Elizabeth posterI was really hoping they were going to to call the Elizabeth sequel Elizabeth II but instead it is Elizabeth: The Golden Age. Co-artistic-director-designate of the Sydney Theatre Company and Elf Queen, Cate Blanchett returns to play Elizabeth. She’s still fighting catholics but this time they are amassed off the coast in an Armada. Clive Owen plays Errol Flynn as Walter Raleigh. Penthouse, Readings, Lighthouse Petone, Rialto, Sky City Queensgate, Embassy

Christmas is here and the first “holiday” movie off the rank is Fred Claus at Readings, Regent-on-Manners and Sky City Queensgate. Paul Giamatti is Santa and Vince Vaughan plays his layabout little brother Fred (a bit like Billy Carter or Roger Clinton).

Older readers will remember the days when Kevin Costner was the biggest star in the Hollywood firmament. Despite some career mis-steps he remains a watchable performer and this week he flicks the serial killer switch in Mr Brooks at Readings, Regent-on-Manners, Sky City Queensgate. The twist is that William Hurt plays his alter-ego, a bit like Jekyll and Hyde.

Finally, a potential arthouse treat at the Paramount. Golden Door follows turn of the century immigrants from Sicily to Ellis Island and stars Charlotte Gainsbourg. It won six awards at the 2006 Venice Film Festival including the Silver Lion.

All these films will be reviewed at Funerals & Snakes next Wednesday (and in print in the Capital Times on the same day) .