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Miss Sloane

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Elizabeth Sloane is a high-powered Washington political lobbyist at the top of her game, but makes a surprise career move when presented with the chance to take on the gun lobby on a bill to enforce background checks for all on gun buyers. Does she really believe in the cause, or is she simply intrigued by the challenge of “winning big, bigger than I ever have before”, despite the formidable opposition of the well-funded gun lobby…

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Arrival

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Arrival is a thoughtful science fiction film, about as far from “Independence Day” as it is possible to get, though the special effects are impressive in their own way. The basic premise is that aliens have landed around the world in twelve huge spaceships, but their intent is unclear. At intervals the ships open a gate and admit visitors, and the aliens show themselves behind a huge screen, but what do they want?

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Pawn Sacrifice (6/10)

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The life of chess prodigy Bobby Fischer has rich potential for drama. He was a poor kid from Brooklyn who taught himself chess and became the youngest ever US chess champion. In the Cold War era when the Soviets dominated the game, Fischer was the solitary western player who could compete with the Soviet grandmasters. But the line between genius and madness is a thin one, and it was rarely thinner than in the case of Fischer.

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Trumbo (7/10)

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Dalton Trumbo (Bryan Cranston) was the highest paid screen writer in Hollywood in the late 1940s before he fell foul of the House UnAmerican Activities Commission. In an atmosphere of cold war paranoia senate hearings were held in which suspected communist sympathisers were grilled and asked to betray others, on pain of prison.

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