Five Must-See Movies in February

Glenn Close and Mia Wasikowska in Albert Nobbs
Glenn Close and Mia Wasikowska in Albert Nobbs
Patrick Redmond

Sometimes a movie is a one-night deal, and sometimes it'll stick around for weeks. So when it comes to catching an independent or limited-screening film at a local theater, planning ahead is crucial.

That's why we've selected five must-see flicks screening in the Valley this month. Stock up on salty and sweet snacks and check out our picks ...

5. Albert Nobbs Glenn Close stars as Albert Nobbs in this dramatic look at a woman masquerading as a man in 19th century Ireland -- where being a poor woman was the equivalent of societal worthlessness. For the role, Close garnered an Oscar nom for Best Actress and, as she wrote the lyrics to the film's ballad "Lay Your Head Down," a Golden Globe nomination for Best Original Song.

Albert Nobbs is currently screening at Harkins Camelview 5 in Scottsdale. See details here.

4. About A Boy Looking back at brothers Chris and Paul Weitz's 2002 dramedy About A Boy, it's apparent the film captured more than the story of a burgeoning friendship between a self-absorbed, womanizing man-child and actual, incredibly troubled child. Hugh Grant was at his peak of likeability; Nicholas Hoult in a pre-hottie state. And thanks to all of the above -- plus a heartbreaking/hilarious screenplay adaptation of Nick Hornby's novel -- the flick has become a bona fide classic. (And we can't listen to Killing Me Softly without wondering if we should shut our eyes.)

The movie screens Wednesday, February 8, at 5 p.m. with free pizza served at 5:30. Via video chat, co-director Chris Weitz will discuss the film at 8 p.m. as part of Hollywood Invades Tempe, a series of screenings and lectures hosted by ASU's School of Theatre and Film. The event takes place at ASU Tempe's Education Lecture Hall in room 117. It's free and open to the public. See more here.   3. The Secret World of Arrietty From Japanese artist and filmmaker Hayao Miyazaki's Studio Ghibli (responsible for films such as Ponyo and Spirited Away) comes The Secret World of Arrietty, an adaptation of Mary Norton's children's book series The Borrowers. Think anime Thumbelina with voice acting from Bridgit Mendler, Amy Poehler, Will Arnett, and Carol Burnett.

Upcoming Events

Arrietty opens Friday, February 17.

2. Orthodox Stance From Sunday, February 12, through Sunday, February 26, the Greater Phoenix Jewish Film Festival will screen 11 films at various Harkins Theatres. Our must-see pick from the fest is Jason Hutt's boxing documentary Orthodox Stance, which examines the career of a Brooklyn-via-Ukraine fighter, Dmitriy Salita, who struggles to balance success with being an Orthodox Jew.

Watch it at Harkins Arrowhead 18 on Tuesday, February 21, at 3 p.m. The screening features a talk from former pro fighter Harvey Prezant. Admission is $10. For more on the festival, go here.

1. Leonardo Live Presuming that you didn't make it to the National Gallery in London to view the rare, grand, and now-closed exhibition "Leonardo da Vinci: Painter at the Court of Milan," you'll have a second chance to see what all the well-deserved fuss was about with Leonardo Live. It's a documentary that takes viewers through the collection of works by da Vinci with plenty of up-close views and commentary by art historian Tim Marlow and journalist Mariella Frostrup.

See it Saturday, February 25, at 2 p.m. at Phoenix Art Museum. Admission is $18.

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