Alan Partridge, The Lone Ranger, Percy Jackson: this week's new films

Coogan's comic alter-ego goes big screen at last, but fear not: he's just as pathetically provincial and inadvertently offensive as he ever was – and just as consistently hilarious.

Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa (15)
(Declan Lowney, 2013, UK) Steve Coogan, Colm Meaney, Sean Pertwee, Felicity Montagu, Anna Maxwell Martin. 90 mins

A siege situation at Partridge's Norfolk radio station is the excuse to "open out" the scenario and explore the talk DJ's latent heroic side, but – as usual – the day is saved by Coogan's deft characterisation, some great writing and a love/hate fascination with Middle English mediocrity.

The Lone Ranger (12A)
(Gore Verbinski, 2013, US) Johnny Depp, Armie Hammer. 149 mins

Where Verbinski and Depp struck a great action-comedy balance with Pirates Of The Caribbean (and Rango), attempts to do the same here result in more of a Wild Wild West: a cluttered, uneven western romp that smacks more of desperation than inspiration.

Foxfire (15)
(Laurent Cantet, 2012, Fra) Raven Adamson, Kate Coseni, Madeleine Bisson, Claire Mazerolle. 144 mins

Cannes-winner Cantet (The Class) takes a surprising detour into 1950s Americana, adapting Joyce Carol Oates's story of a gang of girls railing against the patriarchal order. The pace is leisurely but the tone is smart and literary.

David Bowie Is Happening Now (U) 80 mins. (Tue only)

Live, behind-the-scenes tour of the V&A's closing Bowie exhibition (see Events).

Percy Jackson: Sea Of Monsters (PG)
(Thor Freudenthal, 2013, US) Logan Lerman, Alexandria Daddario, Douglas Smith. 106 mins

Powered by Greek mythology and copious special effects, the unremarkable teen fantasy franchise soldiers on with a monster-filled quest for the Golden Fleece.

Grown Ups 2 (12A) (Denis Dugan, 2013, US) Adam Sandler, Kevin James, Chris Rock. 101 mins

If the first movie didn't satisfy demand to see men behaving a fifth of their age, appetites will surely be sated by this spectacularly unfunny slog, which sees Sandler and co moving back to their hometown.

Looking For Hortense (12A)
(Pascal Bonitzer, 2012, Fra) Jean-Pierre Bacri, Kristin Scott Thomas, Isabelle Carré. 100 mins

Middle-class and middle-age malaises are smartly examined in this Parisian ensemble drama, via a web of storylines touching on marriage, multiculturalism and family ties.

Silence (PG)
(Pat Collins, 2012, Ire/Ger) Andrew Bennett, Marie Coyne, Tommy Fahy. 87 mins

A film that urges us to listen as well as look, this tranquil semi-documentary follows a sound recordist returning to rural Ireland in a quest for unadulterated sound – and (perhaps) spiritual calm.

Chennai Express (12A)
(Rohit Shetty, 2013, Ind) Shahrukh Khan, Deepika Padukone, Rani Mukherjee. 142 mins

A journey to scatter his grandfather's ashes becomes a romantic adventure in Tamil Nadu for Khan.

Out from Friday

Kick-Ass 2More costumed carnage with Aaron Taylor-Johnson's teen vigilantes.

Out from Wed

Once Upon A Time In Mumbai Dobaara

Akshay Kumar's Indian gangster boss looks to expand his empire.

Out from Thu

2 Guns

Denzel Washington and Mark Wahlberg make for novel law-enforcement buddies.


A Chilean earthquake turns a night of fun into a survival scenario.

Call Girl

Politics and prostitution mix in this 1970s-set Swedish drama.


Kirsten Dunst and pals give Rebel Wilson's bride a night to forget.

The Big City

Satyajit Ray's 1963 drama, focusing on a Calcutta housewife.


The mixed fortunes of a Turkish immigrant family in Austria.


Aerial kids' fun from the franchise that brought you Cars.

When The Dragon Swallowed The Sun

Documentary bringing the Tibetan struggle for independence up to date.

Coming soon

In two weeks... Matt Damon starts a sci-fi class war in Elysium … Amanda Seyfried does 70s porn life in Lovelace

In three weeks... Teen summer holiday pains in comedy The Way, Way Back … Shane Carruth's sci-fi headscratcher Upstream Colour

In a month... Richard Curtis's sci-fi About Time … Channing Tatum saves the president in White House Down

Powered by article was written by Steve Rose, for The Guardian on Saturday 10th August 2013 06.00 Europe/London © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010


image: © nicogenin