THE eagerly-awaited Hobbit film makes its entrance on Thursday at Wareham Rex and Salisbury Odeon, a day ahead of the national release.
At the same time, film societies across the area are showing their final films of 2012 during the coming week.
Today, Friday, at the Rex Cinema in Wareham, audiences can see Gambit, the updating of the 1960s comedy heist film now starring Colin Firth, Alan Rickman and Cameron Diaz. It is on for seven nights, with an earlier screening on Thursday 13th December to allow for The Hobbit.
Also at the Rex tomorrow, Saturday, you can see the Beatles classic A Hard Day's Night, starting at 6pm.
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And there are two screenings of the family film When Santa Fell to Earth, this weekend on Saturday at 2.15 and Sunday at 1.30. Based on Cornelia Funke's best selling children's book, it's the story of what happens when Father Christmas has an accident, and two children have to get the traditional holiday festivities back on track.
The new films at Poole's Lighthouse Cinema from today, Friday, to next Thursday 13th December, are The Sapphires and Argo.
The Sapphires are a girl group based in the Australian outback in the 1960s, and their dream is to play for US troops in Vietnam. The man who can help them is a drunken Irish talent show host and soul fanatic, played by Chris O'Dowd.
Argo, directed by Ben Affleck, is based on the real events that surrounded the Revolutionary Guard's 1979 attack on the US embassy in Tehran and the subsequent hostage crisis. (See more below).
Tomorrow, Saturday, there's a screening of the Christmas favourite The Polar Express at The Hub in Verwood at 2pm. On the night before Christmas a doubting boy is at home in bed when a train thunders up to his house, and he's invited on board. The magical locomotive is headed for Santa's home at the North Pole.
The Movie at Athelhampton this Sunday, and on Tuesday 11th December, is Saturday Night Fever, in which John Travolta boogied his way into the hearts of a generation, to the backing of the sounds of the BeeGees.
The final Athelhampton film for 2012 is only showing next Sunday 16th, and it's From Time to Time, the film made in the house outside Puddletown.
From Monday to Wednesday next week, the Tivoli in Wimborne will show The Joy of Six, six short films (one directed by Romola Garai) and starring, among others, Judi Dench, Luke Treadaway and Tom Hiddleston.
From Monday 10th to Thursday 13th December, the Regent Centre in Christchurch is showing Argo, a film with a fascinating history. During 1979 and 1980, Variety, the film industry bible, carried adverts for a major new sci-fi rival to Star Wars. But the film, which was Argo, was withheld from public few and only a few industry insiders knew why ... until the CIA declassified documents about the film 17 years later.
In 1975, fundamentalists in Iran stormed the US Embassy in Tehran, taking 52 hostages. Six US diplomats had escaped to the Canadian Embassy, and this is the film about how they were rescued.
CIA agent Tony Mendez just happened to be watching Planet of the Apes, when he had a brainwave. He set up a phoney film and smuggled the Tehran six out, disguised as a Canadian film crew, who had been looking for film locations.
Hollywood was brought on board in a joint operation with the CIA. A script was written and purchased, readings were held at the Beverley Hills Hilton and adverts placed in Variety. Passports were then doctored with Canadian help and it's mission on.
The films at Salisbury Odeon this week, from today, Friday 7th to Thursday 13th December, are Great Expectations, Nativity 2: Danger in the Manger, Rise of the Guardians, Silver Linings Playbook, Skyfall and Twilight Breaking Dawn Part 2.
The Odeon Kids film, showing on Saturday and Sunday at 11am, is Hotel Transylvania and the Senior Screen is The Perks of Being a Wallflower, on at 11am next Wednesday 12th December.