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The Watch List: 10 Movies and TV Shows to See

Find out which movies and TV shows author John Semley recommends you watch this month.

1 / 10

The Bang Bang Club

Canadian-raised south-of-the-border stars Malin Akerman and Taylor Kitsch play photo junkies bent on capturing the violence and excitement of South Africa at the end of apartheid. Based on the true story of four international photojournalists, this 2010 drama unspools as part of the Reel Alternatives program. In Vanderhoof, B.C., January 18.


2 / 10

Canada’s Top Ten

The very best in homegrown features and shorts-lovingly selected annually by a panel of prominent directors, programmers and critics-screen at the TIFF Bell Lightbox. In Toronto January 5 to 15.


3 / 10

Crazy Horse

American documentary master Frederick Wiseman takes viewers (and voyeurs) behind the scenes of Paris’s legendary burlesque house as its staff creates a new extravaganza, the aptly named Désirs. In selected theatres January 18.


4 / 10

The Guard

This brassy buddy-cop comedy from Ireland isn’t for everyone, but writer-director John Michael McDonagh invests fresh, foul-mouthed energy into the formula. It screens at the Galaxy Cinema as part of the Midland Film Series. In Midland, Ont., January 11.


5 / 10

Midnight in Paris

Woody Allen’s movie-a-year habit means a lot of his newer flicks haven’t quite measured up to Annie Hall and Crimes and Misdemeanors. A nod to Alberta’s Innisfail Library, then, for bringing one of Allen’s best in recent memory, Midnight in Paris, to the Century Theatre. In Innisfail, Alta., January 15.


6 / 10

Take Shelter

Jeff Nichols’s astonishing apocalyptic family drama features Michael Shannon-a rumoured contender for Best Actor at this year’s Oscars-in a tremendous performance as a troubled family man. Belleville residents can weigh in on Shannon’s worthiness at the Empire Theatre during the Quinte Film Alternative series. In Belleville, Ont., January 18.


7 / 10

Little Mosque on the Prairie

The multiculti sitcom that gently raised awareness (and a fair number of American eyebrows) about Muslim life in small-town Canada has been an international success since launching in 2007. The show kicks off its final season this month. January 9 on CBC.


8 / 10


Hurry hard! One of the most exciting events in international curling, the 2012 World Financial Group Continental Cup of Curling (say that five times fast!) is broadcasting from Langley, B.C. On TSN January 12 to 15.

9 / 10

Canada’s Greatest Know It All

This new game show pits ten of the nation’s brainiest and most industrious problem solvers against one another in a battle to see who’s the most MacGyverish of them all. Premieres on the Discovery Channel January 30.

10 / 10

Republic of Doyle

To the great delight of comedy, drama and crime-procedural lovers (who’s left?), Newfoundland’s favourite private eye returns to the airwaves for a third season. And a certain Oscar-winning Aussie will be joining him this year-Russell Crowe is guest-starring in an upcoming episode, rumour has it, as an associate of Doyle’s. January 11 on CBC.