It’s mid-January, and it’s safe to say both Mrs Luxford and I need a holiday. Like lots of people we’re dealing with the post-Christmas pinch, and getting back into the swing of things. A few days off in February have become our light at the end of the tunnel, but before then there’s a lot of cinematic detritus to get through.

In my industry, cynicism is as common a hazard as dodgy pre-screening sandwiches or those pens with the lights on them (very annoying if you’re sat next to one). It’s something I actively try to avoid – there are enough cynical film critics in the world – but we are coming up to the point where such a condition is hard to escape from. You see, this time of year can be a bit of a dead zone for movies.

This year isn’t so bad, with at least one solid movie released every week up until March (when traditionally some edgier releases come out – 300, Watchmen, and Kick-Ass for example), but also January and February are also fertile ground for movies the studio had no idea what to do with. As such, it makes things very difficult not to pre-judge, with a prime example coming up next week – the remake of Robocop.

I’ve been desperately trying to keep positive on this, even though I’m a huge fan of the original and don’t see why this needs a remake (although, is any remake really needed?). However, everything about the release screams ‘flop’, or at the least ‘disappointing’.

It’s released on February 7, which begs the question why such a well-known brand wasn’t released in the summer, or at least ‘edgy March’. Then there was the screening invite. While I’m sure the bigger outlets will have some sort of advance secret screening, the majority of critics will be seeing it on the evening before, hours before we could just walk in a cinema and see it. I’m sure you don’t need to be a cinema expert to imagine that this sort of scheduling rarely bodes well, and makes it hard to have high expectations.

However, in the spirit of the New Year, I will keep positive. It has a very strong cast (Gary Oldman, Samuel L Jackson), a capable director, and even the new Robocop suit (which I’ve been told off on Twitter for criticising in the past) is growing on me. Who knows, it might be so darned good they just want to let the movie speak for itself (hey, it’s possible). I’m also reminded of the first time I had my expectations completely proved wrong. I was invited along to Disney’s Enchanted which, on the face of it, was a movie about a cartoon Princess transported to the real world.

I thought it would be a very lazy, conveyor belt family movie, and could not have been more wrong. Ever since then, that screening has reminded me to keep my mind open, even with the ropiest looking movie, because cinema has a funny habit of surprising you.