Christmas films at EFF
We’ve sprinkled some Christmas classics amongst the pick of the mainstream, art house and world cinema releases at Errol Flynn Filmhouse this December.
At the top of the tree is the greatest Christmas film of all time, It’s A Wonderful Life, starring James Stewart as despairing businessman George Bailey. With its emphasis on the importance of friendship and decency over monetary gain, Frank Capra’s bittersweet comedy drama has never seemed more apt. A screening at 5.30pm on Christmas Eve featuring a pre-show performance from Royal & Derngate Community Choir is sold out, but tickets are still available for the 2.30pm screening on Wednesday 18 December. A further screening has just been announced for 12pm on Saturday 21 December, accompanied by The Mistletoe Bough, a two-minute gem of a Christmas ghost story from 1904, featuring some early trick photography, and released as part of the BFI’s Gothic season.
The Muppet Christmas Carol (Saturday 14 December at 3.15pm) stars Michael Caine as Scrooge alongside the Muppet regulars in a surprisingly faithful adaptation of Dickens’ classic. With its famous ice-skating scene, the 1947 romantic comedy The Bishop’s Wife is full of wonderful seasonal atmosphere, starring Cary Grant as a suave angel, David Niven as a troubled clergyman and Loretta Young as his wife. Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious family favourite Mary Poppins is guaranteed to dispel the post-Christmas slump on Sunday 29 December at 2pm. Before that, from Friday 20 December, the heartwarming Saving Mr Banks tells the little-known story of its making, with Emma Thompson as headstrong author P. L. Travers, and Tom Hanks as a persistent Walt Disney. The screening at 5pm on Sunday 22 December will also feature The Mistletoe Bough.
Our last screening of 2013 will be a live broadcast of the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra’s New Year’s Eve Concert, under the baton of Sir Simon Rattle and featuring the brilliant Lang Lang, at 4.30pm on Tuesday 31 December. The programme includes two of the most popular Hungarian Dances by Brahms, three of Dvořák‘s beautiful Slavonic Dances, and Khachaturian‘s famous Sabre Dance.