Good news, movie fans. Sky has launched a brand new channel devoted entirely to Christmas movies. Sky Movies Christmas is available on channel 303 as part of the Sky Movies package, but what to watch? Here are our tips for the best, most unmissable films on TV this holiday period.
10. Home Alone
Home Alone is amongst the all-time great Christmas movies. Here’s the synopsis: Kevin, played by a youthful McCaulay Culkin, is accidentally left behind by his parents who jet off on Christmas vacation. Some might say it’s deliberate, because as it turns out the kid’s slightly nuts — in a good way. Although, it’s probably not so good if you’re the bungling burglars who make the mistake of trying to rob Kevin’s family home, because the boy’s a walking, talking home security system.
The man in the garish yellow tights wreaks havoc on his community of tiny elven friends in the north pole, before being sent to the US in search of his true identity. Once there, he’s life a fish out of water; he gets attacked by animals, stuck in revolving doors, bamboozled by escalators and generally just annoys the hell out of everybody he comes across; fantastic viewing.
8. Bad Santa
Actually ‘Bad’ Santa is a bit of an understatement – he’s awful. In this one a couple of conmen pose as Santa and his Little Helper to rob department stores on Christmas Eve, but run into problems when they come across a kid with issues. Although those issues probably pale in comparison to those faced by the would-be crooks.
7. Miracle On 34th Street
This one’s an oldie, but a goodie. A six-year-old girl has doubts about Santa Claus, but discovers dreams do come true if you truly believe. While she has doubts about the existence of The Bearded One, she still manages to teach us all a thing or two about Christmas spirit. Proper heartwarming stuff.
6. Die Hard
There’s only one legitimate reason to miss Die hard this Christmas — you’re not legally allowed because you’re under 18. Otherwise, you’d better tune in because this is an absolute classic. NYPD officer John McClane is forced to save his wife and her work colleagues from German terrorist Hans Gruber and his cronies, who take over their Christmas party.
5. Jingle All The Way
Arnie’s usually all about the action flicks, but he switched it up for this family favourite, which tells the story of a father’s mission to get hold of a super-exclusive Turbo Man action figure for his son just before Christmas. Sound straightforward for a man who played the Terminator, but it’s more difficult than he bargains for, and obviously hilarity ensues.
4. Disney’s A Christmas Carol
We’re all familiar with the story of Scrooge, but have you seen it animated Disney-style? This is the wonderful tale of Charles Dickens’ classic novel about a Victorian-era miser forced on a journey to save his very soul. It’s heartwarming stuff — just what Christmas is all about.
3. The Santa Clause.
Brilliant story, this one. A dad accidentally kills Santa Claus (or at least unwittingly causes his death) and by a weird quirk of fate ends up hacing to take his place. He actually becomes Santa; his beard grows uncontrollably, he puts on weight, and he has to deliver presents for an entire planet. It’s a tough gig, but a brilliant movie.
2. Love Actually
Everybody’s got time for a bit of soppy romance, right? Actually it’s not that soppy — it’s actually quite hilarious and will inject Christmas cheer in spades. The film’s about how three very different couples deal with their love lives across loosely related stories set during Christmas in London. One for the romantics at heart, this one.
1. Trading Places
Our number 1 pick for Christmas viewing is Trading Places.This one stars Eddie Murphy at his best as a street con artist who swaps places with a city investor as part of a bet by two, shall we say, ‘insensitive’ millionaires. Properly funny movie and one for all the family.
So those are my top 10 movies to watch this Christmas. Watch them on TV with all the family, or if the telly’s been hijacked then fire up your new phone or your new tablet – assuming you’ve been nice, not naughty – and watch them on Sky Go. Happy viewing, people, and Merry Christmas everybody.