You know the type. RTE are unable to afford many new movies for Christmas, especially as nobody really watches TV anymore, so instead they wheel out the same few movies that spend most of the year gathering dust in a cupboard somewhere. The Home Alone films spring to mind, that Father Ted Christmas Episode is another. Christmas Day usually follows a familiar pattern: an older animated movie first, followed by a reasonably new Pixar endeavour and then something with a bit more clout, but still child-friendly like Alice in Wonderland. My own personal bugbear is the Back to the Future Trilogy. They’re on about three different channels EVERY Christmas. They’re quite good but coupled with the fact that ITV2 shows them every two weeks throughout the year as well, it becomes almost unbearable. There’s only so much of Marty McFly antics I can put up with in the festive season.
Christmas also brings out the Western movies in force. I don’t know what John Wayne and Clint Eastwood did to be so beloved by the festive period, but it must have been pretty darn special because their movies, all of which are basically the same, play one after another from mid-December to mid-January in a non-stop homage to a genre that would’ve been best left in the 60s where they belong. These movies and movies like Zulu are the sort of films that your dad will insist are brilliant and a must-watch when he’s putting them on, but which you find as boring as you suspected they would be and, after fifteen minutes, you look across to see him sound asleep and snoring gently, Christmas hat titled comically over his face.