Saturday 7 December 2013

Festive Viewing - Light-Hearted Fun to Hideous Horror

Today feels like a good day to post this, my partner is making me watch Babe (1995) as I've never watched it before (read the book when I was younger) even though he's been crying throughout the film, I will be in floods by the end!
Every year, like most people, I have a tradition. There are certain films and TV series I try and fit in before Christmas. I usually start in November with Groundhog Day (1993) but the month passed so quickly that I'm determined not to miss my other usual viewings so what is on my line up?

Now I have a load of films I like to watch:

The Christmas Toy (1986)
Santa Claus: the Movie (1985)
A Christmas Story (1983)
Scrooged (1988)
Black Christmas (1974)
Silent Night, Deadly Night (1984)
Christmas Evil (1980)

I think you can see that most of the Christmas films I watch are my era, I grew up watching Santa Claus: 

The Movie, I used to start watching around October time! The Christmas Toy was another one I watched repeatedly as a youngster the story of what happens when toys are left alone and the tremendous stress they suffer each year when a new toy comes in to take their place as the kids favourite toy. Scrooged was a film I used to sneakily watch at night, I had my own TV when I was about 8/9, I was always a night owl so would stay up late watching things I shouldn't.

My favourite viewing has to be a Bob Clark Double bill, A Christmas Story followed by Black Christmas. Two totally different films but with a common theme, Christmas and a common director, Bob Clark. That is where the similarities end, A Christmas Story is a very funny tale of one young lads Christmas wish, the run up to Christmas and general family life whereas Black Christmas is a full on Christmas slasher.

Speaking of slashers if you do love a good horror at Christmas you can't beat Silent Night, Deadly Night or Christmas Evil, nuff said.

On top of that my TV viewing changes too, I love that Gold show all the classic Christmas specials but I also love a good ghost story at Christmas.

Last year I was very excited when BFI released the gorgeous Ghost Stories for Christmas box set, the majority are M.R. James tales, I've had a copy of The Signal-man (1976) for years, I watch it every year before Christmas and I had watched both A Warning to the Curious (1972) and Whistle and I'll Come to You (1968) but didn't own them but I hadn't got them all. Now in this box set I have those three plus The Stalls of Barchester (1971), Lost Hearts (1973), The Treasure of Abbot Thomas (1974), The Ash Tree (1975), Stigma (1977), The Ice House (1978), A View from a Hill (2005), Number 13 (2006), Whistle and I’ll Come to You (2010). I really don't think there are as many films or TV shows as creepy or atmospheric as this series was which is one reason I'll be pulling this out for many a Christmas to come. See trailer for the box set below!

There have been plenty of exciting releases from BFI this year, especially in the lines of creepy, supernatural horror series. Supernatural, a British Gothic horror series with ghosts, werewolves and vampires. Neither myself or James were around the first time it was broadcast so a complete blind buy but I can guarantee it will be my thing.

Now Classic Ghost Stories of M.R. James. We were looking forward to The Mezzotint as both James and I love the story, so we popped it on the other night, it scared the crap out of us, James had to search the house at one point! These are only short so we're trying to pace ourselves. Nothing beats a Gothic horror story at Christmas.

Last up Dead of Night, I am obsessed with horror anthology, the more old TV series like this released the better. I had watched the episode The Exorcism but hadn't seen any others and unfortunately only a few episodes exist, however in my eyes three episodes are better than none and these will be adding to that festive feeling.
What festive-ish film do you watch every single year?


  1. I love The Christmas Story! lOvely blog!

    Cherri from

    1. It always cracks me up, it's nice to have a Christmas film that is sweet, funny but not too saccharin! xx