Manchester's festive film: Wishing you a very (Bill) Murray Christmas

Emma Nuttall

‘Tis the season for a festive film – don’t miss Will Ferrell screaming “Santaaa”, a bunch of Muppets and a ghostly double bill.

Baby, it’s getting cold outside – and despite a bunch of festive events happening in December, it’s becoming all to easy to surrender to the great indoors. So how to get the best of both worlds? Festive films, of course.

HOME has lined up a festive season and titled it Do you believe in Santa? Hard not to when he appears in Miracle on 34th Street (23 Dec), Elf (19 & 20 December) and in a rather more disreputable fashion in Bad Santa (18 Dec). Also on show as part of the season are It’s a Wonderful Life (because obviously, 15-18 Dec), Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale (19 Dec), Gremlins (21 Dec) and Panto (22 Dec).

Manchester Cathedral has organised back to back Christmas Movie Nights showing family favourites including holiday staple The Muppet Christmas Carol (the Muppets, in our opinion, take the Christmas advert crown – or giant crumpet) and Elf (both 4 Dec), with Will Farrell starring as Buddy, a ridiculous human being who has spent his whole life believing himself to be an elf. The films continue over the weekend: get your tissues at the ready for The Snowman followed by the epic modern Disney classic, Frozen.

HOME has lined up a festive season and titled it Do you believe in Santa?

Bill Murray is at the heart of in Grimm Up North’s ghostly double-bill featuring Scrooged and Ghostbusters. Screened in the creepy Ordsall Hall on 10 December, you’ll be getting what, arguably, are two of the greatest Murray movies in one sitting.

It’s also worth making a trip over to Liverpool, where FACT also has a smattering of festive films throughout December. White Christmas  (13 & 16 Dec) follows the dreams of Bob Wallace and Phil Davis as they team up to become a hit song-and-dance act, while Home Alone (19 & 20 Dec) is the beloved 90’s classic about a young boy named Kevin who is accidentally left behind when his family takes off for a vacation in France over the holiday season.

For something a little more grown-up, indulge yourself with Film and Festive Afternoon Tea ticket at The Liverpool Philharmonic on Christmas Eve. Traditional afternoon tea is served in the form of sandwiches and savoury goodies alongside a showing of It’s A Wonderful Life – the ultimate feel-good piece of cinematic history!

Culture Guides

Cinema

It’s all about Halloween this month as screens fill up with iconic monsters, brand new scary movies and all sorts of esoteric terrors.

Exhibitions

Welcome the autumnal season with all of the art goodness that it brings – there are so many brand new exhibitions to see!

Families

As we say bye to the summer holidays and begin to welcome in the cooler months, Manchester’s events and activities continue to bring joy and fun to families.

Kamila Shamsie. Photo Alex von Tunzelman

Literature

There are plenty of online readings and live launches as Manchester and the North welcomes some great writers with book festival season getting underway, and there are loads of new spoken word nights and open mics to check out…

Music

Autumn’s a fine old time for gigs in Manchester and the North. From otherworldly folk to life-affirming soul, here are our top picks for October onwards.

Theatre in Manchester and the North

Theatre

Punchy new writing, anarchic Shakespeare and a chilling vampire love story feature in this month’s eclectic pick of live theatre.

Classical Music in Manchester and the North

We preview the standout classical music events and venues in Manchester and the north.

Food and Drink

Explore the best restaurants and bars in Manchester and the North as we head into autumn.

Tours and Activities

Every season change is an excuse to try something new, and when it comes to tours and activities, autumn delivers!