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

Tours and Activities

In this month’s top picks of Tours and Activities in Manchester, we are featuring the guides who take you into the darker underbelly of the city, as well as some of the more macabre activities.

Exhibitions and art in Manchester

Exhibitions

Autumn is festival season in the visual art world. We preview some familiar favourites alongside a brand-new addition to the scene – brainchild of Manchester’s resident prize-winning peace activist, Qaisra Shahraz.

Theatre in Manchester and the North

Theatre

For this month’s eclectic theatre guide we’ve hunted out exclusive dance events, durational performance and some hair-raising Halloween hijinks.

Cinema

It’s October, and the cinemas of Manchester and the North are taking the opportunity to host all manner of spooky screenings.

Liverpool's Dream Giant Spectacular courtesy Culture Liverpool

Families

See giants in Liverpool, spaghettify yourself in a black hole at Manchester Science Festival, experience spectaculars at the Dashehra Diwali Mela in Manchester and Winter Droving in Penrith. There’s a LOT to do folks.

Writer Eley Williams.

Literature

More spoken word nights are emerging to join our favourite regulars, there are lots of launches and one-offs and workshops and conferences and even walking tours, and tickets are selling like hot cakes for Manchester Literature Festival, the Rochdale Literature & Ideas Festival and Chester Literature Festival.

Music

This month’s music guide features cutting-edge jazz, joyous disco, and singular voices in rock.

Things to do right now

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Cinema 18 July–17 October 2018, from £12.20

Agnès Varda: Pioneer at FACT

The Unreturning
Theatre 16–20 October 2018, from £10.00

The Unreturning at Liverpool Everyman

design manchester 2018
Activity 11–21 October 2018,

Design Manchester 2018

Rochdale Literature & Ideas Festival
Festivals 15–22 October 2018, from £3.00

Rochdale Literature & Ideas Festival

Theatre 24 May–27 October 2018, from £12.50

Rails at Theatre by the Lake

Families 5 May–28 October 2018, from £Quarry Bank admission prices apply (free for National Trust members)

Journeys of the Imagination at Quarry Bank