10 festive films for grown ups on Netflix UK this Christmas
Christmas may be a time for all the family, but every now and then the adults need to get away from the singing, dancing snowmen, and enjoy some more grown up programming over a glass of wine or brandy. Here are our top picks of Netflix UK‘s non-children’s films for the holidays, to be savoured in those golden moments after the kids have gone to sleep.
A Very Murray Christmas (2015)
The legendary deadpan actor recruits countless celebrity friends – including George Clooney, Miley Cyrus, Amy Poehler, Chris Rock, Jason Schwartzman and Michael Cera – in this Sofia Coppola-directed irreverent variety show for the Christmas season.
Happy Christmas (2014)
Anna Kendrick is a loveable twenty-something alcoholic in this analogue comedrama from indie legend Joe Swanberg. Also starring Girls creator Lena Dunham and Swanberg’s adorable real life son Jude, this is not your typical festive fare with a beginning-middle-and-end plot, but rather an alternative look at the holidays via an almost entirely improvised script and ace soundtrack.
Hannah and Her Sisters (1986)
While not Christmassy in the strictest sense of the word, this Academy Award winning wintry classic from real life master of incest Woody Allen certainly sets the tone of a complicated dinner table dynamic, as a trio of sisters and their partners get into enough drama to make your family look normal. Starring a young Michael Caine being a bit of a creep, plus Allen’s then-wife Mia Farrow and several of their real life children, including Allen’s current wife, Soon-Yi Previn.
Blackadder’s Christmas Carol (1988)
A visit from the Spirit of Christmas persuades a kindly Victorian shopkeeper to give meanness a try in this memorable twist on possibly the most reworked holiday tale in history. Set between Blackadder the Third and Blackadder Goes Forth, and narrated by Hugh Laurie, Rowan Atkinson and Tony Robinson are on typically superb comedic form in this special episode for the ages.
“Christmas episodes are always stupid. Cynical cash grabs by greedy corporations looking to squeeze a few extra Nielsen points out of sentimental claptrap for mush-brained idiots who’d rather spend their Christmas watching a fake family on TV than trying to have a conversation with their own dumb families”, rants everyone’s favourite alcoholic horse, who wants nothing to do with Christmas, but is the star of his own Christmas special nonetheless.
Presenting the world’s most beautiful on-screen couple, Penelope Cruz and Paul Walker, this drama also stars Susan Sarandon and Alan Arkin as a group of strangers brought together in the city of New York on one fateful Christmas Eve. A special prize goes to whoever’s first to spot an uncredited Robin Williams!
Knowing Me Knowing Yule (1995)
Arguably the funniest festive comedy special in UK TV history, satirical host Alan Partridge (Steve Coogan) presents this iconic one-off Christmas edition of Knowing Me Knowing You, featuring a golfer who was struck by lightning, and the world’s largest Christmas cracker.
This festive flashback episode of the irreverent cult comedy shows what Sunnyvale Trailer Park was like back in 1997, satisfying die-hard fans’ unanswered questions with an explanation of most characters’ backstories, and acting as a prequel movie to the series proper. Get ready to rewind and rewatch Jim’s famous refrigerator scene over and over again.
It’s A Wonderful Life (1946)
While traditionally dubbed a family favourite, this sentimental black and white drama from Frank Capra does feature a dejected George Bailey poised to jump off a bridge, and at 2 hours and 10 minutes long is a hard sell to the kids, so it’s made it onto our grown up movies list.
Fireplace For Your Home (2010)
While not technically a movie, this festive mainstay is perfect for ‘adult snuggling’ once the little ones are tucked up in bed waiting for Santa Claus. Don’t miss Netflix’s exclusive behind the scenes look as the director of this modern classic creates the hottest fireplace in town.
Check out our full listings of what’s new to Netflix UK this December here.