TV Picks of the Week – Christmas Edition

TV Picks of the Week – Christmas Edition By Lisa Jewell

Christmas – there is no better time of the year to take up residence on the couch and watch some great telly. Here’s our pick of the shows to watch this festive period.

Film – Gone Girl

Saturday 23 December, 9.45pm, RTE One

The popular page turner by Gillian Flynn comes to the big screen with a cast including Ben Affleck and Rosamund Pike and directed by the modern master of suspense, David Fincher.

Pike stars as Amy who mysteriously disappears on the day of her wedding anniversary. When husband Nick finds scenes of a struggle at their house and no Amy to be found, he contacts the police but soon finds that he is under suspicion. A turn in the plot leads onto a very different second half of the film – something that comes together much better in the book than in the film. As we know, the book is always better than the film….but the film still acquits itself as a gripping thriller that stays with you long after.

Film – Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory

Monday 25 December, 6.05pm, RTE2

Fear not, the 1971 classic children’s film makes it to our big screens once again on Christmas Day. And the day just wouldn’t be the same without Gene Wilder singing and tumbling around the chocolate factory or Grandpa jumping out of bed to escort Charlie on his special VIP visit.

It’s curious how the film always ends up alternating between different stations on Christmas Day – this year, it’s RTE2, last year it was TV3 and it often turns up early morning on TG4. It’s almost like they take turns each year, in the sharing Christmas spirit!

Film – Brooklyn

Monday 25 December, 9.35pm, RTE One

Top notch drama here as the 2015 film gets its premiere on Irish TV. Saoirse Ronan got her second Oscar nomination for her role as Eilis who is leading a very ordinary life in 1950s Wexford until an opportunity to move to the States comes along. She pines for home but slowly starts to adjust to her new life in Brooklyn.

A quick trip home pulls at her heartstrings and she struggles as to whether home is Ireland or her newfound life in Brooklyn. Domhnall Gleeson also stars alongside Julie Walters, Jim Broadbent and Jane Brennan in this very moving film, adapted from Colm Toibin’s novel.

Film – Jurassic World

Tuesday 26 December, 6.25pm, RTE One

No sequel in the Jurassic film series is ever going to top the impact that the first film, Jurassic Park, had on its release. Once you reconcile yourself to that, you’re in for a rollicking good ride with Jurassic World.

Chris Pratt turns in a great performance as a raptor trainer extraordinaire while Bryce Dallas Howard is a very controlled manager of what is effectively a zoo for dinosaurs, built from the abandoned Jurassic Park. Of course, history is doomed to repeat itself as a newfangled hybrid of a T-Rex and a raptor is far more sophisticated than its captors.

Documentary – Oasis: Supersonic

Wednesday 27 December, 10pm, BBC Two

Fantastic documentary that blends live concert footage and in-depth interviews from back in the day and the present day. If you’ve ever wondered about the background to the Gallagher brothers’ big rift, you’ll see the back story here.

Entertainment – Baz and Nancy’s Holy Show

Wednesday 27 December, 11.15pm, RTE One

Baz and his mum Nancy team up once again as the matriarch is approaching her 75th birthday. Baz really wants to get her a gift that would mean a lot to her – can he present her with a chance to see the Pope?




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