This week, Tara Judah and Peter Walsh glance at the calendar and talk about Christmas movies old and new.

Frank Capra’s It’s A Wonderful Life has been analysed inside and out for decades as either the most joyous or the least joyous Christmas film in existence. Capra being Capra, it supports both theories, although some feel the argument was put to bed by Peter Capaldi when he made Franz Kafka’s It’s a Wonderful Life and won an Oscar and a BAFTA for it.

A New York midnight screening of Love Actually was live-tweeted by Emma Freud this week, who gamely noted the number of people who had bought tickets to watch it. Who’s to say they didn’t go home happy?

If you are very quick you can catch Gremlins and Gremlins 2: The New Batch at Bristol’s Cube cinema on 17th December, and watch Phoebe Cates deliver the darkest and most self-aware Christmas-related film joke of all, spread over two movies and five years. Joe Dante is the subject of a fine book from the Austrian Film Museum, allowing Dante to take his rightful position rubbing shoulders with Dziga Vertov and Hou Hsiao-hsien.