It’s just over a month until the big day, that time when we all gather around a big tree in the morning and pretend that a chubby bloke somehow managed to sneak into the house in the middle of the night and leave a selection of suitable gifts. Even when we’ve all known for a long time that Santa isn’t real I like to think that Christmas is more fun when we continue to pretend he is. That means that suitable gifts picked with care should be the order of the day for those celebrating the big holiday. For anyone stumped this year when it comes to getting a gift for a film fan that they know, I offer up these suggestions.
1. Straightforward DVD and Blu-ray choices are all well and good if you know that they will be appreciated. If you have kids to buy for then I recommend Brave (which is out in about a week), Arthur Christmas (out yesterday – pictured) and The Pirates! In An Adventure With Scientists (which has been out for a while).
2. For the older film buffs I recommend Prometheus (love or hate it, it’s one of the must-see movies of the year), The Dark Knight Rises (another must-see) and the American Blu-ray of The Avengers. Getting the American disc means that you get some nice extras and commentary track and also don’t have to put up with the Brit-centric retitling of the film (Avengers Assemble). It plays in all regions so don’t worry about that either.
3. I used to hate getting clothes for Christmas but now I am quite appreciative of anything that expands my wardrobe. A nice shirt or suit is all well and good but I also love receiving any tops from the following sites – Dark Bunny Tees is my absolute favourite at the moment (I have about 6 t-shirts from them to back this up and have my eye on two of the newer designs already) but I also recommend the sublime Last Exit To Nowhere and the very cool Arcane Movie Tees. Some designs are obvious, some are very subtle indeed. All of them are pretty brilliant.
4. A night out at the cinema is great, especially when you don’t have to pay. That’s why a gift certificate for any big cinema or local independent cinema is actually a nice gift. They even do packages now, I believe, that include snacks, etc. It may seem easy and thoughtless but it’s a great little pressie. Believe me, if I’d actually paid with my own money to see I Am Legend then blood may have been spilled.
5. Show me a film fan that wouldn’t want something like this. Pop-tastic.
6. Remember that the Indiana Jones movies are now on Blu-ray? Well, you can be damn sure that the film fan in your life hasn’t forgotten that fact.
7. Of course, many movies started off as books or comic books and for the film fan who is also quite well-read a selection of reading material related to some upcoming big releases would probably be most appreciated. You might need to dig around a little to find out what bestsellers have also been optioned for movie adaptations that are definitely going full steam ahead but it’s very rewarding to give someone a small pile of reading material that whets their appetites for the movie year ahead. World War Z springs to mind, as does The Wolf Of Wall Street, The Hobbit, Ender’s Game and Horns.
8. Give props to the film buff that you love by giving . . . . . . . umm . . . . . . props to the film buff that you love. Prop Store (here) is one of the many businesses that can offer something unique and very collectible.
9. A subscription to a service such as LoveFilm or Netflix? Since I signed up with the former I’ve never looked back and wonder why I put it off for so long. Trust me, if someone you know likes to watch movies but doesn’t have such a service yet then they will really appreciate it.
10. Hardware. Oh yes, Santa sometimes loves people enough to bring along some tech. People sometimes need a new DVD player or maybe they have been debating whether or not to upgrade to Blu-ray (and do remember that every Blu-ray player also plays DVDs). If you’re after one main present then there are some great packages available out there. Even surround sound systems aren’t as expensive as they used to be and a great audio set-up is sometimes forgotten by even the most avid film fan who has to prioritise other things above any such luxuries.
Spend as little or as much as you want to, the main thing is to put a bit of thought into the gift-buying process. A £5 gift that shows care and affection is as good as anything else placed under the Christmas tree at this time of year.