Five great films to bring in the new year

Five great films to bring in the new year

Happy New Year?

Some people hate New Year’s Eve, but I am all for it. I agree it is tedious to give things up, but think of all the new things you can take up: You can go on exciting trips (by train, have to watch that carbon footprint); learn foreign languages; take up new hobbies; aim for fitness goals; meet work and personal challenges; create prize-winning campaigns. Or you could always try some new vices… whatever rocks your boat.  

Some people also hate New Year’s parties. So for those of you who want to sit at home in front of the TV and then have an early night, here are some films that show other people celebrating (or not) the end of the year.

The Apartment

This 1960 American romantic comedy has three magic ingredients: First it was directed by that genius Billy Wilder, second it stars the king of comedy Jack Lemmon and third it has the queen of pathos Shirley MacLaine. It puts you through the wringer (aren’t some men bastards?), but then it gives you  a warm, happy ending, spoiler alert, which is preceded by a new year’s eve party, when everything become clear. As it says at the end: “Shut up and deal!”

When Harry Met Sally

Forget the orgasm in the café scene, the real star of the show is the finale new year’s eve party. Everyone go “Aaah!”.Must be one of best romantic comedies of all time. It will set you up for a very happy New Year’s Day, after you have shed a few tears of course. Nora Ephron’s fabulous script is brilliantly directed by Rob Reiner and brought to life by Meg Ryan and Billy Crystal.

The Poseidon Adventure

This will make you realise just how lucky you are to be sitting watching this in the safety of your home (don’t watch this if you are on a cruise). This disaster movie, directed by Ronald Neame, shows a ship overturned by a wave on New Year’s Eve, leaving a few remaining people trapped inside fighting for their lives. You can’t beat a good disaster movie for cheering you up. The great cast is topped by Gene Hackman, Ernest Borgnine and Shelley Winters.

Sunset Boulevard

Lights! Camera! Action! Are you ready for your close-up? This most classic of all classic films is yet another brilliant effort from Billy Wilder. A film noir is a great choice if your mood is dark, and the fantastic Gloria Swanson, playing the lead Norma Desmond, is a reminder of how deluded we can all be. Not YOU of course. One of the highlights has to be the New Year’s Eve party where the character Joe Gillis (played by William Holden) is the only guest of the terrifying Norma.

Bridget Jones Diary

What? Another romantic comedy? I didn’t even realise I was a sucker for them until I picked these films. But I know I am a big fan of Colin Firth, so had to include a film of his. Hugh Grant is his dastardly best and Renee Zellweger’s English accent is spot on, always a treat to see an American play one of us (let’s not mention Dick Van Dyke in Mary Poppins, he gets very upset about that, apparently). The film takes us through one year of Bridget’s life and ends, on New Year’s Eve, with THAT kiss in the snow (sorry, another spoiler).

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