Festive films provide Christmas spirit

This holiday season take advantage of the balmy outdoor weather and relax with some movies under the stars.

Camana Bay is bringing back its popular summer-time Moonlight and Movies evening for a three-nights-only run of those Christmas classics that get everyone in a festive mood. Featuring comedy Elf, starring Will Ferrell, the animated feature The Polar Express and the classic Miracle on 34th Street, the line-up offers something for everyone.

In conjunction with the films, which begin at 7pm, each night there will be ‘snow’ at Camana Bay from 6pm to 8pm, so kids can enjoy playing in the snow prior to, after or during the film.

Periwinkle restaurant at the Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman, has been running its nightly movies ever since re-opening this fall, and the options will take on a Christmassy feel as the holiday nears. A movie will play every night, starting at 6.30pm, and all are family friendly.

‘Date nights’ refer to movies that are particularly appealing to couples, and Ambassadors of the Environment evenings include a brief informational session hosted by one of the Ritz-Carlton’s Ambassadors of the Environment staff. The presentation would pertain to the film being shown.

‘During the month of December, in true Periwinkle fashion, families and friends can gather for the islands original dinner and a movie to watch holiday classics,’ said Peter Frascarelli, manager of Periwinkle. ‘Periwinkle’s is the only experience where families can enjoy world-class cuisine and service while enjoying a favourite movie on our 16-foot screen.’

Rowena Tee, manager of events and public programming at Camana Bay, said: ‘The Moonlight and Movies summer series was a huge success – not just with families with children, but with a broad cross section of the community as well.

‘For many people, watching Christmas movies together with their family and friends is part of their traditional lead up to Christmas. The Moonlight and Movies Christmas series gives them the opportunity to indulge in this pasttime, while also taking advantage of the seasonal Christmas breezes and cooler temperatures.’

Synopses of the Christmas-themed films scheduled to be shown at both Camana Bay and Periwinkle restaurant are below.

Noel (2004)

Stars Penelope Cruz, Susan Sarandon, Alan Arkin and Paul Walker

It’s Christmas Eve in New York, and the lives of five different characters will soon intertwine, from divorced publisher Rose Collins to Nina Vasquez, who has just broken off her engagement with Mike, who is stalked by bartender Artie Venezuela, to Jules, who wants to spend Christmas Eve in hospital.

Elf (2003)

Stars Will Ferrell, Zooey Deschanel, Mary Steenburgen and James Caan

Buddy was a baby in an orphanage who stowed away in Santa’s sack and ended up at the North Pole. Later, as an adult human who happened to be raised by elves, Santa allows him to go to New York City to find his birth father, Walter Hobbs. When Walter’s relationship with Buddy interferes with his job, he is forced to re-evaluate his priorities.

A Christmas Carol (2004)

Starring Kelsey Grammer, Jane Krakowski, Jason Alexander and Jennifer Love Hewitt

Miser Ebenezer Scrooge is awakened on Christmas Eve by spirits who reveal to him his own miserable existence, what opportunities he wasted in his youth, his current cruelties, and the dire fate that awaits him if he does not change his ways. Scrooge is faced with his own story of growing bitterness and meanness, and must decide what his own future will hold: death or redemption.

The Polar Express (2004)

Voiced by Tom Hanks, Leslie Zemeckis, Eddie Deezen and Nona Gaye

Santa Claus does not exist. Or does he? For one doubting boy, an astonishing event occurs. Late on Christmas Eve, a steam engine’s roar and whistle can be heard outside his window. The conductor invites him on board to take an extraordinary journey to the North Pole with many other pyjama-clad children. There, he receives an extraordinary gift only those who still believe in Santa can experience.

Jingle all the Way (1996)

Starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sinbad, Phil Hartman and Rita Wilson

When Howard misses his son’s karate practice, he makes peace by promising his son the hugely popular Turbo Man doll for Christmas. On the day of Christmas Eve, Howard races to try to get his son the cherished toy. While Howard is going insane trying to find the doll, his son is wondering where his father is, and his neighbour is putting the moves on his wife.

The Santa Clause (1994)

Starring Tim Allen, Wendy Crewson, Judge Reinhold and Eric Lloyd

On Christmas Eve, Scott Calvin reads The Night Before Christmas… to his six-year-old son, then receives an unexpected visitor on his roof. What Scott finds is an eight-reindeer sleigh and a suit with instructions to put it on. Scott does, and is transported around the town dropping gifts through chimneys until he’s taken to the North Pole and informed by a group who claim they’re elves that he is now Santa. Scott eventually accepts the truth, but there’s one problem: how to keep it secret from his disbelieving family?

Miracle on 34th Street (1947)

Starring Maureen O’Hara, Natalie Wood, John Payne and Edmund Gwenn

Before Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade, an old man reveals that the store’s Santa Claus is an old drunk, so the store’s special events director Doris Walker convinces the old man to replace him as Santa Claus. Doris soon learns that the man calls himself Kris Kringle and he claims to be the actual Santa Claus. Eventually, Kris finds himself held at Bellevue where, in despair, he deliberately fails a mental examination to ensure his commitment. All seems lost until Doris’ friend, Fred Gaily, reassures Kris of his worth and agrees to represent him in the fight to secure his release.

Miracle on 34th Street (1994)

Starring Richard Attenborough, Elizabeth Perkins, Dylan McDermott and J.T. Walsh

A little girl discovers dreams do come true if you really believe. Six-year-old Susan has doubts about childhood’s most enduring miracle – Santa Claus. Her mother told her the “secret” about Santa a long time ago, so Susan doesn’t expect to receive the most important gifts on her Christmas list. But after meeting a special department store Santa who’s convinced he’s the real thing, Susan is given the most precious gift of all – something to believe in.

A Christmas Story (1983)

Starring Melinda Dillon, Darren McGavin, Peter Billingsley and Ian Petrella

It’s Christmas time and there’s only one thing on Ralphie Parker’s Christmas list this year: a Red Ryder Carbine Action 200-Shot, Range Model Air Rifle, but many obstacles stand in the way of his dream because every adult that he confronts keeps telling him he’ll shoot his eye out. Christmas is drawing nearer and Ralphie visits Santa at the department store in hopes of asking him for his dream gift. Will he receive it? Let’s hope so.