This week – the festive spirit is in full swing as Elf leads the Christmas domination of the UK Top 10
“Well, Well!”. This news is a turnup for the books. Bad news for cinemagoers, good news for the home audience. After last week’s announcement that the Warner Bros. superhero sequel ‘Wonder Woman 1984‘ was going to hit cinema screens here in the UK from December 16th, the news has now emerged that the film will open as planned. But in a shock move, it has been rumored that the film will be available at the local multiplex (if it’s actually open) for a MONTH before it will make its streaming debut on PVOD. No announcement has been made regarding the price at this moment in time or whether Sky and Warners have, in reality, agreed on the deal but I would expect it to follow the lead set by Disney earlier this year when it dropped ‘Mulan‘ on PVOD and set the price at £19.99.
However, I can see the film being available for a 48-hour window as a rental only whereas ‘Mulan‘ was £19.99 and it was yours to keep. Those of us who want to see the film on the big screen may be completely out of luck, due to the Tier system. Depending on where you are located, you MAY get the chance to see the film on the silver screen but at the moment, it isn’t looking likely that many will be open outside of London and the places that have a cinema that can be reopened. If your local is a Cineworld however, then you’re seriously out of luck as it appears that the chain won’t be reopening until at least April next year. All requests for details on when the chain will be open again are being rebuffed with a ‘Not in a position to say’ comment. And that isn’t good enough.
So, with that in mind, I welcome you once again to the weekly look at what we are buying for our entertainment. The chart this week once again sees many old favorites reappear in the top ten alongside two brand new entries. Five different titles make an appearance this week and five have to depart. So, it’s with a tear in our eye as we bid goodbye to ‘Dawn Of The Dead‘, ‘Frozen II‘, ‘Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi‘, ‘Tremors-Shrieker Island‘ and ‘Onward’. To be honest with you though, I don’t think this will be the last of ‘Frozen II’ and ‘Onward‘ that we will see before Christmas. Both have shown they have the power to drop out of the top ten, take a breather, and then power their way back up the chart once more. But as for this week, one film has defied the odds and has hit the top spot seventeen years after it was first released. What could it be? Let’s jump into Santa’s sleigh and take a trip to find out.
It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas and it most certainly is for Will Ferrell as his 2003 hit movie ‘Elf‘ rises by a single place but that is all he needed to make himself the UK’s brand new number one title. The family favorite, a classic Christmas film that is loved by almost all who watch it, has hit the top spot for the very first time, seventeen years after it first hit the multiplexes around the world. The film is being shown on Sky and terrestrial TV this holiday season but that hasn’t stopped it from becoming a best-selling title for this year on both the disc formats and digital downloads. And the film deserves its success again. I have to admit that I find the film to be extremely funny, heartwarming and moving and one that is on a regular rotation at my home every year.
With Will Ferrell taking over the top spot, that means that the live-action remake of the Disney animated classic ‘Mulan‘ drops a solitary place to become this week’s silver medal winner. The film has had a hell of a time getting itself released thanks to the pandemic. Originally due to open in March of this year, the film was moved to July, then August before being pulled from cinematic distribution and hit Disney+ PVOD exclusively for a while for the price of £19.99 before being allowed to hit other streaming sites. After its debut on the disc formats a few weeks back, it is scheduled to hit Disney+ for all subscribers this weekend at no extra cost. Its debut on the Disney+ service shouldn’t harm its retail prospects however as the film will make an ideal stocking filler this Christmas.
Emilia Clarke’s wonderfully charming, enjoyable and heartwarming ‘Last Christmas‘ holds on to third place this week. With a great cast, great soundtrack courtesy of the pop group Wham!, and a great script to work from, the film is a delight and one that is perfect for the cold, winter evenings. Emilia Clarke and Henry Golding make the perfect pairing on the screen and the film is surely destined to become one that will be on terrestrial and pay television every year in the future.
Tune-up the singing voice, polish the dancing shoes and get ready for Hugh Jackman and Zac Efron to once again keep you entertained as ‘The Greatest Showman‘ once again takes a top ten place, rising up the charts by seven places from number eleven last week to take this week’s fourth-place finish. Now, although I think the film is pretty good, I actually much prefer the stage version, ‘Barnum’ starring the legendary Michael Crawford to this film version. But despite my opinion and the mixed reviews the film got upon release, it has gone on to be a successful musical based on the true story of P.T Barnum even though it suffers from creative license and takes liberties with the facts. That said, however, Jackman and Efron are outstanding in the film as is Zendaya. Another film that will become a staple on TV in the years to come.
Rounding out the top five this week and using all the force powers at its disposal, the concluding chapter in the ‘Star Wars‘ saga, ‘Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise Of Skywalker‘ manages to..ahem..rise back up the charts by ten places from last week’s number fifteen to become this week’s number five. The film once again split the fanbase down the middle but is an enjoyable end to the ‘Saga’ series of films. It brings the curtain down on forty-three years of the Skywalker saga and allows the franchise to go off in new and exciting directions, as seen in the brilliant streaming series ‘The Mandalorian‘.
We take a rest from the chart for a few moments while we discuss the forthcoming release of ‘The Godfather Coda: The Death Of Michael Corleone‘ which hits Blu-Ray and download and keep from this Monday. The film is, in reality, a newly remastered version of the 1990 film ‘The Godfather Part III‘. Director Francis Ford Coppola wasn’t happy with how the final film in ‘The Godfather‘ trilogy ended up being released. Over the years, he has expressed an interest in going back to the film and changing it so it would become his definitive version. To accomplish this, Coppola has added a brand new opening and ending to the film and has rejigged certain sequences around to make the film flow more freely. Despite the film not being in the same class as the first two films in the trilogy, the third and final installment is still miles ahead of most other Mafia and gangster films that occupy the movie channel listings and play regularly on TV. Grab it in the format of your choice from the 7th of December.
We now return to the top ten by seeing Russell Crowe put on his psychopathic act once more as ‘Unhinged‘ becomes our first new entry this week. Crowe plays an angry man, cursing his luck and the world who happens to become involved in a road rage incident with a young mother (Caren Pistorious) and her young son. The incident is almost like poking a bear with a stick as Crowe’s character becomes enraged and decides to teach the young woman a lesson she will never forget. This leads to all kinds of horror and disturbing things happening as he ramps up his campaign against her. The film opened in several locations this year in a small capacity, thanks to the virus. But despite all the challenges thrown at it and placed in its way, the film managed to make a small profit and continues to slowly draw in the box office cash.
The World War I masterpiece that is ‘1917‘ continues to fight and battle for its chart life despite slipping a single place to become the seventh biggest seller of the past seven days.
Jim Carrey’s tour de force as ‘The Grinch Who Stole Christmas‘ continues to hang on to a chart position although it slips a place to become this week’s eighth best seller. The film is one of the best Christmas films of all time and rumor has it that Carrey has agreed to a deal to return as the loathsome character in several sequels. Nothing more has been reported but the film(s) will need to go some way to even come close to being as good as this magical version.
You can’t keep those pesky creatures down or away from the top ten for too long as ‘Trolls: World Tour‘ decides it wants to return to the top ten placings by rising by seven places from number sixteen to become this week’s ninth-placed film.
And finally, our last new entry arrives in the tenth and final place in this week’s chart. And it has hit the top ten based on downloads alone as Kristen Stewart and Mackenzie Davis drop by in ‘Happiest Season‘. The film concerns Abby (Stewart) and Harper (Davis), two young women who are in a romantic relationship. Both are invited to spend the holidays with Harper’s straight-laced parents and decide to do so. Abby is planning to propose to Harper on Christmas Day. But on the way there, Harper drops a bombshell: She hasn’t as yet come out to her parents and family. Harper introduces Abby as her single roommate to her parents and family, something Abby isn’t happy about. Will the two get their happy ever after? Although I haven’t seen the film as yet, I have heard that the film has been praised highly by the critics and especially the two female leads. The film was destined to be released at the cinema in November but, of course, the pandemic put paid to that and so, it has gone straight to streaming instead.
It appears that the Reindeer require rest and so, our time together touring the top ten is at an end. Thanks again for joining me on the journey of what is making the grade on the home entertainment front. And so, what do YOU think will be among the Christmas films that will appear in the chart over the coming weeks? Drop us a line right here at The Future Of The Force and why not tell us YOUR own personal favorite Christmas movies, the ones you go back to every year during the holiday season.
Until next time, whatever you decide, whatever you buy, stay safe, be kind, look after each other, and happy viewing!
Anyone wishing to buy any of the titles featured in the chart can do so via FindAnyFilm.com
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Carl Roberts is a Senior Staff Writer and Books and Literature Correspondent for Future of the Force. Aside from being our horror genre aficionado, he is also passionate about Star Wars, Marvel, DC, and the Indiana Jones movies. Follow him on Twitter @CarlRoberts2 where he uses the force frequently!
Editor’s Note | All videos and information have been supplied by Find Any Film and used under authorization.
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Carl Roberts is a Senior Entertainment/Books and Literature Correspondent for The Future of the Force. Aside from being our horror genre aficionado, he is also passionate about Star Wars, Marvel, DC, and the Indiana Jones movies. Follow him on Twitter where he uses the force frequently!