While 2019 was the year of Avengers: End Game, the finale to the Skywalker Saga, and some pretty juicy James Bond banter, 2020 has been contrastingly poor (borderline diabolical) for theatrical releases because of You Know What – not to mention hugely disappointing for Bond fans. So the movie buff in your life will probably be well in need of a cinephiliac pick-me-up on Christmas Day.
Of course, cinema gift cards are simple but wonderful gifts – and if one thing's for certain, it's that cinemas would particularly appreciate the custom now and next year! But if that present idea isn't doing it for you, we have just the super-fun film gifts to recommend (or at the very least to provide some gift inspiration).
Below is a list of film-related present ideas – from home cinema equipment and 4K Blu-rays to movie memberships, film art and card games – that are perfect for anyone who's mad about the movies.
Like one of these gift ideas so much you want it for yourself? Go on, chuck it in your basket – we're not judging.
Blade (1998) 4K Blu-ray
While we'd give special mentions to Tenet (opens in new tab), Jaws (opens in new tab) and the insanely tempting (and pricey) The Lord of the Rings Trilogy (opens in new tab) in this year's raft of 4K Blu-ray releases, you won't see many movie buff must-haves better than this brand-new release of Wesley Snipes' Blade (1998). The sci-fi superhero classic is for the first time presented with a 4K HDR10 picture and Dolby Atmos/Dolby TrueHD 7.1 audio.
A safe and solid buy for any cinephile who owns a 4K TV and 4K-supporting Blu-ray player/games console – even if they already own the 2012 Blu-ray release!
- Buy Blade (1998) 4K Blu-ray (opens in new tab) at Amazon
Sony UBP-X700 4K Blu-ray player
You'll need a decent disc-spinner to play these 4K discs, and what better way then to pop them into this talented budget 4K Blu-ray player from Sony.
Fresh from being crowned a 2020 What Hi-Fi? Award winner (it also picked up gongs in 2019 and 2018), this Sony UBP-X700 is a mighty little marvel, delivering excellent picture performance for less than £200.
John Williams CDs
A beautifully put together soundtrack collection celebrating the master maestro is the perfect gift for someone who appreciates the music that goes with their favourite films.
Brought to life by the London Symphony Orchestra, the ten-track A Life In Music (opens in new tab) album consists of iconic themes composed by John Williams from Star Wars, Jurassic Park, E.T., Jaws, Saving Private Ryan, Hook, Schindler's List, Harry Potter and Superman.
There's also a newer, 2020-released John Williams in Vienna CD (opens in new tab), a live recording of the legendary composer's Vienna Philharmonic debut ("one of the greatest honors of his life") alongside Wiener Philharmoniker and Anne-Sophie Mutter. Better yet, it's available in stereo and Dolby Atmos Music surround sound.
- Buy John Williams: A Life in Music CD (opens in new tab) at Amazon
- Buy John Williams Live in Vienna CD (opens in new tab) at Amazon
Sonos Beam soundbar
As David Lynch once said, “films are 50 per cent visual and 50 per cent sound. Sometimes sound even overplays the visual." So film fans should ideally be well equipped with decent sounding TV set-up.
Not everyone can deck out their living room with a 5.1 speaker package or knock Dolby Atmos speakers into the ceiling, of course. And not many of even the most generous gifters could afford such a set-up, anyway. But if you're feeling generous enough to furnish the living room of the film lover in your life with a brand spanking new soundbar, here's one we highly recommend.
A 2020 What Hi-Fi? Award winner, the Sonos Beam is a blinding little soundbar, combining an impressively enveloping sound with Sonos streaming smarts and a compact build. Got a tighter budget? The five-star, also Award-winning Yamaha YAS-207 is cheaper.
MUBI film subscription
Give someone the gift of a new film every day of the year thanks to this one-year subscription to MUBI for £69.99 (or three months for £29.99).
A neat alternative to the content-hoarding Netflix and Amazon Prime Video streaming services, MUBI's catalogue is always only 30 films strong. Every day a film drops off and a new one is added, with each film having a 30-day lifespan.
With titles that stray sideways from the mainstream market – think more Jean Luc Goddard than J.J. Abrams – it's an appealingly fresh way to watch movies you otherwise might have missed.
Cinephile: A Card Game
It wouldn't be Christmas without turkey, trivia... and tears as people argue about trivia. This movie card game is the ideal after-dinner entertainment, and will suss out those who cares way too much about the minutiae of movies and those who haven't seen that famous film everyone else in the world has. Outrageous.
There are plenty of game variations you can play, and the artwork alone deserves applause.
Framed film posters
What better way to flaunt your (or your loved one's) love of the silver screen by proudly displaying some framed artwork of some awesome flicks.
We really like these two stylish ones for horror classic Halloween and Edgar Wright's Baby Driver, but there are plenty more for whatever genre you favour.
Annual Total Film magazine subscription
Gifting a monthly mag subscription benefits both the gifter and the giftee. After all, you get year-round satisfaction that your one-time purchase is a long-lasting present, and they get to be gifted with an hour or two's entertainment every month.
And anyway, what film fan wouldn't like to be gifted the best film magazine on the planet all year round? For just £42.99, you can buy an annual subscription to Total Film, for yourself or for someone else, that delivers 13 issues straight to your (or their) door throughout the year. That works out as just £3.31 a mag.
You can subscribe or buy the latest issue here (opens in new tab).
Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K video streamer
"Simply the best video streamer after the Apple TV – and it's over £100 cheaper" is our verdict of the Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K. If you know someone with a 4K TV*, this neat, and What Hi-Fi? Award-winning, device may just make the receiver squeal as they open it.
The dinky device simply plugs into a 4K TV's HDMI input to furnish it with 4K streaming, support for every major HDR format (HDR10, HDR10+, Dolby Vision and HLG), all with the Alexa voice-activated personal assistant. Amazon Prime Video comes as standard (of course), alongside Netflix, the terrestrial catch-up services (BBC iPlayer, ITV Hub, All 4 and My5), and the bonus of music services Spotify, Deezer and Tidal.
The entry-level Fire Stick (opens in new tab) would also be a great gift for those without a 4K TV packed with smarts.
Numskull novelty Christmas jumpers
Have you seen anything so... hideous? But then it wouldn't be a Christmas jumper without loud, clashing patterns that could part traffic during rush hour.
Add in a dash of geeky characters and nerdy nods from the world of pop culture and you have a novelty jumper that will make your friends and colleagues laugh and/or shake their head in despair.
You'll be all cosy and smug, though.