Approx advert and trailer run time: 25 mins
Film run time: 2hr 11m
Frank Capra’s enchanting small-town fantasy returns to The Odyssey in time for Christmas, resuming its place as the most beloved of all festive films.
On Christmas Eve in the cosy small town of Bedford Falls, George Bailey (James Stewart) is pushed to his limit, having spent his whole life putting himself before others at the cost of his own dreams and ambitions, in the face of debt and ruin.
Hearing the concern of his friends and neighbours, divine intervention sends Clarence, a novice angel, to look back on George’s life and demonstrate to him just how important and loved he is, even if it means sending him to the horrifying dystopia where he never existed at all.
Although the film is primarily and justifiably known for its great warmth and cheering tone, its reputation does not stress enough how this is earned through a great deal of darkness and emotional tension. This is not to say that it isn’t a deeply moving and uplifting film – only that it is a much richer experience than the popular stereotype might imply, and one best enjoyed in a packed cinema.