Chris’ Picks for December 2023: An Alan Rickman Christmas (Plus Bonus Picks)



Elizabeth’s Books, in the heart of the Town of Lunenburg’s bookselling district, boasts a rental library of more than five thousand DVDs. The shop usually opens around 6 p.m. each evening, never closing earlier than 10 p.m. Each month, proprietor Chris Webb recommends films for your consideration.

For the month of December, Chris recommends two Christmas films showcasing very different sides of the late and great Alan Rickman.

  • Die Hard (1988)
  • Love Actually (2003)

In Die Hard, Rickman plays dastardly villain Hans Gruber, terrorising a skyscraper on Christmas Eve. And in Die Hard With A Vengeance, third in the series, we meet Hans’ brother Simon Gruber who is also evil. Simon’s plan is to steal gold bullion from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and hide it in Nova Scotia. We never learn specifically where Simon’s hideaway spot is, but perhaps Simon and Hans enjoyed a vacation to Lunenburg in their childhood and the two young menaces were inspired towards their future deeds by old stories of Maritime smuggling culture.

In Love Actually, Rickman is another kind of villain – the manager of a design agency, this time his cruel deed is infidelity during the holiday season. This romantic Christmas comedy classic is distributed by Universal Studios, which means a flash of their logo preceding the film shows everyone a glimpse of Lunenburg as seen from a distance in outer space – we’re truly a universal town.

(Photo: Screenshot from Love Actually (2003) Official Trailer – Colin Firth, Emma Thompson Movie HD, Rotten Tomatoes Classic Trailers, YouTube, modified by Jesse Ward)

You should also consider these additional Christmas picks:

  • National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (1989)
  • Nightmare Before Christmas (1993)
  • Elf (2003)
  • Scrooge (1951)
  • Miracle on 34th Street (1994)
  • The Holiday (2006)

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