101 minutes, U.S.A., 1988, Colour

While any adaptation of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol is bound to end on a sentimental and uplifting note, the real pleasure of Scrooged lies in watching Bill Murray at his malevolent best.

He plays the utterly amoral Frank Cross, a television executive who has sacrificed family and personal life to his all-consuming ambition. Warned to change his ways by the ghost of a former mentor, Cross is subsequently visited by three apparitions showing him the mistakes he’s made in a story familiar to all. While Murray is excellent (as always), the film is nearly stolen by Carol Kane as the psychotic Ghost of Christmas Present. (Notes by Kevin Coyne.)

For more festive screenings and events at the IFI in December, see Christmas at the IFI.

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