Buy Hard: Gifts for a film fan

Christmas is days away, the decorations are up and the presents are under the tree. Well, almost all the presents. You’re still searching for the perfect gift to give your movie mad mum/dad/sibling. Well, you’ve stumbled across the right place; the OxStu is here with festive cheer and hopefully some inspiration too.

Why not buy a membership to the BFI? For any film fans within easy reach of the Southbank the BFI is a treasure, and nothing says ‘Happy Holidays’ more than a ticket discount and monthly brochure. But the BFI gives you so much more; where else can you watch classic Woody Allen on a cinema screen this January? Where else can you see The Godfather or 2001 in the glorious panorama afforded by a full size auditorium? And, what’s more, the seats are wonderfully comfy. This gift also gives the recipient access to Sight and Sound magazine, the BFI’s classic DVD collection and the London Film festival; be warned though, it will set you back £40.

If that doesn’t take your fancy, or if your relative doesn’t live in London, you may choose instead to purchase a box set; after all, what greater gift is there to a film lover than film itself? Amazon’s top seller right now is the complete Harry Potter, but your film aficionado will probably want something a bit more sophisticated. A 14 film Hitchcock collection will set you back about £30, but that’s a bit cliché. Get the complete Michael Haneke instead. It’s £50, I know, but he is the most acclaimed European director of the last decade. The White Ribbon won the Palme D’Or, Hidden is viewed as one of the best films of recent years, Funny Games and The Piano Teacher both won huge acclaim and there are six more movies to boot. Just remember, they’re probably not the best family films to watch on Christmas day.

But let’s face it, box sets are pretty dull. What your relative would rather have is a holiday to France. Go ahead, take a punt and book them return flights to Nice in May. Cannes film festival is a sun, sea and celebrity extravaganza, and you could send them there. Of course if you’re buying someone a gift you can’t book them in on Ryanair, it’s got to be BA – just the right mix of plush and affordable. Book now to go on May 14th and come back on the 28th and it’s a meagre £234. Not cheap, I know, but a pretty awesome Christmas gift.

Sadly your gift recipient may not be free in May. Don’t worry: if you’ve got cash to spend, splurge it on some genuine movie memorabilia. Did said movie fan enjoy Gladiator? Of course they did. So buy them an actual sword from the movie. Did they like Tropic Thunder? Buy Jack Black’s helmet. Did they like The Terminator? Yes, they did. So buy them Arnie’s genuine costume from Terminator 3. You know you want to, and it’s only £10,000. Actually, scrap that, they’d probably prefer a car.

And now for the budget option. Maybe you could get them a single DVD. Perhaps you could splash out and book them a cinema ticket in advance. But why do that, when you could get them some film themed lego? That’s right, lego is officially the best thing to come out of Denmark since Hamlet, and he was just a character. Film buffs love film, and everyone loves lego, so go ahead and combine them into one incredible package. Sadly you can’t buy a lego Michael Corleone just yet, but Star Wars, Harry Potter, Pirates of the Caribbean and Pixar are pretty well covered. And before you ask, there is a lego Death Star, it does look awesome but it also costs more than the Cannes tickets. A simple pirate Captain’s Cabin will probably suffice, and cost you less than £10 to boot.

Let’s be honest, buying presents is a bit of a chore, but hopefully this list will give you a touch of seasonal cheer and optimism in the face of your collapsing bank balance. It’s probably best to avoid the Terminator costume, but I hope the rest of the suggestions have piqued your interest and maybe, just maybe, helped sort out a last ditch gift dilemma.