We select the best TV, films and Netflix releases to watch over Christmas and New Year

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Let's be honest. While we all have the good intentions of reading a mountain of books over the festive period and having quality time with the family, sometimes endless rounds of Scrabble just doesn't cut it. And that's not because your brother always beats you. 

Thankfully, there is the other option of watching a film or a TV show over Christmas as everyone knows it's basically when the best stuff is on.

But, what to choose?! To save you from having any viewing conundrums, we've rounded-up the best telly and films to watch live or to stream at your own accord to keep you entertained until after New Year's Eve. 

  • Christmas Eve

    TV: Julie Walters: A Life On Screen, 9.30pm, BBC2

    Amazon Prime: Pitch Perfect

    Film: Little Women, 3pm, BBC2

    Sob along to the Louisa May Alcott's big screen adaptation, celebrate the life of Julie Walters or simply watch Anna Kendrick and co singing their hearts out in Pitch Perfect, a musical comedy about an a cappella group.

  • Christmas Day

    TV: Downton Abbey, 9pm, ITV1

    Netflix: Scrooged

    Film: Frozen, 7pm, Sky Movies Premiere

    Thankfully, seeing as both Downton and Frozen are on at different times, you can sing along to the Disney hit at 7pm and then watch George Clooney take on the Dowager et al at 9pm. And if you want some more comedy, watch Bill Murray's classic Scrooged - an update on Charles Dickens' classic A Christmas Carol.

  • Boxing Day

    TV: The Boy In The Dress, 6.55pm, BBC1

    Netflix: Just Friends

    Film: Four Christmasses, 9pm, Film4 

    It's now become a Christmas tradition that David Walliams will create a one-off special for the BBC. This year, it's the turn of The Boy in the Dress (pictured) which is adapted from David's children's book, which is about a cross-dressing 12-year-old and the reactions he gets from his friends and family. You can also get music label exec Ryan Reynolds in Just Friends, with the snort-out-loud Anna Faris as his annoying artist.

  • 27th December

    TV: The Haunting of Radcliffe House, 9.35pm, Channel 5

    Netflix: Dallas Buyers Club

    Film: The Secret Garden, 12.45 pm, Channel 5

    The festive period is the perfect time to watch scary tales. Channel 5 have a particularly frightening offering in the form of The Haunting of Radcliffe House (nothing to do with Harry, sadly). The story follows Alec Hamilton and his family who move into Radcliffe House only to discover it has a terrible history. 

  • 28th December

    TV:  Never Mind The Buzzcocks Christmas Show, 10.35pm, BBC2

    Netflix: Holiday in Handcuffs

    Film: E.T., 3.20pm, ITV1

    Look, if you're going to watch E.T., just remember how much it makes you cry OK? We don't want to be held responsible for making you sad over Christmas. To cheer yourself up, watch NMTB's show, which is guaranteed to make you chortle with host Rhod Gilbert, and guests such as Louis Walsh.

  • 29th December

    TV: Christmas University Challenge, 8.30pm, BBC2

    Netflix: The Royle Family Christmas special

    Film: The Italian Job, 4.05pm, BBC1

    If you feel like you haven't been stretching your mind enough and over indulging on the mince pies, give yourself a mental work out with University Challenge's Christmas episode. There's also Michael Caine in The Italian Job (a classic in our view) and The Royale Family Christmas special to give you some laughs.

  • 30th December

    TV:  Charlie Brooker's 2014 Wipe, 10pm, BBC2

    Amazon Prime: Brave

    Film: Madagascar 3, 6.05pm, BBC1

    While many might not approve of Charlie Brooker's misanthropic take on the world, his 2014 Wipe - a take down on the year's television - is set to be suitably hilarious, if that's your sort of thing. But don't forget that Disney's feminist (well, it is) movie, Brave, the story of princess who refuses to marry the man she's betrothed to, and fights for her own hand in marriage, is also on too!

  • New Year's Eve

    TV: Jools Holland’s Annual Hootenanny, 11.20pm, BBC2

    Netflix: Some Like It Hot

    Film: Back To The Future, 10.05am, ITV2

    If you're staying in on New Year's Eve then the best thing to watch is Jools Holland's Annual Hootenanny. This year, there are set to be performances from Ed Sheeran, Ellie Goulding, Paloma Faith, Clean Bandit and Paolo Nutini. Afterwards, watch the classic Some Like It Hot, with Marilyn Monroe, Tony Curtis and Jack Lemon.

  • New Year's Day

    TV: Roald Dahl’s Esio Trot, 6.30pm, BBC1

    Amazon Prime: Parks and Recreation

    Film: The Godfather, 12.35am, Channel 4

    Feeling a little delicate? Fear not, time to get that Parks and Recreation box set on the go. The last episode is set to air soon, so you'll want to catch up with Amy Poehler's hilarious sitcom about a perky, mid-level bureaucrat in the parks department of Pawnee, a fictional town in Indiana.

  • 2nd January

    TV: Friday Night Feast, featuring Kate Hudson, 8pm, Channel4

    Netflix: The Invisible Woman

    Film: Up, 4.30pm, BBC1

    One of our favourite up-and-coming actresses, Felicity Jones, starred in the brilliant film The Invisible Woman as Charles Dickens' mistress. If you think you can bear seeing any more food, let alone eating it, then head over to Channel 4 for Jamie's Friday Night Feast, with Kate Hudson.

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Stylist Team