Every December we repeat fairly familiar patterns. Presents are wrapped, trees erected, cards and best wishes posted and, one of my favourite traditions, the circling/highlighting of must see shows and films in the Christmas Radio Times.
Christmas films have become part of the seasonal routine Miracle on 34th Street, It’s A Wonderful Life, The Muppets Christmas Carol, Elf & Home Alone have become part of the staple Christmas movie diet. Alternative options have also increased in their festive circulation, Die Hard, Gremlins, Rare Exports even Batman Returns. These alternative serving to satisfy those seeking more action, fantasy or even horror in amongst the family favourites.
However this year I want to suggest a possible alternative, something fresh to add to the established few.
This small British film flew under the radar this year but really is worth seeking out. Screened at the Belfast Film Festival this year I missed out due to a scheduling clash but intrigued by the title I made sure that a copy was quickly purchased and I was not disappointed.
Directed by Debbie Tucker Green Second Coming tells the story of Jackie (Nadine Marshall) who discovers that she is pregnant. She knows it is not her husband’s (Idris Elba) as they have not slept together in months and she has not slept with anyone else. Therefore the question remains where has this pregnancy come from?
Playing with the notion of an immaculate conception in the London of 2015 raises so many questions. Could it really happen? Could your relationship survive the doubt and the questions that this news brings? Could you survive the mental anguish that Jackie outs herself through?
The real treat is the ambiguity that Debbie Tucker Green applies. No clear answers are given and it is up to the audience to decide what has happened.
Second Coming is not a traditional Christmas film but it does have a little bit of Christmas within it.