Watch List Weekly Recap 12/23/22

This week: Two posts of practical viewing advice and one post of personal holiday memories.

Watch List Weekly Recap 12/23/22

This is the Friday recap of Ty Burr’s Watch List postings for the week. If you’d like to receive this weekly email ONLY, please go to your account page and under “Email notifications” uncheck every box except “Weekly Digest.” If you’d prefer to not receive it at all, uncheck just “Weekly Digest.”

How come some on-demand movies rent for $2.99 and others rent for twenty bucks? The Watch List explains all and recommends which current premium VOD titles are worth the cost.

Premium Video-on-Demand: Worth It?
Here is the state of movie distribution as we usher out the year of our lord 2022: A film will debut in theaters (sometimes) and then A) quickly start streaming on Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu, or whichever service bankrolled it or B) show up on multiple services as a “premium on-demand” title for purchase or rental, the latter usually priced at $19.99, before becoming available at a much cheaper price point – $3.99 to $6.99 – some months down the road. Which forces a decision on you, dear viewer: Should you buy individual tickets to see a specific film on the big screen, shell out at home for the pricier streaming premiere (which is still a decent $20 for as many people as want to watch), or wait until it’s in the bargain bin with all the other movies?

A midweek post as kids and grandkids start streaming in for the holiday weekend. Are there any good movies the whole family can watch together and enjoy? I can think of at least twelve.

What to Watch This Weekend: All-Ages Events
It’s the holidays and everyone’s coming home for the weekend; there will be food, and conviviality, and maybe the entire clan plonking down to watch a movie. Say the words “family film,” though, and, if you’re like me, you have a stark vision of six-year-olds sitting glassy-eyed and narcotized in front of the 87th screening of “Frozen” or “Minions” while the grown-ups gnaw their arms off in the background.

I went down a seasonal memory hole the other morning and decided to write about it. (And if the piece prompts you to share your own holiday recollections, all the better.)

Father, Christmas
The December holidays are a time when all one’s family members return home – the living and the ghosts. It can get rough. I’m sixty-five years old and this morning I felt freshly haunted by my father, who died when I was nine and whom I never really knew. I’ve

Happy holidays to you, dear readers. As ever, thanks for reading and feel free to comment —

— or pass the Watch List along to your friends.

If you’re not a paying subscriber and want to sign up for additional postings and to join the discussions, here’s how:

And don’t forget: A gift subscription is one of the best ways to let someone know you love their love of movies this holiday season.