Chris Hicks: Such holiday favorites as 'It's a Wonderful Life' and 'Miracle on 34th Street' coming to a theater near you

Published: Wednesday, Nov. 21 2012 5:15 p.m. MST

• “The Apartment” (1960, b/w). Although it’s not thought of as a Christmas film, the holiday figures prominently in this Billy Wilder comedy-drama, which is alternately hilarious and touching. Jack Lemmon stars as a corporate climber who lends his bachelor pad to married executives looking for a place to take their girlfriends. But he risks his job by falling for the paramour (Shirley MacLaine) of his sleazy boss (Fred MacMurray). (Opens Friday, Dec. 14, Tower, saltlakefilmsociety.org)

Dec. 19 and 21

• “It’s a Wonderful Life (1946, b/w). This one was not intended as a Christmas movie, although its climax — and the fact that this is the time of year when the film is most visible — has made it one. James Stewart is in peak form as the nice guy who just wants to get out of the little town of Bedford Falls and see the world, but family and community obligations continually foil his plans. Co-written and directed by Frank Capra at his feel-good best, with a pitch-perfect supporting cast. (Wednesday, Dec. 19, Cinemark Theatres, 2 and 7 p.m., www.cinemark.com) (Opens Friday, Dec. 21, Tower, saltlakefilmsociety.org)

Dec. 28

• “City Lights” (1931, b/w). Charlie Chaplin’s first film of the sound era is, of course, a silent movie, and one of the best ever made. The Little Tramp falls in love with a blind girl and decides to anonymously raise the money for an operation to restore her sight. Hilarious and tearful, one of Chaplin’s greatest artful accomplishments. (Opens Friday, Dec. 28, Tower, saltlakefilmsociety.org)

E-MAIL: hicks@desnews.com

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