Touted as “the future of TV,” the new Apple TV has no shortage of improvements that help facilitate watching movies and television shows from the comfort of your own home. While the previous incarnation of Apple TV offered access to apps from Netflix, HBO, Hulu and broadcast and cable networks, the new Apple TV offers its own apps, created by third-party developers. More importantly, the device comes with what Apple calls the Siri remote, which turns the Apple TV into an iPhone of sorts that can be entirely operated through voice command. Simple tell Siri what movie you want to watch, or what genre you’re interested in or what actor and director are your favorites and the device will search all apps at once, eliminating the search process on an app-by-app basis. Apple is offering a choice of a 32GB model at $149 or a 64GB one for $199. Click here for more about how the Apple TV is revolutionizing streaming.
For cinephiles across the world, Mondo is the mecca of movie posters. The company, which owns a gallery in Austin, Texas, creates limited edition one sheets for classic and contemporary films, representing the most creative and visually striking art the medium has to offer. The archive over at the Mondo website includes posters for recent masterpieces like “Ex Machina” to cult favorites (“Mulholland Drive”) and cinematic classics (“Vertigo”), meaning there is something for every cinephile. Mondo’s impressive artists and graphic designers evoke the themes and iconic visuals of the respective films in their eye-popping posters, and the art is perfect for any bedroom, dorm room or movie-friendly office. The company also makes art for television shows, comics, vinyl movie soundtracks, VHS re-issues, toys and apparel. Click here for 15 of our favorite Mondo movie poster recommendations.
“The Quay Brothers: Collected Short Films”
One of the the year’s biggest treats for cinephiles was Zeitgeist Films and Syncopy’s “The Quay Brothers in 35mm,” a 70-minute program curated by Christopher Nolan that included three stop-motion animations from brothers Stephen and Timothy Quay, along with Nolan’s own intimate short film about their production process. The collection, screened exclusively on 35mm, toured the country earlier this year, but anyone that missed these must-see shorts and Nolan’s documentary “Quay” are in luck thanks to this once-in-a-lifetime Blu-ray. In addition to the films screened during the national tour, the Blu-ray includes 12 more shorts from the Quay Brothers, many of which have never been released on home video before. Bonus features include audio commentary from the directors, plus a 28-page booklet that contains an introduction by Nolan, an updated Quay dictionary by Michael Brooke and an updated essay by film critic Michael Atkinson. Click here to purchase the collection.
Studio Ghibli Speciality Gift Items
Beloved animator and Studio Ghibli co-founder Hayao Miyazaki saddened many fans worldwide when he announced his retirement in 2013, but the legacy of his company’s internationally acclaimed features live on in creative and efficient ways, many of which will make inventive and satisfying gifts this holiday season. The legendary iconography behind Miyazaki’s “My Name is Totoro,” in particular, serves as the basis for many everyday items, from soot sprite-inspired umbrellas and slippers to child-friendly Totoro beds, onesie pajamas and homemade hats. Just like the studio’s diverse filmography, the range of Studio Ghibli speciality gifts is endless, with items tailor-made for fashion lovers (check out this “Kiki’s Delivery Service” bag and studio-devoted tote bag), cooks (Totoro cookie cutters and rolling pins) and more. The fate of Studio Ghibli may be up in the air, but fans can own a part of its grand tradition with no shortage of wonderful gifts.
3-D to 2-D Conversion Glasses
Anyone who loves movies, who just has to see the latest releases as soon as possible, is probably all too familiar with this dilemma: You have an opening in your schedule to see a film, but the only available showtime is in 3-D, and watching a film in 3-D is just not your jam. So for your friend who hates the third dimension, these glasses might be the perfect low-budget gift, giving them the opportunity to choose for themselves just how they end up seeing the newest blockbuster. Click here to purchase them.
“The Princess Bride” Playing Cards
You’ve never seen “The Princess Bride”? Inconceivable! Literally inconceivable. It’s ridiculous to imagine that someone has never seen this wonderful film. And so these beautiful playing cards are the perfect gift for those in your life with exceptional taste. Oh, and a bonus “Princess Bride” suggestion! “Princess Bride” star Cary Elwes has written an in-depth memoir about the making of the film, filled with his memories as well as that of his co-stars. It’s called “As You Wish,” because everything related to “The Princess Bride” is perfect. Click here to buy the cards, click here to buy the book.
TCM Wine Club
No wine collection or amateur bar cart is complete without a finely-aged bottle of True Grit Limited Edition Zinfandel — at least, that’s what the newly launched TCM Wine Club is hoping for. A curated collection of wines inspired by classic films (along with “expertly selected varietals” to round out the offerings), the club is the perfect marriage of cinema and boozy treats, and a reliable way to warm up even the coldest of winter nights. Click here to check out the wine club.
“Gilliamesque: A Pre-Posthumous Memoir”
Not since the Tim Burton exhibit at the MoMA have we been treated to such a deep dive into the labyrinthine mind of the auteur. Terry Gilliam’s scintillating memoir starts with an unconventional childhood and takes us through the archives of his masterworks, with hand-drawn sketches, notes and personal memorabilia to help illustrate the journey. A massive cast of historical icons appear in the pages: George Harrison, Robin Williams, Jeff Bridges, Robert De Niro, Brad Pitt, Uma Thurman, Johnny Depp, Heath Ledger and all of the fellow Pythons — as well as cameos from Woody Allen to Frank Zappa, Gloria Steinem to Robert Crumb, Richard Nixon to Hunter S. Thompson. It’s an insider’s look into the creative mind as well as a time capsule of culture.
Wes Anderson Tchotchkes
Wes Anderson movies are full of intricate and well-designed objects, so what better gift for the Wes Anderson fan than a bunch of tchotchkes? Etsy has a bevy of Anderson items, from Zissou pins to Futura messenger bags, but our personal favorites are these beautiful Anderson-themed iPhone cases featuring characters and landscapes found in the director’s oeuvre. This “Grand Budapest Hotel” book makes the perfect coffee table adornment, too. Or, if you’re feeling especially crafty, bake these Mendl’s pastries using the coveted recipe straight from the movie.
SundanceNow Doc Club Gift Subscription
Need something for the notoriously hard-to-buy-for movie fan in your life? SundanceNow’s Doc Club, a curated selection of streamable docs (ad-free!), isn’t just easy for recipients to enjoy, it’s also easy for givers to buy and send out to their loved ones. Gift subscriptions can be sent instantly, allowing their recipients to get going on doc-watching, while also allowing them access to all sorts of special perks, like free tickets to screenings and special events. Click here to learn more about SundanceNow Doc Club.
MUBI Gift Subscription
Another excellent curated subscription option for picky cinephiles is MUBI, which features cult, classic, independent and award-winning movies, all available on a variety of devices for both home and mobile viewing. MUBI is currently offering a banger of a deal on gift subscriptions, taking 30% a year-long sub that’s normally priced at the very affordable $39.99 annual rate. And, as a special bonus for Indiewire readers, MUBI is offering a free 30-day trial to their service, which you sign up for right here. Swing by MUBI to buy a gift for someone, stick around to get a free preview for yourself. Now that’s the holiday spirit! Click here to buy a gift subscription, and click here to try out a free trial of the service.
The littlest cinephile in your life also deserves some snuggly love this season, so why not bundle them up in a Sundance onesie? Not only will they be able to show off their love for the festival circuit in their new duds, they’ll do it in a literally fashion-foward way, as 2016 merchandise is already on sale. Too hip, too cute. Click here to get some Sundance gear.
“Eclipse 19: Chantal Akerman in the Seventies”
For cinephiles who mourned the death of Chantal Akerman this year, nothing is a better pick-me-up than this Criterion DVD box set of some of her greatest works, ranging from “Les Rendes-vous D’Anna” to “Hotel Monterey.” Akerman’s eye for the poetry of cinema permeates every frame of these films.
“Cocktails of the Movies”
Everyone loves movies. Everyone who’s not a bearded, hipster beer snob loves cocktails (and even some of them, too). So the odds are in your favor when gifting this delightful coffee table book combining the best cocktails with the characters who made them famous. Click here to purchase the book.
Last Exit to Nowhere (Film-Inspired T-Shirts and Apparel)
For those who crave a little more subtlety in their style, take the Last Exit to Nowhere to find some truly obscure gems. “Jaws 19” may be the most obvious reference put to a T(-shirt), but even that isn’t referring to Max Spielberg’s follow-up to dear ol’ daddy’s blockbuster. Click here to check out the site.
With an app and a plastic card that make for snazzy additions to both phone and wallet, MoviePass is a monthly subscription service that combines the old and the new. The service isn’t universal, but it works at a number of theaters, from multiplexes to arthouse theaters (like IFC Center in New York) and rep houses (ditto The New Beverly and the Egyptian in Los Angeles). Their “one movie every 24 hours” means that it doesn’t work for double features at the bigger venues, but it still pays for itself with a handful of outings a month. At the very least, you’re giving your giftee (or yourself) the ultimate excuse to spend more time at the theater, which, if you think about it, is one of the greatest gifts of all. Click here to check out MoviePass.
Emily Buder, Kate Erbland, Steve Green, Liz Shannon Miller, Zack Sharf and Ben Travers contributed to this list.