The Personal History of David Copperfield (2019, dir. Armando Iannucci)

The multiple lives (and names) of a young man. Meta riff on the Dickens novel which pretty much all hangs together. A touch too episodic – not much by way of narrative drive – but that’s all part of the pleasure, even if it means there’s some emotional distance from the characters. Everyone is obviously enjoying themselves.

Scrooge (1935, dir. Henry Edwards)

A miser is haunted by a series of ghosts, so he may rethink his approach to Christmas and life. A charming adaptation of the oft-filmed Dickens novella A Christmas Carol, capturing a famous stage portrayal. Some lovely model effects and a keen visual sensibility; a touch of expressionism and a feel for the period on display here.

Scrooged (1988, dir. Richard Donner)

A mean TV executive is visited by a series of ghosts intent on teaching him the true meaning of Christmas. A raucous, overlong, and often unfunny retelling of A Christmas Carol, overly keen to cash in on its star’s links to Ghostbusters. Inevitably, some bits work nevertheless, and the film’s become something of a Yuletide perennial despite its weaknesses.

The Muppet Christmas Carol (1992, dir. Brian Henson)

A faithful adaptation of the Dickens novella, with the muppets cast plus Michael Caine as Scrooge. Good songs (by Paul Williams), Dickens – The Great Gonzo – acts as narrator, and an excellent Caine performance; he plays it admirably straight throughout, and delivers perhaps the finest single line-reading in cinema history.