Okay, E.T. isn’t strictly a Christmas movie, but you would have to have a heart of stone to fail to appreciate its heart-warming awesomeness in the season of eating, drinking and being merry with family.

In case you are from E.T.’s home planet, and have never come across E.T. the movie, you should know that this is a Steven Spielberg family classic. A troubled child called Elliott summons the courage to help a friendly alien escape Earth and return to his home world. Drew Barrymore takes her bow, and once you have wiped away your tears you will feel that all is well with the world. As indeed it will be.

Every family Christmas should include a group viewing of E.T. It won four Oscars and that is many too few. Here we explain how to watch E.T. - The Extra-Terrestrial online, on TV or on any mobile device. (See also 'How to watch every Christmas movie online'.)

Watch E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial on Now TV for free

The easiest (and legal!) way to watch ET online for free is to sign up for the 7-day free trial of Now TV. You can cancel at any time, otherwise, the service renews at £11.99 per month.

Rent E.T. - The Extra-Terrestrial on DVD or Blu-ray for free

But the good news is you don't have to buy a physical copy if you want to enjoy the film, since E.T. is also listed by rental subscription service Cinema Paradiso - sign up here for a free 30-day trial.

Cinema Paradiso has over 80,000 films and TV series. The company mails the disc to your door and you can keep it for as long as you need to. After the trial it's only £5.99 per month

Watch E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial on Netflix (US)

US Netflix subscribers can watch E.T. as a part of your subscription. If you're not a member, it costs $8.99 for basic quality streaming (480p) and $13.99 for standard quality (1080p).

Here's how to watch American Netflix outside of the US.

Rent E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial in digital format for cheap

There are loads of options if you want to rent a digital copy of E.T for a small fee or for free online:

Buy E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial in digital format

If you want to own the film forever in digital format, you can buy the film from the same services at these prices:

Buy E.T. The Extra Terrestrial on DVD or Blu-ray

E.T. is available for just £5/US$8.22 on DVD from Amazon or £7.68/$9.65 on Blu-ray (also Amazon).