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20/10/2021

Sixteen great movies to watch on TV as the evenings get darker

17 films on TV this week that you need to watch

Ronan O'Meara gives his picks of movies on TV over the next week

It's the weekend and Ronan O'Meara has been scouring the TV schedules to find movies to watch over the next seven days...starting tonight.

Here are 16 to choose from....enjoy!

Rocketman:   Saturday,  Channel 4 @ 9pm

A young boy in 1950's Britain called Reginald learns to play the piano. In the late 60's he makes friends with a (your) song-writer called Bernie Taupin and Elton John is born. Dexter Fletcher's 2019 biopic is a great watch that isn't afraid to delve into the darker aspects of it's subject's life. Throw in a (crocodile) rocking turn from Taron Egerton and some fantastically realised musical sequences and you have a fine way to spend Saturday night ('s alright for fighting). 

The Truth: Saturday, BBC4 @ 9pm

A famous actress has written her autobiography and her daughter has issues with the depiction of their relationship on the pages within. Hirokazu Kore-eda's first film made outside of his native Japan is a layered and upsetting look at the lies we tell ourselves to help get through our days and the complexities of mother/daughter relationships. Catherine Deneuve and Juliette Binoche both do exquisite work here.

Without A Clue: Saturday, Talking Pictures TV @ 10.25pm

Everybody knows the story of Sherlock Holmes and his partner Dr Watson. But what they don't know is Dr Watson was the brains of the operation and Holmes has just there to take credit for his skills. Without A Clue one wasn't particularly well received on release but it's a fun twist on an old story and Michael Caine and Ben Kingsley obviously have a good time in their parts which translates to the screen.

Mountains Of The Moon: Sunday, TG4 @ 12.05am (Midnight)

Captain Burton and Lieutenant Speke head to Africa to find the source of the Nile and claim it and it's resources for the Brits. Things......let's just say things don't go too easily for them. A handsomely mounted epic of the type you rarely see anymore while that somehow manages to feel intimate despite it's scope. Our own Patrick Bergin leads the way as Burton with Iain Glen doing nicely as Speke. Keep an eye out for Omar Sharif too.

Sanctuary: Sunday, RTÉ One @ 1.30am

Larry and Sophie are in love and want to consummate their relationship. Both have special needs and incredulously in Ireland of the past it was illegal for them to be together. But sure aren't laws made to be broken. A beautiful, funny and lighthearted drama that isn't afraid to shy from heavy asides on bodily autonomy and personal independence. Kieran Coppinger and Charlene Kelly are both brilliant in their parts.

Flash Gordon: Sunday, ITV4 @ 2.05pm

You want cheese? Here you go. There's enough here for everyone. This 1980 take on the classic comic book sees Flash Gordon and Dale Arden escaping a dying Earth and when they crash land on Mongo they find themselves being chased down by Ming The Merciless. One of the nuttier sci-fi epics that came out of the 80's but it's so much fun, packed with wonder, imagination and a wicked Queen soundtrack. Sam Jones may be the lead but Max Von Sydow and Timothy Dalton own the film.

Rosie: Monday, BBC One @ 12.20am (midnight)

The Davis family are in big trouble. They're homeless and spend their days in their car trying to sort out accommodation for the night. Their kids are having trouble in school and mam Rosie is feeling helpless. This recent Irish drama is a heartbreaking indictment of the appalling state of modern day Ireland and the disastrous agencies running it. Sarah Greene and Moe Dunford are flawless in an upsetting and thought provoking story from Roddy Doyle.

Crossfire: Monday, BBC Two @ 2.20pm

A man is dead, killed in a bar full of off duty soldiers. One of them did it but who dealt the fatal blow and what was his motive? As witnesses are questioned the events of the night play out from different points of view. An interesting and, for the time, an unusual slice of film noir that takes a look at the hate that brews in the head of too many people, even to today. Robert Mitchum, Gloria Grahame and a vile Robert Ryan lead a solid cast.

Hunger: Tuesday, Film4 @ 1.55am

Bobby Sands was an IRA prisoner in the Maze prison outside Belfast in the early 80's. He was one of many and to get the British government to see them as prisoners of war they resorted to extreme measures. A superb film. Yes it's brutal and grim as hell and at some points even seems comparable to a body horror film but you will not be able to look away. Michael Fassbender is immense in the lead. His 17 minute one take chat with Liam Cunningham will stay with you for quite a while.

Woman At War: Tuesday, Channel 4 @ 2.10am

To most people Halla leads a quiet life but in secret she's a die hard environmentalist who isn't afraid to break the law to make life hard for the local factory. Just as she's about to attempt a huge coup de grâce another aspect of her life comes calling and she's torn between her past and her future. An odd and a times surreal comedy about the choices we make and the chances we take. It's worth your time though and Halldóra Geirharðsdóttir is a memorable lead.

Rebecca: Tuesday Talking Pictures TV @ 9am

Alfred Hitchcock's superlative adaption of the Daphne Du Maurier novel is about a new bride trying to deal with the presence of her husband's dead first wife in her new home. A wonderful looking and hugely influential film led by magnificent turns from Laurence Oliver, Joan Fontaine and especially Judith Anderson as the looming Mrs Danvers. Quite different to Hitchcock's other films in tone and all the more enjoyable for it. Forget the Netflix version, here is the one to see.

Hidden Figures: Thursday, Film4 @ 6.30pm

During the space race of the 1960's NASA hired three women who were skilled mathematicians to do calculation work. They were also black so were treated like dogs. Hidden Figures is their story. A fine watch, one full of humanity but also justifiable anger at the horrors of racism and segregation. A mighty cast including Taraji P.Henson, Octavia Spencer, Janelle Monáe, Mahershala Ali and Kevin Costner bring a very important story to life.

78/52: Thursday, BBC4 @ 11.30pm

In 1960 Alfred Hitchcock shocked the world with the murder of Marion Crane in a shower in the film Psycho. The scene was created with 78 camera setups and 52 cuts and this documentary tells us all about the work that went into it and the effect it had on a worldwide audience. Not just documentary a for Hitchcock fans. If you've any interest at all in film making you'll enjoy a behind the look scenes at a seminal moment in cinema.

Patti Cake$: Friday, Film4 @ 1.50am

Patricia Dombrowski, a.k.a. Killa P, a.k.a. Patti Cake$ is trying to become a rapper. She's a white girl from New Jersey and no one will take her seriously. So she knuckles down. A joyous underdog tale and one of the best films of 2017, that on the surface looks silly and cringeworthy but a fiercely committed turn from Danielle MacDonald will have you begging for her to find the success she needs. Cathy Moriarty as her gran adds loads of fun.

Imitation Of Life: Friday, TCM @ 4.55pm

Sarah Jane has a secret and it's tearing her apart. She's an African American woman who can pass for white and in 1950's America it ensures an easier life for her. But what of the people she's left behind? Douglas Sirk's intense and emotional drama about race and class may be 62 years old but it still packs a hell of a punch. Susan Kohner, Juanita Moore and Lana Turner are truly excellent in their parts.

Captain Kronos : Vampire Hunter: Friday, Talking Pictures TV @ 9.05pm

A village is plagued by unusual deaths and when the supernatural is suspected Captain Kronos and his assistant Hieronymus Grost (what a name) are called in to take care of business. This Hammer horror production from 1974 is a joy to watch, with the usual vampire business given a new twist by the addition of some genuinely exciting swashbuckling action. An unusual blend of genres but an entertaining one. Horst Janson does well in the lead.

As always visit hamsandwichcinema.blogspot.com/ for more film and tv chat.

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