Ronan O'Meara gives his picks of movies on TV
If you are planning to watch a movies on TV over the coming week, we've got you covered. Film guru Ronan O'Meara has been scouring the schedules and has picked 17 to choose from.
The Five Year Engagement: Saturday, TG4 @ 9.35pm
Tom and Violet are happily engaged. Or they were happily engaged. Now they've just been engaged for a long time. Their friends and family are passing them by and things are getting strained to say the least. Like all modern day comedies it overstays it's welcome by about twenty minutes but the easy and believable chemistry between Emily Blunt and Jason Segal and the surprising depth on display makes it worth your time
The Angels' Share: Saturday, BBC Scotland @ 10pm
Four Glaswegian teenagers on a road to rock bottom decide to pull off a whiskey heist to get themselves the means to get away from a miserable future. Director Ken Loach has weaved a delightful tale here. One that will upset you in places and give you a full on belly laugh in others. A warm look at the lives of people who are usually ignored. Paul Brannigan as Robbie is a talented chap.
Nightbreed: Saturday, The Horror Channel @ 10.55pm
After his psychiatrist convinces Aaron he's a murderer, he goes on the run, now accused of killings committed by the psychiatrist himself. He finds refuge at Midian, a place where all are accepted, no matter how outlandish. Studio interference led to Nightbreed getting a disastrous reception on release but it's a genuinely well crafted and very imaginative film that will linger in your dreams. Craig Sheffer and the amazing David Cronenberg, in a rare acting role, do fine work.
Crank: Saturday, ITV4 @ 11.10pm
After he's poisoned by Tirad gangsters a man has to keep his heart rate up high to survive. A quite insane and absolutely brilliant film. Jason Statham plays Chev Chelios with gusto. Whether zapping himself with electric paddles, OD'ing on red bull, starting fights he can't win or having extremely public sex, he'll do anything to stay alive. It's hilarious stuff but stay away if you are squeamish or easily offended as it is not for the weak of heart.
Gringo: Saturday night/Sunday morning RTÉ2 @ 12.15am (midnight)
Harold is a stressed out businessman who's work trip from Chicago to Mexico goes sideways spectacularly when he overhears his untrustworthy co-workers up to no good. Now the mild mannered fellow is in for a ropey couple of days. David Oyelowo is value for money as the lead of a twisting turning comedy thriller that isn't afraid to get dark. Charlize Theron and Joel Edgerton do well as a right pair of *censored*
They Live: Sunday, Film4 @ 1.55am
Aliens have taken over society and only one man can see them. He's mad as hell and he ain't going to take it anymore. On the surface John Carpenter's action/sci-fi might seem loud and preposterous but it's actually a surprisingly intelligent and frighteningly prescient story about the dangers of capitalism and consumer apathy. Roddy Piper and Keith David have a whale of a time as the leads. Oh and there's a fistfight for the ages.
Torn Curtain: Sunday, Great! Movies Classics @ 9pm
Professor Armstrong has done something unique. He's defected from West to East instead of the usual way around. Now he's behind the Iron Curtain and has information for Russia. Or does he? Who knows? Alfred Hitchcock does and his 1966 thriller is a memorable one and his only collaboration with Paul Newman who does nice work as a man with a plan and Julie Andrews backs him up admirably. The scene in the farm house is an all timer.
The VVitch: Sunday night / Monday morning, Channel 4 @ 12.55am (midnight)
The America's of the 1600's were a strange and scary place as one family finds out when they are shunned from their religious community and try to start a new life beside a dark and foreboding forest. Now here is a film that will leave you on edge for a long time before it truly frightens the life out of you. There's nothing better than a horror movie that fully commits to it's premise. Anya Taylor-Joy, Ralph Ineson and Kate Dickie are all on fire here.
The Death Of Stalin: Monday, TG4 @ 9.30pm
1953. Moscow. Joseph Stalin has died suddenly and the Russian government is thrown into turmoil. There's a clash of egos and violence is sure to be close behind. Armando Iannucci's hilarious political satire is every bit as cutting as the TV shows he's better known and it's a decent history lesson too, giving us an insight into what made post war Russia tick. The cast is amazing with lively showings from Jason Isaacs, Paddy Considine and Steve Buscemi amongst others.
Loving Vincent: Monday, Film4 @ 11.45pm
A young man tasked with delivering the last letter written by Vincent Van Gogh finds himself troubled by the particulars of the artist's death and so starts to investigate the man's final days. The subject matter is dark and upsetting but it's one glorious looking animated film that was created by over 100 artists painstakingly painting each frame over the course of six years. Douglas Booth and Helen McCrory provide capable voice acting in one of the more unique film's you'll ever see.
Heaven Can Wait: Tuesday, Talking Pictures TV @ 11.35am
Henry Van Cleve has passed away. At the gates of hell he requests entry, knowing that he lived a life that in his mind has earned him a place there. But the powers that be want him to prove his credentials first. Told mostly in flashback this 79 year old comedy drama is a touching and funny slice of technicolored sentimentality. Don Ameche is a winning lead and the unique Laird Cregar has a ball as Beelzebub himself
Shallow Grave: Wednesday, Film4 @ 10.50pm
Three young professionals are looking for a fourth to share their spacious Edinburgh apartment. Shortly after they find a person that suits them something happens that will really change their living arrangements. Danny Boyle's 1994 film debut is an effective and bitingly violent thriller that still has the strength to shock. Flashes of dark humour and captivating performances from Ewan McGregor, Kerry Fox and Christoper Eccleston ensure you'll find it all enjoyable.
Beatriz At Dinner: Wednesday, BBC Two @ 11.15pm
A holistic healer troubled by loss in her personal life goes to visit a client and gets stranded there after car trouble. She's asked to stay for a dinner party. One with guests who go against everything she believes in. You'll squirm hard during a social commentary laced chamber piece but you'll laugh too and you'll definitely leave it with some food for thought. Salma Hayek, Chloë Sevigny, John Lithgow and Connie Britton all add to a heady mix.
Hellraiser: Wednesday night / Thursday morning, The Horror Channel @ 12.40am (midnight)
A family moves into the father's childhood home and they soon realise they have made a massive mistake. Clive Barker's 1987 horror masterpiece is flat out disgusting in places but it's a seriously effective slice of grand guignol that has so far spawned 9(!!) sequels. The first one is of course the best and studded with intelligence and numerous moral shades of grey. Andrew Robinson and Clare Higgins do substantial work as a couple thrown headlong into a nightmare.
Wild: Thursday, Film4 @ 11.20pm
In an effort to jolt herself back to life after her mother dies, a woman embarks on a hike along the full length of America's west coast with no previous walking experience. Reese Witherspoon is exceptional here, as strong as she's ever been. Darkly funny in places and harrowing in others but it's a film that will suck you in and demand you stay until the end. Laura Dern who appears in flashbacks as her mother is reliable as always.
The Crucible: Friday, Talking Pictures TV @ 9.05pm
The young women of Salem, Massachusetts are forced into a lie that has appalling consequences for the older members of the town when hysteria takes hold. Written by the great playwright Arthur Miller as an indictment of the McCarthy witchhunts in the 1940's this is a powerful, handsomely mounted and still topical story fuelled by a trio of stunning performances from Joan Allen, Winona Ryder and Daniel Day-Lewis.
Stake Land: Friday, The Horror Channel @ 10.45pm
The vampires have won. The world is a wreck, one that only comes alive at night when bloodsuckers leave their tombs to feed on the last remaining humans. Connor has been saved by a vampire hunter called Mister and now both are heading north to New Eden. Nick Damici's 2010 horror takes old cliches and gives them inventive and inspired new twists ensuring an exciting and nervewracking watch. Damici, Conor Paolo, Danielle Harris and Kelly McGillis work well together.
As always visit hamsandwichcinema.blogspot.com/ for more film and tv chat.
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