Ronan O'Meara gives his picks of movies on TV over the bank holiday weekend
For those of you who will be giving St Patrick's Day parades a miss, there are plenty of movies on TV over the four-day weekend.
Film guru Ronan O'Meara has been scouring the schedules and has picked 10 to choose from.
Breadwinner: St Patrick's Day, RTÉ2 @ 10.35am
Growing up under Taliban control in Afghanistan is an awful way to live as little Parvana finds out when her father is arrested. Now to support her family she must pretend to be a boy and brave the outside world. Cartoon Saloon's third feature length animated film steps away from Ireland and into a warzone. It's a scary, stressful but gorgeous and heartfelt look at the hardships of being a woman in a man's world. Saara Chaudry adds amazing voicework to glorious animation.
Appointment With Danger: St Patroick's Day, Film4 @ 2.40pm
Gary, Indiana. A postal officer has been murdered and Inspector Goddard is on the case. There's a single witness, a nun by the name of Sister Augustine. She's in danger and he must go undercover to save her and solve the crime. Every film list needs a film noir and here is a prime example. It's familiar stuff as noir goes but there's a subtle streak of humour running through it, Alan Ladd hits the spot as the lead and we get an likably off kilter turn from Phyllis Calvert as the witness.
The Guard: St Patrick's Day, RTÉ 2 @ 9.30pm
In darkest Connemara a stubborn, set in his ways policeman finds himself working with the FBI to stop a big drug deal going down. Will their differing styles blend? A darkly hilarious film shot through with a unique Irish sensibility that will have you in tatters laughing one minute and upset the next. Brendan Gleeson is as good as he's ever been and Don Cheadle supports him ably. Liam Cunningham is wicked craic as always as the baddie.
Knives Out: Friday, RTÉ One @ 9.30pm
The morning after his 85th birthday the patriarch of the Thrombey family is found dead and suspicion has fallen on the many troubled members of his family. Sons, daughters, nieces, grandchildren, who could it be? Private eye Benoit Blanc is here to find out. Rian Johnson's comedy thriller is a twisty turny joy that only a misery guts could hate. Daniel Craig, Jamie Lee-Curtis, Christopher Plummer, Ana De Armas and many others have a whale of a time putting all the pieces together.
Squirm: Friday, Talking Pictures TV @ 11.05pm
A hefty storm in the skies over Fly Creek has awoken something in the soil. Something unsettling. Something dangerous. Something with a taste for human meat. Jeff Lieberman's 1976 cult classic isn't one for the squeamish but there's an awful lot of enjoyment to be had here, especially with Rick Baker's wonderful practical effects, if you're willing to put aside the friday evening snacks and dive in. Don Scardino and Patricia Pearcy are a pair of game leads.
The Elephant Man: Saturday, Virgin Media Three @ 9.15pm
The story of John Merrick, a lovely & gentle man, despised by the society he grew up in because of the way he looked, and Frederick Treves, the doctor who treated him like a human. David Lynch's justifiably lauded 1980 drama is a heartbreaking look at a life ruined by a birth defect. A terribly sad but strangely beautiful film. John Hurt in the lead role does career best work while Anthony Hopkins and Anne Bancroft excel in support.
Burning: Saturday, BBC4 @ 10pm
Jong-Su bumps into an old friend of his while working and she asks him for help while she's travelling. On her return she brings back a new partner who Jong-Su quickly becomes suspicious of. Burning's slowburn (hehe) pace might be off putting to some but stick with it and you'll find it's a very well put together Korean drama/thriller that will knock around your head for quite a while after it's finished. Yoo Ah-in, Steven Yuen and Jeon Jong-seo make quite the trio.
Bridge Of Spies: Saturday, BBC Two @ 11.30pm
Cold war intrigue abounds in this gripping drama from Steven Spielberg. An American lawyer hired to deal with a Russian spy finds himself sucked into a negotiation involving a downed U.S. pilot in a Berlin that's divided in two. Initially slow moving and confusing, but when it settles it turns into both a very entertaining watch and a history lesson. Tom Hanks, Mark Rylance and Amy Ryan are all in fantastic form.
Climax: Sunday, Film4 @ 1.50am
A company of dancers get together for one big celebration. All is going well, laughs are being had, until someone realises that something has gone very very wrong. This is French director Gaspar Noé's tamest film but if this is your first experience of his you might find that hard to believe. It lacks the graphic sex of his better known work but more than makes up for it in intensity and brutality. You won't forget this one for a while. Sofia Boutella is a solid lead.
Brewster's Million's: Sunday, ITV4 @ 2.35pm
Montgomery Brewster's uncle has died and has left him $300 million. But there's a catch. He must first spend $30 million in 30 days and not have anything to show for it. A tough task in the days before bitcoin. Director Walter Hill leaves aside the macho thrillers and westerns he's known for here and while it wasn't well received on release it's actually a charming and funny vehicle for leading man Richard Pryor with John Candy in back up as his usual sparkling self.
Notorious: Sunday, Talking Pictures TV @ 7pm
To atone for the sins of her father a woman called Alicia Huberman delves into the world of espionage to investigate nazis living in South America. Of course, being that this is a Hitchcock film, she falls for her government handler too. 75 years old this year and still as enjoyable as it ever was, this thriller starring Ingrid Bergman and Cary Grant is smooth as silk and full of tension, romantic and otherwise. Keep an eye out for one of the most famous kisses ever filmed.l
As always visit hamsandwichcinema.blogspot.com/ for more film and tv chat.
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