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28/07/2021

16 movies to watch as we begin another month of lockdown

17 films on TV this week to help you ignore that darkening sky

Ronan O'Meara gives his picks of the week

Ronan O'Meara has been scouring the TV schedules to find films to watch as we begin another month of lockdown.

Here are his choices....enjoy!

 

Boogie Nights: Saturday, TG4 @ 9.30pm

Dirk has a gift and porn director Jack Horner wants to share it with the world. He finds a new & accepting family in the world of adult entertainment. Things are grand for a while, but it's the 80's and coke is everywhere... Paul Thomas Anderson's sophomore movie is still his best. An epic look at the seamier side of Tinseltown powered by a brilliant cast including Mark Wahlberg, Julianne Moore, Burt Reynolds and the much missed Philip Seymour Hoffman.

Apocalypse Now : Final Cut: Saturday, BBC2 @ 11pm

Captain Willard has been tasked with going up the Mekon River to terminate a rogue American Colonel with extreme prejudice. What he sees on his journey with stay with him and you forever. Apocalypse Now is a nightmarish, drug fueled masterpiece. A harrowing, troubling, hilarious & psychotic look into the dark troubling heart of man. If you haven't seen it yet I'm very jealous. Martin Sheen, Marlon Brando, Larry Fishburne, Robert Duvall, Frederic Forrest and Dennis Hopper will all amaze you.

The Cotton Club: Saturday, Talking Pictures TV @ 11.50pm

The Cotton Club of 1920's Harlem was the place to be. Brimming with stars rubbing elbows with gangster, it's where dreams were made and Dixie Dwyer is providing the music, He also has his eye on the girlfriend of Dutch Schultz. Francis Ford Coppola's gangster drama is a messy affair but it's so full of fizz and energy that you won't care. Richard Gere, Diane Lane, Nicolas Cage and a scary James Remar lead a wicked cast.

Scanners: Sunday, The Horror Channel @ 12.50am

David Cronenberg's 1981 sci-fi/horror/thriller is an excellent example of the body horror genre. It stars Stephen Lack and Michael Ironside as two men who have dangerous psychic powers. One is on the run from society and the other wants to dominate it. An intriguing and blackly comic watch that contains some special effects that beat modern CGI hands down. The infamous scene near the start will literally blow your mind. Not for the squeamish.

This Beautiful Fantastic: Sunday,  BBC2 @ 2.35pm

Now for a nice Sunday afternoon movie. Bella's a wannabe writer struggling to finish her book for children. Her obsessiveness about things and an awkward rental condition are making things difficult though. If you've seen the French film Amelie you might sense a similar vibe here but since when is that a bad thing. A light, diverting slice of whimsy. Jessica Findlay Brown, Tom Wilkinson and Ireland's own Andrew Scott all do well here.

The Man Who Would Be King: Sunday, RTÉ One @ 3.20pm

Daniel and Peachy are two English soldiers in India. They've had enough of having nothing and decide to set off in search of riches. This adaption of a Rudyard Kipling novel is an enjoyable affair. It's old fashioned stuff but it's pure & utter escapism. A perfect watch for a lazy Sunday afternoon. Sean Connery and Michael Caine have a whale of a time as the leads. The late Christopher Plummer pops up as Kipling himself too.

Secrets & Lies: Monday, Film4 @ 12.55am

When her adoptive mother passes away Hortense decides to do what she's been putting off for years and delves into the past, looking for the woman who brought her into the world. That woman is Cynthia and Cynthia hasn't a clue what's about to hit her. Mike Leigh's 1996 drama is a beautifully human watch about our strengths and weaknesses and our abilities to be cruel and yet so loving. Marianne Jean- Baptiste, Brenda Blethyn and Timothy Spall are all astounding here.

The King Of Comedy: Monday,  TCM @ 11.55pm

Rupert Pupkin is a wannabe comic going to extreme lengths to achieve success. Lengths that involve a star comedian who wants nothing to do with him. This is one of Martin Scorsese and Robert De Niro's finest collaborations and a film you will watch through your fingers while trying not to die from cringing. It's a painfully superb black comedy. But you'll need to be in the right mood to enjoy it. Sandra Bernhard and a nasty Jerry Lewis do mighty work in support.

Nico, 1988: Tuesday, Film4 @ 1.20am

Christa Päffgen a.k.a Nico was a German singer best known for her work with Lou Reed and The Velvet Underground. She was a problematic woman who had what you could call a troubled existence and this is the story of the last year of her life. It's tough and upsetting watch as you'll see but it's carried along by a graceful & in places mesmerising performance from Trine Dyrholm as Nico.

8 Mile: Tues, ITV4 @ 11.15pm

Detroit, 2002, a kip. There's only one way out of the misery and the soul crushing work; Jimmy Rabbit knows it, he has the words but will he have the guts to use them. Curtis Hanson's dark drama is brought to life by a surprising turn from Eminem and it's rap battle sequences will electrify you for days afterwards. The supporting cast of Anthony Mackey, Kim Basinger and the late Brittany Murphy do solid work also.

The Friends Of Eddie Coyle: Thursday, Talking Pictures TV @ 1.15am

A career criminal's lifetime of offences is about to catch up with him and a long jail sentence is in his future. But Eddie can't face jail and so starts doing something about it. Something very dangerous for a man in his line of work. A prime example of 70's crime cinema here, nasty, biting, ironic and effortlessly carried by Robert Mitchum in a part that feels quite different for him. Peter Boyle is aces as one of the titular friends.

Premium Rush: Thursday, Sony Movies @ 1.35am

The world of Manhattan bike couriers is an exciting and potentially life threatening place that sees them risking life and limb everyday to get their packages to their destinations on time. One day Wiley finds himself carrying something rather valuable and other parties want it too. This film is so much fun, bouncing well shot and executed action scenes off you in a manner that will leave you breathless and giggling. Joseph Gordon- Levitt, Daria Ramirez and Michael Shannon all have a good time here.

Battle Of The Sexes: Thursday: Film4 @ 10.45pm

The eternal question. Who's better? Men or women? Watch this and find out. It's 1973 and there's about to be a tennis match between world number one Billie Jean King and ex champ Bobby Riggs that will answer all. An intriguing watch that will make you laugh and then anger you with it's depiction of the double standards, sexism and misogyny that was...and still is endemic in sport. Emma Stone and Steve Carell do great work as the leads.

Cardboard Gangsters: Friday (March 5),  Virgin Media One @ 9.30pm

Four young men with dillusions of grandeur decide to try and take over the drug trade in Darndale. But the existing dealers don't suffer newcomers gladly. Mark O'Connor's Dublin set thriller is vicious stuff. A terrifying,tense and unforgiving look at the underbelly of modern day Ireland. John Connors headlines the film and gives an immense performance full of so much rage you can feel him pulsating off the screen.

You Were Never Really Here: Friday (March 5), Film4 @11.20pm

Joe's a traumatised war veteran haunted by what he saw and did overseas and now he's channeling his pain at bad men who deserve to face justice. People hire him to do his thing and he does it properly. Until a politician enters the picture. Director Lynne Ramsey and star Joaquin Phoenix have made something special here, a film that could have been cheap, nasty and exploitative in lesser hands and turned it into a bleak but soulful look at the power of redemption.

Source Code: Friday (March 5), BBC1 @ 11.55pm

A man wakes up in someone else's body on a train and finds out he has eight minutes to find a bomber on board before disaster strikes. Duncan Jones' 2011 sci-fi thriller is, after an initially confusing opening, very entertaining. It's silly but if you go with it you'll have a good time watching a well written and crafted film led by a fine performance from Jake Gyllenhal. Vera Farmiga, Jeffrey Wright & Michelle Monaghan all make their own mark too.

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

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