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25/07/2021

Sixteen films on TV to keep you entertained during Holy Week

19 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 over the first week of the Easter holidays.

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

In The Name Of The Father: Saturday, RTÉ2 @ 9.25pm

Two young men emigrate to Britain to escapes the troubles in 1970's Northern Ireland and find themselves caught up in a nightmare. This is the true life tale (with a couple of big liberties) of the Guildford four and one of the biggest miscarriages of justice in recent history. A story that will enrage you and upset you. Daniel Day Lewis and Pete Postlethwaite are amazing as son and father Gerry and Guiseppe Conlon.

The Boys From Brazil: Saturday, Talking Pictures TV @ 10pm

The nazi cowards who ran to Paraguay after the war 30 years earlier are up to dodgy things and Ezra Leberman, a veteran nazi hunter wants to know what's cooking. What we got here is a gloriously garish slice of pulp fiction wish fulfillment, nasty and darkly humorous in equal share. Gregory Peck is demented as Joseph Mengele and Lawrence Olivier is great value as the righteous avenger hunting him down.

Foxtrot: Saturday, BBC4 @ 11.40pm

The Feldman's are a wealthy couple living a nice, comfortable life in Tel Aviv. Their ordered existence is upended when they hear tragic news about a family member serving in the military. This powerful 2017 drama uses a fractured narrative to create a damning indictment of life in Israel, one that takes aim at it's insular society and it's horrifying treatment of it's neighbours. Lior Ashkenazi and Sarah Adler do superbly as the Feldman's.

Rango: Sunday, Channel 4 @ 2.20pm

Rango is a pet chameleon who gets lost in the desert and eventually finds himself in a lawless town called Dirt. And Dirt is in need of a new sheriff. This is a creative,smart and lovingly made CGI homage to the westerns we all grew up watching. It's a joy spotting all the movie references in between the fun performances and exciting set pieces. A film for with something for both children and adults that's really worth a go.

Death Race: Sunday, ITV4 @ 10.30pm

In the near future (actually 2012!) prisoners with life sentences are forced to take part in murderous armoured car races for the entertainment of the televisual masses. One man decides to buck the system. Add a ridiculous concept, a dash of carnage, an agreeable Jason Statham performance and a barnstorming turn from Joan Allen as a prison warden and you get a very agreeable 2 hrs of crash, bang, wallop.

God's Own Country: Sunday, Film4 @ 11.40pm

Johnny Saxby despises his rural Yorkshire life and numbs himself with drink and anonymous sex. One day a Romanian farmhand named Gheorghe arrives and Johnny sees a chance for something new. This 2017 drama is a powerful watch, an earthy but very moving paean to the wonders of love and taking chances. Josh O'Connor and Alec Secareanu both do phenomenal work while Ian Hart is aces in support.

The Wind And The Lion: Monday, Sony Movies @ 3.05pm

Morocco. The early 1900's. Foreign powers want it for it's resources and the locals are getting no say in the matter. So a tribal leader kidnaps a rich Greek-American family and stirs up a whole mess of trouble. From the head of John Milius comes this old fashioned and diverting take on a real life incident. It's as chock full of bluster and fun as you'd expect from his work. Sean Connery, Candice Bergen and John Huston all put in fine performances.

Finding Jack Charlton: Monday, BBC2 @ 9pm

In 1966 Jack Charlton became an English hero. In 1990 he became an Irish one. 30 years later as he suffers with dementia a documentary crew looks at his past and present. Yes, the subject matter can be upsetting in places but this is more of a touching, poignant watch than a sad one. The matter of fact way that Jack talks about himself will make you remember why he was so popular over here while the archive footage will give you goosebumps.

Mary Magdalene: Tuesday, Film4 @ 11.15pm

1,987 years ago a young woman called Mary living along the shores of the Galiliean sea rejects a marriage proposal and is deemed mad because of it. Her father asks a healer with a familiar name to help her. A unique look at probably the most famous story ever told, told from the point of view of a woman who's name became mud in the ensuing years. You might scoff at the beliefs but the acting from Rooney Mara and Joaquin Phoenix is second to none.

Goat: Wednesday, Channel 4 @ 2.10am

American universities are strange places and the fraternity houses that surround them are downright terrifying as we see in this story of a young man reeling from an assault who goes to college and joins one in an attempt to reclaim his manhood. A disturbing look at toxic masculinity that may be too much to bear for many people but it's a thought provoking watch. Ben Schnetzer and Nick Jonas do well as the leads.

Cop Land: Wednesday, ITV4 @ 10pm

Garrison, New Jersey is where New York City cops make their home. Freddy Heflin is the sheriff who looks after the town. Usually he looks the other way when they mess up but now he has to make a stand. This is one of the best films of the 90's. A complex tale of rights and wrongs with a cast for the ages. Sly Stallone is the best he's ever been and he gets ferocious back up from Annabella Sciorra, Robert De Niro, Harvey Keitel and Ray Liotta. 

The Third Man: Thursday, BBC4 @ 9pm

Holly has arrived in Vienna to visit his friend Harry Lime but is soon dismayed to find out his friend is dead. Or is he? Who knows? This 1949 classic still holds up brilliantly 70 years later with it's memorable dialogue, stunning cinematography, scenes you'll recognise even if the film is new to you and an atmosphere that just drips off the screen. Watch it. It's deadly. Joseph Cotton, Alida Valli  and Orson Welles are all fantastic

Four Lions: Thursday, Film4 @ 11.15pm

Omar, Hassan, Waj, Faisal and Barry are a group of English jihadists planning to bomb a marathon. Omar, Hassan, Waj, Faisal and Barry are also a pack of dopes. Yes, it is a rather strange basis for a comedy but it really works while also managing to humanise & genuinely make you care about murderous religious extremists. Riz Ahmed, Kayvan Novak and Nigel Lindsay all do mighty work.

Two Mules For Sister Sara; Good Friday, TG4 @ 9pm

A nun called Sara is on the run in the wild west and is saved from a fate worse than death by a mysterious soldier named Hogan. Before long their reasons for being in the desert become intertwined and they have to stick together to survive. This might be one of the lesser Clint Eastwood westerns but it's still an enjoyable one due in no small part to the chemistry between him and a spirited Shirley MacClaine. 

John Wick : Chapter 3 - Parabellum: Good Friday, Virgin Media One @ 9.30pm

The best assassin in the world is still on the run and now every other hired killer in New York City is out for his blood when a massive bounty is placed on his head. Keanu Reeve's 3rd entry in this gunfire filled franchise is sheer entertainment, even if it does outstay it's welcome by at least 20 minutes. The action on display here is mindblowing though with motorbike ninjas, axe battles, horses and weaponised dogs all in the mix. Halle Berry and Lance Reddick both add to the fun.

Overlord: Good Friday, Film4 @ 10.45pm

D-Day. 6th of June, 1944. Paratroopers are descending on Normandy to take on the might of the German army but little do they suspect what's lurking in the darkness under the small town they must infiltrate. Ok, this action/horror is probably the goriest WWII film you'll ever see so avoid if you are squeamish but if you enjoy seeing nazis dying horribly you'll have a whale of a time with this. Jovan Adepo and Wyatt Russell do good work as the guys in charge.

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

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