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26/07/2021

Seventeen films on TV this week to help you keep your head in the game

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

Ronan O'Meara gives his picks of the week

Film guru Ronan O'Meara has been scouring the TV schedules to find movies to watch once you're back home having left your 5k!

Here are 17 to choose from over the next week....enjoy!

The Guard: Saturday, RTÉ2 @ 9.45pm

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 wonderfully funny 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 even been and Don Cheadle supports him ably. Liam Cunningham is wicked craic as always as the baddie

The Man Who Fell To Earth: Saturday, Talking Pictures TV @ 11.50pm

The tall thin man wandering around New Mexico might look human, but he's not. He's an alien here on a mission to save his dying planet but the many temptations available on earth are getting in the way of his work. Nicolas Roeg's surreal 1976 science fiction drama is a cryptic, confusing, disorientating stunner but it's the outlandish turn from David Bowie as the titular character than really makes it sing. 

Westworld: Sunday, BBC1 @ Midnight

Westworld's a place where you can live out your wild west fantasies, you can be a hero or a villain and tourists get a taste of both when the artificial intelligence running the park goes faulty. Yes yes it's Jurassic Park with robot cowboys but it did come first. An enjoyable watch that rapidly becomes a scary one courtesy of a demonic Yul Brynner in a rare bad guy role. James Brolin & Richard Benjamin are a fine pair of heroes and keep an eye out for Alan Oppenheimer aka the voice of 80's cartoons.

Jeremiah Johnson: Sunday, ITV4 @ 1.55pm

Jeremiah has had enough of war and wishes to live a solitary existence in the Rocky mountains. During his time there he lives an interesting life. To say the least. The source of one of twitter's most overused gifs, this 1972 western is a very enjoyable watch. All the usual western tropes are at play here but there's also a tenderness sprinkled throughout you don't see very often in the genre. Robert Redford nails the lead.

Rosie: Sunday, RTÉ1 @ 9.30pm

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 superb in an upsetting and thought provoking story from Roddy Doyle.

I, Tonya: Sunday, BBC2 @ 10pm

Tonya Harding was the talk of the Winter Olympics in 1994. But not because of any medals she won. Oh no, her story was far more complicated than any race to the podium. This sporting autobiography from 2018 is a fantastic watch, as dark and twisted as any crime thriller and based on a true story that will shock you. Margot Robbie is immense as Tonya but it's Allison Janney as her truly vile mother who will stick in your mind for days after.

Death To Smoochy: Monday, Film4 @ 1.10am

Rainbow Randolph, kids TV show host extraordinaire has just got the bullet and new host Smoochy takes over. Soon he's a huge success but Randolph just cannot let it lie. I loved this. It's so deliciously dark that at times you'll be staring at the screen appalled while not being able to stop yourself from laughing. Edward Norton and the late and much missed Robin Williams both have a whale of a time in here. 

True Romance: Monday, Sony Movies @ 9pm

A love at first sight couple go on the run to Los Angeles with a stolen suitcase in tow and the owners of the suitcase in pursuit. Tony Scott directs Quentin Tarantino's script and the result is one of the most engaging and quotable films of the 90's. Dark, hilarious, brutal stuff with a glorious cast led by Christian Slater & Patricia Arquette with memorable back up from Christopher Walken, Brad Pitt, James Gandolfini and Dennis Hopper.

No Country For Old Men: Monday, TG4 @ 9.30pm

A man chasing deer finds himself in a world of hurt after he absconds with money found after a drug deal gone wrong. This thriller from the Coen Brothers is a magnificent watch. A gripping tale from the pen of Cormac McCarthy that will have you on the edge of your chair as the hunter becomes the hunted. The cast is first rate too with Josh Brolin, Kelly McDonald, Woody Harrelson, Tommy Lee Jones and Javier Bardem all lashing into meaty roles.

Hit!: Tuesday, Talking Pictures TV @ 12.40am

Heroin from Marseille has killed his daughter and FBI agent Nick Allen is aflame with righteous fury. He builds a team and sets off across the Atlantic for revenge. Yep, it's sounds formulaic as hell but a blaxploitation twist turns this 1973 thriller into something quite a bit different to what you'd expect. It's a little bit too padded in places but committed turns from Richard Pryor and Billy Dee Williams keep it together.

Bad Company: Tuesday, TCM @ 1.35am

Drew and Jake are heading west. The Civil war is in full flow and instead of facing certain death at the hands of the Union they've decided to try their hand at a life of crime out at the frontier. They're young and they haven't a clue how hard things will get. Jeff Bridges and Barry Brown headline this revisionist western that was made in an era where all the myths of the genre were being shattered. It's tough going but it's worth your time.

Nowhere To Run: Wednesday, Sony Movies @ 9pm

While on the run from a jailbreak, an escaped convict finds himself caring about and getting close with a family under pressure from a developer to sell their land. Jean Claude Van Damme's modern day remake of Shane is an entertaining affair and one that's far more grounded than his usual movies. Rosanna Arquette, Ted Levine and Joss Ackland tackle the acting duties and JCVD kicks ass well. Succession fans will get a kick out of seeing a baby faced Kieran Culkin too.

Role Models: Thursday, ITV4 @ 9pm

Wheeler and Danny hate their job and an ill advised attempt to liven things up finds them facing jail or community service. Community service means the Big Brother programme. It's here they meet Augie and Ronnie. Under it's sometimes crude exterior this 2008 comedy is loaded with heart and soul and it's a joy to watch Paul Rudd, Seann William Scott, Christopher Mintz-Plasse and Bobb'e J. Thompson work together. 

The Man With The Iron Heart: Thursday, BBC4 @ 10pm

Two young Czech men are about to carry out one of the most audacious plans of World War II. The assassination of Reinhard Heydrich, the man behind the nazi final solution. It's a suicide mission. They know it. But it must happen. This has an excellent first hour and a formulaic second but it's an important history lesson nonetheless. Jack O'Connell and Ireland's own Jack Reynor play the heroes and Jason Clarke's Heydrich is someone you'll want to see die painfully.

An Unsuitable Job For A Woman: Friday, Film4 @ 1.50am

Her former boss is dead, his son has passed away too in suspicious circumstances and Cordelia Grey is troubled by it all. So she uses her detecting skills to figure out what exactly happened. An interesting look into the darker side of the lives of the prim and proper English country set. Adapted from a P.D. James novel this is buoyed by a few great turns from Pippa Guard, Paul Freeman and the always watchable Billie Whitelaw. 

The Girl In The Spider's Web: Friday, Film4 @ 9pm

Lisbeth Salander's back and once again she's punishing the evil men of Sweden. This time she's on the hunt for a piece of software that powerful forces do not want released into the wild. A belated follow up to the Millennium trilogy it may be but it's still an energetic watch and it is always satisfying seeing scumbags getting the justice they deserve. Claire Foy, LaKeith Stanfiend and Sverrir Gudnason do well as the leads.

Sicario: Friday, Virgin Media One @ 9pm

The US/Mexico border is a dangerous and morally murky place to work, as FBI agent Kate Macer finds out when she'd co-opted into an inter agency task force and dropped in at the deep end. Denis Villeneuve's 2015 thriller is a cracker, tense, hideous, darkly funny and layered with multiple shades of gray. Emily Blunt is a compelling lead and gets deadly support from Josh Brolin, Jon Bernthal and especially Benicio De Toro. 

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

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