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Sixteen films on TV as we look forward to the easing of Covid restrictions

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

Ronan O'Meara gives his picks of movies on TV over the next week

Film guru Ronan O'Meara has been scouring the TV schedules to find movies to watch as we begin the month of May.

Here are 16 to choose from over the next week....enjoy!

Reservation Road: Saturday, TG4 @ 8.40pm

The futures of two families, the Learner's and the Arno's, are forever changed one night after a chance occurrence on Reservation Road. An upsetting film no doubt, and maybe one to record and watch when times aren't so grim, but it's fine slice of life. A twisting turning look at loss and grief that might surprise you with how it plays out. Mark Ruffalo, Joaquin Phoenix and Jennifer Connelly do powerful work.

The Swimmer: Saturday, Sony Movies @ 10.50pm

Ned is living the suburban life in a New England valley. One day he realises he can swim his way home via a series of swimming pools dotting the backyards of his neighbours. As he sets off on his journey he makes a connection with the people who own them. A strange and surreal but oddly funny story about a person trying desperately to hold on to a life he's not living anymore. Bruce Lancaster is a spectacular lead.

Vertical Limit: Saturday, RTÉ One @ 11.45pm

K2. The second highest mountain in the world but the most dangerous. When Annie Garrett and her team find themselves trapped in the death zone and only her brother Peter has the skills to save her. This action thriller from 2000 is a very silly but very entertaining watch. It's far fetched stuff but it's so well made and put together you'll forgive it a lot. Robin Tunney, Chris O'Donnell and the much missed Bill Paxton lead a starry cast. 

Our Man In Havana: Sunday, Sony Movies @ 3pm

Jim is an English immigrant living in Cuba. His day job isn't working out too well for him so he jumps at the chance of a bit of espionage excitement when it's offered to him. He weaves a web of lies that make him look like a hero but lies have a tendency to backfire. Alec Guinness is a joy in this 62 year old comedy that still feels fresh today. Maureen O'Hara, Noël Coward, Burl Ives and Ralph Richardson all add to the fun.

Pet Semetary: Sunday, Channel 4 @ 10pm

The Creeds have moved to the countryside to get away from the hustle and bustle of Boston life. There's something weird on their land and it comes in rather handy when tragedy strikes. This 2019 adaption of one of Stephen King's darkest stories isn't as successful as the 1989 version but there's plenty here to recommend including a spooky mythology and nice turns from Jason Clarke, Amy Seimetz and the mighty John Lithgow.

Dog Soldiers: Sunday, Film4 @ 11.20pm

A group of soldiers on routine training in the Scottish highlands find themselves under siege from a pack of beasts that should not exist. Neil Marshall's debut film is awesome. Hilarious, horrific, quotable, fun, disgusting and damn scary. A rare horror comedy that gets it's blend just right. All this and we get a wicked cast too. Sean Pertwee, Kevin McKidd, Liam Cunningham and Darren Morfitt who's just deadly as Spoon.

The Delinquent Season: Monday,  RTÉ One @ 9.30pm

Danielle and Jim. Chris and Yvonne. Two couples in love, living the good life with their kids, From the outside things look flawless. But on closer inspection.... This 2018 Irish drama is a strange choice for a bank holiday Monday evening slot because it's a hell of a downer but it's one that's very well acted by a peach of a cast. Cillian Murphy, Eva Birthistle, Catherine Walker and Andrew Scott all bring their best to the table.

Tulip Fever: Monday, BBC2 @ 10pm

Amsterdam. 400 years ago. A painting is commissioned and the painter falls in love with the woman he's working with. She's unhappily married to an older man and accepts the younger man's advances. This erotically charged drama was caught up in the turmoil of the Weinstein arrest and vanished fast but it's worth discovering for yourself. It's a lovely looking film and Alicia Vikander and Dane DeHann do well in charge.

Das Boot: Monday, TCM @ 11.05pm

Set in 1942 during the Battle of the Atlantic, this is about the crew of a German submarine and the daily horrors they faced trying to stay alive in WW2. An unusual film in that we see the war both through German eyes and see these men for what they were, ordinary joe's following commands and suffering for it. Intense, claustrophobic and frightening stuff but really worth a watch. Jurgen Prochnow in the lead is phenomenal.

Maniac: Tuesday, The Horror Channel @ 12.55am

Frank owns a mannequin shop. He's a strange guy and that's putting things mildly. He gets even stranger when a young artist asks for his help and dark desires come bubbling to the surface. Elijah Wood stars in a remake of the infamous and long banned 1980 original and turns in a genuinely creepy performance in this ghoulish, surreal and at times nauseating look at the madness bubbling around inside the minds of men.

Elizabeth: Tuesday, Film4 @ 11.05pm

The death of her sister Queen Mary has elevated Elizabeth to the throne in the year 1588 and the position she has inherited is messy with external and internal strife making her position rather tenuous. The film that made Cate Blanchett famous is a strong one, a good looking, intelligent history lesson that proves once again that the Brits were always at it. Blanchett, Kathy Burke, Christopher Eccleston and Richard Attenborough all do great work.

Walking Out: Wednesday, Film4 @ 7.05pm

A father and son head into the deep Montana countryside in an effort to fix their estranged relationship during a hunting trip. A vicious encounter far from civilisation forces them to work together. A rough watch that's showing surprisingly early in the evening but a film that's worth your while with it's beautiful cinematography and solid performances from Matt Bomer and Josh Wiggins as Senior and Junior.

Reds: Thursday, Talking Pictures TV @ 9pm

The Bolshevik Revolution has done a number on John after he's travelled to Russia to write about it and when he returns to America he's a full blown communist. It leads him to the love of his life but it makes things complicated too. A big epic drama written by, directed by and starring Warren Beatty. It's length and pace may be off-putting to some but it's a muscular yet intimate slice of history. Beatty and Diane Keaton lead a packed cast.

Up In The Air: Thursday, BBC2 @ 11.30pm

A business man who spends his life travelling from place to place makes a connection with a woman who does the same and for the first time in his life thinks about settling down. George Clooney and Vera Farmiga lead a drama that's equally funny and sad. A story about people who think they have it all and have nothing at all and a caution about the silliness of valuing your work life above all else. Well worth a go.

The 'Burbs: Friday, The Horror Channel @ 2.35am

The Klopecks are an odd bunch and when they move into a quiet cul de sac the neighbours start getting suspicious, especially Ray and Art. Joe Dante's 1989 comedy is a nicely subversive watch that still hits the spot 32(!!!!) years later. Tense, scary and flat out uproarious at times. Tom Hanks is as always the perfect every-man and gets amusing support from the late Carrie Fisher, a bonkers Bruce Dern and that staple of 80's cinema, Corey Feldman.

When Harry Met Sally: Friday, BBC1 @ 10.50pm

Harry and Sally have been friends forever. They chat first thing in the AM and last thing in the PM. They'd be fantastic together. Their friends think so. But they claim they can just be friends without other nonsense getting in the way. Rob Reiner's comedy drama is a classic. Endlessly amusing and quotable and full of moments you know even if you're new to the film. Meg Ryan, Billy Crystal, Carrie Fisher and Bruno Kirby are all superb.

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

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