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Films on TV this weekend

TelevisionSet.jpgIf you're going to be able to relax long enough to see some television this weekend then good on you, get a beer or a glass of wine, sit back and enjoy, and just to help you choose here are the Filmstalker picks of Television this weekend.

Even if you're not in Britain to see these, this article has some interesting talking points. I say that now before I've run through the good movies this weekend, perhaps there won't be any! Read on to find out.

The Mummy Returns on ITV2 9:30pm - 11:55pm
A great adventure yarn that's pure entertainment. It'll be interesting to see what becomes of the third film in the series which is still in production, especially since it's off to China and concentrating on their ancient Mummies. Great fun in this sequel though, and just as much as the first. Some of the closing battle scenes are amazing, and the cast are superb throughout. One for the kids to stay up late to I think.

Carrie on E4 10:30pm - 12:25am
Here's a film I really do believe has become better with age. Brian De Palma produces a superb film which at times does give you plenty of scares. What I really enjoy about it though is Sissy Spacek's performance of Carrie and how life continually pushes her towards breaking point. It is more a story about the pressures of life and this poor girl than anything else. For me the scene that always stays in my mind are the kitchen knives. Now there's a shiver for you.

The Big Lebowski on Film4 10:35pm - 12:50am
Confession time. I've not seen this film but I am continually told I have to. Since I am stressed out beyond belief today, I think that this film might just be the best thing for me. Another great cast that everyone raves about. How could I possibly have missed this for so long?

Get Carter on Channel 4 2:00am - 3:45am
I know you're going to ask me what the hell I'm thinking in mentioning this remake of the classic Get Carter with Michael Caine, well sometimes you just have to see the bad for yourself, just to understand how good good is. You follow? If you're sitting with nothing to do at this time, or you're just back from the pub and too drunk to sleep, here's your remedy! Just have a look to see how it compares against the original, and if you haven't seen the original? Go rent it afterwards and see how sometimes stories just can't be changed. The original just sees raw arrogance and power in Caine, whereas the remake seems to stumble at finding something similar in the Sylvester Stallone character. Caine is the original gangster.

Walkabout on Five 1:45pm - 3:35pm
Here's another film I haven't seen before but heard about again and again. Nicholas Roeg has been praised again and again for this film, it is oft called a masterpiece. The film follows two children who are stranded in the middle of the Australian outback and are left to try and fend for themselves. They meet a young Aborigine who has been banished from his tribe and is on Walkabout, and slowly they grow to know each other. It is said that this film carries an unusual amount of sexual and racial tension, quite controversial storylines for when it was first released. Definitely a film that is said to stand the test of time and one I'll be taping to watch when I get back home.

The 6th Day on Five US 9:00pm - 11:25pm
No apologies here, I like action films and I like Arnie. So how can you not like this film? It's clever, has some very cool effects, and has Arnie on the rampage with some cracking one liners. It's elevated from the usual Arnie action fare with an intelligent and rich plot, some surprise twists and a slightly surprising ending. I just wish that they had spent a little more time developing the more serious aspects of the tale, however it's still a good strong film and does a good job of asking some questions of the future of DNA and cloning. The rest of it is simple, Arnie discovers that he's been illegally cloned and his life taken over, now he's got to fight for it all back.

50 Greatest Comedy Films on Channel 4 9:00pm - 12:05am
Yes it's not a film, but in a way it's even better, the best bits of fifty films. Here the superb comic wit that is Stephen Fry will count down the fifty funniest films as voted by Channel 4 website readers. Along the way he'll make you laugh out loud and teach you some new words too, he's very good like that. The countdown is set to include such films as Blazing Saddles, Shaun of the Dead and one of my personal favourites The Pink Panther - that's the original one, bog off Steve Martin!

The Hitcher on Film4 10:35pm - 12:25am
It's hard to believe that this classic can be out done by the remake that's underway. The opening is superbly dark and introduces us to the menace that is Rutger Hauer's Hitcher. Little do we know until later on or during repeat viewings what these early scenes represent in his mind and that he's measuring up Jim, played by C Thomas Howell. It really plays well to the characters and their relationships, never filling the film with too much background, and the police station, diner, and closing scenes are just some of the most memorable of the film. It's a superb horror thriller that shows Hauer at his supreme best.

The Italian Job on Channel 4 9:00pm - 11:05pm
So I already harped on about the Caine film that Hollywood didn't remake very well and shouldn't have, but here's one they did. In fact I like to think it's nothing at all to do with the original and it stands alone as a quite surprisingly enjoyable film, but it's certainly not a remake of the original. A great fun, big budget piece of entertainment with a few over the top scenes, and I love the Mark Wahlberg and Edward Norton pair playing off each other.

Greatest Ever Scary Movies on Five 9:00pm - 11:45pm
The forty greatest ever scary movies as told by one of the most annoying screen personalities of all time. I really can't stand this guy on screen, I'm sure he's nice in real life but on telly his humour misses the mark and his dry delivery just falls flat. There's a host of horrific names in this lineup and expect to see Misery, A Nightmare on Elm Street, Candyman and obviously, The Exorcist. Perhaps we should have our own poll on that soon?

One Hour Photo on Film4 9:00pm - 10:50pm
Although this was on just the other week it really does deserve another mention and another watch. It's perhaps Robin Williams greatest achievement as an actor, the photo lab worker Sy Parrish in this extremely straight and sometimes incredibly unnerving psychological thriller. It's shot really well, but what stands out in this film is Williams playing an incredibly creepy and obsessive character and playing him perfectly. A superb film that has him stealing into peoples lives through the photographs they hand in for him to develop...just gaze at that wall...

Thunderheart on ITV3 10:00pm - 12:25am
Directed by Michael Apted and written by John Fusco, starring Val Kilmer, Sam Shepard, Fred Ward and Graham Greene, this is a film that Simone mentioned in one of the posts that you should see, and it gets a pretty strong write up and rating, including a comment on IMDB that this is Apted's strongest directing role. I can't remember seeing the whole film, but I do remember parts of it. This will be time to refresh my memory and see if it lives up to everything everyone said about it. The story of an FBI agent with a Sioux heritage who is sent to a reservation to help the local police with a murder investigation. Is it Apted's best?

Glory on Film4 10:50pm - 1:10am
This epic film is the story of the American Civil War's first all-black volunteer company who are fighting the prejudices of all sides. There are some stirring performances and we definitely see Denzel Washington at the absolute peak of his abilities as an actor. Matthew Broderick, Morgan Freeman and Cary Elwes also headline with many a recognisable face in the cast. It's an emotional film that surely belongs way higher than number 163 in the IMDB top 250. Edward Zwick provides superb direction with Kevin Jarre pulling together some amazing sources to produce a stunning screenplay.

Boiler Room on BBC1 Scotland 12:00am - 2:00am
Again, another film I've never seen but have been directed to a few times. Some say that this is Vin Diesel's best film, and that he get's a lot of credit when this film is mentioned. Yet that's not quite fair because there's the superb Giovanni Ribisi up there with him, as well as a few other names peppered around that you'll recognise. This is the story of corruption in the background of trading. It's a similar blurb to one we've seen in so many other storys, a law firm, the police force, etc., but I'm told this one is particularly satisfying and well made. Written and directed by Ben Younger who also wrote and directed Prime...ah.



Phew, sorry to be late!

My five cents on the weekend:

-Carrie, I agree totally. The party scene is really shocking.

-Get Carter: Useless remake of a masterpiece. Watch the original.

-One Hour Photo: I´d like to point out the superb direction of Mark Romanek. Powerful visuals to support Williams´achievement.

And we were just talking about Thunderheart the other day, how freaky is that?

I also havent seen The Big Lebowski, but then again I dont have tv right thank goodness for DVD rentals.

I deliberately missed the remake of The Italian Job because I so enjoyed the original and thought that they will just ruin it and youre the 2nd person who has said that the remake wasnt bad at all, gotta go and give it a try then.

Well looks like I've missed most of them anyway due to a wedding I was at...sometimes there are more important things in life than films!

WALKABOUT - Good film, rather altered from the book. Great performance by Jenny Agutter when young.

Incidentally, the Aborigine boy has not been banished from his tribe: a 'Walkabout' is a trial of manhood which the boys do when they reach puberty or thereabouts - they go out into the bush alone and have to fend for themselves for a while.

There is a striking conflict of cultures in this film and the story is quite a sad one. Enduring, though, as the critic says.


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