Tag Archives: Stalag 17

Best Films on TV: 14-20 October

DieHardWillisCasting his eye over this weeks tele again is Owen Hughes, letting us know what films to look out for:

Monday 14 October – Stalag 17 (Film4, 12.45pm)

Billy Wilder earned an Oscar nomination for best director for this World War II drama. William Holden went one better and actually won an Oscar for his performance as Sgt Sefton, accused of leaking information on two prisoners who are killed in an attempted escape from their POW camp. One to tick off your IMDB Top 250 checklist as it currently sits at a lofty #210.

Tuesday 15 October – Me, Myself & Irene (Film4, 23:05)

Not a lot of choice for films to pick for Tuesday as England’s crucial World Cup qualifier against Poland will no doubt dominate viewing figures for the evening. However, after what will no doubt be a huge disappointment to Roy Hodgson’s team, Jim Carrey is here to make things all OK again in his film about a cop with a split personality disorder. The tagline is actually “from gentle to mental.” I’m not making it up. That’s what it says on the poster.

Wednesday 16 October – The Third Man (Film4 ,13.05)

If you didn’t take James’ advice on the latest podcast and sign up to Mubi, but still hoped to watch The Third Man, then you’re in luck. Film4 are showing this all time classic murder mystery thriller from 1949, directed by Carol Reed, starring most notably Orson Welles, and Joseph Cotton as a writer who travels to Vienna to investigate the mysterious circumstances around the death of his shady friend Harry Lime.

Thursday 17 October – The Crazies (2010) (Film4, 23.40)

14 days to Halloween (Silver Shamrock!–ahem, sorry, force of habit) means that we can’t go a week in October without recommending a horror film. This modern remake of George A Romero’s original story of a small American town slowly going violently insane fits the bill. One of those rare occasions where the remake is quite possibly better than the original. Both gory and tense, it’s worth watching late at night in the dark!

Friday 18 October – True Grit (1969) (Film4, 16.20)

I recently forked out for the blu-ray copy of this; it’s that good. Starring the Duke (aka John Wayne) as drunk US Marshall ‘Rooster Cogburn’ escorting Texas Ranger ‘La Boeuf’ and the young but independent Mattie Ross into Indian country in pursuit of the man who murdered Mattie’s father. Wayne is on top form, the story is full of adventure and the pay off is worth the wait. You can here me gush over it here and compare it to the Coen Brothers remake here.

Saturday 19 October – Die Hard (Channel 4, 21.00)

Do you remember a time when cop John McClane (Bruce Willis) was actually a really cool character? Back before he turned into the plastic, fake copy that was served up in Die Hard 5 earlier this year? No? Well, here’s your excuse to remind yourself exactly why he is one of the teams favourite film cops in McTiernan’s original action movie.

Sunday 20 October – Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs (Channel 5, 16.20)

With the sequel due out later this month, Channel 5 are kindly showing the first film in the series that was such an unexpected hit. Released in 2009, this animated comedy, based on a much loved children’s book, features a great voice cast including the likes of James Caan, Bruce Campbell and even Mr T, as well as Bill Hader as a down on his luck inventor who accidentally creates a device that rains food from the sky. Made for a budget of $100k, it has so far grossed $124,870,275! Incredibly impressive. No wonder a sequel was ordered.

Best films on TV – week commencing 15th April 2013

This week’s choices are from our editor, James Diamond.

24hourpartypeopleMonday 15th April – The Bourne Supremacy (ITV2, 10.30pm)

Try to forget the sheer boredom of last year’s The Bourne Narcolepsy by diving into one of the better sequels of recent times. Paul Greengrass’s first go at the helm of a Bourne film, and it’s a cracker of an action movie, with Matt Damon returning as the super soldier pushed to the edge when sinister forces won’t let him enjoy his retirement. Brilliant support from Brian Cox and Joan Allen ensure that  the film feels more heavyweight than the majority of its peers.

Tuesday 16th April – Stalag 17 (More4, 11.10am)

As is now pretty standard in these pieces, I’m going to suggest a film that I’ve got tucked away on my unnamed DVR box and still haven’t got around to watching. This week’s choice in that category is about as low-risk a recommendation as they come though, what with it being a Billy Wilder film that’s firmly entrenched in the IMDB Top 250. William Holden stars as a wheeler-dealer POW during WWII who suddenly finds himself in grave danger when his men suspect him of being an informer for the Germans. Also on today is Blue Valentine (Film4, 11.20pm), and all you need to know about that is that it stars Ryan Gosling.

Wednesday 17th April – Tropic Thunder (BBC3, 10pm)

One of the better examples of the type of high concept comedy that Hollywood seems to churn out by the shedload these days, usually starring some combination of Ben Stiller, Will Ferrell, and Steve Carrell. What elevates Tropic Thunder is its happiness to poke fun at the very industry that made it, from Robert Downey Jr’s character’s extreme method acting, to Tom Cruise cameo as a vile Hollywood producer.

Thursday 18th April – 24 Hour Party People (Film4, 11.30pm)

The first of the Steve Coogan/Michael Winterbottom ‘ego’ collaborations (with their latest The Look of Love out this month), and probably their best. It charts the rise of ‘Madchester’, Factory Records, and the brilliant Tony Wilson (surely an inspiration for Alan Partridge). My local indie nightclub seem to have this playing on mute in a constant loop most Saturday nights, so I’ll be taking this rare opportunity to actually listen to the brilliant soundtrack. Word of warning though, DO NOT watch Knowing (Film4, 9pm) directly beforehand. I didn’t know it was possible for a Nic Cage film to be this bad.

Friday 19th April – The Shawshank Redemption (ITV2, 9pm)

Look, I know it’s obvious. I know it’s a clichéd choice, and I know that you’ve probably already seen it before. That doesn’t stop The Shawshank Redemption being the best film on TV today. Its number one rating on IMDB may be overstating its brilliance slightly, but away from the hype it is still a wonderfully written and directed film (adapted  from Stephen King’s novella by Frank Darabont, the man who brought The Walking Dead to our screens), driven by two utterly magnificent central performances from Tim Robbins and Morgan Freeman.

Saturday 20th April – Parenthood (ITV, 10.45pm)

Now and again a film comes along with an ensemble cast that is so perfect, with everyone at the top of their game, that you just want to sit back and watch them work. Parenthood is one of those films, with brilliant performances from Steve Martin, Mary Steenburgen, Rick Moranis, Dianne West, Tom Hulse, Keanu Reeves, and a young Joaquin Phoenix. A film with great humour, and a lot of heart.

Sunday 21st April – Toy Story & Toy Story 2 (ITV2, 12.10pm)

I know this is cheating a little, but I’m not going to turn down the chance to recommend a double-bill of Toy Story and Toy Story 2. My site, my rules. Toy Story is the film that made Pixar famous, and possibly even saved Disney. Even now the animation looks great, but it’s the smart script (including input from none other than Joss Whedon) and top-notch voice performances from the likes of Tom Hanks and Tim Allen that make this one of the finest family films ever made. Toy Story 2 doesn’t quite live up to the first film, but if you’re watching the first you’d need to have had your mind melded not to hang around for the sequel. Those in search of the perfect family film day can probably fit in a quick toilet break before Jurassic Park (ITV, 3.55pm) starts. Heaven.