Thursday 12 December 2019

Hugo (2011)


Hugo (2011)

5.40pm, Channel4

Historical adventure film set in the 1930s and based on the novel by Brian Selznick, about a boy who lives alone in the walls of the Gare Montparnasse train station in Paris. Directed by Martin Scorsese, and the first time he shot in 3D, with Asa Butterfield as Hugo, supported by Ben Kingsley, Sasha Baron-Cohen and Emily Mortimer.

The Bucket List (2007)

9.30pm, RTE1

Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman star in this comedy about two terminally ill old codgers trying to complete things on their 'bucket lists' before they kick the bucket. Rob Reiner directs and, despite the hackneyed premise, largely manages to avoid being overly sentimental.

The Quiet American (2002)

11pm, BBC2

Excellent film adaptation of the Graham Greene novel of the same name. This is a subtle, memorable spy story set in 1950s Vietnam - Indochina, as it was known - and concerns a cynical British journalist played by Michael Caine and a CIA operative played by Brendan Fraser who get caught up in the struggle between the Communists and their opponents. Do Thi Hai Yen is the woman they both fall for.


The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (1947)

1.45pm, BBC2

The original film 
adaptation of the James Thurber short story, rather than last year's remake with Ben Stiller in the lead role, this is the story of a daydreaming proof-reader who fantasises endlessly about an exciting,adventure-filled life. Danny Kaye is the mild-mannered Mitty, with Virginia Mayo as the girl of his dreams.

The Knot (2012)

9.35pm, RTE1

Cliched but watchable rom-com about a couple who have to overcome a multitude of obstacles before they can finally tie the knot in a London church. Matthew 
McNulty, Talulah Riley, and Mena Suvari rescue the script.

My Left Foot (1989)

11.20pm, RTE1

Oscar-winning drama from Jim Sheridan about writer and artist Christy Brown, who was born with cerebral palsy and overcame huge obstacles with the help of family. Daniel 
Day-Lewis gives a stand-out performance and the film has a rich vein of humour running through it. Ray McAnally and Brenda Fricker shine bright in supporting roles.


The Searchers (1956)

11am, Film4

Classic film-school favourite and probably the best of the Western genre, this disturbing tale, directed by John Ford, is set during the Texas-Indian wars, and follows maverick Civil War returnee John Wayne as he spends years tracking down his niece - played by Natalie Wood - who is kidnapped by Comanche Indians.
The Secret Life of Bees (2008)

6.55pm, Film4

Drama adaptation of the novel of the same name by Sue Monk Kidd about a 14-year-old girl in 1960s South Carolina who runs away from home. Produced by husband-and-wife team Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith, with Dakota Fanning, Queen Latifah, Jennifer Hudson and Alicia Keys.

Jennifer's Body (2009)

10pm, E4

'She's evil ... and not just high school evil'. Comedy horror about a Satanically possessed cheerleader who is killing off her male classmates while her best friend tries to stop her. Megan Fox is
the cheerleader, with Amanda Seyfried as the best friend.


I Am Legend (2007)

9.35pm, RTE1

Sci-fi adventure with Will Smith as the last man standing in a dystopic city inhabited by zombie-like creatures. Essentially a remake of the superior 1970s film, The Omega Man, with Charlton Heston, but worth a look for some great visual moments. .

Alien 3 (1992)

11pm, Film4

This sci-fi sequel had a lot to live up to, given that the first two films in the series are classics of the genre, and it doesn't quite succeed. Some interesting ideas and visually impressive, but it rarely reaches the same heights as the first two. As ever, Sigourney Weaver takes the lead role, this time supported by Charles Dance, Charles S Hutton and Lance Henriksen.

The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie (1969)

2.40am, TCM

Based on Muriel Spark's classic novel and directed by Ronald Neame, this won Maggie Smith a Best Actress Oscar for her defining performance as the Edinburgh schoolteacher determined to mould the hearts and minds of her girls, the Brodie Set. Does a fine job of capturing the wit, style and insight of the novel.


Don't Say A Word (2001)

9pm, TV3

Chilling thriller starring Michael Douglas as a psychiatrist forced to go against his professional instincts and extract a
code number from a patient after his daughter is kidnapped by a criminal gang. Co-stars Sean Bean, Brittany Murphy and Famke Janssen.

Dick Dickman PI (2008)

11.35pm, RTE2

Irish comedy entirely shot in the sunny South East. A hapless private investigator gets involved with a dangerous Mr Big. The cast includes Brendan O'Carroll, June Rogers, Barry O'Neill, Jon Kenny and Patrick Bergin.

A Serious Man (2009)

12.20am, RTE1

Brilliant dark comedy from the Coen brothers about a Minnesotan Jewish physics professor whose life begins to fall apart, leading him to question his faith. Starring Michael Stuhlbarg, Richard Kind and Alan Arkin.


Valkyrie (2008)

9pm, RTE2

Historical thriller starring Tom Cruise as Claus von Stauffenberg - the German officer who led a plot to kill Hitler in 1944. Cruise's physical resemblance to the real von Stauffenberg was apparently what first drew him to the role. Also stars Eddie Izzard, Terence Stamp and Kenneth Branagh.

Death Rides a Horse (1967)

10.05pm, TG4

Revenge-themed Spaghetti Western starring Lee Van Cleef, John Philip Law and Mario Brega. Two gunslingers team up for some payback on a murderous gang; worth watching for the Morricone soundtrack alone.

In the Electric Mist (2009)

11.05pm, BBC2

French-American drama set in Louisiana. Tommy Lee Jones plays an alcoholic sheriff who is disturbed by visions of Civil War era soldiers while he tries to find a serial killer. Also starring John Goodman, Peter Sarsgaard, Kelly McDonald and Ned Beatty.


Ice Age (2002)

6.35pm, RTE1

Animated comedy drama starring Denis Leary and Ray Romano, about a 
group of prehistoric animals migrating south in order to escape the dawning ice age. All except an agitated mammoth, Manfred, who insists on heading north, followed by a saber-toothed squirrel, and a human baby who falls into their care. Nominated for Best Animated Feature at the Oscars, it spawned three (and counting…) sequels.

The Godfather Part II (1974)

9pm, RTE2

Both sequel and prequel to last week's Part I, this continues in the same excellent vein. Al Pacino's Michael has made his father's Mafia empire safe, and now plans to expand at whatever cost, despite the steady, chilling destruction of his personality. Inter-cut are scenes from father Vito Corleone's early years in the stunningly recreated melting-pot of mid-1900s New York, as he becomes the Godfather.

Defendor (2009)

11.10pm, TV3

Superhero comedy drama with Woody Harrelson and Kat Dennings. A mentally-ill man adopts the identity of a real-life superhero and embarks on a quest to find his arch-enemy, inspiring members of the public with his determination to fight crime.

Sunday Independent

Editors Choice

Also in Entertainment

Back to top