What's on telly tonight ?

Messages
1,514
Likes
1
My Satellite Setup
Pace 2200 Sky digibox with ftv card, Comag SL65 FTA sat receiver, 40cm Sky minidish, Setpal terrestrial receiver (for free uk tv only!).
My Location
Midlands
#1
Notable films today (Sunday).

1) ET the extraterrestrial, ITV2, 2.40pm, repeated 8pm.

I don't like this film (flying carpets yes, flying bicycles no!). But, there's no denying its place in movie history, breaking box office records, and putting the phrase "ET phone home" on everyones' lips.

This is very much a weepy (if you're that way inclined, then have the hankies ready!). Director Spielberg laid on the cloying sentiment very thickly, with a builder's trowel, which put off a lot of people. FIlm critics gave reluctant praise, disliking the film but acknowledging the achievement. Intellectuals were more openly hostile ("darling, how can I possibly get excited about a talking vacuum cleaner"?). But, cinema goers disagreed, and in the end that's what matters.

(Spielberg had to wait to win open praise from critics, with films like Private Ryan and Shindler's List).

Like other early Spielbergs, this is about children and childhood fantasies (either children directly, or adults behaving much like children). Little boy Eliot is fatherless and lonely, so "bonds" with child-alien ET, also lonely!

Like Close Encounters, this has elements from many "classic" Disney cartoon films (which Spielberg watched as a child), and some religious overtones (ET dies, then comes to life again). What saves the film is a good script, getting much humour from the situation, although the plot "falls to bits" during the 2nd half.

The memorable "key scene" - very much parodied! - has children flying their anti-gravity bycicles acoss a full moon.

ET is also notable for some amazing acting from very young Drew Barrymore, and the music by John Williams.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/E.T._the_Extra-Terrestrial (good trivia and popular culture notes).

2) The Wolf Man, Film4, 3pm.

Universal Studios' great 1930s horror films had 3 major "series": Frankenstein (brilliant); Dracula (good), and Wolf Man (watchable). Alright, if you like that sort of thing, Lon Chaney makes a good werewolf!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Wolf_Man .

3) The 7% Solution, ITV3, 4.40pm.

Although not sci fi, this is notable for being one of the few filmed Sherlock Holmes spoofs!

The ingenious premise is that Holmes' arch-enemy Moriarty ("The Napoleon of Crime") isn't real, but merely a drug induced fantasy (7% solution is the drug suspension, Holmes' well known cocaine habit). So, Dr Watson lays down a trail of false clues, leading to Vienna, where Holmes gets psychoanalysed by Dr Freud (a real character meets a fictional one, but surely Sherlock Holmes is "almost real"?).

This film has a superb cast (including Sir Lawrence Olivier, as Moriarty).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Seven-Per-Cent_Solution .
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0075194/ .

Other filmed Holmes spoofs are Without a Clue (quite funny), Disney's cartoon Basil The Mouse Detective (good), and Billy Wilder's brilliant and unmissable Private Life of Sherlock Holmes (heavily cut by the studio, so half the film lies in a vault somewhere, still unseen!).

Writing Sherlock Holmes stories - both straightforward pastiches, and outright spoofs - is a "minor industry" (how many people know that Beatle John Lennon wrote a Sherlock Holmes Story?). Nick Meyer has written lots of short stories, and several novels (of which 7% is one), as well as editing pastiche collections.
Sci fi / horror writer August Derleth wrote a series of Holmes stories, pretty much straightforward pastiche, very similar to the originals, but called his detective "Solar Pons" (!!!).
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solar_Pons .

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Non-canonical_works_related_and_derived_from_Sherlock_Holmes .

PS, all the original Conan Doyle Sherlock Holmes short stories and novels are downloadable free, from Project Gutenberg.
_http://www.gutenberg.org/
 
Messages
1,514
Likes
1
My Satellite Setup
Pace 2200 Sky digibox with ftv card, Comag SL65 FTA sat receiver, 40cm Sky minidish, Setpal terrestrial receiver (for free uk tv only!).
My Location
Midlands
#2
Monday. Copenhagen, BBC4, starts midnight (ie, Tuesday morning).

Frayn's play about controversial physicist Heisenberg. "Opened out" for television, but still a play, so all talk and no car chases!

Heisenberg was a genius who invented matrix mechanics - a particular form of quantum mechanics - including his famous uncertainty principle (eg, if you measure an electron's position, then its momentum suddenly becomes "fuzzy").

Bohr invented the Copenhagen Interpretation of quantum mechanics (giving the play's title), a quantum system is in an indeterminate state, until you perform a measurment, when it suddenly collapses into one particular state, but you can't predict which beforehand!

Leading up to World War 2, many physicists fled the Nazis and settled in USA/Britian, helping the Allied war effort ("Hitler's Gift"!). Heisenberg stayed behind, and worked on the Nazi atom bomb project. At one point, he had a secret meeting with Bohr - only revealed much later - where he "pumped" for information about the Allied atom bomb project, but Bohr refused to give any.

At the war's end, Heisenberg let himself be captured by the Allies (rather than end up in Russia). At his debriefing - and up to the end of his life - he insisted he'd stayed behind deliberately, in order to "slow down" Nazi nuclear research, but almost nobody believed him.

The play (tv version) takes the form of an imagined (never happened) meeting, some years later (maybe around 1960), in which Bohr and Heisenberg discuss what really did happen.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Copenhagen_(play) .
http://www.bbc.co.uk/bbcfour/cinema/features/copenhagen.shtml .
http://werner-heisenberg.unh.edu/ .
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Werner_Heisenberg .

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Copenhagen_interpretation .
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uncertainty_principle .

(The uncertainty principle is often given a "pop explanation" in terms of bouncing particles, but is actually an inequality between non commuting operators, as given just above).
 
Messages
1,514
Likes
1
My Satellite Setup
Pace 2200 Sky digibox with ftv card, Comag SL65 FTA sat receiver, 40cm Sky minidish, Setpal terrestrial receiver (for free uk tv only!).
My Location
Midlands
#3
tonight (Tuesday).

Innerspace, ITV2, 8pm.

Similar plot to the famous Fantastic Voyage, with a minaturised sub travelling around inside somebody's body. Except, here it all happens by accident (oops), and there's just one man in the sub! So, the pace gets frantic, with one thing after another, and it's all done for laughs .....

Director Joe Dante specialises in "B movie" knockabout sci fi comedy, with films like Explorers (shown film4 opening night), Gremlins, etc.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Innerspace .
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joe_Dante .

Moonraker, ITV4, 9pm (repeated tomorrow 7pm).

James Bond films have fantasy and lots of gadgets, but are they sci fi? This one probably has the best claim, with space shuttles, and a large manned space station (for maximum publicity, the film's opening was supposed to coincide with the first shuttle flights, but they got delayed ....).

This time, "Dr Evil" has morphed into Drax, who - guess what - wants to take over the world. So he steals a space shuttle, and Bond is sent to investigate.
Lots of exotic locations (M's Egyptian base is inside a pyramid), and action sequences (Richard Kiel's metal teeth "Jaws" character returns, one more time, having been unexpectedly very popular in last film - The Spy Who Loved Me - before being given a "nice" ending, when I saw it everyone in the cinema went "ahhh ....nice").

It all ends with a big "star wars" type space battle ....

Includes some "film parodies", which seemed funny at the time, but now are just very irritating.

Very different from Ian Fleming's original 1950s novel, which has just 1 ICBM secretly aimed at London, if I remember rightly on the Isle of Wright!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moonraker .

Under Siege, 10.50pm, BBC1 Northern Ireland ONLY (Sky ch 973).

Excellent action thriller. A decomissioned USA warship is en route to the breaker's yard, but gets hi-jacked by terrorists, who - guess what - want to steal the nuclear weapons which just happen to be on board. Only 1 man can stop them, ship's cook Steven Seagal (really a commando in disguise).
This has lost of action and ingenuity, and gains much from being set inside a claustrophbic mazelike ship. Excellent Tommy Lee Jones plays the main baddie.

This got poor reviews, mainly because film critics hate Steven Seagal, claiming he "can't act". Yeah, well come to that, you wouldn't expect Michael Caine to play King Lear, but to say he "can't act" .....

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steven_seagal .

Blue/Orange, BBC4, Midnight (Wed morning).

Oh dear, I'm cheating again, this isn't sci fi, and maybe not even science ..... but, is of some interest!

Like Copenhagen, this is another "filmed" National Theatre play (see above post).

A young black man is being detained ("sectioned") in a mental hospital, after some "incident", but after the statutory 30 days is due to be released. After all, he seems quite sane, if a little aggressive from being locked up! But, his (young trainee) psychiatrist doesn't agree, a major problem being that this patient thinks all oranges are really coloured blue!
The psychiatrist's supervisor is an older man, who subscribes to the old fashioned theories of radical 1960s psychiatric guru R D Laing (Brian Cox plays the supervisor with a Glasgow accent, which Laing had, although the script makes it clear he isn't Laing).
There follows a power struggle, with the supervisor threatening the trainee psychiatrist , who then might not qualify .....

This is partly about cultural relativism; what would be "normal expected behaviour" for a person from a particular social/ethnic background? There's also some oblique references to Wittgenstein, with colours perception, and the (im)possibility of a "private language" .....

http://www.bbc.co.uk/bbcfour/cinema/features/blue-orange.shtml .
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/R_D_Laing .
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Private_language_argument .
 
Messages
1,514
Likes
1
My Satellite Setup
Pace 2200 Sky digibox with ftv card, Comag SL65 FTA sat receiver, 40cm Sky minidish, Setpal terrestrial receiver (for free uk tv only!).
My Location
Midlands
#4
Thursday (10 August).

The Time Machine, Ch5, 1.35pm (Afternoon, so set the video)

George Pal's very justly famous 1960 film of H G Wells' classic sci fi novel (which isn't sci fi, but social criticism!). Got the special effects Oscar, watch it and see why (remember, no cgi graphics in those days ...).

The time machine itself, although following Wells' description, looks too flimsy to work, very like something out of Heath Robinson.

Pal was very famous for sci fi films, especially with special effects, eg Tom Thumb, Destination Moon, When Worlds Collide, and War of the Worlds.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_Pál .

http://www.colemanzone.com/Time_Machine_Project/project.htm (the film's tribute website, takes a while to load, but some great stuff!).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Time_Machine (Wells' novel).

(Most of H G Wells' fiction, and some of his non fiction, is downloadable free from Project Gutenberg).

Nashville, 11pm, BBC4.

Heck, I'm cheating again, this has nothing at all to do with sci fi or science. However, it is one of the most important films of the 1970s, highly entertaining and watchable, well worth the effort if you've never seen it.

The film was released in 1975, and set in a fictitious country music festival in Nashville in 1976, in the same year as the USA bicentennial celebrations. Stars actors famous at the time, who all had to become country singers and perform their own songs, just for this film. Watch out for the bogus "message from our sponsors" introduction!

In parts it's extremely funny. Watch out for Shelly Duvall's (? - I think!) hypochondriac singer, Henry Gibson's running joke about his size (he's a very small man), Carradine's obsessive womanising, and Geraldine Chaplin's bizarre clueless behaviour as the BBC lady. However, the political bits are now likely to seem just strange (a lot's changed in the last 30 years!).

Like the earlier MASH, Nashville features director Altman's famous "ensemble" method, where the actors reherse together and improvise, before filming starts (a theatre technique, unusual in films). The final film then incorporates some situations and dialogue arising from the improvisation.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nashville_(1975_movie) .
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Altman .

PS, those following the rerun of I Claudius, BBC4, were last night treated to the spectacle of Patrick Stewart in a curly hair wig, we're so used to him being bald that somehow it just didn't seem right!
 
Messages
1,514
Likes
1
My Satellite Setup
Pace 2200 Sky digibox with ftv card, Comag SL65 FTA sat receiver, 40cm Sky minidish, Setpal terrestrial receiver (for free uk tv only!).
My Location
Midlands
#5
Friday 11th August.

City Beneath The Sea, film4, 3pm (repeated 2.35 am).

Not Allen's best! Rather silly adventure. Imagine Stingray, with live actors, except they're just as wooden! Or, Space1999 relocated underwater .....

However, notable, precisely because it is Irwin Allen!

Irwin Allen was famous for Voyage To The Bottom of The Sea, Lost in Space, Time Tunnel, (then this film!), after which he made some disaster films (inc original Poseidon Adventure).

Allen's The Swarm is on TV Sat Evening.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Irwin_Allen .

Halloween 3, BBC1, 0.10am (Sat Moning).

Standard fare horror film, watchable but unremarkable, nothing to do with Carpenter's original Halloween (except the title).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Halloween_III:_Season_of_the_Witch .
 

JTA

Regular Member
Messages
557
Likes
0
My Satellite Setup
DM8000HD+DM7000S with PLi image, CCcam, movable dish 0.85 m, very happy indeed
My Location
Belgium
#6
just came across the following :

Princess Mononoke (4:45pm - 7:20pm) on Film4 :

The highest-grossing Japanese film of all time is a luxuriously animated legend of ancient gods going head to head with mankind and industry over the balance of nature. Released through Disney offshoot Miramax, the English-language version of this boldly surrealistic and starkly experimental cartoon is beautifully drawn, using the inspiration of classic Japanese artwork, and drums home a modern ecological message with a feminist bias. Set in the 14th century, it's a complicated tale of cursed Prince Ashitaka condemned to roam the land looking for a way to lift the malediction that has given him various supernatural gifts. After encountering bloodthirsty samurai, corrupt priests, friendly sprites and the evil Lady Eboshi who owns a giant iron foundry, he joins forces with San, the Wolf Princess, to ensure capitalistic progress will not be won at the expense of the woodland creatures. Director Hayao Miyazaki expertly weaves Asian folklore and contemporary issues with breathtaking designs and colour palettes. The realisation of the Deer God as a psychedelic Godzilla is a masterstroke.

sounds interresting....
 

JTA

Regular Member
Messages
557
Likes
0
My Satellite Setup
DM8000HD+DM7000S with PLi image, CCcam, movable dish 0.85 m, very happy indeed
My Location
Belgium
#7
and another classic tonight :

The Day of the Triffids (10:00pm - 11:50pm) on Sci-Fi :

A meteor shower blinds all but a few Earthlings, leaving society in a state of hysteria and at the mercy of carnivorous plants from outer space in this rather disappointing version of John Wyndham's classic sci-fi novel. While the Triffids themselves are efficiently bizarre and menacing, Steve Sekely's barely competent direction hardly provides the sinister spores with a shining showcase. That was left to Freddie Francis, director of the lighthouse scenes added later in a bravura effort to beef up the chills and thrills.
 
Messages
1,514
Likes
1
My Satellite Setup
Pace 2200 Sky digibox with ftv card, Comag SL65 FTA sat receiver, 40cm Sky minidish, Setpal terrestrial receiver (for free uk tv only!).
My Location
Midlands
#8
Saturday (12/8/06).

The Swarm, Ch4, 4pm.

This got slaughtered by the critics, and although often unintentionally hilarious, neverthless is still the best ever bee movie! Can you beelieve it stars Michael Caine?

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0078350/trivia .

Apollo 13, ITV2, 8.30pm.

A good telling of the story of Apollo 13, although much dramatic license was used (in both spacecraft and mission control, people are shown struggling to find solutions, racing against time, although in fact using the Lunar Module as a "lifeboat" was always a possibility, and the options were worked out well beforehand ......).

To simulate outer space weightlessness, it was easiest just to use the real thing! A replica of the spacecraft interiors was built inside the Vomit Comet, the free-fall aeroplane really used to simulate wieghtlessness in astronaut training.
On the other hand, in the film, the astronauts are shown doing simulated training missions in a strangely desserted building (to save money), which I found rather unrealistic.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apollo_13_(film) .
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vomit_comet .

The King of Comedy, BBC4, 11pm.

Rupert Pupkin (Robert De Niro) does stand-up spots in small comedy clubs, but wants to make the big time. He can't, being socially inept (and also having a silly name!). So, approaches his comedy idol, megastar Jerry Langford (Jerry Lewis!), to ask for a spot on his tv show. Lewis refuses, so pupkin kidnaps him. As they say, hilarious consequences result .......

I much prefer this film to Taxi Driver, which was unnecessarily violent and depressing (and just silly) "...... are you laughing at me? There's nobody else here....".

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_King_of_Comedy_(1983_film) .
 
Messages
1,514
Likes
1
My Satellite Setup
Pace 2200 Sky digibox with ftv card, Comag SL65 FTA sat receiver, 40cm Sky minidish, Setpal terrestrial receiver (for free uk tv only!).
My Location
Midlands
#9
Yes JTA, fair enough! I was only mentioning SOME sci fi films, and a few other "significant" ones. Only on free to air, and the choice has got to be personal and idiosyncratic. Tried to make the comments interesting (no point in just duplicating other info sources), and based on actual viewings (though when you reach my age, memory starts failing ....... hang on, what did I just say?).

Yes, Triffids! Not the best ever Brit sci fi (despite Freddie Francis directing). Musical star Howard Keel ("the human megaphone") was an odd choice for the cast, and - however good the special effects (or not!), it's always a mistake to show the triffids! Like so many things, works best on radio (the best pictures are on radio!). Or - very radical this! - why not read the book?
 
Messages
1,514
Likes
1
My Satellite Setup
Pace 2200 Sky digibox with ftv card, Comag SL65 FTA sat receiver, 40cm Sky minidish, Setpal terrestrial receiver (for free uk tv only!).
My Location
Midlands
#10
Monday (August 14).

Two interesting films tonight, film4, one sci-fact (sort of!), the other sci fi.

The Dish, 7pm.

A large Australian radio telescope is briefly joined onto NASA's spacecom network, so that tv pictures can continually be received from the 1st manned moon landing in 1969 (otherwise, there might be gaps in the coverage.....).
Humour is derived from the rural/isolated/shoestring setting, and Sam Neil is just right as the laid back pipe smoking academic.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Dish .
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parkes_Observatory .

Solaris, 9pm.

Alas, I've seen the orginal and brilliant Tarkovsky film, but not this remake, so can't comment on it directly (so, will be watching it with interest!). There's no way the remake could possibly be as good, but I'm sure it will be reasonable, as Soderburgh is an excellent director and Clooney a fine actor.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solaris_(2002_film) .
http://www.galilean-library.org/solaris.html .

Stanislaw Lem was an interesting character. His books - to me - are more allegory and magical realism, certainly "not sci fi as we know it" (Jim!). Although a sci fi fan, I find his books hard going, and not very entertaining.
After the success of the (original) Solaris film, Lem became highly fashoinable, his books were translated into English, and he was invited to join the sci fi writers of America organisation. Which he did, then gave a speech that was highly critical of - and rather nasty about - American sci fi, so was promptly thrown out again!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stanisław_Lem .
 
Messages
1,514
Likes
1
My Satellite Setup
Pace 2200 Sky digibox with ftv card, Comag SL65 FTA sat receiver, 40cm Sky minidish, Setpal terrestrial receiver (for free uk tv only!).
My Location
Midlands
#11
Monday (15th August).

Dr No, ITV4, 9pm.

First ever James Bond film. Who could have forseen they would still be making them?

The Iam Fleming books had been popular bestellers, with a mix of fantasy adventure, sadism, and much sexual folklore!

The search for an actor took a while. Connery was a respected actor who had the "right animal-grace qualities" and we now know what an excellent choice he was (some would say there's never been another Bond, not really!).

Fleming was reportedly at first unhappy with Connery, but then relented and admitted that he was the right man for the job! (bond was originally English, but had a Scottish housekeeper, who isn't in the films).

This film established many Bond traditions: the theme music, Connery saying "the name's Bond, James Bond" (which here doesn't happen for some way into the film, and we first see him at a casino table, another tradition!), Miss Moneypenny (Lois Maxwell), M (Bernard Lee), the Walther PPK, Ken Adam's fantastic sets (which got ever more fantastic), etc ..... (although there's nuch sci fi type fantasy, right from the start, Bernard Llewelyen's "Q" character isn't in this first film, and it's purely adventure with no gadgets, closest to the Flemming books!).

Interesting moments:

Dr No opens with a quite interesting scene, a spy making a shortwave radio transmission (then we see the London Station shortwave reeption station, where diplomatic traffic is received form all over the world). State of the art telecoms, at the time!

The first appearence of Sean Connery ("the name's Bond .....").

Ursula Andress rising from the sea, in a bikini. In the book, Honeychile Rider (gedditt??? !!!) is completely naked!

The appearence of Dr No. Orignally, Fleming had wanted Noel Coward to play this part, which would have been interesting, but Joseph Wiseman does it very well. (for quite a time into the film we only hear his voice, another Bond tradition ....).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dr._No .
http://www.universalexports.net/ .
 

JTA

Regular Member
Messages
557
Likes
0
My Satellite Setup
DM8000HD+DM7000S with PLi image, CCcam, movable dish 0.85 m, very happy indeed
My Location
Belgium
#12
tonight : ITV2 - 7:50pm - 10:00pm - Back to the Future
(Including Entertainment News Update)

This irresistible combination of dazzling effects and sly comedy propelled Michael J Fox to stardom and Robert Zemeckis to the front rank of Hollywood directors. And time has not robbed it of any of its vitality. Fox plays the young student who travels back in time to the 1950s and acts as matchmaker for his future parents, who are showing no signs of falling in love. It's beautifully played by the cast (honourable mentions to Christopher Lloyd, Lea Thompson and Crispin Glover), and makes the most of an ingenious script from Bob Gale and Zemeckis that finds time to poke fun at 50s icons and lifestyles between the bouts of time travelling. Zemeckis's direction is equally adroit and he never lets the effects swamp the film.

:-shhspiney : and another chance to view Dr NO again
7:00pm - 9:10pm (ITV4)
 
Messages
1,514
Likes
1
My Satellite Setup
Pace 2200 Sky digibox with ftv card, Comag SL65 FTA sat receiver, 40cm Sky minidish, Setpal terrestrial receiver (for free uk tv only!).
My Location
Midlands
#13
Yes JTA, Dr No, excellent!

Thursday 17 Aug.

The Dish, Film4, 7pm (see above post, this thread).

On a few days ago, but more people might now be interested, after the "nasa loses 1st moonwalk tapes" discussion thread, under Daily Satellite News.

Real-life "the dish" at: http://www.honeysucklecreek.net/Apollo_11/index.html .
 
Messages
1,514
Likes
1
My Satellite Setup
Pace 2200 Sky digibox with ftv card, Comag SL65 FTA sat receiver, 40cm Sky minidish, Setpal terrestrial receiver (for free uk tv only!).
My Location
Midlands
#14
Friday (18 August).

Solaris, 9pm, film4.

Utterly dire remake, so make sure you miss it! On the other hand, should they ever show the brilliant original ........

Being John Malkovich, film4, 10.50pm.

Shown quite a bit, recently, but still worth viewing (if you haven't yet seen it, don't miss!).

Unemployed Cussak is quite happy giving (strangely realistic!) puppet shows on street corners, but his wife nags him (Cameron Diaz, in non-blonde mode), so he gets a filing clerk job in building with an absurd "half-floor" (ceilings half height, so everyone stoops!). There's also a portal into john Malkovich, anyone can be him for 15 mins (everyone should be famous for 15 mins, said Andy Warhol!). Soon they're selling tickets, and there's a queue round the block ........ played entirely straight (that's why it's hilarious).

There's much more here, than at first meets the eye! The puppet show that begins the film is the famous story of Abelard and Heloise. Medeival phiosopher Abelard wrote about "universals"; are human beings entirely individual and separate, or do we all "participate in" just one pre-existing human nature? (shades of Plato). The existance of a portal would suggest the latter .......
(in fact, the Abelard/Heloise love affair is the basis for this film, which most critics seem to have entirely missed!).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Being_John_Malkovich .

http://www.humnet.ucla.edu/humnet/anthropoetics/views/view13.htm (they called their child "astrolabe", a bit like now naming your baby "packet switcher"!).

( http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/basis/abelard-histcal.html ).

Dracula, Prince of Darkness, ITV4, 11.05pm.

Hammer's 1st Dracula film was made 1958, the poor Count had to wait 8 years before being ressurrected (Dr Who had just undergone his regeneration, perhaps that inspired Hammer?).

4 Brits are on holiday in Transylvannia (cheap destination), stop at a pub, and are warned "don't go near the castle, especially after dark!". But, after the taxi driver dumps them in the woods ("I don't go there, mate"), guess where they end up? Well, it's late - getting dark - but there's food on the table and made up beds. "Looks like we were expected", says one. Yes, indeedy! Dracula is back on the road, and will need lots of fresh blood (older model vampires don't do as many miles per gallon) ...... Enormous fun!

Peter cushing wasn't in this, as Van Helsing, instead it's Andrew Kier (Quatermass), there's also Francis Matthews (Captain Scarlet).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dracula:_Prince_of_Darkness .

Saturday (August 19th).

Doc Savage, Man of Bronze. Ch5, 3.15pm.

This film limps a bit, it could have been better made. On the other hand, there just aren't that many musical superhero spoofs!

When the film opens, we see the Doc at his "amazing polar base". He gets summoned, turns out his father has vanished (kidnapped). The hunt begins, the Doc accompanied by his (very strange!) companions ......

Watchable, but the best thing about this film is the music, Sousa's marches re-arranged a bit ...... you'll probably find you're tapping your feet!

Ron Ely was a tv Tarzan, then did this. He radiates "blonde coolness", is never hassled or frantic. On the other hand, when he gets worried, watch his adam's apple (nice trick!) ....

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Doc_Savage_(film) .
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sousaphone (nice pic!).
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Philip_Sousa .

The Burbs, ITV1 (London), 3.25pm.

A nosey neighbours movie. USA middle class suberbia, nice lifestyles, everyone happy and content (if maybe sometimes a bit cranky!). Then, new neighbours move in. Might they be just a little bit strange? Cue much curtain twitching, peeking through windows, breaking and entering, etc.

Works as straightforward comedy, probably intended as allegory (about living with people "not like us", whether different ethnically, disabled, etc .....).

Any film with Tom Hanks in is at least watchable! Then there's Bruce Dern, as usual being paranoid, and Carrie Fisher (princess leila) ....

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Burbs .
http://www.burbsmovie.com/ .

Re-animator. Film4, 11pm.

A - very grisly - version of an HP Lovecraft story, made for mainly comic effect.

Personally, I find most of Lovecraft unreadable, an exception being the brilliant: At the Mountains of Madness.
http://www.dagonbytes.com/thelibrary/lovecraft/mountainsofmaddness.htm .

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Re-Animator .
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/H_P_Lovecraft .

Frenzy, 00.40am (Sun morning), Film4.

Not the very best Hitchcock, but even "2nd rate Hitchcock" is better than most other things!

Not seen for a while on free to air Brit tv. Stars Anna Massey (one foot in the grave).

The backdrop shot - looking towards the ship - is quite obviously fake! At one point, it was trendy to think about Hitchcock's famously bad backdrops as an "alienating device" - something obviously artificial, hence deliberate - but now they're just thought of as "bad"!

Don't forget to watch out for the Great Man himself:
http://www.videouniversity.com/hitchcok.htm .

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frenzy .
 
Messages
1,514
Likes
1
My Satellite Setup
Pace 2200 Sky digibox with ftv card, Comag SL65 FTA sat receiver, 40cm Sky minidish, Setpal terrestrial receiver (for free uk tv only!).
My Location
Midlands
#15
Monday (21 August).

Frankenstein, 4.55pm, Film4.

DON'T MISS !!! (if you don't have a video recorder, go get one!).

One of the best and most important films ever made, both for actual content, and general effects on movie making.

This film pretty much made Universal Studios, inspired sequals and their many other horror series, and defined the genre, including the later Hammer films. Images of Frankenstein in popular culture - and countless parodies - all stem from here.

Unforgettable scenes: Frankenstein's lab, The Creature (monster), the table in the electrical storm, Clive (Frankenstein) shouting "it's alive", the child, the blind man, the lynch mob marching to the castle with torches......

http://universal.frankensteinfilms.com/ .

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frankenstein_(1931_film) .

http://www.dagonbytes.com/thelibrary/frankenstein/preface.htm .
 
Messages
1,514
Likes
1
My Satellite Setup
Pace 2200 Sky digibox with ftv card, Comag SL65 FTA sat receiver, 40cm Sky minidish, Setpal terrestrial receiver (for free uk tv only!).
My Location
Midlands
#16
Tuesday (22nd August).

Bride of Frankenstein, film4, 5.05 pm.

Successor film to yesterday's Frankenstein, also directed by James Whale.

1st film was basically the original novel, this 2nd one "branches out", and is somewhat bizarre, notice the bride's hairstyle (looks as if she's just been electrified, which is the general idea!), and her constant screams! Slightly misogynistic (Whale was mature content!).

http://www.allmovie.com/cg/avg.dll?p=avg&sql=1:7091~C .
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Bride_of_Frankenstein .

The Spy Who Loved Me, ITV4, 7pm.

By this stage, the plots were getting less serious and more fantastic, the general style more "campy". Played for laughs, basically, which - however - does make it entertaining!

1st appearence of "Jaws" character (ITV are showing the films in the wrong order!), and - as always from Ken Adam - a very fantastic and elaborate set, which (just on its own) is "worth the money"!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Spy_Who_Loved_Me_(film) .
 
Messages
1,514
Likes
1
My Satellite Setup
Pace 2200 Sky digibox with ftv card, Comag SL65 FTA sat receiver, 40cm Sky minidish, Setpal terrestrial receiver (for free uk tv only!).
My Location
Midlands
#17
Wednesday (Aug 23rd).

Gods and Monsters, BBC4, 10.40pm.

Relevant, since about famous horror director James Whale (his Frankenstein and Bride of Frankenstein just shown on film4).

That said, it's an "all talking" film, ironically, being about a man who worked in a very visual medium! I didn't like it, and don't like Ian McKellen that much either (sorry, nothing personal, just don't like his style!). However, this film did get heaps of awards!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gods_and_Monsters .

http://www.godsandmonsters.net/story1.htm (the entire film, here, so you almost don't have to watch it!).

Re-animator, film4, 1.10am (Thur Morning).

Another chance to see (as they say!) this gory (but for laughs!) film version of Lovecraft's story Herbert West, Re-animator.

On 1st film4 showing, this had poor sound (probably due to somebody not throwing a switch, as this budget film has a non Dolby soundtrack, unusual for 1985!).

_http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Re-Animator

http://www.dagonbytes.com/thelibrary/lovecraft/reanimator.htm (the original story, also all Lovecraft's main works on this website. Free!).
 
Messages
1,514
Likes
1
My Satellite Setup
Pace 2200 Sky digibox with ftv card, Comag SL65 FTA sat receiver, 40cm Sky minidish, Setpal terrestrial receiver (for free uk tv only!).
My Location
Midlands
#18
Thursday (Aug 24th).

The Jungle Book, film4, 3pm.

Live action version of the Kipling classic, starring Sabu. Lovely tehcnicolor photography, but ..... a little bit boring!

_http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jungle_Book_%281942_film%29 .
_http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sabu_Dastagir .

The Flintstones, ITV2, 8pm.

I didn't like this. Works fine as a cartoon, but the live action version is just silly! That said, there's lots of knockabout laughs, and John Goodman and Rick Moranis are exactly right as Fred and Barney, who else could possilby have done it?

_http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Flintstones_%28film%29.
_http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flintstones .
_http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hanna_barbara .

Armageddon, BBC1, 9pm (10 pm news in the middle!).

An asteroid is about to hit the earth, but there's just a chance it can be deflected, so hey, where's that redneck oilwell driller Bruce Willis .... ?

entertaining enough (but switch off brain!), as usual Bruce Willis is good, what he does, he does very well!

_http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Armageddon_(film) .
_http://intuitor.com/moviephysics/armageddon.html (bad physics).
_http://www.agonybooth.com/armageddon/ (really bitchy review!).
 

JTA

Regular Member
Messages
557
Likes
0
My Satellite Setup
DM8000HD+DM7000S with PLi image, CCcam, movable dish 0.85 m, very happy indeed
My Location
Belgium
#19
Back to the Future Part II : 7:55pm - 10:00pm (ITV2)
(Including Entertainment News Update)

After the success of the first time-travelling caper a sequel was inevitable, although this time around director Robert Zemeckis is guilty of gilding the lily. Stars Michael J Fox and Christopher Lloyd return from the original, along with Lea Thompson and Thomas F Wilson, but the script is too clever for its own good and the film gets bogged down by trying to cram in too many ideas and settings (past, future, alternative universes). The effects, however, are even better than in the first film, and the actors certainly enjoy themselves in a baffling array of roles.

and for those of us with an Irish Sky card :
What Lies Beneath (9:30pm - 11:45pm) RTE1

Supernatural thriller about a woman who uncovers a chilling secret in her husband's past when, recuperating from a serious road accident, she begins to see visions of a mysterious woman. The husband, a university research scientist, sends his wife to a therapist. But events take an even more ominous turn when her therapist suggests she make contact with the apparition.

or Excalibur (11:05pm - 1:40am) TG4

Lavish and often violent production of the King Arthur legend, telling the story from the birth of the boy who would one day command the Knights of the Round Table.

and we'll end with a bang :
Ice Pirates (10:55pm - 12:40am) TCM

Although little more than an Errol Flynn-type intergalactic swashbuckler, this slight space opera is good inventive fun even if it does err on the crudely silly side. Space pirate Robert Urich searches the universe for the prized commodity of water, gets captured, falls in love with princess Mary Crosby and escapes with her to search for her father on a mysterious planet covered in water. Great art direction and neat special effects - the clever time-warp birth sequence, the castration device and the robot pimp - augment the constant stream of smart-aleck remarks and sexual innuendo. Off-the-wall and amusing enough even if it is more Carry On than Star Wars.


So there's quite a lot on this evening.
BTW, did anybody watch Buck Rogers in the 25th century this summer on Bravo ?
 
Messages
1,514
Likes
1
My Satellite Setup
Pace 2200 Sky digibox with ftv card, Comag SL65 FTA sat receiver, 40cm Sky minidish, Setpal terrestrial receiver (for free uk tv only!).
My Location
Midlands
#20
Friday (Aug 25th).

She, BBC2, 12.35pm (afternoon).

Film of Rider Hagard's adventure novel, one of the sillier Hammer films, mainly an excuse to put Ursula Andress back into a bikini (after Dr No) .........

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0059710/ .

Thief of Bagdad, film4, 3pm.

An "Arabian Nights" style adventure fantasy, magic carpets, genies, etc. Again starring Sabu (see above). Lovely technicolor.

(a little bit like the later Sinbad films, if you've seen those!).

_http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Thief_of_Bagdad_(1940_film) .
 
Top