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A trifecta of the best films on DirecTV & cable

Sunday BC on TV – A trifecta of the best films on DirecTV & cable

On a great day for wide-ranging film choice, three films that have been the Best Film of the Day before screen a little too early on this Carnival Sunday to get the nod they deserve: 2001: A Space Odyssey BEST FILM OF THE DAY, 6.05am Max; *Lawrence of Arabia, 8.40am Max and **Boyhood, 7.08am HBO2. A Perfect Murder, (6.55am MaxP), the very strong remake of Hitchcock’s Dial M for Murder also fails to place for that reason. The only music challenging the soca on DirecTV is Dire Straits: On the Night (9am TCM).

Film of the Day:

The Hours 7.05pm Fox Cinema. Watch this if you liked Closer, House of Sand and Fog or The Ballad of Jack & Rose. Technically masterful – indeed, marvellous – adaptation of Michael Cunningham’s novel recreating a single day in the lives of three women, one in 1923, one in 1951 and one in 2001. A powerful and ultimately hopeful film although dealing with that entirely depressing subject matter: the human condition.

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A Trifecta of Today’s Best Films on the Box

Today’s number one film:

Pleasantville, 12 midday MaxU. Watch this if you liked The Truman Show, Groundhog Day or Stranger Than Fiction. An excellent film on all levels, starting with an outstanding script and backed by flawless direction and magnificent performances. Technically it is not only sound but ground-breaking, with the medium of cinema itself being used to make the film’s points, via colour taking over the black & white screen as the spirit of rebellion and free thinking spreads.

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A Trifecta of Today’s Best Films on the Box

If BC on TV could be sure of English subtitles, the Hungarian thriller/horror, White God, would have been today’s number one pick; though it is probably not today’s “best” film, it is almost certainly the most original – even with Locke, The Lobster, Slumdog Millionaire, Stranger Than Fiction and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind all screening.

Today’s number one film:

Slumdog Millionaire, 10am Fox Movies. Watch this if you liked any of Bride & Prejudice, Monsoon Wedding, Mississippi Masala AND Life is Beautiful, American Beauty or The Departed. Danny Boyle’s exuberant direction makes the stark poverty of inner-city India bearable long enough for his deeply compassionate and sympathetic story of young love to take hold; worth it just for the clever flashing back from the “Who Wants to be a Millionaire?" Read more

A Trifecta of Today’s Best Films on the Box

For the music lovers, the DirecTV Channel screens the Nobel Peace Prize Concert at 2.30pm and 10.30pm.

Today’s number one film:

In Bruges, 9pm Sundance Channel. Watch this if you liked Inglorious Basterds, The Hangover or Intermission. A very dark, very funny comedy from the writer-director of Seven Psychopaths about two hitmen relaxing in the medieval Belgian city between assassination jobs. It features a terrific script and – if you can believe it – Colin Farrell keeps up dramatically with Brendan Gleeson and Ralph Fiennes. The comedy is hard-edged hilarious but there are several moments of very real and quite disturbing violence that might distress the sensitive. (Martin McDonagh/ 2008/ UK-USA/ Black comedy-Thriller/ 107 mins/ R for strong bloody violence, pervasive language and some drug content)

Also watch:

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A Trifecta of Today’s Best Films on the Box

Like last weekend, posting on Saturday because of early screening times on Sunday. And, like last Sunday, AMC runs all of season one of the seminal TV series, M.A.S.H. from pre-dawn.

Today’s number one film:

Locke, 8.40pm Cinemax BEST FILM OF THE DAY. Watch this if you liked Unfriended, Snowpiercer or the original Michael Caine/Laurence Olivier Sleuth. The best film comparison to represent Steven “Eastern Promises” Knight’s wonderful, and wonderfully tense, film is probably 12 Angry Men, the classic film of conflict set in a murder trial jury room. Locke is even more claustrophobic: apart from a very few establishing shots, the entire film takes place in the interior of a BMW driving from Birmingham to London. The full cast numbers 12 – like the Angry Men – but you see only Tom Hardy as the titular Locke at the wheel of the Bima; all the others are just voices coming in on the car’s mobile phone. Out of that ultraminimalist setup, Steven Knight – and Tom Hardy and the 11 voice co-stars – craft a superbly watchable film that will have you on edge for almost all its runtime; and nothing really happens. Simply wonderful. One of the best films ever shot, but clearly not for the Fast & Furious crowd, who would just consider it a waste of a firetrucking BMW…(Steven Knight/ 2013/ Drama-Thriller/ UK-USA/ 85 mins/ R for language throughout)

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