icon Films On Freeview - Wednesday 21st Apr 2021
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Rain Man- (1988)
00:10 - 01:50 - Wed 21/4/21 - 5*
7.4/10 Stars

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While everyone remembers this film about an autistic man as Dustin Hoffman's Oscar-winning triumph, it is equally Tom Cruise's. As a fast-talking wheeler-dealer living out the 1980s dream, he learns that not only is he out of his father's will (save for a 1949 Buick), he also has an institutionalised elder brother (Hoffman). This is a classic road movie, with the two siblings crossing country to California in the Buick. Hoffman's savant - a mass of baseball and airline disaster statistics, prone to hysterics if his routine is broken - is one of modern cinema's great triumphs: believable, unsentimental, often hilarious. But without Cruise, whose emotional journey runs from confused and impatient to understanding, protective and eventually loving, there is no film. Director Barry Levinson handles the whole thing beautifully, and also won an Oscar, and the film took the best picture award.


Black Hawk Down- (2001)
00:35 - 02:10 - Wed 21/4/21 - ITV 4
7.1/10 Stars

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Following on swiftly from the release of Behind Enemy Lines, here's another noisy, gung-ho modern war movie. However, the fact that this film is based on the disastrous 1993 "Battle of Mogadishu" in Somalia does not temper its flag-waving, pro-American militarism. The film's poster tagline "Leave no man behind" disguises what was a strategic American mess as chest-beating melodrama - in reality, 18 Americans were killed, as were hundreds of Somalis during a 15-hour firefight. That it should come from a British director is the surprise, though to his credit Ridley Scott has cast many non-Americans in prominent roles - an underused Ewan McGregor, an impressive Jason Isaacs, comic turn Ewen Bremner and charismatic Eric Bana. It's sensitive, cool-headed and intelligent for a Jerry Bruckheimer movie, but for all of Scott's incredible technical skill - you really do feel as if you are there - the battle scenes lack identifiable characters and there is scant insight into the Somalian conflict. In a post-11-September world, its call for "heroes" makes it little more than a recruitment film.


Splice- (2009)
00:40 - 02:45 - Wed 21/4/21 - Horror Channel
5.3/10 Stars

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Two scientists hope to create new creatures for medical purposes by combining DNA from various animals. When their funding is stopped, they secretly create a new creature incorporating human DNA. However, they soon realise they cannot control it, while the relationship between the being and its creators turns dangerous. Sci-fi horror, starring Adrien Brody, Sarah Polley and Delphine Chaneac.


20 Questions Murder Mystery- (0)
01:30 - 03:20 - Wed 21/4/21 - Talking Pictures
0.0/10 Stars

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1950. Crime. Director: Paul L. Stein. Stars Robert Beatty, Rona Anderson & Clifford Evans. Someone sends in a question to the B.B.C.'s "20 Questions" programme prior to committing a crime


Leaning Into the Wind- (2017)
01:50 - 03:45 - Wed 21/4/21 - Film 4
0.0/10 Stars

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(2017) Thomas Riedelsheimer allows space for contemplation in this visually stunning documentary, as artist Andy Goldsworthy creates works that mediate and disrupt with the environment.


FirstBorn- (2016)
02:45 - 04:30 - Wed 21/4/21 - Horror Channel
5.5/10 Stars

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Unsettling supernatural horror. The birth of a couple's first child goes from joyous to jittery when they discover that their newborn daughter is surrounded by a horde of evil entities. (2016)


The Pale Faced Girl- (0)
06:00 - 06:30 - Wed 21/4/21 - Talking Pictures
0.0/10 Stars

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Directed by Francis Searle. With Fidelma Murphy, Kevin McHugh, Tony Rohr, Patrick Duggan. It's Saturday night in Dublin, and Mick is attempting to chat up Cecilia.


Police Dog- (1955)
06:30 - 08:00 - Wed 21/4/21 - Talking Pictures
5.0/10 Stars

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Although mercifully brief and nowhere near as doggedly eager to please as Turner and Hooch or K-9, this competent quota quickie from Derek Twist is, in all honesty, "mutt ado about nothing". In one of his few movie excursions, Tim Turner plays a bobby who adopts an alsatian stray and has reason to break out the Bonio when it helps him on the trail of his friend's murderer. It's hardly a baffling mystery even Scooby Doo would have sussed it! However, it's always nice to see class acts like John Le Mesurier and Christopher Lee, no matter how briefly.


Wings of Mystery- (0)
08:15 - 09:30 - Wed 21/4/21 - Talking Pictures
0.0/10 Stars

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1963. Adventure. Directed by Gilbert Gunn. Stars Judy Geeson, Hennie Scott, Francesca Bertorelli & Arnold Ridley. Ted is suspected of stealing a secret alloy from a Sheffield steel works.


Clockwise- (1986)
10:30 - 12:30 - Wed 21/4/21 - Talking Pictures
5.8/10 Stars

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A headmaster obsessed with punctuality catches the wrong train en route to a convention where he is due to make an important speech, turning the entire journey into a frantic race against the clock. Comedy, starring John Cleese, Alison Steadman, Stephen Moore, Penelope Wilton and Joan Hickson.


Appointment with Danger- (1950)
11:00 - 12:50 - Wed 21/4/21 - Film 4
0.0/10 Stars

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(1950) Noir thriller starring Alan Ladd, Phyllis Calvert and Paul Stewart. A postal inspector infiltrates a gang planning a huge heist. But he must also protect a nun who witnessed a crime.


King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table- (2017)
11:00 - 12:50 - Wed 21/4/21 - Horror Channel
0.0/10 Stars

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Returning from banishment by Merlin, Morgana and Mordred vow to destroy every descendant of Arthur and his knights. (2017)


Noose for a Lady- (0)
12:30 - 14:00 - Wed 21/4/21 - Talking Pictures
0.0/10 Stars

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1953. Crime. Director: Wolf Rilla. Stars: Dennis Price, Rona Anderson & Ronald Howard. A woman has been sentenced to death by hanging. Her cousin works against time to prove her innocent.


Hondo- (1953)
12:50 - 14:35 - Wed 21/4/21 - Film 4
6.2/10 Stars

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This fine colourful western was originally made in 3-D, which explains the odd look of certain segments, notably the marvellous title sequence where John Wayne just keeps on walking off the screen and, supposedly, into the audience. Wayne, in his prime, plays a grim, buckskin-clad cavalry scout, who comes across Oscar-nominated Geraldine Page and her son Lee Aaker - shades of Shane - in the wilderness and eventually helps them fend off some Apache Indians. There is a strange tendency for some scenes to fade into black as though not fully completed by director John Farrow, yet this is still a mature, good-looking western - almost a rehearsal for The Searchers - with an excellent screenplay by James Edward Grant. The film was long unseen as Wayne's son Michael owned the rights.


Dragon Wars- (2007)
13:00 - 14:50 - Wed 21/4/21 - Horror Channel
4.2/10 Stars

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Once every 500 years, malevolent creatures will rise up to try and take over the world. A journalist learns he contains the spirit of one of two heroes who stopped the evil forces the last time they attacked. He must find the reincarnation of the other hero before the monsters appear again. Fantasy adventure, starring Jason Behr and Amanda Brooks.


Friends Who Kill- (0)
14:20 - 16:00 - Wed 21/4/21 - Channel 5
0.0/10 Stars

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Lacy and Cassie quickly become the best of friends. But when Cassie begins to drive a wedge between Lacy and her mother, she begins to wonder if Cassie is the godsend she first imagined.


The High and the Mighty- (1954)
14:30 - 17:30 - Wed 21/4/21 - Talking Pictures
6.2/10 Stars

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A pilot loses his nerve when one of his plane's engines fails on a flight bound for San Francisco, leaving his washed-up co-pilot to fly the craft to safety and save the passengers' lives. Disaster thriller based on the novel by Ernest K Gann, starring John Wayne, Claire Trevor, Laraine Day and Robert Stack.


Destroyer- (1943)
14:35 - 16:40 - Wed 21/4/21 - Film 4
6.5/10 Stars

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A former welder working on the Navy destroyer whose construction he oversaw angers his crewmates with his relentless quest for perfection. Wartime adventure, starring Edward G Robinson, Glenn Ford, Marguerite Chapman and Regis Toomey. Includes Flight Bites at 5.30pm.


Martian Land- (2015)
16:00 - 17:50 - Wed 21/4/21 - Horror Channel
2.4/10 Stars

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In the distant future, humans are living on Mars in cities that resemble those once found on Earth, and are protected from the inhospitable Martian atmosphere by dome-like force-fields. When a massive sandstorm breaks through the dome and destroys Mars New York, those in Mars Los Angeles must figure out how to stop the storm before it wipes them out next. Sci-fi drama, starring Alan Pietruszewski, Jennifer Dorogi and Lane Townsend.


The Black Arrow- (1948)
16:40 - 18:15 - Wed 21/4/21 - Film 4
6.0/10 Stars

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A knight returning home from fighting in the Wars of the Roses returns home to discover his father has been murdered. A family friend fighting for the other side has been blamed for the crime, but the knight tries to prove his wicked uncle is responsible. Swashbuckling adventure based on Robert Louis Stevenson's novel, starring Louis Hayward and Janet Blair.

Interpol Calling- (0)
18:00 - 18:30 - Wed 21/4/21 - Talking Pictures
0.0/10 Stars

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The Angola Brights. 1959. Stars Charles Korvin, Edwin Richfield, Roland Bartrop & George Pastell. Who owns the diamonds mining engineer Martin Becker now has, after an explosion at Angolan mine.

Ghostbusters - (2016)
18:15 - 21:00 - Wed 21/4/21 - Film 4
6.5/10 Stars

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The beloved Ghostbusters franchise gets a feminist spin with Hollywood's hottest female talent getting the call. Comedy starring Melissa McCarthy and Kristen Wiig. (2016)(112 mins) Also in HD

The Man with the Golden Gun- (1974)
20:00 - 21:00 - Wed 21/4/21 - ITV 4
6.2/10 Stars

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This is an improvement on Ian Fleming's novel, with Christopher Lee making a fine villain, sporting a golden gun, a third nipple and a tiny henchman called Nick Nack, who's wittily played by Herve Villechaize. Britt Ekland is funny, too, sending herself up as Bond's clueless assistant and surviving the most sexist scene in the entire 007 series: "Forgive me darling, your turn will come," Roger Moore assures her after he's dallied with Maud Adams. The use of the old Cunard liner Queen Elizabeth is clever, but there are major faults as well - notably the repeat of the pre-credit scene for the climax (borrowing from Orson Welles's The Lady from Shanghai) and the return of redneck sheriff Clifton James from Live and Let Die. Thailand's Phang-Nga Bay was a stunning choice of location, though it was soon to become a tourist trap.

Independence Day- (1996)
21:00 - 23:50 - Wed 21/4/21 - Film 4
6.6/10 Stars

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No film had presented the destruction of the Earth on such an epic scale before this preposterously successful smash-hit sci-fi adventure came along. Of course, when we say Earth we really mean the USA - the rest of the world barely gets a look in. The story is simple: gigantic alien spacecraft hover above major cities and set about destroying everything below. Those plucky Yanks, however, won't go down without a fight. There are subplots focusing on the fate of ordinary folk, but most of the effort goes on the mind-boggling set pieces. Such scenes of digital mayhem are now commonplace, but this provided the template, and the levelling of Washington here is still impressive. Will Smith's charismatic performance as a wisecracking fighter pilot helped make him one of the biggest box-office draws in the western world, while Jeff Goldblum delivers a variation on his boffin role in Jurassic Park. Bill Pullman, meanwhile, manfully keeps a straight face as the beleaguered American President. Of the females, Vivica A Fox fares the best, although the likes of Mary McDonnell and Margaret Colin are largely wasted in supporting roles. But this is, after all, a special effects, not an acting, showcase, and a very entertaining one at that.

Mary Shelley's Frankenstein- (1994)
21:00 - 23:20 - Wed 21/4/21 - Horror Channel
6.0/10 Stars

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Kenneth Branagh's version of the much-filmed story is as pompous as it is perverse in the way it wastes not only his own talents (as Victor Frankenstein), but also those of Robert De Niro (who boasts a few moving moments as the man-made monster) and Helena Bonham Carter. The creation of the creature is undoubtedly spectacular, but the rest of the movie is not a fraction as frightening or funny as the 1931 classic with Boris Karloff. In attempting to keep faith with the original novel, Branagh concentrates too much on design and content, and loses the heart and soul of the story in the process.

First Man- (2018)
21:00 - 23:50 - Wed 21/4/21 - 4Seven
0.0/10 Stars

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Biographical drama starring Ryan Gosling as legendary American astronaut Neil Armstrong, in the years leading up to the Apollo 11 mission to the moon. (2018)(141 mins) Also in HD

The Shillingbury Blowers- (1980)
21:05 - 22:45 - Wed 21/4/21 - Talking Pictures
0.0/10 Stars

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1979. Drama. Directed by Val Guest and stars Robin Nedwell, Diane Keen and Trevor Howard. The arrival of a pop star and his wife, upsets the status quo of the Shillingbury village brass band.

The Man with the Golden Gun- (1974)
21:05 - 22:35 - Wed 21/4/21 - ITV 4
6.2/10 Stars

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This is an improvement on Ian Fleming's novel, with Christopher Lee making a fine villain, sporting a golden gun, a third nipple and a tiny henchman called Nick Nack, who's wittily played by Herve Villechaize. Britt Ekland is funny, too, sending herself up as Bond's clueless assistant and surviving the most sexist scene in the entire 007 series: "Forgive me darling, your turn will come," Roger Moore assures her after he's dallied with Maud Adams. The use of the old Cunard liner Queen Elizabeth is clever, but there are major faults as well - notably the repeat of the pre-credit scene for the climax (borrowing from Orson Welles's The Lady from Shanghai) and the return of redneck sheriff Clifton James from Live and Let Die. Thailand's Phang-Nga Bay was a stunning choice of location, though it was soon to become a tourist trap.

Heartbreak Ridge- (1986)
22:35 - 23:35 - Wed 21/4/21 - ITV 4
6.6/10 Stars

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Clint Eastwood struts his stern stuff in this typically hard-nosed war epic, playing a grizzled gunnery sergeant training a batch of rookie soldiers. He's the main reason to watch this by-the-numbers drama, which recycles many vintage clichés of the genre, from the misfit recruit gaining dignity and the old, die-hard veteran versus the modern major, to the virgin platoon's first bitter taste of battle on the beaches of Grenada. It's a movie the US Department of Defense openly condemned - "drill sergeants are not permitted by regulations to swear at recruits".

Villa Rides- (1968)
22:45 - 01:05 - Wed 21/4/21 - Talking Pictures
5.4/10 Stars

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A paella-western, with Yul Brynner wearing a wig and a sadistic sneer as the Mexican folk hero. The original script was written by Sam Peckinpah, who hoped to direct it but Brynner objected to Peckinpah's story. A TV director (Buzz Kulik) was brought in and Robert Towne - who later wroteChinatown - gave the script a makeover. The result is a botched job, watchable only for a few rousing action scenes and for Robert Mitchum's sleepy-eyed gun-runner who literally flies in and out of the story.

Bus Party To Hell- (2017)
23:20 - 00:55 - Wed 21/4/21 - Horror Channel
0.0/10 Stars

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Bloodsoaked desert romp with Tara Reid. When a bus filled with young partygoers headed to the Burning Man festival breaks down, they find themselves hunted by a satanic cult. (2017)

Heartbreak Ridge- (1986)
23:40 - 01:15 - Wed 21/4/21 - ITV 4
6.6/10 Stars

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Clint Eastwood struts his stern stuff in this typically hard-nosed war epic, playing a grizzled gunnery sergeant training a batch of rookie soldiers. He's the main reason to watch this by-the-numbers drama, which recycles many vintage clichés of the genre, from the misfit recruit gaining dignity and the old, die-hard veteran versus the modern major, to the virgin platoon's first bitter taste of battle on the beaches of Grenada. It's a movie the US Department of Defense openly condemned - "drill sergeants are not permitted by regulations to swear at recruits".

Snowpiercer- (2013)
23:50 - 02:20 - Wed 21/4/21 - Film 4
0.0/10 Stars

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(2013) Violent sci-fi thriller with Chris Evans. After a global disaster, survivors take refuge on a train that develops its own class system. But the oppressed will rebel. Strong language.