There’s always a wide selection of great films available on Freeview. And seeing as staying in is the new going out, TV presents the ideal opportunity to catch up on what you might have missed in the cinema. Plus, it saves you spending your student loan on DVDs and rentals. Sometimes the choice can be quite overwhelming, so LSi decided to compile a weekly list of the best films on TV. This week we spend a lot of time in jail, follow tattoos to try and catch a killer and enter a roller derby.
MONDAY – Memento (Channel4 00:15)
Christopher Nolan is one of the best directors currently working in the film industry, if not the best. Although he is most famous for his outstanding Dark Knight Trilogy and the mind-bending Inception, it is his earliest full length feature film Memento where he really shows off his flair as a director and screenwriter. An original and fresh story you will be taken on a journey into the mind as we follow Guy Pearce’s brilliant Leonard, a man who suffers from short-term memory loss who uses tattoos and notes to try and discover who killed his wife. A masterpiece like this is rare in modern cinematic history.
TUESDAY – Cape Fear (ITV4 22:00)
Martin Scorsese’s Cape Fear is not one of his best known pieces, but that does not mean it is not one of his best. This remake of a 1962 noir classic about a convicted rapist who stalks the family of his lawyer after his release from prison is disturbing, intense and dark. Brutal and violent it is not for everyone, but the stunning performance from Robert De Niro, who has fallen into the trap of only playing the same character nowadays, is a good reason alone to watch it!
WEDNESDAY – Fight Club (ITV4 23:00)
David Fincher’s classic film is a masterpiece that will never get old. Much deeper than the title would suggest, this story of an insomniac office worker who forms a fight club with a manic soap maker delves right into the deepest and darkest corners of the mind in an intensely psychological story. Norton and Pitt have never been better, and Helena Bonham Carter is always watchable.
THURSDAY – Bronson (Film4 23:15)
Today Nicholas Winding Refn is most famous for his neon-lighted stylishly violent films like Drive and Tom Hardy for his role as Bane, but together in Refn’s early film Bronson there is a magnificent spark that sets the film alight. Hardy plays Bronson perfectly, the alter ego of Michael Peterson who is sentenced to seven years in prison for robbing a post office, but spends thirty in solitary confinement. Violent, intense and hilarious, it is a bizarre mix of different tones, styles and genres that would not work in anyone else’s hands except Refn.
FRIDAY – The Escapist (Film4 22:50)
Director Rupert Wyatt did a brilliant job with Rise of the Planet of the Apes, but it is his highly original prison thriller The Escapist that will remain the highlight of his career. The ever fantastic Brian Cox plays a convict who comes up with an escape plan with some very interesting characters all played brilliantly by members of an ensemble cast that includes the talents of Damian Lewis to Dominic Cooper. With a fabulous twist and a unique take on the prison escape story it is well worth staying in Friday night to tune in for a watch.
SATURDAY – A Prophet (Film 4 00:50)
This French thriller is one of the best films to come out of France in recent years with its brilliant story of an Arab man sent to prison in France and becomes a mafia kingpin. It surprised many on its release and will haunt you for weeks after the credits rolled. Again, hard to watch, it is not for everyone, but if you can sit through violence you will be absorbed by this dark and intense film.
SUNDAY – Whip It (ITV2 19:50)
Sunday evenings always require a lighter film to watch and so we step out of the prison cells and on to the roller derby course with Drew Barrymore’s light hearted chick-flick which guys can also enjoy Whip It! Ellen Page is fantastic as Bliss a girl trying to find her way in the world who discovers the violent and bitchy world of roller derby but instantly falls in love. Light-hearted, smart, witty and funny it is perfect for a Sunday evening in to relax before the week ahead.