Freeview Flicks of the Week: Chaplin, District 9 and Brief Encounter

In the Middle’s best weekly freeview flicks picks is here! This week we have a brief encounter at a railway station, start a revolution and meet some aliens.

MONDAY – Brief Encounter (Film4 12:45)

David Lean is one of the best and most important filmmakers to have come out of Britain. In the eyes of many, his best work is the beautiful 1945 Brief Encounter, a story of romance and war. The exquisite chemistry between the two leads draws you in, and the commentary on post-war austerity, morals and women gives it more depth. A true treasure, it is delightful to watch.

TUESDAY – Cemetery Junction (BBC1 23:45)

Felicity Jones is currently wowing us with her superb performance in The Theory of Everything, in which she plays Jane Hawking, the first wife of the famous scientist Stephen Hawking. Her first major film role was given to her by Stephen Merchant and Ricky Gervais in their 1970s-set comedy Cemetery Junction. Jones is just one of a fabulous cast, that include Ralph Fiennes, making this coming of age comedy drama work wonders! Enjoyable and not what you would expect from Gervais and Merchant.

WEDNESDAY – If… (Film4 01:15)

Before Malcolm McDowell became known around the world as the sadistic delinquent Alex DeLarge from A Clockwork Orange, he stole the show in Lindsay Anderson’s 1968 drama If… as a student who starts a revolution at an old private school in England. A brilliant and unique mixture of social criticism, fantasy rebellion and realism, If… is one of the most powerful films to come out of 1960s Britain.

THURSDAY – The Killer Inside Me (ITV4 23:05)

Michael Winterbottom’s strange film The Killer Inside Me is not everyone’s cup of tea, however it is certainly worth a watch, and for some of you it may even become an instant cult favourite. The enigmatic Casey Affleck plays Lou Ford, a West Texas deputy sheriff who is unmasked as psychotic killer. Affleck is the key to this film’s success, drawing you in with the intriguing complexities he gives to his character with his seemingly effortless performance. Horrifyingly fascinating.

FRIDAY – District 9 (Film4 22:50)

This week sees the release of Neil Blomkamp’s highly anticipated Chappie, starring Hugh Jackman, Dev Patel and Sigourney Weaver. Blomkamp’s first feature length directorial will be hard to beat though, considering District 9 is a sci-fi film brimming with intelligence and talent. Following the story of an alien race that is forced to live in the slums on Earth, it will surprise you with its stark social commentary, raw edge and powerful story. This is a film that will stay with you.

SATURDAY – Good Vibrations (BBC2 22:30)

Two years ago, low-budget film Good Vibrations stole hearts, becoming a critically acclaimed and popular hit. The film chronicles the life of Terri Hooley, a record store owner who, despite being amidst the troubles in Northern Ireland, changes the world of punk music as he discovers The Undertones smashing single, Teenage Kicks. This film has it all; rocking music, charm, brilliant performances and an energetic vibe that makes it thoroughly entertaining.

SUNDAY – Chaplin (ITV3 23:35)

Chaplin follows the troubled life of the master filmmaker. Attenborough was a very talented director, and this really shows when you watch this film. Downey Jr. is perfectly cast as Chaplin, mastering the art of slapstick but giving his character an edge of poignancy that adds depth. Chaplin reminds us that we should never forget the days of silent movies.

Emily Murray

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