I only found myself in a cinema a handful of times over the last 12 months, but a movie I saw and enjoyed was Behind the Candelabra. Sky Arts 2 are showing a 1972 documentary on Liberace tonight at 8pm and the director Tony Palmer has stated that the HBO movie did a “monumental disservice” to the piano legend. The World of Liberace takes a look at Liberace at home where he discusses his humble beginnings, the time he was almost kidnapped in Cuba and various brushes with death and promises to be the kitch fest you hope for.
Prisoners of War returns to Sky Arts 1 on Tuesday evening at 10pm. This Israeli thriller has been remade in the US as Homeland, but the original follows the families of the 3 kidnap victims and therefore is more of a dometic drama. The season 2 opens with the knowledge that the third kidnapped soldier may still be alive as the two released men, Nimrode and Uri, try and piece together what his fate might be.
For those of us who have a horrifically early start in the morning, TV often has nothing more to offer than Teleshopping infomerchials or Euronews. One morning I stumbled upon this gem on Sony TV at 7am- Community. A comedy show based around a group of adult learners at a community college in the fictional Greendale, Colorado. When his law firm discovers Jeff Winger (Joel McHale) lied about having a bachelor’s degree, he’s suspended and has no choice but to enroll at Greendale Community College to get one. Jeff quickly becomes attracted to Britta, a former political activist from his Spanish class, and pretends he runs a study group in order to spend time with her. But his plans go awry when other classmates are invited along: Abed, Shirley, Annie, Troy, and Pierce. Despite being seven very different people, the group quickly become close friends. They’re often roped into helping the flamboyant Dean Pelton in his schemes to make the school seem more reputable, as well as having to deal with the antics of their unhinged teacher/classmate Ben Chang. The show welcomes the return of Chevy Chase to the small screen as millionaire Pierce Hawthorne, often at odds with the group due to his desperate attempt to fit in, his self-importance, causal bigotry and lack of empathy.
Finally we come to Crisis (TV3, Thursday, 10pm). On paper this looks like it should be brilliant. Ok not brilliant but totally watchable. Starring Gillian Anderson, Dermot Mulroney and a host of beautiful teenagers, the premise of the series is that during a school field trip from the illustrious Ballard High School, home of the offspring of Washington’s political and business elite, all of the teens are kidnapped. A national crisis begins and FBI agent, Susie Dunn is called in to investigate as she realizes that her niece is among the taken. It has received pretty good reviews in the states but after 6 episodes, the filming went into a hiatus as there were fears that the plot had gone so far away from the tone of the pilot episode. Production values are pretty ropey on this, in my opinion, particularly as in the pilot episode much of the action took place in moving vehicles and I’ve seen Doris Day flicks that had more authentic car scenes. We’ll see how this one pans out.