TV PICKS OF THE WEEK By Lisa Jewell
Get stuck into these top TV choices this week
Documentary – The Drug Trial: Emergency at the Hospital
Tuesday 21st February, 9pm, BBC2
In March 2006, eight healthy young men signed up to a clinical trial for an experimental drug called TGN1412 which was designed to treat leukaemia. It had already been successfully tested on monkeys but not on humans. All indications were that it would be a routine medical trial, like so many others every year.
However, within an hour of receiving the drug, six of the eight participants were fighting for their lives – temperatures soaring, screaming in pain, vomiting and organs failing. Some of their bodies swelled so much that they came to be known in the media as the Elephant Men.
This fascinating documentary follows the story and includes interviews from the medical team who found themselves dealing with a huge medical emergency. Some of the participants also feature in the programme and reflect on the impact that the events had on their lives.
Film – 12 Angry Men
Sunday 26th February, 4.55pm, Film Four
If there was a list of perfect Sunday afternoon movies, 12 Angry Men would surely be at the very top. This 1957 black and white film is adapted from a teleplay and it’s basically a piece of theatre committed to film. It has just one setting for all but three minutes of the film, that of a jury room, and so the writing and the acting are really what comes to the forefront.
After hearing all of the evidence in the trial of a young Hispanic boy who is accused of stabbing his father to death, the 12 jurors retire to their deliberation room on a sweltering hot day.
Henry Fonda is the only dissenting voice, believing the boy could be innocent. The unfolding drama between the very different characters centres around reasonable doubt and whether people base their opinions on facts or their own bias.
Wonderful film that will always stand the test of time.
Documentary – Inside Apollo House
Thursday 23rd February, 10pm, TV3
This documentary takes a look at the occupation of Apollo House, a NAMA controlled former office block in Dublin city centre, by a group called Home Sweet Home. For just under a month, it became a centre for homeless people and sparked interest through newspaper headlines, a big surge of support from volunteers and also attracted some critics.
This programme features behind the scenes footage and interviews with some of the key players including Glen Hansard and Jim Sheridan. It also asks where to next for the organisation.