TV PICKS OF THE WEEK By Lisa Jewell
Make a date or set your DVR for our top telly choices this week
Documentary – The Knowledge: The World’s Toughest Taxi Test
Wednesday 12 April, 9pm, Channel 4
This documentary follows three participants as they put themselves through one of the hardest exams known to man or woman – The Knowledge. They have to learn the 25,000 streets and 100,000 points of interest in London in order to pass the test and become a black cab driver.
It takes an average of four years to pass the test and there’s a 70 per cent drop out rate – the documentary follows a single mum, a Kosovan immigrant and bus driver as they prepare for the test and you can’t help but root for each of them to pass with flying colours.
Friday 14 April, 9pm, BBC2
Stirring biopic that follows three months in the life of Martin Luther King and fellow activists in the civil rights movement in 1965. A year earlier, the Civil Rights Act had outlawed segregation and racial discrimination but the black community found that their right to vote was being curtailed through registration restrictions.
A non violent campaign to change this centred on Selma, Alabama, and was met with extreme force. Activists who wanted to march from Selma to the state capital in Montgomery were blocked and viciously attacked by state troopers. A fascinating film overall, though it does have slow moments, with the lead role of Martin Luther King impressively portrayed by David Oyelowo.
Film – The Book Thief
Saturday 15 April, 6.30pm, Channel 4
Adaptation of the popular book, which follows the story of Liesel, a girl separated from her family in Nazi Germany and raised by foster parents who teach her a love of reading. She can hardly believe her eyes when people congregate and burn books and she tries to save the volumes from the flames.
The young girl’s innocence is forever changed when she begins to realise what is happening in society and who this man Hitler is. When the family are asked to give refuge to a Jewish man, the realities of Hitler’s policy of persecution really start to hit home. It’s a nicely executed film that benefits from the novel’s strong narrative arc.