WEEK IN MOVIES
SUNDAY NIGHT AT THE MUSEUM: SECRET OF THE TOMB 7.30PM, WIN ★★★
Fans of the Night at the Museum effect will be content enough with this latest offering, which sees Ben Stiller and friends leaving America behind for a tour of duty in England. The core charm of the series has always revolved around fusty old exhibits coming to life after opening hours, and the novelty still hasn’t quite worn off. There’s some nice support work from new franchise addition Rebel Wilson, and the prominence of Robin Williams (in one of his final screen appearances) throughout adds a layer of poignancy to events. Co-stars Owen Wilson, Steve Coogan and Ricky Gervais.
MONDAY HEAT 8.30PM, ONE ★★★★
Vincent Hanna (Al Pacino) is one of those cops who has been chewed up and spat out by the very system he used to believe in so much. He rails so hard against what he knows to be unjust that there is simply no room for justice in his life. Then along comes chameleon crook Neil McCauley (Robert DeNiro) and his crack troop of high-rolling thieves. McCauley is about to pull off the job of a lifetime, and woe betide anyone stupid enough to stand in his way. Unbelievably, this was the first film to bring together DeNiro and Pacino, and the scene in which they finally come face to face is the highpoint.
TUESDAY THE LEAGUE OF EXTRAORDINARY GENTLEMEN 8.30PM, FOXTEL ACTION/ ADVENTURE ★★★
A fascinatingly flawed action-adventure fantasy with an original, off-the-wall premise. A secret society of superheroes sourced from the pages of 19th-century popular fiction – including Jekyll and Hyde, Dorian Gray, Tom Sawyer and The Invisible Man – are enlisted to save the world from a diabolical dude with designs on world domination. Don’t get it? Don’t worry. You’ll have plenty of company. Stars Sean Connery, Peta Wilson and Richard Roxburgh.
WEDNESDAY SUNSHINE 10.25PM, SBS2 ★★★★
As Earth enters a permanent winter in the year 2057, a spacecraft flies towards the sun to fire a nuclear bomb that will re-ignite the dying star. This soulfully cerebral sci-fi drama is not so much a thrill ride for the senses as it is an obstacle course for the mind. Beguiling light-drenched graphics, a tremendous ensemble of actors and the carefully restrained direction of Danny Boyle (28 Days Later) make this a must-see for anyone up for a challenge. Stars Cillian Murphy, Chris Evans and Rose Byrne.
THURSDAY A TIME TO KILL 8.30PM, ELEVEN ★★★
Another one-size-fits-all slab of legal eaglery from the platinum paperback pen of John “you can buy my collected works at any airport newsagent’’ Grisham. The setting is America’s deep south, where the necks are red, the right are white, and a black steel worker (Samuel L. Jackson) is unlikely to get a fair trial for killing the two thugs who assaulted his young daughter.
FRIDAY PHILOMENA 8.30PM, SBS ★★★★
Unmarried Irishwoman Philomena Lee (Judi Dench) was forced to give her baby up for adoption. Now in her 70s, Philomena is tired of wondering what became of her little boy. With the reluctant assistance of a British journalist (Steve Coogan), Philomena heads off on a heart-rending search for both closeness and closure. Based on a true story that became a bestseller, this film sublimely blends drama and comedy. The credible chemistry that unfolds between Dench and Coogan holds the key.
SATURDAY THE A-TEAM 9.30PM, WIN ★★★
A mindless and fun rebooting of the 1980s TV show of the same name. It should come as no big surprise the all-new The A-Team isn’t about to tamper with the old formula. Only now, the ex-Vietnam vets are ex-Iraq, and a little more self-serving. The story centres on a quartet of disgraced soldiers looking to clear their name while the army and the CIA track their every move. The stunt work (CGI-assisted or not) is particularly impressive.