The Weekend Australian - Review - - Tv - EVAN WIL­LIAMS

LEST I be sued for defama­tion and locked up, I can as­sure read­ers that all films men­tioned in this col­umn, what­ever I may say about them, are mas­ter­pieces of cin­e­matic art.

I haven’t seen Na­tional Lam­poon’s Hol­i­day Re­union ( Satur­day, 11.15pm), but Seven reck­ons this is Na­tional Lam­poon’s most out­ra­geous fam­ily mis­ad­ven­ture yet, so that’s good enough for me.

You can bet it will be just as taste­less as the oth­ers. The orig­i­nal, Na­tional Lam­poon’s An­i­mal House, was a huge hit with young au­di­ences, gross­ing more than $ US80 mil­lion, which was a lot of money in 1978.

Seven has some­thing called Sav­ing Jes­sica Lynch ( Thurs­day, mid­day), billed as the in­cred­i­ble true story of Private Lynch’s heroic res­cue dur­ing Op­er­a­tion Iraqi Free­dom, in 2003. The real Jes­sica Lynch has since pub­licly ac­cused the US Gov­ern­ment and mil­i­tary of fab­ri­cat­ing the story as part of a pro­pa­ganda cam­paign to jus­tify the in­va­sion of Iraq, so I’d be in­clined to treat the in­cred­i­ble true story, star­ring Laura Re­gan ( Dead Si­lence , Hollow Man 11 ) as only slightly in­cred­i­ble.

Theresa Rus­sell plays an Amer­i­can di­vorcee who has an af­fair with a psy­chi­a­trist in Ni­co­las Roeg’s Bad Tim­ing ( Sun­day, 1.40am, ABC) and An­thony Hop­kins plays a dis­tin­guished col­lege pro­fes­sor who has an af­fair with a younger work­ing- class wo­man in Robert Ben­ton’s The Hu­man Stain ( Fri­day, mid­day, Seven). In both cases the act­ing is more con­vinc­ing than the ma­te­rial, but you wont for­get ei­ther film in a hurry.

Ge­of­frey Rush stars, with oth­ers, in House on Haunted Hill ( Sun­day, 11.30pm, Seven), an above- av­er­age spooky in the old dark­house tra­di­tion ( and a re­make of William Cas­tle’s fa­mously scary 1959 orig­i­nal). Five strangers are per­suaded to spend a night to­gether in a for­mer in­sane asy­lum and any­one who comes through the ex­pe­ri­ence will re­ceive $ 1 mil­lion.

Mad Cows ( Mon­day, mid­day, Seven) is from Kathy Lette’s novel about a spunky Aussie girl ( Anna Friel) who takes on the evil Bri­tish class sys­tem in an at­tempt to get English cad Alex ( Greg Wise) to ac­knowl­edge his baby son. Lette spe­cialises in wickedly clever one- lin­ers but, as funny as they usu­ally are, they don’t trans­fer eas­ily to the mouths of ac­tors.

Lette makes an ap­pear­ance ( as does

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