Free-to-air films

The Weekend Australian - Review - - Television Free To Air -

This fi­nal episode of Four Cor­ners for this year is one of the most pow­er­ful the pro­gram has ever pre­sented: the story of TV jour­nal­ist Liz Jack­son, who ad­dressed so many ma­jor is­sues for the pro­gram, in­clud­ing the chil­dren over­board af­fair, the Iraq war and the miss­ing weapons of mass de­struc­tion, youth sui­cide, euthana­sia and Abo­rig­i­nal deaths in cus­tody. Dev­as­tated when di­ag­nosed with Parkin­son’s dis­ease last year, a dis­ease of the ner­vous sys­tem that pro­gres­sively di­min­ishes the abil­ity to per­form es­sen­tial mo­tor func­tions such as walk­ing and eat­ing and for which there is no cure, she de­cided to com­mu­ni­cate what it’s like to go through — and what hap­pens when some­one can no longer func­tion in the world as they have al­ways done. Nigella Law­son is also back in a new show that first aired in Bri­tain late last year, and has also done the rounds of Fox­tel’s Life­style chan­nel, but no doubt has yet to be seen by count­less sali­vat­ing fans. While there’s no talk from Ms Law­son of her semi-re­cent mar­i­tal breakdown she does rather tri­umphantly tell us she’s pre­sent­ing recipes that “I’ve en­joyed with fam­ily and friends as I’ve set­tled into my new kitchen and where I am in my life right now”. And it’s ob­vi­ously a sup­port­ive place too as she ru­mi­nates about things in that lovely high­brow voice, shares a few happy snaps of Thai­land, and projects a calm sense of heal­ing through the food she pre­pares — dishes “that re­lax and re­store, up­lift and en­rich”. Open­ing Shot: Big Bad Love Wed­nes­day, 9.30pm, ABC Two This is the first of five half-hour do­cos from a new gen­er­a­tion of film­mak­ers — all un­der 35 — tasked with fir­ing an “open­ing shot” into the na­tional Paris- con­ver­sa­tion. First up, di­rec­tor and writer Bri­ony Ben­jamin, who spe­cialises in pro­duc­ing and di­rect­ing so­cial and en­vi­ron­men­tal-themed con­tent, fol­lows co­me­dian Becky Lu­cas, who re­cently found out one of her clos­est child­hood friends had suf­fered years of vi­o­lence and abuse at the hands of her part­ner. Becky meets ex­perts and psy­chol­o­gists to bet­ter un­der­stand the signs, and conducts an ex­per­i­ment on the street to see how the av­er­age by­stander re­acts to do­mes­tic vi­o­lence. Her­bert Ross’s Boys on the Side (Sun­day, 9.30pm, Eleven) is one of sev­eral movies, in­clud­ing Steel Mag­no­lias, he’s made about fe­male char­ac­ters. This af­fect­ing com­edy-drama with a nice sar­donic edge sees three sin­gu­lar women on a road trip to get to Los An­ge­les in a hurry. Whoopi Gold­berg’s Jane, a les­bian lounge singer, wants a new life; Mary-Louise Parker’s rather prim real es­tate agent Robin joins her; as does Drew Bar­ry­more’s preg­nant Holly, after a brawl with her drug-deal­ing boyfriend. Great per­for­mances from all. Rob Bow­man’s Elek­tra (Thurs­day, 8.30pm, Eleven) is for Marvel fans, a spin-off from the 2003 movie Dare­devil. It stars Jen­nifer Gar­ner as the comic book char­ac­ter Elek­tra Nat­chios, an in­ter­na­tional as­sas­sin whose favoured weapon is a pair of Sai, those dag­gers orig­i­nat­ing from Ok­i­nawa with two sharp prongs curv­ing out­ward from the hilt. So­phie Lel­louche’s Paris-Man­hat­tan (Mon­day, 12.30am, SBS One) is an af­fec­tion­ate homage to Woody Allen in which ide­al­is­tic phar­ma­cist Alice (Alice Taglioni) is ob­sessed with the Hol­ly­wood film­maker, even pre­scrib­ing the oc­ca­sional DVD of his movies to help her cus­tomers. Can any good-look­ing French­man ever match her fix­a­tion?

Alice Taglioni and Pa­trick Bruel in Man­hat­tan

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