The best films on the box this week
FOUR WEDDINGS AND A FUNERAL (1994) (Film4, 9pm)
POSH English Charles (Hugh Grant) seems destined always to be the best man at weddings and never the groom. The first collaboration between writer-director Richard Curtis and Grant was the movie that put them both on the map. This hilarious romantic comedy makes full use of Grant’s natural charm and boasts a superb cast giving their best. In fact, the only weak link might be MacDowell, especially when compared with Kristin Scott Thomas’s acerbic Fiona.
THE ASSASSINATION OF JESSE JAMES BY THE COWARD ROBERT FORD (2007) (ITV4, 11.25pm)
IN 1881, the final year of Jesse James’s extraordinary life, the James Gang continues to rob banks and railroad owners. Evading capture and the enemies who would love to collect the bounty on his head, Jesse (Brad Pitt) is initially flattered by the attention of devoted fan Bob Ford (Casey Affleck) but soon grows concerned by the young man’s fixation.
ENDER’S GAME (2013) (Film4, 6.45pm)
A hostile alien race called the Formics invades Earth and is repelled at the last minute by International Fleet Commander Mazer Rackham (Ben Kingsley), who sacrifices his life to bring down the mothership. The International Military prepares for the next attack by scouring the globe for the best young minds and bringing the raw recruits together at Battle School, including Ender Wiggin (Asa Butterfield). Based on the books by Orson Scott Card, Ender’s Game is a stirring tale of heroism aimed at young adults, which follows the lead of The Hunger Games by casting respected stars, including Harrison Ford, in pivotal roles.
TRIPLE 9 (2016) (Film4, 9pm) Premiere
VENOMOUS Russian moll Irina Vlaslov (Kate Winslet) puts the squeeze on private security contractor Michael Belmont (Chiwetel Ejiofor) and his team of dirty cops and Special Ops veterans. Michael fathered a child with Irina’s sister Elena (Wonder Woman Gal Gadot) and is beholden to the Vlaslovs if he wants access to his boy. Triple 9 is a taut action thriller with a stellar cast and a robust script penned by Matt Cook.
UNDERWORLD: RISE OF THE LYCANS (2009) (E4, 10pm)
THE third instalment of the popular Underworld series sketches the origins of the ancient feud between vampires and werewolves. Lucian’s secret vampire lover, Sonja (Rhona Mitra), betrays her noble bloodline to lend support to the werewolves’ plight, jeopardising Viktor’s sadistic reign, but as we know from the other entries in the series, this won’t have a happilyever-after ending.
HOWL’S MOVING CASTLE (2004) (Film4, 12.40pm)
THE legendary Hayao Miyazaki, the man behind Spirited Away, turns Diana Wynne Jones’s book into a magical animated feature. There is excitement in the air - the moving castle of Wizard Howl (Christian Bale) has been spotted in the wasteland close to the town. This dalliance with the wizard incurs the wrath and the jealousy of the vindictive Witch of the Waste (Lauren Bacall), who casts a spell on Sophie, transforming her into an arthritic 90-yearold woman (now voiced by Jean Simmons).
MOONSTRUCK (1987) (Sony Movie Channel, 1.15pm)
THIRTYSOMETHING Italian-American widow Loretta (Cher) gets engaged to her staid boyfriend Johnny (Danny Aiello) just before he leaves for Sicily to be with his dying mother. Cher and Dukakis deservedly won Oscars for their roles, but everyone is terrific in Norman Jewison’s funny, big-hearted romantic comedy.
The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford (Saturday, ITV4)