TV film fare -- week of July 10, 2022
NEW YORK (CNS) -- The following are capsule reviews of theatrical movies on network and cable television the week of July 10. Please note that televised versions may or may not be edited for language, nudity, violence and sexual situations.
Sunday, July 10, 8-10:15 p.m. EDT (TCM) "Only Angels Have Wings" (1939). A stranded American entertainer (Jean Arthur) gets stuck on the leader (Cary Grant) of a bunch of daring aviators trying to win a government contract flying the mail over a dangerous South American route. Director Howard Hawks' classic picture of men whose bond of camaraderie transcends the dangers of their profession is conveyed by a fine cast including Noah Beery Jr. and Allyn Joselyn as devil-may-care pilots, Thomas Mitchell as the flier with failing eyesight and Richard Barthlemess as a disgraced pilot trying to prove himself. The Catholic News Service classification of the theatrical version was A-II -- adults and adolescents. Not rated by the Motion Picture Association.
Tuesday, July 12, 8-10:05 p.m. EDT (Showtime) "Glory" (1989). The story of the 54th Regiment of Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry, the first Black fighting unit raised during the Civil War, focuses on its enlightened white commander (Matthew Broderick) who molded field hands and runaway slaves into proud, heroic Union soldiers. Director Edward Zwick raises consciousness about the little-known regiment and re-creates some harrowing battle scenes but, unfortunately, gives shallow attention to the themes of racism and the obscenity of war. Stereotyping of key Black characters, much grisly wartime violence and some profanity. The Catholic News Service classification of the theatrical version was A-III -- adults. The Motion Picture Association rating was R -- restricted. Under 17 requires accompanying parent or adult guardian.
Saturday, July 16, noon-1:45 p.m. EDT (TCM) "Annie Oakley" (1935). Robust story of an Ohio country girl (Barbara Stanwyck) whose prowess with a hunting rifle starts her on the way to fame as the star sharpshooter of Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show. Director George Stevens provides a lively picture of late 19th-century America as well as a gentle story of Annie's love for a boastful trick shooter (Preston Foster). Enjoyable both for its colorful Western action and appealing success story. The Catholic News Service classification of the theatrical version was A-I -- general patronage. Not rated by the Motion Picture Association.
Saturday, July 16, 8-11 p.m. EDT (HBO) "Last Night in Soho" (2021). What begins as a paean to the London of the swinging '60s rapidly turns into something more menacing as a psychic fashion student (Thomasin McKenzie) in the present-day British capital who is obsessed with the earlier era journeys back to it in a series of dreams during which she witnesses scenes in the life of an aspiring actress and singer (Anya Taylor-Joy) of the time. Though the would-be star's career gets off to an apparently promising start, her suave manager (Matt Smith) is not at all what he seems, and her existence rapidly degenerates into the stuff of squalid nightmares. Haunted by what she is seeing, but powerless to intervene, the protagonist becomes a neurotic mess. Her erratic daytime behavior draws the disdain of one classmate (Synnove Karlsen), the sympathy of another (Michael Ajao), who would like to make her his girlfriend, and the ire of her elderly landlady (Diana Rigg). Director and co-writer Edgar Wright's psychological thriller shifts gears along with the narrative as its initially sunny tone first intensifies, then becomes feverish as it reaches a gory, mayhem-ridden conclusion. Much harsh bloody violence, fleeting but strong sexual content, including glimpses of aberrant behavior and full nudity as well as a premarital bedroom scene, vengeance and prostitution themes, drug use, a few instances of profanity, at least one milder oath, considerable rough and crude language. The Catholic News Service classification of the theatrical version was L -- limited adult audience, films whose problematic content many adults would find troubling. The Motion Picture Association rating was R -- restricted. Under 17 requires accompanying parent or adult guardian.
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Mulderig is on the staff of Catholic News Service.