There’s something for everyone at the movies this weekend.
Thanks to broadcast and cable television stations, you can choose from a range of film favorites to choose a movie that makes you hungry for popcorn.
Take a look.
Hollywood loves thrillers that are based on actual events, set in remote places and involve enough suspicion to keep people on the edge of their seats. This Oscar winner takes us back to Iran in the 1970s when six Americans go into hiding after political radicals take over the US Embassy in Tehran. Actor/director Ben Affleck relies on his recall of movie classics to give the film a familiar foundation while lacing the drama with just enough natural humor to create a total package.
Friday, September 25, 5:30 p.m., FXM
Movies love to look to Broadway for opportunities to sing and dance. This film version of the Broadway musical hit features John Travolta in a cross-dressing role as the mama to end them all, Michelle Pfeiffer as a self-absorbed mother of questionable scruples and Christopher Walken as a selfless husband with a grasp of show tunes. The musical moment belongs to Queen Latifah who brings the house down with a rousing rendition of I Know Where I’ve Been. When she sings, the film fully comes to life.
Friday, September 25, 6:30 p.m., VH1
Baseball is a fan favorite for Hollywood. As the current season heats to an exciting end, the ins and outs of the sport come to the screen in this modern classic from Bennett Miller and Aaron Sorkin. Brad Pitt is well case as Billy Beane, the general manager of the Oakland A’s, who dares to look at the sport in a fresh way. The film carefully reveals more about the sport than all those baseball movies that only focus on what happens on the field. This time around, the front office creates the drama.
Friday, September 18, 8:15 p.m., ABC Family
Pride and Prejudice (2005)
After winning an Oscar for writing Ang Lee’s film adaptation of Sense and Sensibility, Emma Thompson provided an uncredited rewrite of the script for this movie based on another Jane Austen novel. Keira Knightly delights as a young woman who refuses to let the conventions of romance define her potential relationships while Brenda Blethyn happily chews the scenery as her bothersome mother. The real star is the unbilled Thompson who knows her way around Jane Austen as though she channels the author.
Saturday, September 26, 5:30 p.m., Bravo
Any Given Sunday (1999) and JFK (1991)
Leave it to Oliver Stone to look for a conspiracy in everything from football to politics. Sunday takes a typical Stone look at the complications behind the scenes at a professional football team. While Al Pacino and Dennis Quaid try to give the movie credibility, Cameron Diaz and Ann-Margret stretch the boundaries of reason with exaggerated (and fun) performances. In JFK, Stone’s creative camera work and editing retells a familiar story in a dramatic way. But the bitter tones of Kevin Costner’s attempt at a New Orleans accent are almost too much to beat.
Sunday: Saturday, September 26, 4:30 p.m., Esquire
JFK: Saturday, September 26, 7 p.m., Sundance
The Birds (1963) and Psycho (1960)
Leave it to Alfred Hitchcock to deliver the thrills of the weekend with these classics from the early 1960s. The Birds finds a feisty flock in a frenzy to remind residents of a seaside California town that man was not born to fly. Tippi Hedren and Rod Taylor may get the billing but the birds get all the best lines. And, in Psycho, Janet Leigh reminds us why bed bugs are a trivial concern when staying in a roadside motel. These oldies never get old because Hitchcock knows that, on screen, less is always more.
The Birds: Sunday, September 27, 2:30 p.m., BBC
Psycho: Sunday, September 27, 5:30 p.m., BBC
Sharing movies can be as easy as turning on the television or going online.
And, when you watch as a family, take the time to chat about what you’re seeing. That makes it even more fun.