ANDREW COLLINS: FILM OF THE DAY
The Fast and the Furious ★★★★
With the eighth instalment in the $3.9 billion tyre-squealing franchise revving up for 2017, the 2001 original may seem quaint by comparison. Parochial, too, as it’s set strictly in Los Angeles, where the late Paul Walker’s undercover cop is tasked with breaking up a car-theft ring that’s linked to the local illegal street-racing scene, led by wedge-shaped baritone Vin Diesel. Petrolheads can gawp at the 1993 Mazda RX-7 and 1999 Mitsubishi Eclipse GTX (I looked those up), while Michelle Rodriguez, no slouch at the wheel, counters the Top Gear testosterone. It’s both fast and furious — and preposterous — but its set-piece stunts are destructively real. They get bigger as the series unfolds, but not necessarily better.
The Towering Inferno ★★★★
Paul Newman and Steve McQueen jostled for top billing in this 1974 disaster movie that creates a real sweatbox atmosphere. Who won the billing battle? You’ll have to tune in to find out.
It’s a Wonderful Life ★★★★★
The festive season may have come and gone, but this riff on A Christmas Carol is timeless with James Stewart as a suicidal man brought back from the brink by his guardian angel.
Bradley Cooper is currently in cinemas with Joy and he’s on a high here, too, after popping a pill that makes him a super high achiever. Joy co-star Robert De Niro is also on form.
10.50pm-12.40am Movie Mix
An earthquake shakes Chile to its core, geographically and societally, in a taste-free horror film that will leave you trembling (some, in outrage).