BARRY NORMAN: FILM OF THE DAY
The Man in the White Suit ★★★★★
A classic Ealing comedy with a classic Ealing theme Ð the little man versus the Establishment. Timid young chemist Alec Guinness invents a material that will never wear out. Great news, yes? Not necessarily: whoever buys the formula will clearly make a fortune short term Ð but long term both manufacturers and workers see disaster ahead. Henceforth, one set of clothes will last people for ever. So there springs up an unholy alliance between factory owners Michael Gough and Cecil Parker and the trades unions to force Guinness into selling his patent so that it can be suppressed. Joan Greenwood, Parker’s daughter and Gough’s fiancée, is urged to persuade Guinness to sell by sleeping with him, surely an offer he can’t refuse. Well, maybeÉ Directed by Sandy Mackendrick, this is lovely stuff, tense as well as funny, a satirical swipe at big business and the British class system, and it’s hard to forget the musically gurgling tubes Guinness uses to create his fabric.
California Suite ★★★★
6.55-9.00pm Movie Mix
Neil Simon’s Broadway smash successfully translates to the big screen. It’s a portmanteau comedy set at the Beverly Hills hotel, in which the likes of Alan Alda, Maggie Smith and Michael Caine have to deal with their first world problems.
The Hunger Games: Catching Fire ★★★★★
Jennifer Lawrence returns for the second instalment in the series, with Katniss competing against previous winners in an ‘all-star’ Hunger Games showdown.
American Psycho ★★★★
10.45pm-12.45am Horror Channel
Christian Bale shines as Patrick Bateman, the Manhattan yuppie turned psychopathic killer in this very twisted but brilliant dark comedy.
Mr & Mrs Smith ★★★
Undercover assassins Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie put the spark back into their marriage when they are assigned to bump each other off.