Finnegan On Films: Powerful Drama And A Classic Comedy To Enjoy This Weekend

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James Finnegan suggests a classic comedy from the 70s and a multi-award winning drama from the 80s for your viewing pleasure this weekend…

If you are looking for a family film to start the weekend, you can’t beat a bit of Shrek.

Shrek Forever After (Saturday 6.35pm RTE1) is the fourth instalment in this particular franchise.

Shrek is finding the responsibilities of domestic family bliss a bit of a struggle. He yearns for the days when he was a carefree and feared ogre rather than a celebrity.

He is tricked by Rumplestiltskin to sign a contract that sends him into a dark alternative world where no one, even Fiona, knows him.

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Staring the vocal talents of Mike Myers, Eddie Murphy, Cameron Diaz, Antonio Banderas, Julie Andrews and John Cleese among others, there is something here for all ages.

Star Wars: The Last Jedi (Saturday 8.50pm RTE2) is the second of the Star Wars sequel trilogy, or, in old money, the eighth instalment of the Skywalker saga.

Ray (Daisy Ridley) is seeking the help of Luke Skywalker (the legendary Mark Hamill) to help the Resistance against the evil Kylo Ren and the First Order.

Meanwhile First Order forces are mounting an attack on what remains of the Resistance fleet, while Finn, Rose and droid BB-8 attempt to disengage the First Orders tracking device.

Written and directed by Rian Johnson and stars acting talent than spans the Saga including Adam Driver, John Boyega, Andy Serkis, Domhnall Gleeson, Anthony Daniels and a posthumous performance by Carrie Fisher.

There is also the notable Supporting Role played by our own Skellig Michael, now a site of honour for Jedies galaxy wide, as well as UNESCO.

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Rain Man (Saturday 10.35pm TG4) is a multi award winning film that has both increased awareness but has also popularised an erroneous stereotype of certain autistic behaviour.

A rather brash and self centred young car dealer Charlie (Tom Cruise) has found out that his estranged father has died and left the bulk of his substantial estate to another elder son Raymond (Dustin Hoffman), whom Charlie did not know existed.

Left with only his father’s vintage car and rosebushes, Charlie and girl friend Susanna (Valeria Golino) head to the institution where Raymond lives.   In an attempt to get control of the estates money, Charlie abducts Raymond and travel across the country, during which significant life lessons are learnt.

Written and directed by Barry Levinson, this is one of the most notable films of the 1980s winning the Academy Awards for Best Picture, Best Director, Best Screenplay and Best Actor for Dustin Hoffman.  It also is anchored by a notable performance by Tom Cruise.

Finally a classic Mel Brooks comedy, that probably could not be made today, Blazing Saddles (Saturday 11.35 RTE2).

A corrupt railway tycoon wants to route his train through Rock Ridge.

He sends his men to terrorise the town and arranges for an African-American Sheriff to be appointed, hoping that the racist townsfolk reject him and leave.

However, the Sheriff is more cunning than they expect and engages the help of legendary gunslinger ‘The Waco Kid’. Enjoy and stay safe.

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