Phil Spector

8 p.m. March 24, HBO Al Pacino gets his freak on in this biopic about legendary record producer Phil Spector, who definitely had a case of the wacky. Written and directed by David Mamet, "Spector" fictionalizes what went on behind-the-scenes before and during Spector's 2007 first trial for the murder of actress Lana Clarkson. Although Mamet has said the movie takes no sides--the 2007 case ended in a mistrial, but Spector was convicted of second-degree murder and sentenced to 19 years to life in a 2009 retrial--it certainly raises the idea that he was convicted mostly of being a freak. The always spot-on Helen Mirren stars as Spector's real-life attorney Linda Kenney Baden, whose belief in Spector's guilt slowly erodes the more she gets to know the eccentric wig-lover. She and Pacino, who despite the crazy wigs actually brilliantly refrains from overdoing the crazy that has seeped into many of his recent roles, paint a portrait of the bond between client and lawyer. It doesn't matter if any of it actually happened; Mamet and his actors spin a fascinating yarn.
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