The Life and Times of Judge Roy...
The Life and Times of Judge Roy Bean (Channel 13 tonight at 8), written by John Milius and directed by John Huston, was one of several provocative and entertaining revisionist Westerns of the early ‘70s, yet was unjustly neglected. Paul Newman has lots of fun playing the legendary hanging judge, and Ava Gardner is a ravishing Lily Langtry, the object of Bean’s unrequited love.
Romancing the Stone (ABC tonight at 9) is that delightful 1984 comedy in which Kathleen Turner, as a dowdy author of best-selling romances, is plunged into adventures beyond her wildest imaginings--with Michael Douglas as her breezy, rugged leading man. Director Robert Zemeckis and writer Diane Thomas have pulled off an amusing reworking of genre conventions.
Waterhole No. 3 (Channel 11 Tuesday at 8 p.m.) is a hilarious 1967 Western, designed for sophisticates in a mood for burlesque. James Coburn stars in a cockamamie tale about what happens when a cavalry sergeant (Claude Akins) decides to rob an Army warehouse of a fortune in gold bullion.
Walking Tall (Channel 11 Wednesday at 8 p.m.) is a bloody, slam-bang fictionalized account of the exploits of Sheriff Buford Pusser of Tennessee. His bloody career ended in 1974 when he died in a mysterious car accident the day before he was to start playing himself in “Part 2 Walking Tall.” Shrewdly directed by Phil Karlson, this raw and extremely violent 1973 film stars Joe Don Baker as the club-swinging Pusser.
Jonathan Demme’s 1984 Swing Shift (Channel 13 Friday at 8 p.m.) is an astonishingly accurate evocation of Los Angeles during World War II. Goldie Hawn stars as a demure housewife transformed by her new job as a war factory riveter, but Christine Lahti all but steals the film as her easy-going bungalow court neighbor. Kurt Russell is the 4-F factory worker-jazz musician who leads Hawn astray. Uneven but largely satisfying.
In the 1989 fable on the perils of success, Woody Allen succeeded dazzlingly in bringing together the comic and serious sides of his nature in Crimes and Misdemeanors (Showtime Saturday at 2 p.m.). It’s two parallel stories, one involving a rich ophthalmologist (Martin Landau, in a towering portrayal) eager to free himself from a desperately clinging mistress (Anjelica Huston), the other a triangle in which Allen’s nebbish documentary filmmaker is losing Mia Farrow to obnoxious TV tycoon Alan Alda.
Kirk Douglas never got to play Randle McMurphy of “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” on screen, but in the 1985 TV movie Amos (Channel 9 Saturday at 8 p.m.) he stars as a feisty old ex-ballplayer battling a tyrannical head nurse (Elizabeth Montgomery) in a nursing home.
The 1980 Any Which Way You Can (Channel 13 Saturday at 8 p.m.) brings back Clint Eastwood and his orangutan chum Clyde from “Every Which Way but Loose” for more fisticuffs, foolery and romantic mischief.