John Hughes’ The Breakfast Club (KTLA tonight at 6) takes place in a suburban Illinois high school where five radically disparate kids (Anthony Michael Hall, Emilio Estevez, Ally Sheedy, Molly Ringwald and Judd Nelson), condemned to all-day detention, come to know each other. A kind of have-it-both-ways attempt to fuse “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” with “Animal House,” the 1985 movie is too schematic for its own good and needs a more honest sense of rebellion.
In Walter Hill’s smart, rambunctious action-comedy 48 HRS. (KCOP tonight at 6), Eddie Murphy made his smash 1982 film debut as a slick con man on a two-day leave to help San Francisco cop Nick Nolte nail one of Murphy’s cohorts.
Chances Are (KTLA tonight at 8, again on Saturday at 6 p.m.; TBS Monday at 7 p.m.), a contrived 1989 comedy, finds Cybill Shepherd’s widow character falling in love with Robert Downey Jr.'s journalism graduate, who is the reincarnation of her dead husband.
The 1989 hit Honey, I Shrunk the Kids (CBS Tuesday at 8 p.m.), in which shrunken suburbanites are thrust into the ominous jungle of their Gargantuan back yard is a cautionary comedy about human beings deformed by science and a bright, overly loud fable about suburban conformity.
The Adventures of Robin Hood (KTTV Tuesday at 8 p.m.) is the definitive 1938 Michael Curtiz version, a grand, timeless Technicolor swashbuckling adventure with the perfectly cast Errol Flynn in the title role, Olivia De Havilland as Maid Marian and a terrific Warner Bros. supporting cast.
Dead Solid Perfect (KCOP Thursday at 8 p.m., again on Saturday at 6 p.m.), a zesty 1988 adaptation (for HBO) by director Bobby Roth and co-writer Dan Jenkins of Jenkins’ novel, takes us into the wearying world of professional golf and, with compassionate detachment, observes the plight of Kenny Lee (well-played by Randy Quaid), whose performance on golf courses and in marriage are beginning to show the strain of touring the circuit for eight years.
Don Siegel’s The Shootist (KCOP Friday at 8 p.m.) is a grandly elegant 1976 Western that was a fitting farewell to the screen for John Wayne, cast as a dying gunfighter who craves a peaceful end but has one last mission to accomplish. This 1976 film is notable for its provocative, ambiguous attitude toward the passing of the Old West.