TELEVISIONJanek returnsJanek is back. One of TV's most...


September 19, 1992|By David Zurawik MOVIES Probing look at marriage


Janek returns

Janek is back. One of TV's most complicated and appealing characters this side of Columbo is Richard Crenna's Lt. Frank Janek, NYPD. Janek first appeared a few years back in a miniseries and has since reappeared every year on CBS in a made-for-TV movie or two, solving bizarre murders. Tomorrow at 9 p.m. on WBAL (Channel 11) in "Terror on Track 9," Janek and sidekick Det. Sgt. Aaron Greenberg (Cliff Gorman) track a murderer who kills by injecting his victims with heroin and leaving their bodies on the tracks under Grand Central Station. It's not great Janek, but even midlevel Janek will do.

"Husbands and Wives" is Woody Allen's best film since "Hannah and her Sisters"; it's a powerful and probing look at marriage. Allen isn't exactly generous to the women he portrays, but the movie is put together with such knowing confidence and insight and such consistent humor that you half-forgive him for his bias. PG-13. *** 1/2 .

Stephen Hunter "Mississippi Masala" is a wonderful examination of two ethnic cultures making awkward contact that ultimately yields satisfying emotional resonance. The two cultures are African-American and African-Hindu-American -- that is, Indian refugees from Idi Amin's Uganda -- as they come to mix into a stew -- a "masala" -- in Mississippi. The Romeo and Juliet of this melting pot are Denzel Washington and Sarita Choudhury and ))6the director is Mira Nair. It's a fine movie. R. ***.

Stephen Hunter James Weldon Johnson wrote "God's Trombones" in 1927 as a tribute to black preachers, but the current incarnation at Arena Players, 801 McCulloh St., is also a fitting tribute to that venerable theater, now celebrating its 40th anniversary season. Director Sam Wilson has assembled rotating casts to perform the show's eight sermons and assorted hymns, and the result displays a broad panorama of Arena Players' skills. Weekend performances are today and tomorrow at 7:30 p.m., with a matinee tomorrow at 3 p.m. Tickets are $18. Call (410) 728-6500.


J. Wynn Rousuck

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