Stars, czars, a few klezmer bars

Today's TV

March 06, 1996|By Chris Kaltenbach | Chris Kaltenbach,SUN STAFF

Tune in to MPT at 10 tonight and prepare to have a good time.

"National Geographic Presents" (8 p.m.-9 p.m., WBAL, Channel dTC 11) -- "Russia's Last Tsar" is at least the third special broadcast in the past year about the tragic fate of Czar Nicholas II, his wife, Alexandra, and their four children. This one is best (and most heart-wrenching) when it shows home movies of the czar and his family, photos taken by the Romanovs themselves and even watercolors by one of Nicholas' daughters. It bogs down a bit when resorting to movie re-creations to fill in some gaps in the archival footage, but it's an interesting hour nonetheless. NBC.

"American Comedy Awards" (8 p.m.-10 p.m., WMAR, Channel 2) -- For the 10th time, America's funny folks pay tribute to themselves. Tonight's highlight promises to be Lily Tomlin reprising her Ernestine character, who's abandoned her career as a phone operator in favor of the Internet. Richard Pryor is also scheduled to make an appearance. ABC.

"Blockbuster Entertainment Awards" (8 p.m.-10 p.m., WNUV, Channel 54) -- If you've visited a Blockbuster video store over the past several months, maybe you've helped vote for these awards. That could explain why you care enough to watch it. Kelsey Grammer is the master of ceremonies. UPN.

"Great Performances" (10 p.m.-11: 30 p.m., MPT, Channels 22 and 67) -- I defy you to sit still during "Itzhak Perlman: In the Fiddler's House." This celebration of klezmer, traditional Jewish folk music, could even get a corpse to start clapping its hands. PBS. (Warning: With pledge time hard upon us, all starting and ending times on MPT are approximate.)

"The Tonight Show with Jay Leno" (11: 35 p.m.-12: 35 a.m., WBAL, Channel 11) -- Mel Gibson, whose "Braveheart" is nominated for a kazillion Academy Awards, shows up to enhance his reputation as one of the least-affected actors in Hollywood -- and thus one of the best talk-show guests. And I have a couple of lady friends who say his blue eyes make him pretty easy to look at, too. NBC.

Cable

"MTV News Raw" (7: 30 p.m.-8 p.m., repeats 9: 30 p.m.-10 p.m., MTV) -- "Gangsta" rapper Snoop Doggy Dogg sits down for his first formal interview since being acquitted of murder charges by a Los Angeles jury last month. Producer Abbie Kearse provides the off-camera questions.

"Hidden in Silence" (9 p.m.-11 p.m., Lifetime) -- Kellie Martin ("Christy") stars in this fact-based drama about Fusia Podgorska, a teen-age Polish girl who hid 13 Jews in her apartment, thus sparing them from death in a Nazi concentration camp. The film, which also stars Marion Ross (Mrs. Cunningham on "Happy Days"), was shot in the Czech Republic.

"The Sunshine Boys" (9 p.m.-11 p.m., TCM) -- George Burns, an American treasure if ever there were one, grabbed an Oscar for his role in this film about a pair of cantankerous, aging vaudevillians. And to think, he was a spritely 79 when this film was released in 1975.

Pub Date: 3/06/96

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