Leone Westerns offer relief from the Olympics

Today's TV

August 01, 1996|By Chris Kaltenbach | Chris Kaltenbach,SUN STAFF

Care for some movies to go with your Olympics? Up for a double dose of Sergio Leone, the Italian director who took over the Western genre in the 1960s and made a superstar of Clint Eastwood while he was at it? Check out TBS tonight.

"Hercules: The Legendary Journeys" (8 p.m.-9 p.m., WNUV, Channel 54) -- Tired of the real Olympics? Wondering who's to blame for getting them started in the first place? Turns out it was Hercules himself, who was tired of constantly having to kill his enemies and decided some sort of organized sporting competition would relieve men's bloodlust without them actually drawing blood. Well, at least that's what they claim here (Don't believe a word of it. Just sit back and enjoy the ride.)

"Shameful Secrets" (9 p.m.-11 p.m., WMAR, Channel 2) -- Joanna Kerns and Tim Matheson star in this look at an abusive marriage and its effect on a child-custody dispute. Also in the cast is Theresa Saldana, who knows a thing or two about being attacked, having nearly been killed by a knife-wielding wacko in 1982. ABC.

"Baywatch" (10 p.m.-11 p.m., WNUV, Channel 54) -- Mitch is paralyzed by a lifesaving accident (wanna bet he recovers?). In the hospital, he makes friends with a boy who's wanted by the Mob.


"For Me and My Gal" (6 p.m.-8 p.m., TCM) -- This 1942 Judy Garland movie was Gene Kelly's first film, as he played the male half of an early-20th-century vaudeville team. Kelly became better as he gained stature in Hollywood and confidence in his ability to carry a picture, but he's fine here; he and Judy make the archetypal cute couple.

"The Good, The Bad and The Ugly" (8 p.m.-11: 30 p.m.) and "Once Upon A Time In the West" (11: 30- p.m.-2: 05 a.m., TBS) -- Watching these films is akin to watching a train wreck: It's tough to look away, but you're sure glad it has nothing to do with you. "Good" is the last chapter of Leone's trilogy featuring Clint Eastwood as The Man With No Name (but one bodacious trigger finger), while "Once" stars all-American nice guy Henry Fonda as one of cinema's more despicable bad guys.

"White Palace" (8 p.m.-10 p.m., USA) -- Most of the good parts will be cut out, including the famous love scene between stars James Spader and Susan Sarandon, but the latter's portrayal of a middle-age waitress who becomes the lust object of a young corporate executive is one of her more intriguing performances.

"The Road Warrior" (9 p.m.-11 p.m., A&E) -- Mel Gibson blows all sorts of things up real good, as a moral (sort of) man trying to make his way in a post-apocalyptic world. Director George Miller rarely lets up on the throttle (with all the close-ups of car crashes, you wonder how many cameras met their maker during the filming), and the result is one massive adrenalin rush that was hardly the feel-good film of 1981, but helped make Gibson a star.

Pub Date: 8/01/96

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