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Movies Of The Week

March 10, 1985

The Enforcer (NBC Sunday at 9 p.m.) brought back Clint Eastwood's "Dirty Harry" for the third time. Harry Callahan, veteran San Francisco Police Department homicide inspector, is just as tough and ornery as ever, but here he's been presented with unprecedented humor as he tracks down an elusive terrorist group. To his dismay, he has a new partner, a woman! But a delightful Tyne Daly, in a kind of warm-up for "Cagney & Lacey," proves her mettle.

Murder by Death, Neil Simon's amusing, star-studded spoof of fabled private eyes, airs at 4 and 8 p.m. Sunday on Channel 11.

Airing at 8 p.m. Monday on Channel 13, Looking for Mr. Goodbar stars Diane Keaton in Richard Brooks' potent but uneven film of the Judith Rossner novel about a teacher of deaf children who's a saint by day and a swinger by night. Unfortunately, we never know why the attractive Keaton opts for one-night stands in preference to steadier relationships.

Anthony Geary and Shelley Hack star in the new TV movie Kicks (ABC Monday at 9 p.m.), a thriller about a couple whose mutual attraction is fired by their obsession with high-risk games.

Tuesday at 8 p.m. on Channel 13 brings Yanks, the stirring John Schlesinger film starring Richard Gere as the American soldier who falls in love with Britisher Lisa Eichhorn in wartime England. William Devane and Vanessa Redgrave co-star.

The new TV movie Seduced (CBS Tuesday at 9 p.m.), billed as a romantic thriller, stars Gregory Harrison as a high-ranking state attorney tempted by an offer from a retailing giant whose most powerful outside shareholder's wife (Cybill Shepherd) happens to be an ex-lover.

On Channel 13 Wednesday at 8 p.m. is The Cincinnati Kid, an entertaining card-shark adventure starring Steve McQueen and a host of Hollywood veterans.

Constantine Costa-Gavras' Missing (CBS Wednesday at 8:30 p.m.) plunges us into Allende's crumbled Chile as Sissy Spacek and Jack Lemmon attempt to find John Shea, Spacek's free-lance journalist husband (who is also Lemmon's son) who has disappeared after the coup. Amid Costa-Gavras' superbly evoked nightmare atmosphere of the new authoritarian regime, Lemmon finds his conservative, patriotic assumptions about the United States and its involvement in Latin American politics challenged at every turn. This tense, provocative film is an unusual instance of a Hollywood studio (Universal) tackling politically sensitive material.

Smokey and the Bandit II (ABC Thursday at 8 p.m.) is back yet again. If crudeness were oil, this film hit a gusher. Reprising their roles are Burt Reynolds, Jerry Reed, Sally Field, Pat McCormick and Paul Williams. At the same hour on Channel 5 is Hitchcock's thriller-on-a-train, The Lady Vanishes, starring Michael Redgrave and Margaret Lockwood, with delightful Dame May Whitty in the title role.

In Melvin and Howard (Channel 13 Friday at 8 p.m.) Jonathan Demme turned the sorry saga of Melvin Dummar, the Utah gas station operator left $156 million by Howard Hughes in the mysterious, so-called "Mormon Will," into an enticingly lyrical and bittersweet--and very funny--slice of Americana. Paul Le Mat is big, beefy Melvin, the representative of debt-ridden America, and Jason Robards is Howard, whom Le Mat finds lying in the freezing desert night outside Las Vegas. Mary Steenburgen is Melvin's dippy, go-go dancer wife. Playing opposite on Channel 5 at 8 p.m. is another Hitchcock classic, The 39 Steps, with Robert Donat and Madeleine Carroll.

A Man, a Woman and a Bank (Channel 5 Saturday at 8 p.m.) is a minor, low-key caper picture, filmed in Vancouver and Macao and starring Donald Sutherland and Paul Mazursky as bored pals turned bank robbers. It's never less than pleasant but not very inspired or amusing. Brooke Adams is The Woman.

It's best to skip The Choirboys (Channel 13 Saturday at 8 p.m.), based on a Joseph Wambaugh cop novel--he disowned the film--and remember its late director Robert Aldrich for his many better films.

Some notable evening fare on the pay/cable services: Vertigo (Z Sunday at 6:30 and Thursday at 9), The Dresser (Cinemax Sunday at 8 and Friday at 6, Z Tuesday at 9), My Favorite Year (HBO Monday at 8), Straw Dogs (WTBS Monday at 9:30), The Little Foxes (Cinemax Tuesday at 6), This Is Spinal Tap (Cinemax Tuesday at 8), Fort Apache, the Bronx (HBO Tuesday at 8), To Begin Again (Movie Channel Tuesday at 10), Chariots of Fire (Cinemax Wednesday at 10, Movie Channel Saturday at 7) and The Last Waltz (ON-TV Thursday at 9).

Opinions in this column are based on the original-release version of the films. Checks for the logs are based on Leonard Maltin's "TV Movies" book and other sources. Pay TV movies without checks have not been reviewed by The Times.

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