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MOVIES OF THE WEEK / Kevin Thomas

December 04, 1988|Kevin Thomas

The romantic comedy My First Love (ABC Sunday at 9 p.m.), a new TV movie, stars Bea Arthur as a widow who decides to pursue her high school sweetheart (Richard Kiley).

Raoul Walsh's 1941 High Sierra (Channel 5 Monday at 8 p.m.) established Humphrey Bogart as a major star--even though Ida Lupino was billed over him. A bank robber serving a life sentence, classic "good-bad guy" Roy Earle (Bogart) gets sprung after eight years through the efforts of a dying gangster pal (Donald MacBride), who wants him to come to the West Coast to pull one last job. Lupino, MacBride's girlfriend, a real stand-up type who's been knocked around by life, is attracted to Earle, but he has been deeply touched by a lame country girl (Joan Leslie) with whom he has crossed paths on his way from Illinois to California.

Based on Kay Boyle's "Maiden, Maiden," Fred Zinnemann's handsome 1983 Five Days One Summer (Channel 13 Monday at 8 p.m.) has fascinating elements: physical adventure, adultery and more than a hint of scandal yet tends to remain as remote and lofty as its Swiss mountain settings. Sean Connery, however, is superb as a tormented Scottish doctor. The time is the early '30s.

The new TV movie Maybe Baby (NBC Monday at 9 p.m.) stars Jane Curtin as a career woman who suddenly decides she wants a baby, much to the shock and dismay of her middle-aged husband (Dabney Coleman), who already has a daughter (Julia Duffy) from his first marriage.

The 1947 Delmer Daves' movie Dark Passage (Channel 5 Tuesday at 8 p.m.) is far-out but certainly fun and exciting. It has an opening you'll never forget: an escaped convict who has undergone plastic surgery to change his appearance hides out with Lauren Bacall and once the bandages come off, he's Humphrey Bogart.

The Tall Men (Channel 11 Tuesday at 8 p.m.) is a 1955 Raoul Walsh western with Clark Gable and Robert Ryan that is not as memorable as one would expect.

Not to be missed is George T. Nierenberg's That Rhythm, Those Blues (Channel 28 Tuesday at 8:45 p.m.), a documentary on the birth of rock 'n' roll. That Rhythm, Those Blues features Ruth Brown, Charles Brown and various influential deejays and record promoters.

Tricks of the Trade (CBS Tuesday at 9 p.m.) is a new movie in which Cindy Williams, as a stockbroker's widow, sets out to solve his murder with the help of the prostitute (Markie Post) in whose room he was shot.

Miracle on 34th Street (Channel 11 Wednesday at 8 p.m.), that Christmas season perennial, lives on warmly in our collective memory. Edmund Gwenn is the Macy's Santa who believes he really is Kris Kringle, and Natalie Wood is the little girl who wants him to prove it. Note: Like "High Sierra," it's being shown in a "colorized" version.

The Snows of Kilimanjaro (Channel 11 Thursday at 8 p.m.) is the respected 1952 Henry King film of the Hemingway story with Gregory Peck as a renowned writer confronting his mortality and taking stock of his life.

Richard Lester's deft 1974 tongue-in-cheek treatment of The Three Musketeers (Channel 5 Saturday at 6 p.m.) stars Michael York as the handsome but hopelessly oafish D'Artagnan while Oliver Reed, Richard Chamberlain and Frank Finlay take over the title roles with aplomb.

Rage (Channnel 9 Saturday at 8 p.m.) is a notable 1980 TV movie starring David Soul as a convicted rapist undergoing intensive therapy.

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