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MOVIES OF THE WEEK

May 26, 1991|KEVIN THOMAS

Plymouth (ABC tonight at 9), a new TV movie, envisions the inhabitants of a town in the Pacific Northwest rendered uninhabitable by a toxic accident re-establishing their community--on the moon!

Blood Ties (Channel 11 Monday at 8 p.m.), a new TV movie, tells of a modern vampire struggling to be assimilated into American life. Jason London, Michelle Johnson and Bo Hopkins star.

A frightening variation on "The Hunt for Red October," the 1990 made-for-TV nuclear thriller By Dawn's Early Light (Channel 13 Monday at 8 p.m., again Saturday at noon) has a strong cast headed by Powers Boothe and Martin Landau as the U.S. President.

B.L. Stryker: Plates (ABC Monday at 9 p.m.), a 1990 rerun, in which a beautiful woman (Carol Alt) drags Burt Reynolds' private eye into a case which leads to his kidnaping.

The self-denying world of the other woman is examined minutely in Amy Jones' 1983 Love Letters (Channel 11 Wednesday at 8 p.m., USA Saturday at 2 p.m.). Jamie Lee Curtis is outstanding as a young woman who falls headlong into an affair with a rich, married older man (James Keach), repeating a pattern set by her adored, late mother. The film is uneven, but Curtis' conviction lifts it to very near her level.

In Dear America: Letters Home from Vietnam (Channel 5 Thursday at 8 p.m.), a wrenching 1987 documentary, the letters of the fighting men of Vietnam are read in accompaniment to extraordinary NBC News war footage.

The Bridges at Toko-Ri (Channel 13 Thursday at 8 p.m.), one of the few fine films to come out of the Korean War, stars William Holden as a Navy pilot drafted back to duty after serving heroically in World War II. Grace Kelly co-stars in this 1954 film directed by Mark Robson and based on the James Michener novel.

The problem with the 1987 TV movie Baby Girl Scott (CBS Friday at 9 p.m.) is that for all the fine acting by John Lithgow and Mary Beth Hurt as a couple who go through hell after their baby is born three months prematurely is that the whole medical Establishment is made of 98% evil cardboard.

Running Brave (Channel 5 Saturday at 6 p.m.) is an engaging 1983 biography of Lt. Billy Mills (Robby Benson), a Native American who won the gold medal in the 10,000-meter run at the 1964 Olympics in Tokyo.

Inspired by the Charlie Starkweather-Caril Ann Fugate 1958 murder spree in which the two teen-agers gunned down 11 people in Nebraska and Wyoming, Terence Malick's Badlands (Channel 13 Saturday at 6 p.m.), although stylish and technically adroit, finally tells us nothing more about the deadly pair--well-played by Martin Sheen and Sissy Spacek--than the news reports, which provided the what but not the why.

Blood on the Moon (Channel 5 Saturday at 8 p.m.), a superior 1948 western directed by Robert Wise and based on a Luke Short novel, stars Robert Mitchum, Barbara Bel Geddes and Robert Preston.

Whoopi Goldberg enlivens the otherwise routine 1989 TV movie Kiss Shot (CBS Saturday at 9 p.m.) in which she plays a pool-hustling mom.

Channel 28's Saturday night double feature airs the Kurosawa classics Rashomon (at 9 p.m.) and Throne of Blood (at 10:30 p.m.).

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