Prime-Time Flicks

August 29, 1993|Kevin Thomas

The Living Daylights (ABC Sunday at 8:30 p.m.) introduced Timothy Dalton as the latest James Bond in 1987. Dalton is splendid--provided you can put Sean Connery, and Roger Moore, out of your mind. But after a quarter-century of 007 , it's pretty much the same as before, except for less casual sex in this AIDS era.

A prize performance by Brendan Fraser as Martin Sheen's rebellious jailbird son propels the true-life 1991 family drama Guilty Until Proven Innocent (NBC Sunday at 9 p.m.). Fraser plays a high school dropout wrongly convicted of a murder and Sheen a rigid, blue-collar Brooklyn father whose angry distrust of his son changes through his Herculean efforts to prove his innocence.

Writer-director Gary Hoffman's 1992 TV movie Bonnie and Clyde: The True Story (Fox Monday at 8 p.m.) proceeds as a conventional mixed-up teen-agers tale. The film fails to tell us enough about what made Tracey Needham's Bonnie and Dana Ashbrook's Clyde leave such a bloody trail of corpses across the Southwest in the depths of the Depression.

The affecting 1991 TV movie Deception: A Mother's Secret (NBC Monday at 9 p.m.) stars Steven Weber as a caring man who desires to adopt his dead wife's son, only to find the boy's origins obscured in a web of lies.

The French Connection (KTLA Tuesday at 8 p.m.) is that slam-bang, suspenseful, plain-spoken and sardonically funny 1971 melodrama starring Gene Hackman and Roy Scheider.

Lesley Ann Warren, fluttering like a moth, is a cold-blooded vixen in the entertaining 1991 TV movie A Seduction in Travis County (CBS Tuesday at 9 p.m.), based on a true story.

Despite the usually capable presence of director Lamont Johnson, the 1992 TV movie Crash Landing: The Rescue of Flight 232 (ABC Thursday at 8 p.m.), which tells of the rescue of 186 of 296 passengers after the 1989 crash of a United Airlines plane, never rises above the standard jet-in-jeopardy genre.

Charles Burnett's landmark 1978 Killer of Sheep (KCET Saturday at 9 p.m.) is a powerful and poetic documentary-like account of several days in the life of an L.A. slaughterhouse worker (wonderfully played by Henry Sanders) and his family.

Written and photographed by Burnett and directed by Billy Woodberry, the 1984 Bless Their Little Hearts (KCET Saturday at 10:30 p.m.) is rawer and more direct, though less sophisticated visually, than "Killer of Sheep." Like the earlier film it deals with a family man (Nate Herd) struggling to make ends meet.

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