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Prime-Time Flicks

November 05, 1995|Kevin Thomas

The uproarious 1988 comedy Beetlejuice (KCOP Sunday at 6 p.m.) is a dazzling display of director Tim Burton's unique pop-culture sensibility. It's an irresistible treat in which homespun ghosts Alec Baldwin and Geena Davis wreak havoc on the relentlessly upscale new owners of their New England home. With Michael Keaton as a decidedly weird "bio-exorcist" in the title role.

The 1993 Nowhere to Run (ABC Sunday at 9 p.m.) allows Jean-Claude Van Damme to expand his range as an actor while delivering the action goods in a simple but effective story of a man with a past who comes to the aid of a widow (Rosanna Arquette) trying to stave off a developer from gobbling up her ranch.

Twins (KTLA Monday at 8 p.m.) may be the ultimate High Concept movie. It's composed in exclamation points. Arnold Schwarzenegger and Danny DeVito as twins! Separated at birth after a genetic experiment that made Arnold a superman and left Danny a scuzzball! Millions attended this overblown, super-slick, one-gag 1988 comedy.

Francis Coppola brings to the 1992 Bram Stoker's Dracula (KTTV Tuesday at 8 p.m.) the grand operatic style of his "Godfather" movies plus considerable sensuality and an affectionate tongue-in-cheek quality to the vampire tale. With Gary Oldman in the title role, Winona Ryder, Anthony Hopkins and Tom Waits.

Willow (KTLA Thursday at 8 p.m., Saturday at 5 p.m.), a lively 1988 adventure-fantasy written by George Lucas and directed by Ron Howard, finds a little person (Warwick Davis) guiding an abandoned child to its destiny; Val Kilmer, Joanne Whalley and Jean Marsh star.

In the first half of Lethal Weapon (KCOP Thursday at 8 p.m.)--when Mel Gibson and Danny Glover are expertly sketching in their characters--this 1987 buddy-buddy cop thriller works very well. After that, it's as if some anonymous, all-purpose kung fu-L.A. street action unit rolled in and took over the picture.

Percy Adlon's 1988 Bagdad Cafe (KCET Saturday at 9 p.m.) is an adorable comic fable set in a ramshackle motel-restaurant on the edge of the Mojave Desert and featuring a triumphant teaming of of the Rubenesque Marianne Sagebrecht and the formidable C.C.H. Pounder. With Jack Palance, in a fine comic turn.

The Women (KCET at 10:35 p.m.), George Cukor's evergreen 1939 film of the Clare Boothe Luce comedy features an all-star cast headed by an elegant Norma Shearer. Men are what's on these women's minds--but none are ever seen on screen. With Joan Crawford, a scene-stealing Rosalind Russell, Joan Fontaine, Paulette Goddard and Mary Boland.

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