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Prime-Time Flicks

February 11, 1996|Kevin Thomas

Ghostbusters II (KCOP Sunday at 6 p.m.) means that it's slimebusting time again, and The Boys (Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, Harold Ramis) plus Sigourney Weaver are back in ferocious form. One-line zingers ricochet around like ectoplasmic ghoulies, contained in a production that builds to a grand finale even funnier than the guys' classic duel with the giant Marshmallow Man. Over on the hardware side, this 1989 release finds the Industrial Light & Magic crew succeeding totally.

With the 1990 Dances With Wolves (KTLA Monday at 8 p.m., concluding Tuesday at 8 p.m.), Kevin Costner made a clear-eyed vision of the South Dakota frontier that is irresistible. The story of a Union officer (Costner) who becomes assimilated within a tribe of Sioux, it has all the elements of an epic. Because it is more concerned with character than spectacle, its epic quality becomes engaging, never self-congratulatory. Beautiful, memorable and full of humor.

Cliffhanger (KTTV Tuesday at 8 p.m.) reveals that Renny Harlin ("Die Hard 2") certainly knows how to direct action. However, to appreciate the exciting stunts that Sylvester Stallone & Co. pull off, you have to endure beatings sadistic enough to unnerve the old Marquis and the kind of story and dialogue that would look undernourished in a comic book. Very slickly done, but not even John Lithgow or Janine Turner can give it any dramatic heft.

In the hilarious yet poignant 1982 Tootsie (KCOP Friday at 8 p.m.), a starving New York actor (Dustin Hoffman) disguises himself in drag and captures America's heart as a sort of latter-day "Mary Worth." Predictably, incredible amounts of sexual and psychological confusion are generated by his ruse. Director Sydney Pollack and Hoffman, Jessica Lange, Charles Durning, Teri Garr and Bill Murray, keep it trim, funny and provocative.

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