HDTV Movie Highlights: March 27-April 2

Pride and Glory: Sky Movies, 8.30m Saturday.

Big Apple cops are rotten to the core in this familiar but fierce thriller that mixes NYPD skulduggery with family loyalties. Edward Norton plays a New York City detective forced to confront corruption close to home when his sibling and brother-in-law are among the cops implicated in a botched drug bust that costs the lives of four officers. What ensues doesn’t depart from genre conventions but is action-packed, atmospheric and dense enough to keep you hooked until the ham-fisted finale. Colin Farrell and Jon Voight co-star. (2008)

Chicago: Sky Movies Greats, 8.30pm Saturday.

Chicago is my kind of musical. A Cabaret-lite that won six Oscars, including best picture, it reduces Moulin Rouge to the sound of muzak with its sizzling, sassy, juiced-up jazz and a ripe plot about fleeting fame and media manipulation that’s more relevant now than it was in the 1920s. The Jazz Age court case about a woman who killed her lover had been filmed twice before Cabaret collaborators Fred Ebb, John Kander and Bob Fosse turned it into a hit Broadway musical 30 years ago. (Fosse was going to make it into a movie with Madonna before his death in 1987.) Like Cabaret, Chicago seamlessly integrates stylised stage numbers into a dramatic storyline and while the music isn’t quite as memorable, the performances and choreography dazzle. Catherine Zeta-Jones, Renee Zellweger, Richard Gere and Queen Latifah star. (2002)

Slumdog Millionaire: Sky Movies, 8.30pm Sunday.

This Oscar top dog – it won eight Academy Awards, including best picture – became a worldwide phenomenon by using another global pop culture sensation, the TV game show, Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?, to ingeniously frame a rousing rags-to-riches fable about three orphans from India’s Mumbai slums. Director Danny Boyle’s best film since 1996’s Trainspotting is even more enthralling in high definition. (2008)

The Punisher: War Zone: Sky Movies, 8.30pm Monday.

Rome’s Ray Stevenson takes over the Thomas Jane (Hung) role of the Marvel comic hero in a sequel that earned its share of punishing reviews but is worth a look for a cast that includes The Wire’s Dominic West, Dexter’s Julie Benz and Seinfeld’s Wayne Knight, as well as the kind of action that saw one sequence nominated for “best fight” in the 2009 World Stunt Awards. (2008)

He’s Just Not That Into You: Sky Movies, 8.30pm Wednesday.

The title’s a mouthful and so’s the movie, a romantic-comedy in which an ensemble cast endlessly analyses the language of the opposite sex. Yet what could have been an insufferable prattle-of-the-sexes gabfest is instead engaging and relevant. Revolving around nine core characters and their relationships, from the fledgling to the failing, it lacks the wit and intellect of vintage Woody Allen, but is fun to watch unfold amid Big Love’s Gennifer Goodwin stealing not only hearts but also every scene from her bigger-name co-stars (including Jennifer Aniston, Jennifer Connelly, Drew Barrymore, Scarlett Johansson and Ben Affleck). (2009)

Revolution: TV3, 2.30am Friday.

Screenwriter/producer Ed Redlich (Without a Trace, Shark) described this two-hour pilot for a TV series that never eventuated as “re-envisioning the American Revolution 200 years in the future”.  The SyFy channel commissioned it in the hope of landing the next Battlestar Galactica, one of whose producers, Michael Rymer, directed Revolution after original choice Simon West (Con Air, Lara Croft: Tomb Raider) opted to executive produce only. Peter Fonda and Bill Campbell (Once and Again, The 4400) head a largely obscure cast. (2009)

The Wedding Planner: Sky Movies Greats, 8.30pm Friday.

Romantic-comedy about a wedding planner (Jennifer Lopez) who falls head over high heels for the white knight (Matthew McConaughey) who rescues her from a runaway dumpster. There’s just one hitch: he’s about to marry her new client. Appealing but too lightweight and lame to lure you for long. (2001)

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