Tudor Love Letters And More With PBS

Thursday, September 17th, 2020

Shining a light on a buried past, Dr Janina Ramirez unlocks the secrets of illuminated manuscripts, and explores the medieval world they reveal in The Private Lives Of Medieval Manuscripts (Tuesday 22nd-Thursday 24th at 6.15pm).

Beginning her journey with the first Anglo-Saxon rulers to create a united England, she discovers books in the British Library’s Royal Manuscripts collection that are over a thousand years old, and reads a wedding gift for a ten-year-old prince. Later, she learns how childhood manuscripts helped Edward III to victory at Crecy, and reveals how a new national identity bloomed during the 100 Years War with France. Finally, she uncovers manuscripts from the Tudor court, including astrological texts and Henry VII’s will, and reads love notes between Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn, found written in the margins of a prayer book.

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The Kardashians Announce Final Season

Wednesday, September 16th, 2020

Kim Kardashian has announced that her family’s long-running E! series Keeping Up With The Kardashians will end with its 20th season in 2021, having made celebrities of the family – most notably Kim, Kourtney and Khloe, as well as Kris, Kendall and Kylie Jenner – and spawned a number of successful spin-offs.

 Kim said “It is with heavy hearts that we’ve made the difficult decision as a family to say goodbye to Keeping Up With The Kardashians. After what will be 14 years, 20 seasons, hundreds of episodes and numerous spin-off shows, we are beyond grateful to all of you who’ve watched us for all of these years – through the good times, the bad times, the tears and the many relationships and children.”

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Matt Helm’s 60th Anniversary On Sony Movies Classic

Wednesday, September 16th, 2020

Secret agent Matt Helm (Dean Martin) is called in to stop a plan to steal over one billion dollars in gold. With the help of the fumbling female agent Freya (Sharon Tate), the two race against time to stop the devious plan of Count Contini (Nigel Green) and his henchmen. The Count is aided by a bevy of women (Nancy Kwan, Tina Louise and Elke Sommer) who attempt to throw the world economy into chaos with the heist.

There’s plenty of comedy, action, murders and martial arts sequences in The Wrecking Crew (Friday 18th, 12.30pm) – with the added bonus that September marks 60 years since the character’s debut in Donald Hamilton’s novel Death Of A Citizen.

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Ramsay Round The World On Nat Geo

Wednesday, September 16th, 2020

Gordon Ramsay dives, fishes, forages and leaps out of helicopters on another all-action adventure in the pursuit of food in Gordon Ramsay: Uncharted (Wednesdays from the 16th at 9pm).

From the big game fills wilds of South Africa; and caiman infested jungles of Guyana, to pristine Tasmania, his culinary journey takes in Louisiana’s Cajun swamps, Norway’s icy fjords, the spice-packed mountains of South India, and the epic Indonesian Island of Sumatra.

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Franco: Spain’s Forgotten Dictator on PBS

Wednesday, August 26th, 2020

Overshadowed in the history books by his contemporaries Hitler and Mussolini, General Francisco Franco ruled Spain for four decades after seizing power in the country’s savage civil war.

Appointing himself ‘Caudillo de España’ – Supreme Leader of Spain – Franco implemented brutally repressive policies. Although ostensibly neutral during the Second World War, his sympathies lay with the fascists. Post-war, the allies considered him an enemy of democracy, and Spain became isolated – yet somehow he managed to remain in office.

This five-part series The Truth About Franco: Spain’s Forgotten Dictatorship (Monday 31 August to Thursday 3 September at 8.40pm) sheds new light on Franco’s years in power, from his emergence onto the world stage in 1939 to the state of Spain on his death in 1975, and examines the legacy of a dictator.

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Journey To Tibet With Smithsonian

Wednesday, August 26th, 2020

With state-of-the-art technology, unprecedented access and two years of filming, Into Wild Tibet (Wednesday 2 September 8pm) on Smithsonian reveals the astonishing wildlife that survives in one of the harshest environments on the planet, where the air is thin, the terrain unforgiving and the weather punishing.

At an average elevation of 15,000 feet, the Tibetan Plateau is known as ‘the roof of the world’. In this area of Qinghai, rarely glimpsed by the outside world, animals are elusive and filming conditions are extreme. Here, a pack of rare Tibetan wolves struggles to raise new pups, terrorising the herds of blue sheep that cling precariously to the peaks, where snow leopards also lie in ambush. In spring, the epic chiru antelope migration advances across the vast plateau as 30,000 females converge to give birth. Summer brings dramatic monsoons but, at three miles high, the torrential rain has a sting in its tail, falling as ice, which pummels the newborn calves. Executive Producer Karen Bass isa multi-Emmy award winning filmmaker who worked for more than 20 years with the BBC Natural History Unit. Working with her is an extraordinary cadre of multi-Emmy and Bafta award winning British cameramen: John Brown (Dynasties; Seven Worlds: One Planet), Rod Clarke (Blue Planet 2; Planet Earth 2; Hidden Kingdoms) and Mark MacEwenn (Dynasties 2; Planet Earth 2).

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Harry Palmer’s Back On Sony Movies Action

Wednesday, August 26th, 2020

Michael Caine stars for the fifth and final time as British secret
agent Harry Palmer in Midnight In St Petersburg (5.30 pm Friday 4th September) on Sony Movies Action.


Former British secret agent Palmer now runs a private
investigation company in Russia. He gets a job to find and
retrieve a consignment of stolen Plutonium, and with the help
of colleague Nikolai Petrov, played by Jason Connery, he sets
off to St. Petersburg. Along the way he must deal with the
violent Russian Mafia, and also find Nikolai’s girlfriend Tatiana
who has been kidnapped.

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Birthday Boy Steve Martin On Sony Movies Classic

Friday, August 21st, 2020

Steve Martin, who recently celebrated his 75th birthday, is a modern-day Cyrano De Bergerac in riotous romantic comedy Roxanne (Friday 21st, 9pm). This ‘80s remaking of Edmond Rostand’s classic Cyrano de Bergerac story sees Martin as C.D. Bates, the quick-witted fire chief of a Washington State resort town. Bates’ most trusted fireman is the handsome but tongue-tied Chris McConnell.

When both men fall in love with the beautiful Roxanne (Daryl Hannah), Bates is convinced that he’ll never win Roxanne’s heart. So, in the self-sacrificing tradition of Cyrano de Bergerac, Bates woos Roxanne vicariously by lending his voice and poetry to his rival

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Sleeping With PBS

Friday, August 21st, 2020

We spend nearly a third of our lives asleep – a need we share with virtually every other animal on the planet. But what is sleep? And why is it so essential to our survival? Documentary Mysteries Of Sleep (Monday 24th  August, 8.05pm) attempts to uncover the functions of sleep, and what exactly happens when we aren’t awake.

From regulating our emotions to helping toddlers learn new words, sleep plays a powerful role in our lives. And there is evidence that interrupted sleep can be just as harmful as no sleep at all. As scientists uncover the powerful role sleep plays in our lives, one thing is certain: it’s a biological function that is as crucial to our survival as it is complex.

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Gabon’s Gorillas On Smithsonian

Friday, August 21st, 2020

We know the mountain gorillas of Rwanda, made famous by Dian Fossey and the film ‘Gorillas in the Mist’, but their western lowland gorilla cousins of central Africa have shied from human contact. In recent years Ebola has wiped out a third of these gorillas, making them even more elusive. Now the survival of the rainforest might rest on their shoulders. Gabon is home to probably the highest density of great apes in Africa. A team from Smithsonian’s Gabon Biodiversity Program, working with the Gabon government, is attempting to habituate the gorillas as the linchpin of a nascent ecotourism industry, as seen in Gorillas Of Gabon (Wednesday 26th August, 8pm)

Spearheading the effort is Matamba Kombila, who left Gabon aged 19 to pursue fashion and filmmaking in New York. But earning the trust of a silverback is a gruelling task that can take five years of daily contact. And first, you have to find one. Lead Smithsonian scientist Angelique Todd, who pioneered this process in Central African Republic, brings in legendary Bayaka trackers to hunt for the great apes—a seemingly impossible task in the dense jungle despite their impressive size. She and her team target a silverback named Mussiru — ’the forest’. As they gain his confidence they hope to discover more about his species, offering a rare glimpse of the jungle life of one of the biggest, most powerful and most susceptible creatures on our planet.

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Amy Adams, Jake Gyllenhaal Make Freeview Premiere On Sony Movies

Friday, August 21st, 2020

From writer/director Tom Ford comes a haunting psychological thriller starring Amy Adams, Jake Gyllenhaal and Michael Shannon.

Nocturnal Animals (Friday 21st, 10pm) is a film of gripping tension which sees an art gallery owner haunted by her ex-husband’s novel, a violent thriller she interprets as a veiled threat and a symbolic revenge tale. A stunning thriller which scored several Oscar and BAFTA nominations.

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Smithsonian Revisits The Tudor Court

Thursday, August 13th, 2020

Hosted by Tracy Borman, Chief Curator for Historic Royal Palaces, Henry VIII And The King’s Men (Mondays from the 17th at 8pm) portrays England’s most famous King as more than the one-dimensional, slightly boorish monarch we’ve heard of. To understand him you have to understand the men who made him. This is a portrait of the men who knew him best: the instigators, the enablers, the fools, the teachers and the men at arms. The series is based on Tracy’s book ‘Henry VIII and the Men Who Made Him’.

Henry was taught by some of the most famous scholars of his time, and developed a reflective and intelligent manner we seldom hear about. Raised to be a great prince, he enjoyed being the centre of attention, but as the second-born had none of the pressure of his older brother. He could enjoy court life and the companionship of men, revelled in jousts, and loved hunting. Even after he became crown prince, he maintained a careless joie de vivre. He could also be naïve and was often too trusting of those around him. And despite some lascivious portrayals of him, he could often be a prude

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PBS Focuses On Fat

Thursday, August 13th, 2020

Fat has long been demonised as a problem and a warning sign, indicative of a variety of health issues and even undesirable character traits. Yet, as this documentary explains, there is actually far more to fat than meets the eye. Scientists are at last gaining a truer understanding of its complex functions, and its key role in controlling hunger, hormones and even reproduction.

Drawing upon true-life tales of hunter-gatherers, sumo wrestlers and supermodels, The Truth About Fat (Friday 14th, 7.20pm) examines the biological processes that underpin fat distribution, and weighs up the benefits of fat as well as the hazards. It looks at how and why evolution has hardwired humans to accumulate fat, and points out the perils of eliminating it entirely.

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Streisand On Sony Movies Classic

Thursday, August 13th, 2020

Winning her first Academy Award, Barbra Streisand portrays the life of famed comedienne, singer and all-round entertainer, Fanny Brice in Funny Girl (Tuesday 18th, 9pm). Using whatever means she can to break into the business, we follow her from the New York City Vaudeville stage all the way to stardom on Broadway.

When Fanny’s talents eventually come to the attention of impresario Florenz Ziegfeld Jr., Fanny becomes one of the Ziegfeld Follies most popular acts, despite her maverick performance style. In her personal life, Fanny’s relationship with her suave, imprisoned businessman husband, Nick Arnstein, is equally as drama-filled.

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Sony Movies Classics’ Monday Misfits

Wednesday, August 5th, 2020

Penned by Arthur Miller, directed by John Huston and starring Clark Gable, Marilyn Monroe and Montgomery Clift, The Misfits (Monday 10th, 9pm) turned out to be the last completed film for both Gable and Monroe.

While filing for a divorce, beautiful ex-stripper Roslyn Taber (Monroe) ends up meeting aging cowboy-turned-gambler Gay Langland (Gable) and former World War II aviator Guido Racanelli (Eli Wallach). The two men instantly become infatuated with Roslyn and, on a whim, the three decide to move into Guido’s half-finished desert home together. When grizzled ex-rodeo rider Perce Howland (Clift) arrives, the unlikely foursome start-up a business capturing wild horses.

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PBS Sails The Mediaeval Seas

Wednesday, August 5th, 2020

In 2002 a discovery was made in Wales that would change the way we view medieval nautical history forever. In the city of Newport, on the bank of the River Usk, a ship dating from the mid-fifteenth century was uncovered during the development of a riverside arts centre. The Mysteries Of The Mediaeval Ship (Monday 10th August, 9.55pm) has the whole story.

Originally 35 metres long and 8 metres wide, it is the most complete ship of its type and period ever found. Archaeological evidence estimates it sailed between 1449 and 1469, during which time it would have operated in a world of piracy on the high seas and civil war at home. Uncover the mysteries of this remarkable ship as archaeologists excavate, raise and attempt to preserve the invaluable information within this important discovery.

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Smithsonian’s War In The Pacific

Wednesday, August 5th, 2020

In Britain, there is exultation and relief on VE-Day in Europe in May 1945. But in the Pacific, American troops on Okinawa are in the midst of one of the bloodiest battles of the entire war. It will be exactly 100 more days to VJ-Day, and it will include some of the most tumultuous and significant days of the 20th century. Two characters dominate the storytelling. One is American Marine Harold Clay, fighting on Okinawa and prepping to invade Japan. The other is Japanese Admiral Matome Ugaki, in charge of a group of Kamikaze pilots. The rules of war are in tatters as both sides use brutal tactics to kill as many of their opponents as possible. Kamikazes plough into American ships, and American firebombs incinerate Japanese cities.

Race To Victory: WWII Pacific (Monday 10th August, 8pm) uses a countdown-as-it-happened narrative and remarkable colour footage to reveal both iconic and intimate moments of the climax of the Pacific War. Nearly everyone thinks the end will be the two-million-man invasion of Japan itself. Planners estimate the fighting could rage into 1947. But a handful of scientists are testing a brand new superweapon. President Truman makes the ultimate decision, and a new horror is unleashed upon the world. Japan’s emperor finally capitulates. Harold Clay is spared the invasion and possibly his life, but Admiral Ugaki chooses to become the last Kamikaze of the war. These are the moments that illustrate some of the most radical days of the century, which sparked destruction such as the globe has never witnessed. When the end finally comes, the world is at peace – and profoundly different.

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Tom Hiddleston Goes Country On Sony Movies

Wednesday, August 5th, 2020

Tom Hiddleston is country music legend Hank Williams in I Saw the Light, making its channel premiere at 9pm on Tuesday, August 11th on Sony Movies. Elizabeth Olsen also stars.

Charting his life and rise to fame, as well as his turbulent marriage to Audrey Sheppard due to alcoholism and infidelity, I Saw the Light is a gripping biopic of an iconic musician and cultural figure. To prepare for his role in the film, Hiddleston practiced with country singer Rodney Crowell, in order to effectively recreate Williams’ southern accent

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Sony Movies Meets The American

Thursday, July 30th, 2020

When an assignment in Sweden ends badly, master assassin Jack (George Clooney) retreats to the Italian countryside to lay low for a while. But when he becomes friends with a local priest and pursues a romance with a beautiful woman, Jack may be making a fatal mistake by stepping out of the shadows.

The American (Sunday 2nd August, 9pm) is a stylish suspense thriller directed by Anton Corbijn – who brings the same inimitable eye which made his photo shoots and videos for the likes of Depeche Mode and Joy Division so memorable.

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PBS Salutes The Bomber Boys

Thursday, July 30th, 2020

The Lancaster Bomber was the backbone of the Allied war effort, carrying the largest payload of any bomber in World War II. The main aircraft for night bombing campaigns, it first saw service with RAF Bomber Command in 1942. But what was it like to crew such a terrifying military machine in battle?

Using first-person interviews, CGI and never-before-seen WWII footage, Bomber Boys: The Fighting Lancaster (Monday 3rd-Thursday 6th August, 9.55pm) goes inside the minds of the brave young men who flew it, as a new generation – aged between 17 and 26, and all descendants of WWII veterans – undergo training to become Lancaster aircrew. As the veterans and new ‘Bomber Boys’ meet and share their experiences, a deeper understanding develops, helping to build a bridge between the generations.

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Smithsonian’s Shark Stories

Thursday, July 30th, 2020

Humankind has tamed almost our entire planet, but there are some remote outposts where the wild still rules. One such place is Ascension Island, halfway between West Africa and Brazil. This British territory is the tip of an underwater volcano, and is one of the most isolated ecosystems on the planet. But the island has been shaken and economically damaged by shark attacks – including an attack on Frankie Gonsalves, a British woman who was snorkeling. The resident Galapagos sharks, as well as tiger sharks, hammerheads, even great whites, lured here every year by the bountiful reefs, are displaying aggressive behaviour.

Shark Ganglands (Wednesday 5th August, 8pm) dives into the mystery behind the altered behaviour of these hungry predators, and points a finger at wealthy sports fishermen and trophy hunters. Shark Ganglands also explores whether efforts to bring this delicate ecosystem back into balance can work.

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Shampoo With Sony Movies Classic

Thursday, July 30th, 2020

Shampoo (Saturday 1st August, 10.30pm) is a sharp social satire about a male hairdresser who does more than just hair! Actor Warren Beatty lampoons his own womanising ways in this classic comedy as the handsome hair stylist who serves the upper class set of Beverly Hills during the 1968 Presidential election day.

Directed by Hal Ashby, there’s a host of stars including Julie Christie, Goldie Hawn, Lee Grant, and Carrie Fisher in her film debut.

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Smithsonian Shadows Sharks

Thursday, July 23rd, 2020

Jacques Cousteau called the oceanic white-tip shark “the most dangerous of all sharks”, and until recently it was the most numerous large predator on the planet. In two infamous cases during WWII, the troop ship Nova Scotia and the USS Indianapolis, at least 1,000 sailors perished in the jaws of the oceanic white-tip. Survivors painted a picture of a terrible killer that was particularly skillful in hunting at the ocean surface.

But today these animals are on the brink of extinction. How this happened is a natural history detective drama. Surprisingly, we know very little about this shark. Professor Yannis Papastamatiou, who grew up in London, and studied at Southampton University, is using state-of-the-art tracking and recording technology to study them closely. In World’s Most Dangerous Shark (Wednesday 29th, 8pm) he sets out on a quest to uncover the secrets of this rarely seen shark, revealing unique hunting behaviour never before captured on camera.

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Secrets Of The Zoo On Wild UK

Thursday, July 23rd, 2020

On the tail end of the month Nat Geo Wild goes back to The Colombus Zoo & Aquarium for some more Secrets Of The Zoo (From Tuesday 28th, 8pm). The show gives unprecedented behind-the-scenes access to one of America’s largest and most popular zoos, with 2,000 employees, 10,000 animals, 6,000 veterinary cases and more than 100 animal births each year.

Secrets Of The Zoo tells the dramatic, heart-warming and often hilarious stories of the wildlife, and wild people, that it takes to create a loving and healthy landscape for animals and animal lovers alike.

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PBS Tells The Story Of A Familiar Photo

Thursday, July 23rd, 2020

It’s an iconic photo: eleven men sit on a steel beam high above Manhattan, relaxed and enjoying a meal in the most unlikely of settings. But what is the story behind the world-famous ‘Lunch Atop a Skyscraper’? Director Seán Ó Cualáin investigates in fact-finding documentary Men At Lunch (Wednesday 29th, 9pm), narrated by Fionnula Flanagan. Who were the men in the photograph, and how did the picture come to be taken?

Discover Manhattan during the Depression, and the role of Irish immigrants in constructing the city’s famous skyline. Journey to the top of the Rockefeller Center with archival footage and photographs, first-person interviews with experts and relatives, and the photographers who captured this formative era in New York’s history.

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Face/Off With Sony Movies

Thursday, July 23rd, 2020

In classic actioner Face/Off (Saturday 25th, 9pm) directed by John Woo, FBI Special Agent Sean Archer (John Travolta) tries to find a biological weapon placed in Los Angeles by a sadistic terrorist-for-hire and criminal mastermind named Castor Troy (Nicolas Cage).

Archer has hunted Troy for the last 8 years and is consumed by revenge because Troy is responsible for the death of Archer’s son. To accomplish this, Archer must ‘borrow’ Troy’s face using a surgical procedure to go undercover as Troy, but things go wrong when Troy also assumes the identity of Archer.

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Sony Movies’ Summer of Sam

Thursday, July 16th, 2020

It didn’t get any hotter than the summer of ‘77 in New York City. As temperatures soared it made everybody a little tense and crazy. Looters took hold of the streets, and as a blackout plunged the city into darkness a mysterious killer began stalking and gunning down strangers in the night. Dubbed ‘Son of Sam’ by the tabloids, the killer terrorised the whole city.

Filmmaker Spike Lee sets his story Summer Of Sam (Saturday 18th, 9pm) in the heart of the boiling Bronx during this unbelievable summer, and John Leguizamo, Adrien Brody, Mira Sorvino and Jennifer Esposito star.

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Need For Speed On SYFY

Thursday, July 16th, 2020

Fresh out of prison, a street racer enters a competition and plots revenge on the associate who framed him in action-packed game adaptation Need For Speed (Sunday 19th, 9pm), in which classic cars engage in white-knuckle races along some of America’s most stunning roads, climaxing with a showdown on the Pacific Highway. 

Breaking Bad’s Aaron Paul stars, alongside Dominic Cooper, Imogen Poots, Rami Malek and Michael Keaton.

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Into Space With PBS

Thursday, July 16th, 2020

Since the beginning of time, human beings have stared at the stars, wondering at the universe and puzzling at our place in it. Today, science may have placed the answers to these age-old questions within our grasp. New planets are now being discovered on a regular basis, and with each of these new finds, scientists are being forced to rewrite the history of our own solar system.

Secrets Of The Solar System (Monday 20th, 7.10pm) reveals that far from being a simple story of stable orbits, the creation of our solar system is a miraculous tale of hellfire, chaos and planetary pinball. It seems that we shouldn’t really be here. Yet somehow, against astronomical odds, the Earth nevertheless exists.

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Nat Geo On The Roof Of The World

Thursday, July 16th, 2020

On June 8th, 1924, the British explorers George Mallory and Andrew Irvine disappeared high on Mount Everest, just 800 vertical feet from the summit. Irvine is believed to have carried a camera that final day. The film inside it could rewrite history.

Now, a team of elite climbers have new intel on the location of Irvine’s body, and a chance to solve Everest’s greatest mystery. Find out more in Lost On Everest (Sunday 19th, 9pm).

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Sony Movies Classic Goes Stir Crazy

Thursday, July 16th, 2020

After being imprisoned for a bank robbery they didn’t commit, unemployed film writer Skip Donahue (Gene Wilder) and actor Harry Monroe (Richard Pryor) rack their brains to figure out an escape plan. Fortuitously, one of them discovers an unexpected talent as a rodeo rider, and an escape plan begins to take shape at the annual prisoners’ rodeo.

Stir Crazy (Thursday 16th, 9pm) reunited Wilder and Pryor who had appeared previously in the 1976 comedy thriller film Silver Streak.

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Nat Geo Reaches For The Stars

Thursday, July 9th, 2020

In this four-part documentary series Reach For The Stars (Friday 10th, 9pm), National Geographic shows the journey of the Mohammed bin Rashid Space Centre (MBRSC) to date. This includes delving into the motivations behind their satellite launches and the inception of their mammoth Mars ambitions.

The series will combine multiple story threads, from education on astrophysics, space science technologies and engineering, to training and development of the current team (and the teams of the future), global-scale knowledge transference, and an in-depth look at the outcome and implications of the missions.

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Ken Burns’ Civil War On PBS

Thursday, July 9th, 2020

It was the bloody war that changed America. Between 1861 and 1865, brother fought brother as a bitter dispute over Union and State’s Rights exploded into violent conflict. By the time it was over, 620,000 soldiers had lost their lives.

Employing archive photographs, paintings and newspaper images, award-winning documentary maker Ken Burns brings this terrible period in American history to life. Actors read contemporary quotes from historical figures, breathing new life into the words of Stonewall Jackson, Abraham Lincoln, and the ordinary soldiers and their loved ones caught up in the fighting. First shown in 1990, and with over 40 major awards to its name, The Civil War (Monday 13th, 7.45pm) remains as compelling and as relevant today as it ever was.

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Sony Movies Classic Marries A Millionaire

Thursday, July 9th, 2020

In How To Marry A Millionaire (Friday 10th at 9pm) , three fashion models use a Manhattan penthouse apartment as their HQ in their mission to meet wealthy men.

This ensemble comedy is powered by three of the mid-twentieth century’s biggest stars: Marilyn Monroe, Betty Grable and Lauren Bacall.

The three women, who are tired of cheap men and a lack of money, intend to use all their talents to trap and marry three eligible millionaires, but inadvertently end up finding true love into the bargain.

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Smithsonian Meets The Royals

Thursday, July 9th, 2020

The three-part series Private Lives Of The Windsors (starting Monday 13th at 8pm) reveals inner secrets and startling stories behind three pivotal figures in the Royal Family: Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother, Princess Margaret, and Lord Mountbatten. The first episode looks at Lord Mountbatten, who became a World War II hero, whisperer to two kings, and ultimately the last Viceroy of India, who oversaw the partition of India and Pakistan in 1947. Much of his and his family’s life was captured on film, including home movies of him with famous figures ranging from Charlie Chaplin to Jahawahal Nehru – some of them never broadcast before.

Paired with interviews that Mountbatten gave on camera, personal letters, and military archive, Private Lives Of The Windsors paints a portrait of his unusual relationship with a philandering wife, his mentorship of Prince Charles, and his friendship with Winston Churchill. Lord Louis Mountbatten was a man whose life spanned the end of empire. It would end in an IRA bomb blast in a boat off the coast of Ireland in August 1979.

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SYFY’s Bad Boys

Thursday, July 2nd, 2020

It’s one of the definitive action films of the noughties, not just in its own right but for its influence on Edgar Wright’s affectionate rural pastiche Hot Fuzz. Yes, it’s Bad Boys II (Sunday 5th, 9pm)! When detectives Burnett and Lowrey investigate potent new drugs flooding Miami, they end up in the fight of their lives.

Michael Bay’s love of outlandish action has never been displayed to better effect, and Will Smith and Martin Lawrence’s rapport would have sufficed to carry even a far quieter film. Gabrielle Union, Peter Stormare, Theresa Randle and Joe Pantoliano also feature.

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Nat Geo Asks Where Our Food Comes From

Thursday, July 2nd, 2020

Behind each bag of chips, can of beer, bar of chocolate, and loaf of bread is a mega-industrial production line that brings that product to the masses. Food Factory (Thursday 2nd July, 8pm) is a mesmerising behind-the-scenes peek into the weird and wonderful processes that produce everyone’s favourite foods.

From fresh ingredients to finished products, Food Factory reveals in awe-inspiring detail just how mass-produced favourites are really made. Put on a hard hat and get ready to meet the food! In the first episode, discover just how much cream it takes to make premium toffee, and what the connection is between ice rocket lollipops and Canadian birch trees.

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An Affair To Remember On Sony Movies Classic

Thursday, July 2nd, 2020

A shipboard romance blooms between a handsome playboy and a nightclub singer who are both on their way to meet their lovers in this timeless classic starring Cary Grant and Deborah Kerr, An Affair To Remember, showing on Saturday 4th at 9pm.

Although each is engaged to someone else, Nickie (Grant) and Terry (Kerr) meet aboard an ocean liner and fall deeply in love. They agree to rendezvous six months later at the top of the Empire State Building, but tragedy strikes and the lovers’ future takes an emotional and uncertain turn.

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Stories From Beyond The Grave In The Smithsonian Vaults

Thursday, July 2nd, 2020

The Smithsonian Institution is the world’s largest museum and research complex, with 19 different museums, 9 research centres, and even a research centre on an island in Panama. But like the British Museum and museums all over the world, it is bursting at the seams and can’t display all its collection. In the Smithsonian’s case it has an estimated 156 million artefacts, works of art and specimens. So, what’s hiding behind the scenes?

Canadian comedian and actor Tom Cavanagh (‘The Flash’, Golden Globe nominee for ‘Ed’) gives an offbeat tour of the Smithsonian’s labyrinthine vaults and cutting-edge labs, revealing some of the amazing artefacts and treasures that visitors seldom see in Stories From The Vaults. From visiting the National Zoo and the National Air and Space Museum, to the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery, Tom explores the stories behind some amazing and surprising artefacts – and, in ‘Life After Death’ (Thursday 2nd, 8.30pm), looks at items relating to the afterlife.

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PBS In The Dust Bowl With Ken Burns

Thursday, July 2nd, 2020

Acclaimed documentary maker Ken Burns chronicles the worst man-made ecological disaster in American history, in which the wheat boom of the ‘great plow-up’, followed by a decade-long drought during the 1930s, turned parts of eight plains states into a wasteland, and nearly destroyed America’s breadbasket.

Featuring compelling interviews with twenty-six survivors of those terrible times, dramatic photographs and seldom seen film footage, The Dust Bowl (Monday 6th to Thursday 9th, 7.30pm) brings to life stories of incredible human suffering and equally incredible human perseverance. Less than a century since America’s heartland bore witness to barely-imaginable destruction, this powerful documentary highlights our relationship to the land that sustains us, and begs the question: could the same disaster occur all over again?

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Beneath The Waves On Sony Movies Classic

Tuesday, June 23rd, 2020

Das Boot (Tuesday 23rd, 9pm) is set in 1942, during World War II, and follows German U-boat U-96 and its crew, as they set out on a hazardous patrol in the Battle of the Atlantic, bent on harassing and destroying British shipping.

German U-boats have begun to take heavy losses and the film examines how these submariners maintained their professionalism and attempted to accomplish impossible missions, all the while attempting to understand and obey the ideology of the government under which they served. It depicts both the excitement of battle and the monotony of a failed hunt for the enemy. Wolfgang Petersen directs, with actors including Jürgen Prochnow, Herbert Grönemeyer, and Klaus Wennemann.

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PBS Meets The Quakers

Tuesday, June 23rd, 2020

Playing an influential role in the religious, social and political life of America, Quakers have been prominent in anti-slavery, civil rights and women’s rights movements, and have also been strong advocates for world peace.

America’s long list of Quaker activists includes William Penn, Alice Paul and Susan B. Anthony, among many others. Despite the significance of their social role, members of this denomination have largely remained out of the spotlight – although two presidents, Herbert Hoover and Richard Nixon, came from quaker backgrounds. Quakers: The Quiet Revolutionaries (Thursday 25th, 8.30pm) charts the rich history of Quakerism, from its founding in 17th century England as the Religious Society of Friends, to its spread to America and beyond, and examines its past, present and future.

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Arnie Back On SYFY

Tuesday, June 9th, 2020

1993’s underrated The Last Action Hero (Saturday 13th, 10pm) sees Arnold Schwarzenegger sending up his own screen persona as Jack Slater, a fictional all-action cop whose films are the favourite escape of young Danny Madigan (Austin O’Brien). Danny thinks it’s a dream come true when a magical cinema ticket takes him inside the latest Jack Slater film – a hilarious world stuffed with clever nods to all the most ridiculous aspects of the era’s blockbusters.

But the portal works both ways, and soon the sinister assassin Benedict (Charles Dance) has escaped into the real world, where violence has real consequences. Can Danny and Jack save the world when that’s a world without Slater’s usual narrative invulnerability? As well as Slater, Arnie also gets to play himself as the actor who plays Slater in what’s probably the most successful of his occasional forays into comedy.

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PBS Does WWI

Tuesday, June 9th, 2020

From 1914-18 the first World War raged. Brutal and bloody, many millions fought and died before Germany surrendered.  Drawing on the first-hand testimonies, interviews, letters and audio recordings of the soldiers themselves, three-part scripted drama series Our World War (Monday 15th to Wednesday 17th. 9.40pm) reveals with eye-witness immediacy their often hidden and disturbing front-line experiences throughout the duration of the war.

From the riflemen and machine gunners of the 4th Battalion The Royal Fusiliers, to the young volunteers fighting alongside workmates and friends in a pals regiment, and a tank commander and crew fighting their way across enemy territory, Our World War captures the terrible reality of combat, bringing the conflict to vivid life and capturing history as seen through the soldiers’ eyes.

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Two Goslings On Sony Movies

Tuesday, June 9th, 2020

On Tuesday 16th, Sony Movies brings you a Ryan Gosling double-bill, with the award-winning Drive (9pm), followed by gritty crime drama Only God Forgives (11.05). The Driver (Gosling) is a skilled Hollywood stuntman who moonlights as a getaway driver for criminals. Though he projects an icy exterior, lately he’s been warming up to a pretty neighbour named Irene (Carey Mulligan) and her young son, Benicio. When Irene’s husband gets out of jail, he enlists Driver’s help in a million-dollar heist. The job goes horribly wrong, and Driver must risk his life to protect Irene and Benicio from the vengeful masterminds behind the robbery.

In Only God Forgives, Julian (Gosling) is a respected member of the Thai criminal underworld, having set up a boxing club which acts as a front for a drugs operation. When Julian’s brother Billy murders an underage prostitute, the police call on retired cop Chang – the Angel of Vengeance. Chang allows the father to kill his daughter’s murderer, but everyone is in danger when Julian and Billy’s mother turns up to find out what happened to her son. Also starring Kristin Scott Thomas.

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Meet Mr Tornado On PBS

Friday, June 5th, 2020

Twister. Whirlwind. Cyclone. Tornadoes can be known by many names, but they all have one thing in common – they can be deadly. The Super Outbreak of 1974 was the most intense tornado outbreak on record, as 148 tornadoes from Ontario to Alabama damaged thousands of homes, killing more than 300.

Meteorologist Tetsuya Theodore ‘Ted’ Fujita spent ten months studying the aftermath. Extensive aerial tornado study, detailed mapping and leaps of scientific imagination led to a series of meteorological breakthroughs, and revealed such phenomena as ‘microbursts’, sudden high wind patterns that could cause airplanes to drop from the sky without warning. Mr Tornado (June 9th, 8.25pm) on PBS  is the story of the man whose groundbreaking work saved thousands of lives, helping to protect us all from dangerous weather phenomena.

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Sony Movies Gets Groovy With Austin Powers

Friday, June 5th, 2020

Austin Powers, a 1960s secret agent who had been cryogenically frozen, is brought out of his cryofreeze and into the 1990s in Austin Powers: International Man Of Mystery (June 9th, 9pm) on Sony Movies.

His greatest enemy Dr. Evil, who had also been cryogenically frozen, wakes up in Nevada and steals a nuclear weapon. After realising he’s now living in the ’90s, Dr Evil holds the world hostage for 100 billion dollars. Austin Powers joins up with Vanessa Kensington, his ex-partner’s daughter, and goes to Vegas to look for Evil, stop his plan and save the world.

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Smithsonian Investigates The End Of Mammoths

Friday, June 5th, 2020

In Mystery Of The Ice Age Giants (June 10th, 8pm), world-famous mammoth expert Dick Mol traces the extraordinary history of woolly mammoths from their origins in southern Africa to their extinction 3,700 years ago. Mammoths expanded their territory over the millennia and theirs is a story of one of nature’s greatest adaptations from tropical warmth to extreme cold. But as they specialised in surviving the ice ages, they limited their chances of survival in the greenhouse conditions of a changing climate.

Professor Mol traces this path of evolution and extinction, from the Namibian desert, to the Canadian permafrost, to the ancient steppe of what is today the bottom of the North Sea. Did humans cause a mass extinction, or did these giants fall victim to the rise in temperature? It appears that climate change and the arrival of mankind might have been the deadly combination for the giants, who were not able to adapt to the changing environment in time.

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Triple Peter Sellers On Sony Movies Classic

Thursday, May 28th, 2020

Peter Sellers stars in three roles in The Mouse That Roared, (Saturday 31st, 1.05pm) a hilarious war satire about the Duchy of Grand Fenwick, who inadvertently stumble across a weapon that could destroy the Earth. The scheming Prime Minister (Sellers), plots with the Grand Duchess (Sellers), to declare war on the USA, lose the war and get that foreign aid.

Unfortunately, they forget to tell Tully Bascombe, commander of their medieval army (Sellers again). Through a series of unbelievable circumstances, this man does his best and wins the war, much to the Duchy’s dismay. Roles not taken by Sellers include appearances for Jean Seberg and William Hartnell.

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