Culture Vulture: our guide to the week’s entertainment

Saturday 13 August 2022

Cup Fever (1965) 10am Talking Pictures

The children of Barton United are trying to win the cup in their local football league. Nasty councillor Mr. Bates doesn’t like them and wants the team his son plays for to win instead so he makes life as difficult as he can for them. However, Barton United is offered help by the local professional team that just happens to be Manchester United with its manager Matt Busby.

The Inn of the Sixth Happiness (1958) 1pm Great Movies Classic

A tenacious British woman becomes a missionary and runs an inn for traveling merchants in China during the Japanese invasion and the tumultuous years leading up to the Second World War.

Three Sisters Re-Wired 1/2 3pm BBC RADIO 4

Three Sisters Rewired is a radical reworking of Chekhov.

This is not a faithful modernisation of the Russian original – it’s a complete overhaul, exploring how, even in the modern world, isolation and stagnation are the daily lot of many women still.

Set in 21st century Yorkshire, Moscow becomes London. On an isolated farm, three sisters – Olivia, Maisie, and Iris – struggle to survive on a financially draining farm, with intermittent internet, and a pervading sense of dislocation from the real world.

The Balmoral: Scotland`s Finest Hotel 5.20pm Channel 5

Documentary looking behind the scenes at the prestigious Edinburgh hotel, following staff members as they cope with various challenges – including the Covid-19 lockdown

Witness: Eichmann in Argentina 7pm BBC RADIO 4

In 1960, the Nazi war criminal, Adolf Eichmann, was abducted in Argentina and smuggled to Israel to face trial. He had been living in Buenos Aires under an assumed name. During his time in Argentina, he had spent hours talking to Willem Sassen a Dutch journalist and Nazi sympathiser. His daughter, Saskia Sassen, remembers. She was just a child at the time, but she vividly recalls her father’s excitement at being able to interview such a high-profile figure. “It was like he had won the lottery,” she says. “He would come home from work and sit down at the kitchen table with a notepad and tape recorder, and Eichmann would just talk and talk.” Sassen Senior was not the only one enthralled by the former SS officer; his daughter recalls that the whole family would sit around the table listening to the endless stream of stories about the war years. Eichmann’s capture and trial caused a sensation around the world, but for Saskia Sassen it was a deeply personal event. She still has the tapes her father made of his conversations with the Nazi war criminal, and she often thinks about what might have happened if he had been caught sooner. “I sometimes wonder if my father would have gone to prison too,” she says. “It’s a disturbing thought.”

Gary Numan Resurrection Sky Arts 9pm

This documentary tells the fascinating story of British Rock Star Gary Numan, 40 years after he last played the Wembley Arena, Gary Numan staged the comeback of a lifetime. Follow Numan on his road back to Wembley and follow his turbulent careers, from the times he felt he had hit rock bottom to the times when he seemed on top of the world.

Sunday 14 August 2022

The Re-Union – Grange Hill 11.15am BBC RADIO 4

The most popular faces from the early days of pioneering children’s drama Grange Hill are reunited. Todd Carty, Susan Tully, and Lee MacDonald take Kirsty Wark back to school.

India 1947 – Partition in Colour 9pm C4

The first part of this two-part documentary uses newly colorized archive footage to reveal the atrocities that occurred around Britain’s withdrawal from India. The contributors include contributors such as Midnight’s Furies author Nisid Hajari, Prof Shruti Kapil, and Prof Priya Satia help to tell the difficult story. The programme examines how Lord Mountbatten–the 1st Viceroy (or Governor General) faced many challenges during his time in office. More than a million people died. What led to that tragedy? How far was Mountbatten culpable?

A very British Way Of Torture Channel 4 10pm

The Mau Mau were a group of Kenyan independence fighters who took up arms against the British colonial authorities. In response, the British government declared a state of emergency and unleashed a campaign of brutal repression against the Mau Mau and their supporters. One of the most notorious aspects of this campaign was the use of so-called “Screening Units” where captured Mau Mau fighters were subjected to interrogations using electric shocks, beatings and mock executions. The documentary includes disturbing footage of these interrogations, as well as testimony from former prisoners who describe the horrific physical and psychological toll that they took. Despite being banned by the British government, the Screening Units continued to operate until 1961, when they were finally shut down following international pressure. Essential viewing for anyone interested in understanding the true nature of colonialism and its legacy or seeking to understand the true nature of the UK State and the interests it represents.

Monday 15 August 2022

Stalin`s Executioners – the Katyn Massacre 8.50pm; PBS America. (also at 10.40am and 4.25pm)

Katyn Memorial

The Katyn forest is an unholy place. For the first time, the story of the Katyn massacre (a series of mass executions of nearly 22,000 Polish military officers and intelligentsia prisoners of war) is seen from both sides: that of the victims and of the perpetrators. It reveals how this crime, attributed to the Nazis for 50 years, was in fact carried out by the Soviet secret police, the NKVD (“People’s Commissariat for Internal Affairs”).

Picture credit: Goku122 at Polish Wikipedia, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Porn King: The Rise and Fall of Ron Jeremy Channel 4 10pm

Ron Jeremy’s career in the adult film industry began in the early 1980s. He quickly established himself as one of the most prolific performers in the business, appearing in over 2,000 films over the course of his career. Jeremy’s on-screen persona was that of the all-American everyman, and his apparent affable nature helped to make him one of the most popular stars in the industry.

Jeremy has been accused of sexual abuse by multiple women. The accusations started surfacing in 2017, and they continue to mount up. Jeremy has denied all the charges, but many people believe that he is a serial abuser. Many of his accusers say that he used his celebrity status to gain power over them. One of the most disturbing things about the accusations is that they span a period of almost 30 years.

Jeremy continues to deny any wrongdoing and insists that he is innocent. He has even said that the women who have accused him are “just trying to get attention.”

He now faces multiple charges of rape and sexual assault. Is Ron Jeremy a sexual predator who has used his fame and power to exploit vulnerable women?

This episode focuses on his rise to fame but rumours are starting to circulate.

Tuesday 16 August 2022

An English Journey 2.30 pm BBC RADIO 4 Extra (1/2). 2/2 Wednesday at the same time

Retracing JB Priestley’s footsteps of 1933, poet Lemn Sissay heads south to begin his odyssey around modern England.

India`s Partition – the Forgotten Story (1/2) 9pm BBC4
Also Wednesday 9pm 2/2

British filmmaker Gurinder Chadha travels from Southall to Delhi to find out about the Partition of India – one of the most seismic events of the 20th century.

Wednesday 17 August 2022

T S Eliot – The Search for Happiness Sky Arts 12 noon

There is a great review at theartsdesk.com here.

Thursday 18 August 2022

Crossing Continents – Moldova 11am BBC RADI0 4

This former Soviet republic faces both east and west – but which way is best for Moldova’s future?

Empire of the Sun (1987) 9pm BBC 4

A young English boy struggles to survive under Japanese occupation of China during World War II.

Friday 19 August 2022

Cromford – cradle of the Industrial Revolution 7pm BBC East Midlands

And on Netflix…

Inside The Mind Of A Cat (available from 18 August 2022)

As I write (PH) one of my cats has decided I should be paying more attention to him than my computer. Perhaps I will gain insight into his behaviour from the experts giving their analysis of our feline companions.

Selections by Henry Falconer and Patrick Harrington

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