Stay-At-Home Seven: September 14 to 20

This week's selection of films to catch on TV and streaming services

by Amber Wilkinson

Casablanca
Casablanca
Welcome to this week's Stay-At-Home Seven. If you're looking for more inspiration, you can read last week's here or hop aboard our Streaming Spotlight on trains.

Casablanca, BBC Four, 8pm, Thursday, September 17 and on BBC iPlayer

Infinitely quotable and featuring Ingrid Bergman and Humphrey Bogart at the top of their game, there's little wonder Michael Curtiz's film about impossible choices and a reunion between old lovers regularly makes it into lists of favourites. The secondary players are all from the top drawer, too, with Claude Rains, Paul Henreid, Sydney Greenstreet and Peter Lorre all puting in memorable performances. It's the heart of the matter that really makes the film tick, however, and scenes between Bergman and Bogart as economical as well as emotionally rich. Plus, of course, there's the song, As Time Goes By, which gains resonance the more you think about it. Read our full review.

The Red Shoes, BBC iPlayer

When people talk about the duo Emeric Pressberger and Michael Powelll, they really should cite a trio that includes Jack Cardiff - because the cinematographer contributed every bit as much to their most memorable films, including this one about an obsessive dancer. Those red shoes take centre stage in a colourscape of more muted tones and the use of montage still feels exhilarating today, while its key ballet sequence transports us from the realm of the real to the psychological. Moira Shearer and Anton Walbrook - as headstrong ballerina and demanding impresario - spark off one another with a heat to match those shoes. Those interested in the shooting of the film, could do a lot worse than seek out documentary Cameraman: The Life And Work Of Jack Cardiff to hear the man himself talk about his work. Read our full review of The Red Shoes.

Bait, 11.20pm, Film4, Thursday, September 17

The Red Shoes shows what can be achieved in glorious three-strip technicolor, and this more recent British film debut from Mark Jenkin displays ingenuity of a different hue, showing what can be achieved in black and white with a Bolex cine-camera and hand-processed 16mm film. The resulting look has a hypnotic quality that lures you in to its tale of family tensions and class friction, fuelled by the influx of out-of-town tourists to a Cornish fishing village. Jenkin magnifies the melodrama, while emphasising the age-old graft of the fisherman - personified here by gruff anti-hero Martin (Edward Rowe). It may be experimental but it's also engaging - a seductive mix. Read our full review.

Kubo And The Two Strings, Film4, 4.35pm, Sunday, September 20

Animation studio Laika may not be a household name like Pixar or Ardman, but they soon will be if they go on crafting stop-motion crackers like this. The directorial debut of Travis Knight - who is currently on pre-production for a film version of The Six Billion Dollar Man - this is the absorbing tale of a young boy (Art Parkinson) who goes on a dangerous quest with his talking monkey (Charlize Theron on no-nonsense vocals) and a samurai who is stuck in a bug outfit (Matthew McConnaughey). Using origami as inspiration for the animation, every inch of the film is a visual feast built around memorable characters and a plot that is inventive from beginning to last. Funny, scary and heartfelt in all the right places, it's a family treat. Read our full review.

Maiden: War On The Waves, BBC Four, 1am, Tuesday, September 15 and then on iPlayer

You don't need to be a fan of sailing but be swept away by this fascinating documentary about boat pioneer Tracy Edwards. Alex Homes' immersive film recounts the tale of how Edwards decided, back in the Eighties, to put together an all-female crew to take on the Whitbread Round The World Race. A tale of determination in the face of every knock back imaginable - and a few you might not have thought of - Holmes is aided by Edwards' refreshing honesty about the period and extensive use of footage shot by Jo Gooding on the boat during the 1989 race. Gripping and inspiring. Read our full review.

I, Tonya, BBC2, 9.30pm, Saturday, September 19

The story of ice skater Tonya Harding has gone down in infamy after her ex-husband organised an attack on her arch-rival Nancy Kerrigan. Craig Gillespie, who since 2007's Lars And The Real Girl has shown an aptitude for humour and poignancy in the oddest places, imbues this biopic - written by Steven Rogers - with dark comedy. It features a blistering central performance from Margot Robbie, while Allison Janney, as Harding's chain-smoking mother, gets all the best lines. There's more to Tonya than you might imagine, and Gillespie and Robbie take you to the heart of her. Read our full review.

Dances With Wolves, My5.tv

Kevin Costner proved he was more than just a pretty face in front of the camera when he stepped behind it to make this epic western about a Union soldier who leaves his life behind to join a Sioux community. Costner shows no signs of nerves as he takes on the sweeping vistas of America as well as the central role, alongside Mary McDonnell, avoiding the saccharine in favour of more adult and measured considerations of sacrifice and love that finds strength in simplicity. Read our full review.

This week's short is a found-footage selection, Wound Footage, by experimental filmmaker Thorsen Fleisch, who is still continuing to make visually arresting shorts.



Thorsten Fleisch - Wound Footage from Anti-Utopias on Vimeo.

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