What to watch on TV this week

SATURDAY
What to watch on TV this week

Finding Neverland

BBC Two, 5.55pm

A heavyweight cast includes the likes of Johnny Depp, Kate Winslet and Dustin Hoffman in the true account of how JM Barrie was inspired to write Peter Pan by an enounter with a free-spirited widow.

Despicable Me

RTÉ One, 7.05pm

Excellent animation from 2010 that the smallies will probably enjoy yet another look at.

Francis Bacon: A Brush with Violence

BBC Two, 9pm

A documentary on the Dublin-born painter that talks to fellow artists and others who knew him to decipher whether the image of a drunken loudmouth is deserved.

The Monuments Men

Channel 4, 9pm

George Clooney directs and stars in the story of a group of art experts trying to prevent various works from falling into the Nazis’s hands during World War II. John Goodman and Bill Murray are among the other actors popping up in a film that’s watchable rather than brilliant.

Raging Bull

RTÉ One, midnight

As Martin Scorsese puts a dent in his reputation with his current film Silence, this classic from 1980 stands as a reminder of what a great director he can be. Robert De Niro plays the self-destructive boxer in a story adapted from Jake LaMotta’s memoir.

SUNDAY

Dancing with The Stars

RTÉ One, 6.30pm

After last week’s elimination, the 10 remaining celebrities are put through their paces before a public vote decides who will follow Hughie Maughan out of the competition.

Apple Tree Yard

BBC One, 9pm

Last week’s opener ended with a nasty scene that ensures the show that seduced us with a tale of sexual adventure has taken a turn towards something very different. It doesn’t always make for comfortable viewing, but it really is excellent drama.

MONDAY

Then Comes Marriage?

RTÉ2, 9.30pm

The three couples on this week’s episode include a busy young couple who are trying to reconnect after a year of parenthood. Another couple roadtesting their relationship with the experts are a duo who have both been married before.

George III - The Genius Of The Mad King

BBC Two, 9pm

George III is probably most familiar to people in this country from his portrayal by Nigel Hawthorne in The Madness of King George. In this documentary, we get a more sober insight into the monarch (1738-1820) who was bedevilled by mental health problems later in life.

The makers of the show were given access to George’s letters and diaries for the first time, as Buckingham Palace allows a team of historians prepare them for publication online in what should prove a fascinating archive.

Apparently, the papers show Britain’s longest serving king as a dedicated family man, but it’ll be interesting to see if there are any revelations re Ireland, given that he was king when the Act of Union was passed, and also took quite a hardline position on the ‘Catholic question’.

TUESDAY

Eco Eye

RTÉ One, 7pm

Dr Lara Dungan looks at the possible scenarios for the effects climate change will have on Ireland. When first mooted, many of us shrugged at the thoughts of ‘global warming’ and the chance of better weather. We’ve since learned, however, that our summers may even get wetter, and we’ll also be facing more storms in winter.

Sicily: The Wonder of the Mediterranean

BBC Two, 9pm

We learn how the island of Sicily was settled by people from Greece about 3,000 years ago, bringing olive trees and vines and eventually establishing powerful city states.

The Modern British Slave Trade

Channel 4, 10pm

A high-profile case about three years ago that resulted in the conviction of several Irish Travellers in the UK on charges relating to forced labour. This documentary shows how it wasn’t an isolated case, with an estimated 13,000 ‘slaves’ in Britain, working in areas from agriculture to sex.

WEDNESDAY

Trust Me, I’m a Doctor

BBC Two, 8pm

Michael Mosley and his team return for a new series. Among the issues discussed in the first episode are whether it’s better to focus on dieting or exercise when trying to lost weight. There’s also a look at whether probiotic products really are good for your health.

THURSDAY

Dúiche

TG4, 8pm

Síle Nic Chonaonaigh is on the Beara peninsula in Co Cork, where she meets John Harrington to hear about his shellfish business based in Ardgroom.

Fortitude

Sky Atlantic, 9pm

Episode two brings a new murder suspect.

Escape to the Wild

Channel 4, 9pm

Jimmy Doherty takes over from Kevin McCloud for this new run of the series that meets people who’ve set up home in far-flung places in an attempt to escape the hassles of modern life. First up, he’s on a Pacific island that ticks plenty boxes in what you’d imagine a tropical paradise should look like. As ever, however, it’s not all plain sailing for the British couple who live there, not least when they’ve an 18-month-old toddler they have to keep safe from pythons and poisonous centipedes.

Generation F’d

RTÉ2, 10.30pm

The final episode of the series looks at how the apathy traditonally associated with young people has, in some cases at least, been replaced with a desire to better their lot. Volunteering and activism have helped some of them get a foothold in society and establish some self-esteem, while also doing some good.

Other Voices

RTÉ One, 11.30pm

The first episode of the new series includes acts from both the Dingle and Austin incarnations of the event last year, including Willie Nelson, Imelda May and All Tvvins.

FRIDAY

Birds Of Paradise: The Ultimate Quest

BBC 2, 9pm

BBC security correspondent Frank Gardner has been wheelchair-bound since he was shot in 2004 by supporters of Al-Qaeda in Saudi Arabia, an attack that killed Irish cameraman Simon Cumbers. In this two-part show, Gardner tries to fulfil his lifelong dream of seeing birds of paradise by making a difficult journey to a remote part of New Guinea.

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