Reeled in: I Fish.FREE TO AIR
FIBA Men’s Basketball World Cup, ABC2 1.25am, ABC 5.25am (Sunday)
If you’re a fan of the more marginal sports, the ABC is doing its best to keep you happy. There’s VFL on the weekend. You can generally catch a bit of lawn bowls. They did a great job covering the men’s and women’s hockey world champs. Now they’ve picked up this obscure beauty: the FIBA World Cup. If you’re wondering, FIBA stands for International Basketball Federation and our national broadcaster is going all-out to provide some entertaining and professional coverage. Stephanie Brantz leads the broadcast team; Andrew Gaze, Phil Smyth and Brett Maher are also on board; Shane Heal and John Casey will be calling the games from Spain; and there’s the obligatory comic wrap of the day in Double Dribble, nightly at 8.20pm. Tonight the Boomers meet Slovenia (on ABC2) while the USA take on Finland(ABC).
I Fish, Ten, 3pm
No one’s quite sure when fishing moved from a way of finding food to a recreational pursuit but these days casting a line is the preferred pastime of millions all over the developed world. Unsurprisingly, television is right there beside us, churning out dozens of programs dedicated to the drowsiest of sports from the gonzo antics of River Monsters to more humble offerings like this one. The title says it all. Paul Worsteling fishes. And we watch, as he catches – or fails to catch – assorted domestic varieties, advises us on bait, tackle and tactics, throws in numerous plugs for his sponsors, all with the air of a man content with his life and his lot. Like fishing itself, it’s a peaceful half hour with occasional spikes of interest.
Gardening Australia, ABC, 6.30pm
Having recently celebrated its 25th anniversary, this hands-on gardening show chugs along placidly: refreshed by a broader brief and a new host, but still delivering its trademark combo of sensible advice and inspiring stories. Tonight, Jerry does double duty, providing timely tips on caring for citrus and also visiting a cacti maven for advice on growing succulents in pots. Down at the patch in Tassie, Tino is getting some root vegies in for spring. Sophie explores South Australian natives that succour wildlife without needing a lot of attention. And Costa does his favourite thing: finds a fabulous community garden in the heart of Sydney.
An Education (2009), SBS One, 8.30pm
An Education is an admirable but ultimately unpersuasive film about a 16-year-old schoolgirl, Jenny Mellor (Carey Mulligan), who has an affair with a much older and rather sleazy man (Peter Sarsgaard). It ends, as many ‘‘feminist’’ films do (Campion’s, Armstrong’s), with a woman striding – or bicycling – towards a rosy authorial future. And while the last line unfortunately celebrates lying to boyfriends, thatshould be put down to over-enthusiasm.Set in early-1960s England, the film does a fine job with the period, which is perhaps not unexpected in that director Lone Scherfig is Danish. Foreign directors often capture a location and a culture better than locals do. (Walkabout and Wake in Fright, both foreign-directed Australian films from 1971, are notable examples.) If the universally admired An Education has an issue, it is Carey Mulligan, a sometimes overly intense actress with the gift of appearing miscast (most unfortunately as Daisy Buchanan in The Great Gatsby). Mulligan is not helped here by being seven years too old for her part. She even evokes memories of Joan Fontaine in Letter from an Unknown Woman, where the 31-year-old actress gawkily attempts to play a schoolgirl. Mulligan is slightly less unconvincing, but, like Fontaine, falsely ascribes adult emotions and sexuality to a still-maturing child. Fashion magazines are regularly taken to task for inappropriately sexualising children, but casting adults as teenagers in movies is equally to blame. Still, An Education is an engaging, if bleak, look at a time when men had greater licence to be bad, and women were more forcefully imagining their future rights and freedoms.
Taking Woodstock (2009), Seven, 12.30am (Sunday)
The Woodstock Music & Art Fair was a defining moment in time. For three days on a 240-hectare farm on the outskirts of White Lake, New York, half-a-million people revelled in a festival of music, free love and torrential rain. Ang Lee’s Taking Woodstock takes a wry look at the many back-paddock machinations.
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