What’s on TV tonight: The Jury: Murder Trial, Under the Banner of Heaven and more


The Jury: Murder Trial

The Jury: Murder Trial – Channel 4

Monday 26 February

The Jury: Murder Trial
Channel 4, 9pm

Stripped across the next four nights, this series is not Channel 4’s first attempt to interrogate the jury system – a similar experiment called The Trial aired in 2017, with a jury considering a fictional murder charge where witnesses and accused were actors but the case was prosecuted, defended and presided over by legal professionals. This time around, the court hosts a painstaking recreation of an actual murder trial, with only names, dates and locations amended for the sake of anonymity; alongside actors playing accused, witnesses and lawyers, there are also two separate juries, each comprising retirees and jobseekers, middle managers and support workers, and each unaware of the other. The case is one of a husband who killed his wife with a hammer, and who is citing “loss of control” as his defence against a murder conviction; a crime which appears to have just enough nuance and ambiguity to incite meaningful debate. The concept is inevitably flawed – deliberations depend to some extent on the quality of acting – but the insights are many and useful as some of the 24 jurors reveal, sometimes inadvertently, how their own histories and beliefs can prejudice decisions. GT

Under the Banner of Heaven
ITVX
First shown on Disney+, this gripping seven-part miniseries from Oscar-winner Dustin Lance Black explores murder in Salt Lake City as Andrew Garfield’s Mormon detective uncovers dark deeds and faith curdling into fanaticism. Daisy Edgar-Jones, Sam Worthington and Denise Gough are among a stellar cast in full cry.

Panorama: Royal Mail: Where’s My Post?
BBC One, 8pm; NI/Wales, 8.30pm
Royal Mail is currently under fire over missed delivery targets and accusations of favouring more lucrative parcels over letters. Reporter Zoe Conway considers the institution’s future.

George Clarke’s Remarkable Renovations
Channel 4, 8pm
George Clarke’s lower-stakes spin on the Grand Designs formula is back for a third series, as a solicitor bids to turn a village shop into a family home. Yet while she has the budget, she lacks the experience – and the way ahead proves fraught with pitfalls.

The Way
BBC One, 9pm
The central episode of this richly intriguing drama finds the Driscolls forced on the run after protests against the steelworks’ closure turn violent. The pressures they face bring long-simmering resentments to the surface, their resonance both personal and universal. Any concerns The Way could descend into didacticism, meanwhile, are negated by propulsive pacing and dramatic tension, not least from the arrival of Luke Evans’s “Welsh Catcher”, dressed like a medieval witchfinder.

The Space Shuttle That Fell to Earth
BBC Two, 9pm
This composed docu-series concludes with the Columbia’s explosion itself – a tragedy which, on the basis of previous episodes, could have been avoided and whose impact was far-reaching.
 
The British Airways Killer
ITV1, 9pm; not Wales
In a real-life case oddly redolent of the one simultaneously being recreated on Channel 4, this two-parter (concluding on Thursday) follows a notorious case of domestic homicide in which the killer, Robert Brown, was convicted not of murder but manslaughter. The verdict prompted outcry given his violent marriage to Joanna Simpson, the woman 
he bludgeoned to death; family members and police are among those pulling apart the grim events.

Doctor Zhivago (1965) ★★★★★
BBC Two, 2pm
David Lean’s adaptation of Boris Pasternak’s great novel is an extraordinary work of cinema and arguably his greatest film – no mean feat when your work includes the medium-defining likes of The Bridge on the River Kwai and Lawrence of Arabia. Doctor Zhivago is a tale of thwarted love during the Russian Revolution, with a starry sprawling cast and several intertwined plots. Omar Sharif (in the title role) is a married physician and poet whose life is changed forever by the Revolution’s ruthless onslaught and the subsequent civil war, while Julie Christie brings both heartache and glamour to the role of his long-suffering mistress. Plus, there’s Alec Guinness and Rod Steiger, warm and wicked (respectively), in support. These days, critics deplore its historical inaccuracy (although you can’t begrudge its iffy locations, considering 
it was shot in Spain instead of Russia because the book was, at the time, banned in the Soviet Union), but remain in thrall to the central romance. It also had a stellar showing at the Oscars, winning five awards (including Best Adapted Screenplay and Original Score) but lost out on the biggies (Best Picture and Director) to The Sound of Music.

Missing Link (2019) ★★★
BBC One, 3pm  
This rich family animation from Laika, the team who gave us Coraline and Kubo and the Two Strings, follows dashing adventurer Sir Lionel Frost (Hugh Jackman) as he hunts for mythical creatures – first a cutely fearsome Nessie and next the Sasquatch. To his surprise, the beast (Zach Galifianakis) turns out to be civilised, and versed in Frost’s exploits thanks to the reports of the British press. A stop-motion joy that’s perfect for all ages.

Roman Holiday (1953, b/w) ★★★★★
Film4, 4.35pm  
The film that made Audrey Hepburn a star. She plays a princess on a visit to Rome, who escapes her guardians and takes off on a jaunt through the city with a handsome journalist (Gregory Peck). He recognises her but isn’t letting on because he’s hoping for an exclusive. Gorgeously shot on location, it’s an all-time great romcom. You can also catch it from Friday on Channel 4 online as part of their Oscars Collection.

Chappaquiddick (2017) ★★★
BBC Two, 10.45pm  
On July 18, 1969, Senator Ted Kennedy drove his car off of a bridge on Massachusetts’s Chappaquiddick Island, resulting in the death of his passenger, 28-year-old campaign strategist Mary Jo Kopechne. Jason Clarke plays Kennedy in John Curran’s lukewarm dramatisation of a tragedy that rocked American politics, but from which Kennedy walked away 
with just a two-year suspended sentence.

The Last Right (2019) ★★★
BBC One, 11.05pm  
In this British-Irish comedy-drama, Daniel Murphy (Michiel Huisman) has the flight experience from hell when, while travelling from New York to Ireland, he is left in charge of a stranger’s corpse. He’s then challenged to transport an environmentally friendly cardboard coffin from his familt home in Clonakilty to Rathlin Island by his younger brother, Louis (Samuel Bottomley), and Mary (Niamh Algar), a young funeral director.


Television previewers

Stephen Kelly (SK), Veronica Lee (VL), Gerard O’Donovan (GO), Poppie Platt (PP) and Gabriel Tate (GT



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