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Archive for Friday, December 25, 2009

Encore recalls Hughes’ influence

December 25, 2009

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Few directors have been as closely associated with a particular generation as the late John Hughes.

The chronicler of the teenage angst of the 1980s died suddenly this year at the age of 59. Hughes and his films are recalled in the documentary “Don’t You Forget About Me” (5:40 p.m., Encore), completed a year before his death.

Filled with clips of his iconic movies, it includes recollections from his stars and those he influenced, including Ally Sheedy, Judd Nelson, Andrew McCarthy and filmmakers Kevin Smith and Jason Reitman.

Hughes’ movies capture a moment in time, and their soundtracks were a boon to musicians of that period, New Wave-ish artists like Simple Minds, The Thompson Twins, Oingo Boingo and The Psychedelic Furs, whose songs mirrored the onscreen antics, disguising achingly romantic feelings behind a facade of cynical lyrics.

“Forget” is part of a three-day onslaught of 1980s movies, hosted by Reagan-era siren Cyndi Lauper, who will introduce them, beginning with “The Breakfast Club” (7 p.m., Encore) and “Sixteen Candles” (8:40 p.m.) and running through “Purple Rain” (9:15 p.m., Sunday).

• It’s not hard to gauge a network’s confidence in a series when it yanks it suddenly from the schedule in October and then burns off four unseen episodes on Christmas night, when an already fractured audience has got to be distracted.

On the Christmas episode of “Til Death” (7 p.m., Fox), Eddie is determined to be positive for the holidays. On three following installments, Eddie and Joy travel to Florida for Thanksgiving (7:30 p.m.), Joy befriends Eddie’s ex-girlfriend (8 p.m.) and Kenny moves in after his wife kicks him out (8:30 p.m.).

Other Christmas mar-athons include an ongoing helping of “Clean House” (Style) that runs through 2 a.m. Saturday morning. It features a typecast quartet of professional makeover artists helmed by the sassy Niecy Nash who encounter some of the most pathological pack-rats on the planet.

• If dust-busting is not your cup of Christmas tea, there’s the “Mythbusters” (5 a.m. to 2 a.m., Discovery) marathon, pitting two cheerful nerds against common assumptions and urban legends.

• “Your Weather Today” (7 a.m., The Weather Channel) brings the gift of snow to a family in the Florida Keys, winner of a “Guaranteed White Christmas” contest.

Meanwhile, some viewers from areas guaranteed white Christmases wish they were in the Florida Keys.

Tonight’s other highlights

• Melinda comforts a bereaved family on “Ghost Whisperer” (7 p.m., CBS).

• Kristen Wiig takes center stage on “Saturday Night Live Presents: A Very Gilly Christmas” (7 p.m., NBC) showcasing clips from Christmases past and featuring Alec Baldwin and Steve Martin.

• Johnny Depp channels his inner Keith Richards in the 2006 sequel “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest” (7 p.m., ABC).

• Allison is shocked by a missing woman’s children on “Medium” (8 p.m., CBS).

• Jake Spankenheimer hosts the 2000 special “Grandma Got Run Over by A Reindeer” (8 p.m., CW) inspired by a novelty song of the 1980s.

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