Feature

The Week’s guide to what’s worth watching

Plus, Other highlights; Show of the week; Movies on TV this week; New on DVD

Killer of SheepA long-lost masterwork, the 1977 debut by award-winning filmmaker Charles Burnett follows a young man who works in a Watts, Los Angeles, slaughterhouse. Unreleased for 30 years due to legal issues concerning its evocative soundtrack, the movie debuts in a restored version as part of a special Martin Luther King Jr. Day lineup. Monday, Jan. 21, at 8 p.m., Turner Classic Movies

Life After PeopleWhat would the world look like if the human race suddenly disappeared? Through visual effects and expert commentary, this special imagines a hypothetical future of abandoned skyscrapers and crumbling bridges, and looks at real-life models of desolation, such as Chernobyl and remote islands off the coast of Maine. Monday, Jan. 21, at 9 p.m., History ChannelAmerican Experience: The LobotomistAmbitious neurologist Walter J. Freeman pioneered one of medicine’s most notorious missteps—the lobotomy—severing the frontal lobes of thousands of patients. Was he an inhuman monster, or sincerely trying to ease the suffering caused by mental illness? Through interviews with medical historians and former patients and their families, American Experience paints a nuanced portrait. Monday, Jan. 21, at 9 p.m., PBSIndependent Lens: A Son’s SacrificeShort but richly textured, this documentary profiles a young New York Muslim coming to terms with his half Bangladeshi, half Puerto Rican heritage as he takes over his father’s business: a slaughterhouse catering to Islamic dietary laws. His opportunity to prove himself comes during the holiday of Eid al-Adha, which commemorates Abraham’s willingness to sacrifice his son. Tuesday, Jan. 22, at 10 p.m., PBS; check local listingsBehind the Great WallFor this two-hour special, which traces the history of the construction of the Great Wall of China, a Western filmmaking crew was allowed inside a base of the People’s Liberation Army for the first time. There they interview descendants of the wall’s builders—and of the Mongol warriors it was designed to keep out. Sunday, Jan. 27, at 9 p.m., Discovery

Other highlightsReno 911!Diedrich Bader (The Drew Carey Show) guest-stars in a funny sendup of Dog the Bounty Hunter. Wednesday, Jan. 23, at 10:30 p.m., Comedy Central

Masterpiece: The Complete Jane Austen, Mansfield ParkEx–Doctor Who sidekick Billie Piper portrays a poor girl raised among rich relatives in this new Austen adaptation. Sunday, Jan. 27, at 9 p.m., PBS

All listings are Eastern time.

Show of the weekFrontline: Growing Up OnlineAs young people flock to social networking Web sites such as MySpace and Facebook, the news media has sounded dire warnings about the threat of sexual predators online. But a greater danger, according to this sobering report, is the way technology amplifies adolescents’ emotional stresses and typical lack of impulse control. It tells of a lonely 14-year-old whose sexually provocative alter ego attracted an online following without her parents’ knowledge; of a girl who secretly networked with other bulimics; and of a victim of “cyberbullying” who committed suicide. Also interviewed are parents and teachers who struggle to engage media-saturated students who no longer read books or newspapers. Tuesday, Jan. 22, at 9 p.m., PBS; check local listings

Movies on TV this week

Monday, Jan. 21A Raisin in the Sun (1961)Sidney Poitier and Ruby Dee are among the stars in the original film version of Lorraine Hansberry’s groundbreaking play about a black Chicago family. 5:45 p.m., TCM

TuesdayGerry (2002)Matt Damon and Casey Affleck improvised all their dialogue for director Gus Van Sant’s experimental film about two young men who become lost in the desert. 2:45 p.m., IFC

WednesdayThe Life and Times of Hank Greenberg (1998)An award-winning profile of the Detroit Tigers slugger who overcame anti-Semitism to become baseball’s first Jewish superstar. 1:40 p.m., Showtime 2

ThursdayFast Food Nation (2006)Eric Schlosser’s best-selling exposé of the fast-food industry became an ensemble comedy-drama directed by Richard Linklater (School of Rock).9 p.m., HBO Signature

FridayLa Moustache (2005)Director Emmanuel Carrère adapted his own novel, a metaphorical mystery that begins when a man’s wife fails to notice that he has shaved his mustache. 7:30 p.m., Sundance

SaturdayBreach (2007)Chris Cooper portrays FBI agent Robert Hanssen, who sold secrets to the Russians for 15 years—the worst security breach in U.S. history. 8 p.m., HBO

New on DVD3:10 to Yuma (2007)Russell Crowe and Christian Bale star in the critically acclaimed remake of a 1957 Western, based on a story by Elmore Leonard. (R, $30)

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