What to watch on Wednesday, December 30th, 2009

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The Turn of the Screw

BBC 1 at 9:00pm (Other show times...)

The Turn of the Screw

Chilling ghost story about Ann, a young governess who is sent to a country house to take charge of two orphans. Unsettled by a sense of intense evil within the house, Ann becomes convinced that malevolent forces are stalking the children in her care.

Adapted from Henry James's novel by Sandy Welch (Emma, Jane Eyre), the drama, reset in the Twenties, when Britain is still imbued with the grief of the First World War, is a complex study of the interactions between the living and the dead.

Ann is sent to the country to take care of Miles and Flora. An idyllic summer follows, filled with picnics and boating trips, and Ann soon earns the trust and affection of the two young children and staff at Bly Country Estate - including Mrs Grose, the loyal housekeeper. But the idyll is soon threatened when Ann begins to see the figures of a man and woman whom she doesn't recognise. These figures come and go at will without ever being seen or challenged by other members of the household, and they seem to Ann to be supernatural.

To add to her anxiety she learns that her predecessor, Miss Jessel, and her lover, Peter Quint, a former servant of the household, both died under curious circumstances - could it be their ghosts she keeps seeing?

Ann soon becomes obsessed with the belief that malevolent forces are stalking the children in her care and that Quint and Jessel are manipulating Miles and Flora - even using them to continue their relationship from beyond the grave. As Ann becomes more convinced of the ghosts' licentious intentions, her behaviour appears increasingly erratic - are these apparitions truly supernatural or simply products of her own suppressed sexuality and overactive imagination? Ann determines to save Miles and Flora from these beings, confronting them and banishing them from Bly, but her final confrontation with the forces of evil comes at a huge cost to herself.

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The Turn of the Screw

The Turn of the Screw

BBC 1 at 9:00pm

Chilling ghost story about Ann, a young governess who is sent to a country house to take charge of two orphans. Unsettled by a sense of intense evil within the house, Ann becomes c...

Mary Poppins

Mary Poppins

BBC 1 at 3:35pm

The Banks family needs a new nanny, but when the wind changes, it blows the extraordinary Mary Poppins (Julie Andrews) into their lives - to the consternation of t...

The Turin Shroud: The New Evidence

The Turin Shroud: The New Evidence

Channel 4 at 8:00pm

For centuries, people have argued about the authenticity of the Shroud of Turin. It is one of the most controversial relics in the Christian world. Some believe it to be a physical...

Bedtime Stories

Bedtime Stories

Sky Movies Premiere at 8:00pm

Tall tale teller Adam Sandler becomes the star of his own bedtime stories....

Three Men Go To Ireland

Three Men Go To Ireland

BBC 2 at 9:00pm

Griff Rhys Jones, Dara O Briain and Rory McGrath return for more comedic water-based travels as they make their way across Ireland to the Limerick Poetry Festival....

Piers Morgan‘s Review of the Year

Piers Morgan's Review of the Year

itv London at 9:00pm

Piers Morgan looks back at the highs and lows of 2009. The momentous year began with Barack Obama's inauguration and took in Michael Jackson's death, the MPs' expenses scandal, the...

Tsunami: Caught on Camera

Tsunami: Caught on Camera

Channel 4 at 9:00pm

On Christmas Day 2004, across the Indian Ocean, tourists from around the globe were enjoying dream holidays in the sun. But none of them knew that the very next day their video cam...

Waterloo Road

Waterloo Road

BBC 1 at 8:00pm

Max's true colours are finally revealed as the Waterloo Road Has Talent competition takes over the school....