What’s on TV This Week: ‘The People vs. Agent Orange’ and Macy’s Fireworks

by Msnbctv news staff

Between network, cable and streaming, the modern television landscape is a vast one. Here are some of the shows, specials and movies coming to TV this week, June 28-July 4. Details and times are subject to change.

INDEPENDENT LENS: THE PEOPLE VS. AGENT ORANGE (2021) 10 p.m. on PBS (check local listings). This documentary from the filmmakers Kate Taverna and Alan Adelson (“In Bed With Ulysses”) looks at the enduring effects of the defoliant known as Agent Orange, which was infamously used by the United States military during the Vietnam War and has caused health problems and suffering for generations. Taverna and Adelson center their documentary on two activists — Tran To Nga and Carol Van Strum — who operate in different parts of the world, but who share a common goal of holding chemical companies accountable for the effects of Agent Orange.

PARAGRAPH 175 (2000) 11:30 p.m. on TCM. The documentarians Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman (“Linda Ronstadt: The Sound of My Voice”) examine the imprisonment and murder of gay people by the Nazis during World War II — and the decades of psychological trauma that followed. Epstein and Friedman interview a number of survivors, whose recollections are shown alongside archival film, family photographs and narration by the actor Rupert Everett. The result, Lawrence Van Gelder wrote in his review for The New York Times, is a film that is “at once admirable and deeply unsettling.”

FRONTLINE 10 p.m. on PBS (check local listings). Tuesday night’s installment of PBS’s investigative documentary program looks at the resurgence of neo-Nazis and far right extremism in present-day Germany, and efforts by authorities to handle that problem.

DOGS WITH EXTRAORDINARY JOBS 8 p.m. on Smithsonian Channel. As its title suggests, this new documentary series spotlights a variety of jobs done by canines, from heroic rescue missions — like locating survivors in the aftermath of a deadly mudslide — to mental health support. Viewers with dogs of their own may want to put them in another room, lest they develop inferiority complexes.

RESERVOIR DOGS (1992) 8:15 p.m. on HBO. Harvey Keitel, who is back on screens this month in “Lansky,” where he plays an aged Meyer Lansky, the mob figure, was cast as a more sprightly criminal in “Reservoir Dogs.” The film, Quentin Tarantino’s first feature, focuses on a group of ill-fated bank thieves. Keitel acts alongside a few other performers known for criminal roles: Steve Buscemi, Michael Madsen and Tim Roth. The movie, Vincent Canby wrote in his review for The Times in 1992, “moves swiftly and with complete confidence toward a climax that matches ‘Hamlet’s.”

CRISIS (2021) 6 p.m. on Showtime. Gary Oldman, Michelle Rodriguez, Armie Hammer, Lily-Rose Depp and Evangeline Lilly star in this crime drama from the writer-director Nicholas Jarecki. Split into three separate strands, the story follows a cast of characters — including an undercover D.E.A. agent, a professor and an addict in recovery — whose lives are tied to the opioid epidemic.

LET HIM GO (2020) 8 p.m. on HBO. Kevin Costner and Diane Lane play a couple moving from grief to vengeance in this adaptation of a novel by Larry Watson. Set in 1960s, the film casts Costner as George Blackledge, a sheriff-turned-farmer who tends horses alongside Margaret (Lane), his wife. After the couple’s son dies in an accident, their daughter-in-law (Kayli Carter) marries a new partner (Will Brittain), bringing George and Margaret’s grandson with her. When George and Margaret learn that their daughter-in-law’s new partner is a domestic abuser, they take it upon themselves to intervene — a task that proves more dangerous than the couple had anticipated. “With uncommon stealth, ‘Let Him Go’ morphs from a drama about loss and grief into a terrifying thriller,” Glenn Kenny wrote in his review for The Times. But even as it does so, Kenny added, the film “never loses sight of its character dynamics, beautifully acted by Costner and Lane.”

THE MISFITS (1961) 8 p.m. on TCM. If you’re looking for a mid-20th century dream team, you can’t do much better than “The Misfits.” Directed by John Huston from a script by Arthur Miller, the film casts Marilyn Monroe opposite Clark Gable. Monroe plays Roslyn, a recently-divorced 30-year-old in Reno, Nev., who falls for an aging, gambling cowboy (Gable). They move in together alongside a friend (Eli Wallach), whose half-built desert home they plan to complete. “They are amusing people to be with, for a little while, anyhow,” Bosley Crowther wrote in his 1961 review for The Times. “But they are shallow and inconsequential, and that is the dang-busted trouble with this film.” In retrospect, the film is of some historical significance: It was the final film for both Gable, who died weeks after shooting completed, and Monroe, who died the year after it was released. TCM is showing it alongside another 1960s Western, the classic BUTCH CASSIDY AND THE SUNDANCE KID (1969), which airs at 6 p.m.

MACY’S 4TH OF JULY FIREWORKS SPECTACULAR 8 p.m. on NBC. After the coronavirus pandemic called for a reworked, truncated series of celebrations last year, the Macy’s annual Independence Day fireworks display is slated to return in full force this July 4. It will be viewed by many people as a celebration of both the annual holiday and the country’s post-vaccine reopening. Those many people include New York’s mayor, Bill de Blasio: “This is part of the summer of New York City,” de Blasio said this month, “the rebirth of New York City.”

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