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The Thomas Crown Affair

* When: Saturday 3 March at 20.00 on Sky Premier 1
* What: Romantic caper
* Who: Pierce Brosnan, Rene Russo, Denis Leary, Ben Gazzara, Faye Dunaway
* Directed by: John McTiernan

In a nutshell: Sharp-suited thief versus arch insurance investigator. Pierce Brosnan and Rene Russo make sparks fly in an assortment of glamorous locales.

The bigger picture: Thomas Crown (Brosnan) is a bored New York millionaire, a playboy who executes the perfect theft, stealing a priceless painting. Think Gordon Gekko twinned with James Bond. Russo plays insurance agent Catherine Banning who's yet to be defeated by any crook, let alone one in a suit of Prince Charles check.

Of course, as she gets closer to cracking the case, she gets nearer and nearer to Crown, who is beginning to charm her with his catamaran, glider and tropical island hideaway (always popular with the ladies). There are some terrific scenes between the two, a crackling dance and a smart, tricksy d‚nouement with a cast of men in black bowler hats.

Faye Dunaway, who played the detective in the 1968 original opposite Steve McQueen, stars as a psychiatrist. Denis Leary is the detective who is bamboozled by Crown and overawed by Banning. Leary is a stand-up comic who began his career at Emerson College in Boston, performed at the Edinburgh Festival and then switched to movies. Known for playing masculine, hard-drinking tough guys, he can also be seen in Suicide Kings, playing on Sky MovieMax 2, 3 and 4 in January.

Director John McTiernan is also the man charged with bringing cult Norman Jewison classic Rollerball back to life. The remade version of this violent, futuristic sporting film is scheduled for release later in the year.

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