Vegas on TVViva Las Vegans!

August 20-26

Locked Up Abroad — Vegas Mobster (Aug. 20, 10 a.m., NGC):  A Chicago mobster heads to Vegas, where he’s caught by the FBI, turns rat and testifies, then enters witness protection. Isn’t that always the way?

Leaving Las Vegas (Aug. 21, 3:30 a.m. and Aug. 25, 11:35 p.m., SHO2E): Downbeat but poignant — and featuring an Oscar-winning performance from Nicolas Cage — this 1995 drama finds Ben Sanderson (Cage), an alcoholic Hollywood screenwriter, arriving in town for an intentionally fatal bender. Along his drunken path, he connects with Sera (Elisabeth Shue), a sympathetic prostitute, forming a sad but unique bond. Famously intense in his acting approach, Cage reportedly prepared for his role by filming himself drunk to study his inebriated speech patterns. Whether that constitutes method acting or a weird way to pick up bar hookups is up for debate.

The Hangover (Aug. 22, 9:50 p.m. and Aug. 26, 12:40 a.m., MAX): Cinematically speaking, our city is still hung over from “The Hangover,” the raucous 2009 comedy about a missing groom and a bachelor party gone off the rails that is a veritable Vegas smorgasbord. Bradley Cooper, Zack Galifanakis and Heather Graham (as a stripper/escort, of course) topline this Strip joyride that gives us such sights as a tiger in a bathroom, a chicken in a living room, a baby in a closet, a mattress impaled on a Caesars Palace statue and a naked man in the trunk of a Mercedes. … Oh, and Mike Tyson.

Lucky You (Aug. 23, 7:45 a.m., HBOSG): Aspiring lounge warbler (Drew Barrymore) meets poker stud (Eric Bana) with a problematic relationship with his World Series of Poker-winning papa (Robert Duvall) in this 2007 drama, in which Robert Downey Jr., Debra Messing and a slew of poker pros also pop up. Where was it filmed here? Where wasn’t it? A sampling: Dino’s Lounge, the Bellagio fountains, Binion’s Horseshoe, the Jockey Club, Summerlin’s Bear’s Best Golf Club, Tiffany’s Cafe inside the White Cross Drugs store and the then-under-construction Cosmopolitan. Oh — and the Silverton Casino 117,000-gallon aquatic tank. That’s where Messing spent 16 hours filming a scene dressed as a mermaid — for a scene that was cut. No wonder she went back to Will & Grace.

 Last Vegas (Aug. 23, 8:30 a.m. and Aug. 24, 1:30 a.m., BRAVO): Old(er) guys rule in Vegas! And with a cast that includes Michael Douglas, Robert De Niro, Kevin Kline and Morgan Freeman (plus Mary Steenburgen for the feminine touch), this 2013 comedy finds the funny as Douglas’ character gets a bachelor party thrown by his pallies. Admittedly, only 10 days of filming happened in Las Vegas, with the rest done in Atlanta. However, scenes will give viewers glimpses of the Aria hotel-casino, McCarran International Airport, the Neon Museum, Bellagio, New York-New York, Binion’s Horseshoe and the Stratosphere’s “X Scream” roller coaster.

The Hangover Part III (Aug. 23, 10 p.m., TNT): All hail the return of the Wolfpack in this 2013 trilogy-ender in which the gang (Bradley Cooper, El Helms and Justin Bartha) try to get off-his-meds Zack Galifianakis back on track with a road trip to You-Know-Where. Bring on the mayhem, dudes.

2012” (Aug. 24, 10:06 a.m. and 6:20 p.m., STZEN ): What did we ever do to tick off Hollywood? This time, in 2009’s 2012, we get leveled by an earthquake. Hey Hollywood, go pick on someone else — Washington, D.C. perhaps. They haven’t had a good movie wipeout since Independence Day.

Bar Rescue — Beer and Loathing in Las Vegas (Aug. 24, 11:12 a.m., PAR):  Host Jon Taffer visits a struggling, blue-collar Las Vegas establishment, where he mediates a strained relationship between the two chef/owners. Let the food fight begin!

 Rush Hour 2 (Aug. 24, 7 p.m. TBS): Cop cutups Jackie Chan and Chris Tucker somehow wind up in our town (don’t ask how) at the “Red Dragon” hotel-casino to solve a counterfeit money laundering scam in this 2001 martial arts laugher-sequel. Guess who played the Red Dragon? The now-defunct Desert Inn, which had already closed before filming began, but was all dressed up in a Chinese-palace theme.

Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery (Aug. 25, midnight, TBS): Oh behave! Well, that’s no fun when you’re vacationing in Vegas, is it? But Mike Myers’ orthodontically-challenged spy is all over our town in an absurdist 1997 comic stew that takes us on a local tour of spots including the Stardust, the Riviera, the Imperial Palace (now the Linq) and even good ol’ Burt Bacharach, doing his swingin’ cat thing on a double-decker rollin’ down the Strip.

The Godfather (Aug. 25, 5 p.m. and Aug. 26, 10:08 a.m., AMC): C’mon, you remember this 1972 classic’s Vegas connection, don’cha? Ya know, when the Corleones muscle in on the territory of Bugsy Siegel-inspired Moe Green (Alex Rocco) — who is later shot through the eye (Bugsy-style!) but not before he accuses Corleone weak link Fredo (John Cazale) of, um, making love to (not exactly his phrasing) cocktail waitresses two at a time. It’s coming back to you, right?

— Steve Bornfeld


Dates, times and channels provided by TVguide.com. All times are Pacific, check your local listings for your time zone and channel guide.

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Las Vegas Newswire

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