American Beauty HBO, 9pm Sorry, terrestrial TV viewers, the best programmes are on Cable TV tonight, unless you are an avid fan of Trackside Racing Night, which has crept into Pearl's Saturday evening schedule. Some think that American Beauty, the multi-Oscar winner, is overrated while others think it is one of the best to come out of the 1990s. I 'hate' this movie because its brilliant script, by Alan Ball, has all but totally dashed my dream of becoming a scriptwriter. Directed by Sam Mendes, this black comedy takes an exceptional and original look at the American Dream gone sour. Two-time Academy Award winner Kevin Spacey plays Lester Burnham, a middle-aged man living in a picture-perfect planned community and working for an advertising magazine. His wife, Carolyn (Annette Bening), sells real estate and works at it like a woman possessed. Their adolescent daughter Jane (Thora Birch) mainly works at finding new ways to feel contempt for both of them. Very ordinary, suburban and American you may think. Well, when the mid-life crisis hits Lester in a big way, things start to turn on their heads. First, he meets Jane's blossoming classmate Angela Hayes (Mena Suvari, above), a blonde bombshell on the high school cheerleading squad. Then he quits his job and starts smoking dope. In the meantime, Carolyn embarks on her own adventure and begins an affair. Even Jane is not spared this sudden sweep of changes as she finds herself attracted to Ricky Fitts (Wes Bentley), a quiet boy who recently moved into the house next door with his strange family. Other than its excellent script, much of the success of this film can be attributed to Spacey's equally excellent performance. His Lester is a self-declared 'loser' and the actor gets so many shadings of absurdity, haplessness, self-disgust, wry amusement, distraction and insouciance into the character that Lester becomes an epic American hero. One critic points out: 'After such an edgy film, he leaves us with the gift, the utterly unanticipated gift, of serenity'. Don't miss the classic opening scene. (1999) Ape Man Pearl, 1.40pm In 1924, a brilliant but eccentric South African scientist called Raymond Dart was invited to examine some mysterious fossils that had been blasted to the surface a few weeks earlier at a place called Taung, on the edge of the Kalahari Desert. He identified them as the remains of a three-year-old child who had died millions of years ago. The toddler, commonly known as the Taung Child, was, Dart decided, an immature member of a long-vanished species that straddled the boundary between man and ape. Second episode of this fascinating BBC series. English FA Cup Final: Liverpool vs Arsenal (Live) Sports 1, 9.30pm The climax of the European soccer calendar is upon us with most leagues wrapping up and the finales of cup competitions suddenly coming at us in rapid succession. But the most anticipated match is probably the English FA Cup final tonight because of its convenient late-evening kickoff. Now, what if you want to watch the game with the stadium buzz but don't have one of those be-there-feel ultra-expensive TV sets? We have done some painful research to find out where in Hong Kong you can enjoy the match, yell your guts out with your mates but without upsetting the neighbours. A good choice would be the Dickens Bar in Causeway Bay, which has predominantly a sophisticated Western crowd but who are quite able to whip up noise on live nights when the tension picks up. For a more local feel, there is Shooters Bar in Times Square. It always shows all the top football games and may even have a big screen for the FA Cup final. If you don't really care who wins but still want to be part of the mania, Delaney's in Wan Chai has been known to provide just such a frenzy. Soccer crazy Amoeba in Tsim Sha Tsui also has a cosy football den in the basement.