Saturday TV: Modern ‘Native Son’

native-son-trailer-gq-1Richard Wright’s 1940 “Native Son” (HBO, 10 p.m.) gets a modern retelling, with a screenplay by Suzan-Lori Parks and directed by visual artist Rashid Johnson. The story of a young Chicago man hired as a driver for a rich real estate man has the feel of “The Night of” in part because of the presence of Bill Camp as the businessman. Also, it involves a driver who gets mixed up in the death of a young woman.

Ashton Sanders gives a strong performance as Bigger; a nice twist is that he is into metal and punk music (and the obscure Detroit band Death). David Alan Grier and Sanaa Lathan pop up in the story, which is engaging in its depiction of inner city life and a lot of the racial undertones of 80 years ago, sadly, still ring true. But some things from the 40s don’t fit in the modern era, particularly a coal-fired heating system. It also has an abrupt ending that may be fitting for the era, but leaves out a lot of the book.

The Final Four finally meet with Virginia vs. Auburn (CBS, 6 p.m.) and Michigan State vs. Texas Tech (CBS, 8:30 p.m.).

Can woolly mammoths be revived? Scientists hope so, on a new series called “Beasts of the Ice Age” (Discovery, 10 p.m.).

Sara Rue stars as a community gardener who goes up against a real estate developer (Jordan Bridges) before “True Love Blooms” (Hallmark, 8 p.m.) in the latest romance movie.

A stylist’s new client becomes obsessive and worse in the made-for-TV thriller “My Killer Client” (Lifetime, 8 p.m.), with Tammin Sursok, Allison Paige and Greg Perrow.

Colin Hardy’s horror film “The Nun” (HBO, 8:15 p.m.), the fifth chapter in the “Conjuring” franchise, with Taissa Farming, with makes its premium cable debut. Also on: Nikolaj Arcel’s adaptation of Stephen King’s “The Dark Tower” (Showtime, 9 p.m.), with Idris Elba and Matthew McConaughey.

A motorcycle enthusiast gets help from “Trading Spaces” (TLC, 8 p.m.).

Vanilla Ice pops up on “While You Were Out” (TLC, 9 p.m.).

More home fixing shows start today with “Big Texas Fix” (DIY, 9 p.m.), with a couple restoring historic homes in Galveston, and “Mom & Me” (HGTV, 11 p.m.) a mother and son team working in Oregon.

“The Vet Life” (Animal Planet, 8 p.m.) returns for its fourth season.

“Murder Made Me Famous” (Reelz, 8 p.m.), looks at the case of Laurie Bemenek, for a report that may be better suited for “Murder Made Me Not That Famous” (Reelz, 8 p.m.).

Turner Classic Movies pairs a couple of “essentials,” “East of Eden” (8 p.m.) and “The Night of the Hunter” (10:15 p.m.) before the 12 o’clock noir, “99 River Street” (midnight) and a pair of musicals, “Mame” (:45 a.m.) and “Pennies from Heaven” (4 a.m.).

Baseball includes Kansas City at Detroit (MLB, 1 p.m.), Texas at Angels (Fox Sports 1, 4 p.m.), Cubs at Milwaukee (Fox Sports 1, 7 p.m.) and Dodgers at Colorado (MLB, 10 p.m.).

Hockey has Vancouver at St. Louis (NHL, 4 p.m.), Toronto at Montreal (NHL, 7 p.m.), Winnipeg at Arizona (NHL, 10 p.m.), Brooklyn at Milwaukee (NBA, 5 p.m.) and Philadelphia at Chicago (NBA, 8 p.m.).

Auto racing has NASCAR’s Alsco 300 (Fox Sports 1, 1 p.m.) and AMA Supercross (NBC Sports, 8 p.m.).

Women’s hockey has U.S. vs. Canada (NHL, 12:30 p.m.) for the IIHF world championship.

College football starts up with spring games at Clemson (ESPN2, 2:30 p.m.) and Arkansas (ESPNU, 4 p.m.).

In women’s college basketball, it’s Northwestern at Arizona (CBS Sports, 3 p.m.) for the WNIT championship.

Men’s college lacrosse includes Lehigh at Loyola (CBS Sports, 11 a.m.), Notre Dame at Duke (ESPNU, noon), Rutgers at Johns Hopkins  (ESPNU, 2 p.m.) and Villanova at Denver (CBS Sports, 5 p.m.).

Women’s college lacrosse includes Northwestern at John Hopkins (ESPNU, 10 p.m.).

College baseball includes Texas A&M at LSU (ESPN2, 8 p.m.) and Cal State Fullerton at Cal Poly (ESPNU, 11 p.m.).

College softball includes UCLA at Arizona State (ESPN2, 5 p.m.), Alabama at South Carolina (ESPN, 6 p.m.), LSU at Mississippi State (ESPNU, 6 p.m.) and Baylor at Oklahoma (ESPN, 8 p.m.).

Miguel and Alessia Cara play an “Austin City Limits” (PBS, 11 p.m., check local listings) from last year.

Kit Harrington, Jon Snow himself, hosts a new “Saturday Night Live” (NBC, 11:30 p.m.) with musical guest Sarah Barielles. The 2016 “SNL” episode hosted by another “Game of Thrones” star, Peter Dinklage, is replayed at 10 p.m., with musical guest Gwen Stefani.

 

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