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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

‘Double Jeopardy’ Run-Of-The-Mill Drama

John Martin New York Times Syndicate

There’s no question who killed Julia Marie Neuland. You find out in the opening sequence of “Double Jeopardy,” CBS at 9, that Baltimore police officer John Dubroski took the young mother for a ride and blew her brains out in the front seat of his pickup truck.

The first half of the fact-based movie, told in flashbacks, recounts how the married cop, played by Joe Penny, romances much younger Julia (Brittany Murphy), who subsequently has his child. When Dubroski breaks his promise to divorce his wife (Teri Garr) and refuses to support the child, Julia files a paternity suit.

The second half of the movie shows how, after his arrest, Dubroski hatches a sleazy scheme to beat the rap.

Penny is adequately chilling, and Murphy provides a suitable mix of naivete and stubbornness. But it results in a run-of-the-mill tale hampered by a spotty script. Absent is a legal-eagle prosecutor who outsmarts the killer.

Oddly, Dubroski’s devious courtroom strategy is revealed and then foiled in the space of less than five minutes. It’s a truly strange and anticlimactic turn of events.

Worth watching is always-outstanding Frederic Forrest, who plays Julia’s loving father. Garr is fine as Dubroski’s betrayed wife.

“Double Jeopardy” fails to separate itself from any number of similar movies-of-the-week. It will satisfy only those who haven’t tired of the endless stream of sensational crime stories.


“Nova,” KSPS at 7 The science series records the efforts to revive a World War II B-29 bomber abandoned in the arctic after a forced landing in 1947. The team of seven rescuers, battling the elements and fighting exhaustion, nearly perished in their quest.

“Wings,” NBC at 8: Fay (Rebecca Schull) decides on a hasty marriage to a man (guest star Norman Lloyd of “St. Elsewhere”) she meets on a cruise. Weddings never go quite as planned on this show. Don’t expect this one to be any different.

“Hot Shots! Part Deux” (1993), FOX at 8: Director Jim Abrahams (“Airplane!,” “Hot Shots!”) spares nothing when he sets out to make a parody, and this one is a relentless sendup of “Top Gun,” “Rambo III” and about a dozen other films.

Charlie Sheen is fearless commando Topper Harley. Lloyd Bridges is a crackup as ditzy President Tug Benson.

“3rd Rock From the Sun,” NBC at 8:30: Sally (Kristen Johnston) goes on her first date. You can imagine how things go for the male alien disguised as a voluptuous earth babe.

“Frasier,” NBC at 9: It seems as if we haven’t seen Daphne (Jane Leeves) dating much, but this week she has a boyfriend (Tony Carreiro) who spends the night. Also, Niles (David Hyde Pierce) fears that his beloved Maris is getting him dropped from Seattle’s society “A-list.”

“Frontline,” KSPS at 8: “So You Want to Buy a President” looks at what big-spending campaign contributors get in trade for their cash.

xxxx CABLE CALLS “The Celluloid Closet” (1995), HBO at 10: Hollywood’s love-hate relationship with homosexuals - from the “sissy” stars of the silent era to “Philadelphia” - is examined in this important film documentary.