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More News: July -- December 2005

DVD Collectibles:
Due Monday is 1999's "Toy Story 2 Special Edition," a two-disc set that adds a host of features to an already fabulous film, from Disney ... "Airplane: Don't Call Me Shirley! Edition" is a special edition of the 1980 film that virtually started the craze of spoof movies, directed by Jim Abrahams, David Zucker and Jerry Zucker, starring Robert Hays, Julie Hagerty, Lloyd Bridges, Leslie Nielsen, Robert Stack, Peter Graves and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, loaded with extras from Paramount ... Buena Vista has bought the rights to almost all of Roger Corman's indie films and is releasing two collections this week, the Roger Corman Early Films Collection, featuring such cult classics as "Caged Heat" (Jonathan Demme's first film), "Jackson County Jail" (starring a young Tommy Lee Jones), "Big Doll House" (starring Pam Grier), Penelope Spheeris' "Suburbia" and five others, $14.99 each; and the Roger Corman Comedy Collection, featuring "Beach Balls," "Corporate Affairs," "Loose Screws," "Welcome to Planet Earth" and five others, $14.99 each. (Posted December 26)

From TV to Video:
Due December 26: "Criss Angel: Mindfreak: The Complete Season One," a two-disc set with 15 episodes, $26.95 from A&E Home Video ... "Seaquest DSV: Season One," featuring all 23 episodes including the pilot, $59.98 from Universal. Due December 27: "America's Funniest Home Videos: Best of Kids & Animals," a three-disc set, $29.99 from Shout! Factory ... "Pterodactyl: Evil Is in the Air," a 2005 Sci Fi Channel telefilm starring Coolio, Amy Sloan and Cameron Daddo, from Showtime ... "The Shield: Season 4," a four-disc set with 13 episodes, $59.98 from Fox ... "Tracey Takes On ... Season One," a three-disc set with 10 episodes, $34.98 from HBO Video. (Posted December 26)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
Extending its "American Pie" franchise, Universal will release on December 26 the direct-to-video "American Pie Presents Band Camp" (2005) in which libidinous campers use hidden cameras to produce a series of raunchy band camp videos (featuring "bandies" played by Playboy Playmates). Eugene Levy reprises his role from the "American Pie" films. In R-rated and unrated editions, on DVD and VHS ... In "Shooting Gallery" (2005), a street kid with a gift for pool becomes the pawn in a dangerous contest of wits and Nine Ball between two legendary hustles. Stars Freddie Prinze Jr., Ving Rhames and Roselyn Sanchez, on DVD and VHS from First Look Home Entertainment on December 27 ... Also on that day MTI Home Video will release "Path of Evil" (2005), about a serial killer called the Key Hole Killer, who returns to his murderous ways in a small coastal town after a 20-year hiatus, starring Justin Ament, Ryan Deal and Carrie Finklea. (Posted December 26)

For the Kids:
Scholastic Media will release on December 27 two additions to its Scholastic Video Collection: "The Dot ... And More Stories to Make You Feel Good," featuring animated versions of Peter Reynold's wonderful story "The Dot," Mary Hoffman's "Amazing Grace" and William Steig's "Brave Irene," narrated by Thora Birch; and "Martin's Big Words ... And More Stories From the African-American Tradition," featuring a bio of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. using quotes from King's beloved speeches, narrated by Michael Clarke Duncan, and two other stories; $14.95 DVD and $9.95 VHS each. (Posted December 26)

Foreign:
Due December 27 is "Sonata for Viola" (1981). Banned for years by the Soviet government, "Sonata for Viola" is regarded as the definitive document on one of the 20th century's most important composers, Dmitri Shostakovich. Miraculously preserved from the hands of the KGB who wanted it destroyed, the film has been fully restored after being hidden for years. $29.95 from Facets Video ... "Ab-Normal Beauty" is a terror-fest from the acclaimed Pang brothers, about a photography student who becomes obsessed with death after photographing a horrible car accident; soon her obsession turns to terror. In Cantonese with English subtitles. Stars Race Wong, Anson Leung and Elkin Cheng. From Tartan Asia Extreme on DVD. (Posted December 26)

On the Indie Front:
On December 26, Image Entertainment will release "The Football Factory" (2004), a boozy, brawling saga of middle-class England, football (soccer) violence and male culture, a kind of "Fight Club" meets "Trainspotting." The film centers around Tommy Johnson, a bored twentysomething who lives for the weekend, casual sex, watered-down lager, and Hooliganism. On DVD for $24.99. (Posted December 26)

Special Interest:
Three interesting releases from A&E Home Video on December 26: "The Crusades: Crescent & the Cross," a 2005 History Channel documentary about the epic struggle between two religions and two cultures over one land, in a two-disc set, $29.95 ... "The Battle History of the United States Military" is a five-disc set with 17 documentary features with volumes on the Marines, Navy, Army, Air Force and Coast Guard, $59.95 ... and "The Mikado," in which Monty Python's Eric Idle teams with the English National Opera in a hilarious performance of Gilbert and Sullivan's beloved comic opera, $24.95 ... On December 27 World Wrestling Entertainment will release "Survivor Series," featuring the return of the legendary Undertaker with such matches as Team Raw vs. Team Smackdown, a last man standing match between Ric Flair and Triple H, a WWE Championship between John Cena and Kurt Angle, plus more; $24.95. (Posted December 26)

From TV to Video:
"The Amazing Race Season 7" is a four-disc set, $42.99 from Paramount ... "Battlestar Galactica: Season 2.0" is a three-disc set with 10 episodes, $49.98 from Universal ... "ER: The Complete Fourth Season" is a six-disc set with 22 episodes, $49.98 from Warner ... "Once Upon a Mattress" is a recent telefilm tweaking of the fairy tale, starring Carol Burnett, Tracey Ullman, Denis O'Hare, Zooey Deschanel and Tom Smothers, from Buena Vista ... "Party of Five: The Complete Second Season" is a five-disc set with 22 episodes, $49.95 from Sony. (Posted December 20)

Foreign:
"Vodka Lemon" (2003 -- Armenian) is a whimsical study of life in the snowy badlands of post-Soviet Armenia, a portrait of an abandoned community and the quirky characters that inhabit the surreal landscape, $24.95 from New Yorker Video. (Posted December 20)

On the Indie Front:
"Land of College Prophets" is a 2005 B-movie sci-fi-fantasy-black comedy by the Hale Manor Collective about college students who awaken an ancient two-story wishing well (The Well That Ate Children) possessed with toxic spirits that causes the townspeople to go insane and awakens an army of evil prophets; $14.95 from York Entertainment ... "Four Letter Words" (2000) is a comedy study of the post-adolescent male psyche as it focuses on a group of high school graduates gathering for a summer's night party, offering a raw look at the views, attitudes and language of young men in suburban America; $19.99 from Vanguard ... "Ice Men" (2004) is a new dramatic thriller about a group of friends who test the limits of friendship on a snowy hunting trip; the film is the feature directorial debut of Thom Best (who has directed many episodes of "Queer as Folk") and stars David Hewlett (from "Stargate: Atlantis"); $24.95 from Wolfe Video. (Posted December 20)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
In Hit Me" (2005), a bored 35-year-old office worker who happens to be a math whiz teams with a dangerous woman to take on Las Vegas in a blackjack card counting scam, starring Max Herholz and Camden Brady, from Monarch Home Video ... In "Fortune" (2005), three old friends have a night on the town and find themselves at a fortune teller, whose readings of the future change their lives forever, starring Mike McGlone, James Urbaniak, Tony Hale and Peter Dinklage, from MTI Home Video. (Posted December 20)

Special Interest:
"Martha's Baking Favorites" is the latest title from Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia featuring episodes of Stewart baking pies, cakes, tarts and cookies, with such extras as printable recipes and shopping lists for each segment on the DVD, "Baking Pantry 101," with a pastry tip glossary, cake decorating tips and techniques, and more; $19.98 from Warner ... After splurging with Stewart, you can exercise with Denise Austin in "Denise Austin: Hit the Spot Pilates," which focuses on abs and waistlines and hips, thighs and buttocks; "Burn Fat Fast: Cardio Dance and Sculpt" that helps fine-tune your body into a fat-burning machine; and "Denise Austin's Blast Away the Pounds Indoor Walk"; $14.98 each from Lions Gate. (Posted December 20)

Coming Soon:
Due January 9 from Universal is the high-stakes drama "Two for the Money," starring Al Pacino, Matthew McConaughey, Rene Russo, Armand Assante, Jeremy Piven and Gedde Watanabe ... Fox will release comedy "In Her Shoes," directed by Curtis Hanson and starring Cameron Diaz, Anson Mount, Toni Collette and Shirley MacLaine, on January 31 ... Also on January 31, Sony will release "The Legend of Zorro," starring Antonio Banderas, Catherine Zeta-Jones and Rufus Sewell ... Three films are due February 7: Frustrated waiters come to the fore in Lions Gate's "Waiting," starring Ryan Reynolds and Anna Faris; Universal will release video game turned movie "Doom," starring Karl Urban, Rosamund Pike and Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson; and Paramount will release Cameron Crowe's "Elizabethtown," starring Orlando Bloom, Kirsten Dunst, Susan Sarandon, Alec Baldwin, Bruce McGill, Jessica Biel and Loudon Wainwright III ... Two Valentine's Day releases: "Saw II," starring Donnie Wahlberg and Shawnee Smith, from Lions Gate; and actioner "Domino," about model-turned bounty hunter Domino Harvey, directed by Tony Scott and starring Keira Knightley, Mena Suvari, Christopher Walken, Lucy Liu, Mickey Rourke, Macy Gray and Jacqueline Bisset, from New Line ... and, on February 28, New Line will release David Cronenberg's "A History of Violence," starring Viggo Mortensen, Maria Bello, Ed Harris, William Hurt, Ashton Holmes and Peter MacNeill. (Posted December 13)

DVD Collectibles:
Buena Vista has acquired the vast Roger Corman library of 'B' and exploitation films, and is releasing them in several waves beginning this week. First up is "Rock 'n' Roll High School" (1979), the classic student vs. teacher teen film starring P.J. Soles, Vincent Van Patten, Clint Howard, Dey Young, Mary Woronov, Paul Bartel and The Ramones; extras include a new "Back to School: A Retrospective" featurette; commentary by Roger Corman and Dey Young; commentary by director Allan Arkush, producer Michael Finnell and screenwriter Richard Whitley; audio outtakes at the Roxy (original recordings of The Ramones during the shooting of the final scene); "Big Bad Mama," (1974), starring Angie Dickinson, William Shatner and Tom Skerritt, with a retrospective featurette; "Death Race 2000" (1975), starring David Carradine, Sylvester Stallone and Mary Woronov, with a retrospective featurette; and "DinoCroc" (2004), starring Costas Mandylor, Charles Napier, Jane Longenecker and Jake Thomas ... Sony will release this week the "Harryhausen Gift Set," a three-disc set with three classics, each with digitally mastered audio: "20 Million Miles to Earth" ( 1957), "Earth vs. the Flying Saucers" (1956) and "It Came from Beneath the Sea" (1955), $49.95. Each disc includes "The Harryhausen Chronicles" documentary and "This Is Dynamation" featurette; "Earth vs. the Flying Saucers" includes a making-of featurette. (Posted December 13)

From TV to Video:
Due this week: "The Dukes of Hazzard: The Complete Fifth Season," an eight-disc set with 22 episodes, $39.98 from Warner ..."Family Bonds," a single disc with 10 episodes, $29.95 from HBO Video ... "Gilmore Girls: The Complete Fifth Season.," a six-disc set for $59.98 from Warner ... "In the Line of Duty: The FBI Murders," a 1988 TV movie starring David Soul, Michael Gross. Ronny Cox and Bruce Greenwood, from Echo Bridge Home Entertainment ... "Miami Vice Season Two," a three-disc set with 22 episodes, $59.98 from Universal ... "Reba: Season Two," a three-disc set with 24 episodes, $39.98 from Fox ... "Roadracers," a 1994 TV movie, directed by Robert Rodriguez and starring David Arquette, John Hawkes, Salma Hayek, Jason Wiles and William Sadler, from Buena Vista ... "The Simpsons: Season Seven," a four-disc set with 23 episodes, $49.98 from Fox ... and "Tour of Duty: The Entire Series," a 14-disc set with all three seasons, $121.95 from Sony. (Posted December 13)

For the Kids:
The folks at Disney have created ""Kronk's New Groove," a direct-to-video sequel to the animated "The Emperor's New Groove," with the returning voice cast of Patrick Warburton, David Spade, John Goodman and Eartha Kitt. Extras include a "Kronk's Brain Game," "Pyramid Scheme" and "How to Cook a Movie" featurette; $29.99 ... "Scooby-Doo in Where's My Mummy?" is a direct-to-video Scooby-Doo animated feature with such extras as "Scooby-Doo: The Curse of the Lost Lunch," a National Geographic Entertainment featurette produced especially for kids in which Scooby-Doo, Shaggy and Kid "Y" discover King Tut's tomb in Egypt while in search of an ancient banquet; "Escape From the Ankh" interactive chamber challenge; "Mystery Voices" behind-the-scenes featurette that includes the voiceover talent of Casey Kasem and other stars who contributed to the feature; and Scooby-Doo rap music video; $24.98 from Warner. (Posted December 13)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
In the psychological thriller "Silence Becomes You" (2005), two beautiful sisters, leading a very close and remote life in a snow-bound New England mansion, begin to cook up evil schemes. After luring a young and handsome stranger, Luke, into their web, they begin to seduce him using their otherworldly powers. But the sisters' plan goes terribly wrong when they failed to consider the traumatic powers of lust, deceit, jealousy and betrayal. Stars Alicia Silverstone, Sienna Guillory, Joe Anderson and Leigh Lawson. On VHS and DVD from First Look Home Entertainment. (Posted December 13)

Foreign:
First Run features has added two more titles to its groundbreaking slate of titles form the German DEFA Collection (the state-run studios of the former German Democratic Republic -- East Germany). This week's offerings are films that explore the realities of Nazi Germany: "Naked Among Wolves" (1963), based on a true event and on the novel by Buchenwald survivor Bruno Apitz, was the first German film about life and death in a concentration camp. Jankowski, a Polish prisoner from Auschwitz, arrives at the Buchenwald concentration camp hiding a little boy inside a suitcase. When the prisoners and members of the camp's covert resistance group discover the boy, his innocence moves many, yet his possible discovery by the camp guards threatens them all. Stars Academy Award nominee Armin Mueller-Stahl in one of his first film roles. "Your Unknown Brother" (1981) is a landmark film exploring the role of the individual in confronting anti-fascism. It was invited to the Cannes Film Festival but, ironically (and tellingly), it was withdrawn by the East German authorities, who from that point undermined the artistic activities of director Ulrich Weiss, an independent, untamable and unpredictable talent. After being released from a Nazi camp for political prisoners, Arnold Clasen returns to Hamburg to lead a quiet life. He contacts Renate, with whom he is still in love. And, although he is aware of the danger of doing so, he begins a friendship with Walter, who is active in the resistance. But as old comrades are arrested one after another, Arnold begins to suspect that Walter, who remains unscathed, has betrayed them. On DVD, $24.95 each. (Posted December 13)

Special Interest:
Hollywood never tires of self-promotion. Due a day before "King Kong" opens in theaters is "King Kong: Peter Jackson's Production Diaries Gift Set," a two-disc billed as a set step-by-step, first-hand account of the eight-month production process for Peter Jackson's "King Kong." Introduced by Jackson, the package's 54 intriguing production diaries provide an opportunity to see stars Naomi Watts, Jack Black and Adrien Brody in action as they bring the tale of "King Kong" to the screen. As a special bonus, the set includes a fascinating, detailed look at the creation of one of the film's most exciting action sequences: the spectacular Kong/T-Rex battle scene. Gift Set Contents: A full-color book with more than 50 pages containing dozens of on-set and behind-the-scenes photographs, drawings and images from the production; four exclusive production lithographs created by the conceptual artists at Big Primate Pictures and WETA workshop, commissioned exclusively for the production diaries DVD collection and suitable for framing; numbered letter of authenticity; $39.98 from Universal. ... "Suze Orman: For the Young, Fabulous and Broke" is based on the #1 N.Y. Times best selling book "The Money Book for the Young, Fabulous and Broke," aimed at young adults (20 to 40) struggling with unprecedented financial challenges, $19.99 from Paramount ... "The Erasure Show -- Live in Cologne" (2005) was recorded during the group's 2005 European tour; $19.98 from Caroline Distribution. (Posted December 13)

DVD Collectibles:
Fox adds three titles to its Film Noir collection this week: "The Dark Corner" (1946), directed by Henry Hathaway and starring Lucille Ball, Clifton Webb, William Bendix, Mark Stevens, Kurt Kreuger and Cathy Downs; "Kiss of Death" (1947), also directed by Henry Hathaway, and starring Victor Mature, Brian Donlevy, Coleen Gray, Richard Widmark, Taylor Holmes, Howard Smith and Karl Malden; and "Where the Sidewalk Ends" (1950), directed by Otto Preminger and starring Dana Andrews, Gene Tierney, Gary Merrill, Bert Freed, Tom Tully, Karl Malden, Ruth Donnelly and Craig Stevens ... Two fine titles this week from The Criterion Collection: Francois Truffaut's "Shoot the Piano Player" (1960), starring Charles Aznavour, Marie Dubois, Nicole Berger and Michale Mercie; and Rene Clement's "Forbidden Games" (1952), starring Georges Poujouly, Brigitte Fossey, Amedee and Laurence Badie. Truffaut is drunk on the possibilities of cinema in his most playful, anarchic film. Part thriller, part comedy, part tragedy, "Shoot the Piano Player" relates the adventures of the mild-mannered piano player Charlie (Charles Aznavour, in a triumph of hangdog deadpan) as he stumbles into the criminal underworld and a whirlwind love affair. Loaded with gags, guns, clowns, and thugs, this razor-sharp homage to the American gangster film is pure nouvelle vague. A timeless evocation of the loss of innocence, Clement's devastating "Forbidden Games" tells the story of a young orphan and her friend forced to fend for themselves in World War II France. Featuring brilliant performances from its child stars, the film won the 1952 Academy Award for Best Foreign Film and remains a singular, breathtaking cinematic achievement. (Posted December 6)

"Imagine John Lennon Deluxe Edition" is the story of one of music's most enduring singer-songwriters, culled from a treasure trove: the legendary musician's own collection of more than 240 hours of film and videotape, much of it never seen by the public. With cooperation from Yoko Ono in its creation, producers David L. Wolper and Andrew Solt transform the archival footage -- and a monumental 36-tune soundtrack -- into a spellbinding account of a complex, fascinating man. Lennon's own voice narrates this classic biography. The $19.97 disc has 45 minutes of bonus features, including a never-before-seen acoustic performance of "Imagine," a tribute to Lennon, a trivia track, more; from Warner. (Posted December 6)

On a lighter note, Sony will release this week "The Matt Helm Lounge," a four-disc set with four Matt Helm super-spy films, $34.95: "The Silencers" (1966), starring Dean Martin, Stella Stevens, Daliah Lavi; "Murderer's Row" (1966), starring Dean Martin, Ann Margret, Karl Malden; "The Ambushers" (1967), starring Dean martin, Senta Berger, Janice Rule; and "The Wrecking Crew" (1969), starring Dean Martin, Elke Sommer, Sharon Tate ... The latest Walt Disney Treasures collections are due this week: "Walt Disney Treasures: The Adventures of Spin and Marty" and "Walt Disney Treasures: The Mickey Mouse Club: The Complete First Year: 1955-1956," each a two-disc set in a metal case, $32.99, from Disney. (Posted December 6)

From TV to Video:
Due this week: "Aqua Teen Hunger Force: Vol 4," a two-disc set with 13 episodes, $29.98 from Warner ... "Batman: The Animated Series -- Volume Four (DC Comics Classic Collection)," a four-disc set with 24 episodes, $44.98, from Warner ... "Cause Celebre," a 1987 telefilm starring Helen Mirren and David Suchet, from Koch Vision ... "The Count of Monte Christo" (1998 -- France) is a two-disc set of the French TV miniseries that aired on Bravo, starring Gerard Depardieu, Ornella Muti and Jean Rochefort, $29.98 from Koch Lorber ... "Everybody Loves Raymond: Season 5" (2000-01), a five-disc set with 25 episodes, $44.98 from Warner ... "Full House: The Complete Second Season," a four-disc set with 22 episodes, $29.98 from Warner ... "Garfield and Friends, Volume Five" (1993-94), a three-disc set with 24 episodes, $39.98 from Fox ... "Green Acres -- The Complete Third Season," a four-disc set, $29.95 from Sony ... "Jackass Volume One" with 50 never-before-released uncensored segments; $24.99 from Paramount ... "Jackass the Box Set" (2000-02),a four-disc set with all three volumes of "Jackass" (including the previously missing Volume 1) completely upgraded with never-before-released footage, an entire disc loaded with bonus features, plus a 48 page collectable book; $69.99 from Paramount ... "Gleason: The Jackie Gleason Story" is a 2002 tele-bio of the Great One, starring Brad Garrett and Saul Rubinek, from Echo Bridge Home Entertainment ... "Kenny Rogers Christmas Special: Keep Christmas With You" is a 1992 TV special recorded at the Grand Palace Theater in Branson, Missouri, featuring guests Garth Brooks, BoyzIIMen and Trisha Yearwood; $6.99 from Echo Bridge Home Entertainment.

"Kidnapped" is a 2005 Masterpiece Theatre presentation of Robert Louis Stevenson's adventure, starring Anthony Pearson, Iain Glen, Adrian Dunbar, Paul McGann, Gregor Fisher and Kirstin Coulter Smith; $19.95 from WGBH Boston Video ... "Law & Order: The Fourth Year" Contains 22 episodes, $59.98 from Universal ... "M*A*S*H Season Nine" is a three-disc set with 20 episodes, $39.98 from Fox ... "MacGyver -- The Complete Fourth Season" (1988-89) is a five-disc set with 19 episodes, $36.99 from Paramount ... "The Magnificent Seven -- Complete First Season" is a two-disc set with nine episodes, $29.95 from Sony ... "Murder She Wrote: Season Two" contains 22 episodes, $49.98 from Universal ... "Newlyweds: Nick & Jessica -- The Final Season" (2004) is a two-disc set of the fourth and final season, $26.99 from Paramount ... "The Proud Family Movie" is a 2005 telefilm based on the animated TV series, $14.99 DVD and VHS from Disney ... "The Rockford Files: Season One" is a three-disc set with 23 episodes, $39.98 from Universal ... "Roseanne: The Complete Second Season" is a four-disc set with 24 episodes, $39.98 from Anchor Bay ... "Superman: The Animated Series -- Volume Two (DC Comics Classic Collection)," a two-disc set with 18 episodes, $26.99 from Warner ... "That's So Raven: Raven's House Party" contains four music- and dance-themed episodes from the Disney Channel series, $19.99 VHS and DVD from Disney ... "24: Season Four" is a seven-disc set with 24 episodes, $69.98 from Fox ... "The West Wing: Season Five" is a six-disc set with 22 episodes, $59.98 from Warner. (Posted December 6)

For the Kids:
For girls there's " Felicity: An American Girl Adventure" (2005), a full-length live-action movie, based on American Girl's best-selling six-book series featuring Felicity, a 10-year old girl growing up in Colonial America, from Warner ... for the boys there's "Gargoyles Season 2, Volume 1: We Live Again," a three-disc set with 26 episodes, $39.99 from Buena Vista; "Power Rangers S.P.D.: Boom (Vol. 4)" and "Power Rangers S.P.D.: Zapped (Vol. 5)," each with three episodes, from Buena Vista; "Star Wars: Clone Wars -- Vol. 2" features five animated episodes, $19.98 from Fox; "Thundercats: Season One, Volume One" is a six-disc set, $64.92 from Warner; and "Yu-Gi-Oh! Volume 4.1: A New Evil" (2005), with seven episodes from the Kids' WB! show's fourth season, $14.98 from 4Kids Entertainment ... "Pet Alien: Lighter Side of Doom" features four 11-minute computer animated episodes from the kids series, $14.98 from Fox ... "Postcards From Buster: Buster's Buddies" (2005) includes four episodes from the series that uses a blend of animation and live action, starring Buster (from PBS' "Arthur" series), a curious world explorer who's always ready for fun and adventure; $14.99 from Paramount. (Posted December 6)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
In "Scarred" (2005), an urban legend comes to life as a family on a camping trip encounter a faceless woman wandering the woods looking for a replacement face, starring Hannah Leigh, Julian Berlin and Jonny Mack, from MTI Home Video ... "Dirty Love" (2005) is a Jenny McCarthy vehicle about a trashy woman seeking true love, co-starring Eddie Kaye Thomas and Carmen Electra, in rated and unrated versions on VHS and DVD from First Look Home Entertainment. (Posted December 6)

Special Interest:
"The Future of Food" is a 2005 documentary that examines the complex web of market and political forces that are changing the food we eat as huge multinational corporations seek to control the world's food system; the two-disc set includes "GE-Free Recipes" from eight of the country's most admired chefs and cookbook authors; an interview with New York Times journalist and U.C. Berkeley professor Michael Pollan on the real cost of food; Community Supported Agriculture (CSA)'s resource guide on farmers' markets; a section on seed saving; food and farming for kids; farmers' portraits and a downloadable "Taking Action" toolkit, $24.95 from Cinema Libre Studio ... WGBH Boston Video will release "Einstein's Big Idea," a NOVA documentary based on David Bodanis' best-selling book "E=MC2: A Biography of the World's Most Famous Equation," $19.95 ... In "Messiah," famed photographer/filmmaker William Klein reflects on the state of our society as he juxtaposes images from the modern world with the music of Handel's popular work, $29.98 from Koch Lorber ... "Penguins Under Seige" is a 2005 family program about South Africa's Blackfoot Penguins, $14.98 from Koch Vision ... "Bret Hart: Hitman" is a World Wrestling Entertainment documentary on the worldwide wrestling superstar; the three-disc set includes seven hours of interviews and 18 complete matches; $34.95. (Posted December 6)

Coming Soon:
On January 3 Universal will release Jim Jarmusch's quirky "Broken Flowers," starring Bill Murray, Julie Delpy, Jeffrey Wright, Frances Conroy, Jessica Lange and Tilda Swinton ... "Lord of War," starring Nicolas Cage, Bridget Moynahan, Jared Leto, Ethan Hawke, Eamonn Walker, Shake Tukhmanyan, Jean-Pierre Nshanian and Ian Holm, will arrive January 17 from Lions Gate ... On February 14 New Line will release "The Thing About My Folks," starring Peter Falk, Paul Reiser, Olympia Dukakis, Elizabeth Perkins, Mackenzie Connolly and Lydia Jordan. (Posted November 29)

From TV to Video:
"CSI: Crime Scene Investigation -- The Complete Fifth Season " (2004-5) is a seven-disc set with 24 episodes, $99.99 from Paramount ... "Crank Yankers: Season Two, Volume Two" (2005) is a two-disc set, uncensored, $26.99 from Paramount ... "Empire" (2005) is a two-disc set with all five hours of the TV miniseries, $29.99 from Buena Vista ... "Family Guy: Volume Three" is a three-disc set with the first 13 episodes from Season 3, $39.98 from Fox ... "Mission Hill: The Complete Series" is a two-disc set with 13 episodes, $29.98 from Warner ... "Project Runway: First Season" is a three-disc set, $39.99 from Miramax ... "Their Eyes Were Watching God" is a 2005 telefilm starring Halle Berry, Ruben Santiago-Hudson, Michael Ealy, Nicki Micheaux, Lorraine Toussaint, Ruby Dee and Terrence Howard, from Buena Vista ... "Timeslip: The Complete Collection" (1985) is a four-disc set with 26 episodes of the 1970s U.K. time travel series, $79.95 from A&E Home Video ... "The Tomorrow People: Set 2" (1975) is a four-disc set with all 26 episodes from the third and fourth seasons of the campy, family-friendly U.K. sci-fi series, $59.95 from A&E Home Video. (Posted November 29)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
In "Confession" (2005), a prep-high school junior confesses a murder to the parish Father and, relying on the priest's confidentiality, frames him for the crime. With the police investigating him, the priest must decide to stay silent or give up everything the priesthood holds sacred. The thriller stars Chris Pine, Cameron Daddo, Peter Greene, Tom Bosley and Bruce Davison; from MTI Home Video. (Posted November 29)

Foreign:
"Loving Couples" (1964 -- Sweden) is actress Mai Zetterling's directing debut that brings Agnes von Krusenstjerna's controversial Swedish feminist work to the big screen. The film is about three pregnant women from different backgrounds waiting to have their babies in a hospital during the "Great War" who relive their childhood and youthful experiences via flashback. Harriet Andersson, Gunnel Lindblom, Gio Petre, Anita Bjork and Gunnar Bjornstrand star. From New Yorker Video. (Posted November 29)

On the Indie Front:
Vanguard Cinema will release this week "New Guy" (2004), a comedy that mixes the cubicle world of "Office Space" with the terror of "The Twilight Zone"; "A Sudden Loss of Gravity" (2000), Todd Verow's second installment in the Addiction Trilogy, about three generations of small town rebels crashing and burning; and "The Award Winners of Hollywood Scarefest" (2005), a collection of fantastic horror short subjects from the annual Hollywood Scarefest; each $19.95 on DVD ... "Santa and Sons & Daughter" (2005), set in 1980, is a musical that looks at the futuristic world of Santa, Mrs. Claus and their family, and introduces Zwerkin, the harried inventor of the Teleportation Device that gets Santa into houses without chimneys. The feature length movie is directed by Robert Battaile and introduces nine original songs. It's available at www.santaandsons.com or Amazon.com ... Toronto based film company Substance Production -- run by brothers Jason and Brett Butler -- has released two privately funded feature films: "Alive and Lubricated" follows retail veteran Dickey and his buds over one memorable weekend after he gets dumped by his girlfriend; the film has reached cult status because of its crass characters and very real take on guy talk; and "Bums," a day-in-the-life comedy that follows the lives of six friends as their relationships blur together to produce love, laughs, lethargy and a loose cannon. Both are available from www.subprod.com or Amazon.com. (Posted November 29)

For the Kids:
"Hi Hi Puffy AmiYumi" is a half-hour animated series that takes real-life Japanese rock stars Puffy AmiYumi (Ami Onuki and Yumi Yoshimura, who were brought together in 1995 in a talent search and have since sold millions of albums) and turns them into super cool animated characters; the series has been an instant hit with Cartoon Network youngsters and preteens. Warner has released two DVD compilations of the series: "Hi Hi Puffy AmiYumi Volume 1: Let's Go!" and "Hi Hi Puffy AmiYumi Volume 2: Rock Forever," each with 12 episodes and bonus features, $14.95. (Posted November 29)

Special Interest:
"2005 World Series" captures the highlights of the 2005 World Series -- from Playoff Game 1 right though to the World Series Championship, $19.99 from MLB/Shout! Factory ... "The Secret Life of Geisha" (1999) is an intimate look at the culture, history, training and private lives of the most alluring women in Japan, narrated by Susan Sarandon, $19.95 from A&E Home Video ... "Unknown Chaplin" (1986) is Kevin Brownlow and David Gill's documentary on Charlie Chaplin, in three parts: "My Happiest Years," "The Great Director," and "Hidden Treasures," narrated by James Mason; $24.95 from A&E Home Video ... Before there was Russell Simmons' "Def Poetry Jam" there were "slams," spoken-word poetry contests that pitted poet against poet. "SlamNation" is a two-disc set ($29.95) from Docurama that explores this amazing cutthroat world, following several slam champions as they journey to the National Poetry Slam, the Super Bowl of spoken-word poetry. (Posted November 29)

Coming Soon:
Teen roller skating comedy "Roll Bounce," starring Bow Wow, Brandon T. Jackson, Marcus T. Paulk and Rick Gonzalez, will glide to video on December 13 from Fox ... Inspirational drama with music "The Gospel," starring Boris Kodjoe, Idris Elba, Clifton Powell, Aloma Wright, Donnie McClurkin, Omar Gooding, Tamyra Gray, Keshia Knight Pulliam and Nona Gaye, sings its way to DVD on January 3 from Sony ... John le Carre thriller "The Constant Gardener, starring Ralph Fiennes, Rachel Weisz, Hubert Kounde and Danny Huston, is due January 10 from Universal ... On January 24 Paramount will release "The Weather Man," starring Nicolas Cage, Michael Caine, Hope Davis, Gemmenne de la Pena, Nicholas Hoult and Michael Rispoli ... The 2005 remake of the 1980 horror classic "The Fog," here starring Tom Welling, Maggie Grace and Selma Blair, also arrives on January 24 from Sony ... Also on that day weird black comedy "Thumbsucker," starring Lou Taylor Pucci, Tilda Swinton, Vincent D'Onofrio, Vince Vaughn, Keanu Reeves, Benjamin Bratt, arrives from Sony ... On January 31 Warner will release the wild and wonderful stop-motion animation "Tim Burton's Corpse Bride," with the voices of Johnny Depp, Helena Bonham Carter, Emily Watson, Tracey Ullman, Albert Finney, Richard E. Grant, Christopher Lee and Danny Elfman ... On February 7 Sony will release Neil Gaiman and Dave McKean's fantastical fantasy "MirrorMask" ... Golf drama/biopic "The Greatest Game Ever Played," directed by Bill Paxton and starring Shia LaBeouf, Stephen Dillane, Elias Koteas and Peyton List, will swing its way home March 14 from Disney. (Posted November 22)

DVD Collectibles:
This week's highlights: Timed to take advantage of the December 14 release of Peter Jackson's "King Kong," Warner releases this week the original 1933 "King Kong," starring Fay Wray, Robert Armstrong and Bruce Cabot, in several configurations. There's a two-disc special edition, a two-disc collector's edition, and "The King Kong Collection." The $19.95 special edition includes the original classic in glorious black and white, restored and digitally mastered, with commentary by Ray Harryhausen and Ken Ralston, with Merian C. Cooper, Ernest B. Schoedsack, Ruth Rose, Fay Wray and Robert Armstrong; "I'm Kong: The Exploits of Merian C. Cooper" documentary by Kevin Brownlow; "RKO Production 601: The Making of Kong, Eighth Wonder of the World" a two-hour, seven-part feature; and much, much more. The $39.98 collector's edition puts the two-disc "Kong" set in a collectable tin with a 20-page reproduction of the original souvenir program, postcard reproductions of the original one sheets, and a mail-in offer for a reproduction of a vintage 27-inch-by-41-inch movie poster. The $39.92 "King Kong Collection" includes the two-disc special edition" and new-to-DVD "The Son of Kong" and "Mighty Joe Young."

Two diverse releases arrive from the folks at The Criterion Collection: "The Tales of Hoffmann" (1952), directed by Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger. In Jacques Offenbach's fantasy opera, the poet E.T.A. Hoffmann dreams of three women -- a mechanical performing doll, a bejeweled siren who steals his reflection, and the consumptive daughter of a famous composer -- all of whom break his heart in different ways. Powell and Pressburger create a phantasmagoric marriage of cinema and opera in their one-of-a-kind take on this classic story. Feverishly romantic, "The Tales of Hoffmann" is a feast of music, dance, and visual effects. In "Ran" (1985), legendary director Akira Kurosawa re-imagines Shakespeare's tragic King Lear as a singular historical epic set in 16th century Japan. Tatsuya Nakadai stars as Lord Hidetora, a warlord who cedes authority over his vast dominion to his eldest son, setting off a familial power struggle for control of his kingdom. Majestic in scope, "Ran" is a visual masterpiece in which Kurosawa contrasts the immensity of war with the crumbling of one family under the weight of betrayal, greed, and the insatiable thirst for power. As with all Criterion editions, these come packed with fine extras.

New Yorker Video will release this week "Punishment Park," Peter Watkins' controversial pseudo-documentary about the Vietnam War, dissent and repression in 1970s America. In the film, the war in Vietnam is escalating. There is massive public protest in the United States and elsewhere. President Nixon declares a state of national emergency and the Federal authorities are given the power to detain persons judged to be a risk to national security. In a desert zone in southwest California, a civilian tribunal passes sentence on groups of dissidents and gives them the option of participating in law enforcement training exercises in the Bear Mountain National Punishment Park. In an atmosphere of aggression and intimidation and in soaring temperatures, the prisoners have to fight for their lives as they are hunted down by the forces of law and order. The film has virtually been banned since its release in 1971. Extras include a new 28-minute introduction by Watkins; commentary by Dr. Joseph A. Gomez, founding director of Film Studies at North Carolina State University; "The Forgotten Faces" (1961), an 18-minute amateur film by Watkins recreating the 1956 Hungarian revolution; a text essay by media critic Scott MacDonald on audience response to the film; a Watkins filmography; the original 1971 press kit; and a 24-page booklet with the "Punishment Park" chapter from Gomez's book, "Peter Watkins." (Posted November 22)

From TV to Video:
Three hot offerings come home this week: Just in time for the December 2 big screen version of "Aeon Flux," starring Charlize Theron, comes "Aeon Flux: The Complete Animated Collection" (1991-95), a three-disc set with all the episodes plus extras, $39.99 from Paramount ... "Barbra Streisand: The Television Specials" is a five-disc set that includes Streisand's five CBS television performances: "My Name Is Barbra" (1965), "Color Me Barbra" (1966), "The Belle of 14th Street" (1967), "Barbra Streisand: A Happening in Central Park" (1968) and "Barbra Streisand ... And Other Musical Instruments" (1973), $59.99 from Warner ... And sure to top many a holiday season gift list are the Seinfeld compilations released this week by Sony -- and touted on cable: "Seinfeld Season 5" a four-disc set with 22 episodes, $49.95, and "Seinfeld Season 6" four-disc set with 24 episodes, $49.95, both with such extras as "Yada Yada Yada" commentaries; "In the Vault" deleted scenes; "Not That There's Anything Wrong With That" bloopers; "Notes About Nothing" trivia tracks; "Master of His Domain" stand-up footage, more. Sony will package both sets as the "Seinfeld Seasons 5 & 6 Giftset" that also includes a Puffy Shirt collectible and a reproduction of a handwritten script by Seinfeld; $119.95.

Also due this week: "Andy Griffith -- The Complete Fourth Season" (1963-64) is a five-disc set with all 32 episodes, $39.99 from Paramount ... "The Best and Worst of American Idol Limited Edition" includes DVDs of both the "Best" and "Worst" of "American Idol" plus an exclusive bonus disc, $34.98 from Capital Entertainment ... "CSI: Miami -- The Complete Third Season" (2004-5) is a seven-disc set, $59.99 from Paramount ... "Dark Shadows DVD Collection 21" is a four-disc set with 40 episodes, $59.98 from MPI Home Video ... "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" a two-disc set, $29.99 from Buena Vista ... "The Golden Girls Season Three" is a three-disc set with 25 episodes, $39.99 from Buena Vista ... "Home Improvement: Season Three" is a three-disc set with 22 episodes, $39.99 from Buena Vista ... "King of the Hill Season Five" is a three-disc set with 20 episodes, $39.98 from Fox ... "Leave It to Beaver The Complete First Season" is a four-disc set with 39 episodes, $49.98; in a lunchbox gift set, $69.98, from Universal ... "Tracey Takes On ... Season One" is a three-disc set with 10 episodes of the Tracey Ullman show; $34.98 from HBO Video ... "The True Stories Collection" features four telefilms about life-altering situations: "Choices of the Heart: The Margaret Sanger Story" (1995) starring Dana Delaney, Henry Czerny, Rod Steiger; "Guilt by Association" (2002) starring Mercedes Ruehl; "Her Desperate Choice" (1996) starring Faith Ford, Kyle Secor; "My Breast" (1994) starring Meredith Baxter, Jamey Sheridan; $9.98 each from MPI Home Video ... "The X-Files Mythology: Super Soldiers" is a four-disc set with 14 episodes centering around the results of secret government genetic engineering experiments, $39.98 from Fox. (Posted November 22)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
In "Skeleton Man" (2004), the evil spirit of an Indian warrior haunts the Pacific Northwest and may be responsible for the mysterious deaths of four Army Special Forces officers, starring Michael Rooker and Casper Van Dien, on DVD and VHS from MTI Home Video. (Posted November 22)

For the Kids:
Youngsters can plug into the King Kong hoopla this week with "Kong: King of Atlantis," a new direct-to-video animated feature about the rebirth of a modern Kong using DNA from the original; the film, which originally aired on Toon Disney Channel, contains three original songs; $19.98 from Warner. (Posted November 22)

Foreign:
"The Grand Role" (2005) is a French comedy about an American director who comes to Paris to cast a Yiddish version of "The Merchant of Venice," starring Stephane Freiss, Berenice Bejo and Peter Coyote, $29.95 from First Run Features ... "Scary True Stories: Ten Haunting Tales From the Japanese Underground" is a compilation of 10 allegedly true tales depicting the experiences of everyday people with ghosts and spirits, set in contemporary Japan. Three of the short films are directed by Norio ("Ring 0: Birthday") Tsuruta. The series is considered to be the godfather of the Japanese Horror film movement; $19.98 from Dark Sky/MPI Home Video. (Posted November 22)

On the Indie Front:
"The Ross McElwee DVD Collection" is a five-disc set with six films by the acclaimed nonfiction filmmaker, plus an hour of bonus material: "Charleen" (1978), "Backyard" (1984), "Sherman's March" (1986), "Time Indefinite" (1993), "Six O'Clock News" (1997) and "Bright Leaves" (2004); $99.95 from First Run Features. (Posted November 22)

Special Interest:
Manga: "Astro Boy Collectors Box Set" is a seven-disc set with 51 half-hour episodes, $39.98 from Manga Entertainment ... "Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex 2nd Gig Vol. 2" (2005) is the second season of the smash hit Japanese animated television series, $24.98 from Manga Entertainment.

Music: "Ozzfest 10th Anniversary" (2005) features performances, interviews and exclusive behind-the-scenes experiences -- plus live CD -- from the iconic tour's 10th year; $19.98 from Clear Channel Entertainment Home Video/Ventura Entertainment Enterprises ... "Still Growing Up: Peter Gabriel Live & Unwrapped" is a two-disc set featuring Gabriel live on his 2002 "Growing Up Live" tour, with performances at small, intimate venues around Europe, as well as the Anna Gabriel/Hamish Hamilton-directed documentary "Still Growing Up Unwrapped," which explores the world behind the songs; $29.99 from Rhino ... "Harry Chapin: Remember When, The Anthology" features 11 live performances from MPI Home Video.

Misc.: "The French Chef With Julia Child 2" offers eight hours of recipes and cooking, $39.95 VHS and DVD, from WGBH Boston Video ... "A Dog's Life: A Dogamentary" (2004) is a documentary on Chelsea, the Shih Tzu Diva, as she hits the streets of New York with her two-legged stage mother, filmmaker Gayle Kirschenbaum, on their never-ending comic search for love; features cameos by Albert Maysles, Joe Piscopo, Katie Couric and Al Roker, from Facets Video ... "Hell on Wheels" is a 2004 documentary that goes behind the scenes of Le Tour de France, $29.95 from First Run Features ... "Operation Last Patrol" (1972), is a documentary that follows Ron Kovic ("Born on the Fourth of July") and his fellow Vietnam veterans on their epic road trip to the Republican National Convention in Florida, $24.95 from Cinema Libre Studio. (Posted November 22)

Coming Soon:
Joss Whedon's sci fi TV series "Firefly" made it to the big screen as "Serenity," starring Nathan Fillion, Gina Torres, Alan Tudyk, Morena Baccarin, Adam Baldwin, Jewel Staite, Sean Maher, Summer Glau, Ron Glass, David Krumholtz and Chiwetel Ejiofor; Universal will release it to DVD on December 20 .... Sony will release gurgly underwater adventure "Into the Blue," starring Paul Walker, Jessica Alba, Scott Caan, Ashley Scott and Josh Brolin on December 26 ... On January 17 Warner will release lame police buddy comedy "The Man," starring Samuel L. Jackson and Eugene Levy ... Also on that day Miramax will release teen high school cop comedy "Underclassman," which stars Nick Cannon and Roselyn Sanchez ... "Venom," starring Agnes Bruckner, Jonathan Jackson, Meagan Good, Bijou Phillips and Method Man, will slither to DVD on January 17, from Dimension ... On January 24 Sony will release Roman Polanski's take on "Oliver Twist," starring Ben Kingsley, Barney Clark, Leanne Rowe, Mark Strong, Jamie Foreman and Harry Eden. (Posted November 15)

DVD Collectibles:
Paramount tickles funny bones this week with its "Airplane (Don't Call Me Shirley Edition)" (1980), directed by Jim Abrahams and David Zucker and starring Robert Hays, Julie Hagerty, Lloyd Bridges, Leslie Nielsen, Robert Stack, Peter Graves, Lorna Patterson, Stephen Stucker and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, with commentary, deleted scenes, trivia track, and more ... New Line Home Entertainment will release "The Harold Lloyd Comedy Collection," digitally remastered, restored and rescored, in a three-volume, seven-disc DVD collection that includes 15 feature films, 10 shorts and a bonus disc containing a treasure chest of extras including Harold Lloyd's home movies, star tributes, photo galleries, all-new interviews and featurettes, and a 3-D bonus photo disc with a pair of 3-D photo glasses. Having appeared in more than 200 films and widely considered to be one of cinema's most respected comic geniuses, Harold Lloyd was one of Hollywood's first true movie stars. This is the first comprehensive collection of the master's work. "The Harold Lloyd Comedy Collection" is available for $89.95; each volume can also be purchased separately for $29.95 each.

Three Fox studio classics arrive in stores this week: "The Sound of Music 40th Anniversary Edition" (1965), directed by Robert Wise and starring Julie Andrews, Christopher Plummer, Richard Haydn, Peggy Wood, Anna Lee, Portia Nelson, Ben Wright and Daniel Truhitte, in a two-disc set with commentary by Andrews and Plummer, a cast reunion, a tour of the film's shooting locations in Austria, and more ... "Oklahoma! 50th Anniversary Edition" (1955), directed by Fred Zinnemann and starring Gordon MacRae, Gloria Grahame, Gene Nelson, Charlotte Greenwood, Shirley Jones, Eddie Albert, James Whitmore, Rod Steiger, Barbara Lawrence and Jay C. Flippen, in a two-disc set with commentaries, sing-along subtitles and featurettes ... and "State Fair 60th Anniversary Edition"> (1945), directed by Walter Lang and starring Jeanne Crain, Dana Andrews, Dick Haymes and Vivian Blaine in a two-disc set with commentaries, a making-of documentary, and the 1962 version of "State Fair" with commentary by Pat Boone. (Posted November 15)

From TV to Video:
Due this week: "Buffy the Vampire Slayer: The Chosen Collection" is a limited edition 40-disc collector's case with all seven seasons with 144 episodes, $199.98. The set is -- of course -- loaded with extras, from Fox ... "Charmed -- The Complete Third Season" is a five-disc set with 22 episodes, $49.99 from Paramount ... "Cheers -- The Complete Seventh Season" (1988-89) is a four-disc set with 22 episodes, $39.99 from Paramount ... "Fantasy Island: The Complete First Season" is a four-disc set with 16 episodes, loaded with extras, $49.95 from Sony ... "The Flintstones: The Complete Fourth Season" is a four-disc set with 26 remastered and restored original episodes, $44.98 from warner ... "Frasier -- The Complete Seventh Season" (1999-2000) is a four-disc set with 23 episodes, $39.99 from Paramount ... Warner has two "Friends" releases this week: "Friends: The Complete Tenth Season," a four-disc set with 18 episodes from the final season, $44.98; and "Friends: The One With All Ten Seasons," a limited-edition collector's set that showcases all 10 seasons in an exclusive collectible case, $299.98 ... "Home Movies Season Three" is a three-disc set with 13 episodes, $34.98 from Shout! Factory ... "The Huckleberry Hound Show: Volume 1" is a four-disc set with 26 remastered and restored original episodes, $44.98 from Warner ... "Jane Goodall: Return to Gombe" is a 2005 Animal Planet special that follows the world-renowned primatologist on her annual return to Gombe National Park, site of the groundbreaking research she began more than 40 years ago, $14.94 from Sony ... "Murder One: Season Two" is a five-disc set with 18 episodes, $59.98 from Fox ... "P. Diddy Presents the Bad Boys of Comedy -- Season One" (2005) features the next generation of risk-taking stand-up comedians, from Paramount ... "Scrubs: Season 2" is a three-disc set with 22 episodes, $39.99 from Buena Vista ... "SpongeBob SquarePants: Where's Gary?" (2005) features a double-length episode, with two bonus episodes on the DVD, from Paramount ... "Stargate Atlantis: Season One" is a five-disc set, $59.95 from Sony ... "That '70s Show: The Complete Third Season" is a four-disc set with 25 episodes, $49.98 from Fox ... "A Thief of Time" is a 2004 PBS Navajo tribal mystery starring Gary Farmer, Adam Beach, Ernest Tsosie III and Wes Studi, from Paramount ... "Three's Company: Season Five" is a four-disc set, $39.98 from Anchor Bay ... "Winx Club Volume 2: The Power of Dragon Fire" contains six episodes of the kids series, $14.98 from 4Kids Entertainment ... "The Yogi Bear Show: The Complete Series" is a four-disc set with all 35 remastered and restored original episodes, $44.98 from Warner. (Posted November 15)

Special Interest:
"Wal-Mart: The High Cost of Low Price" (2005) is a documentary about Wal-Mart that takes viewers behind the glitz and into the real lives of workers and their families, business owners and their communities, in an extraordinary journey that will challenge the way you think, feel ... and shop. The critical look at the retail giant has caused Wal-Mart to hire an array of top-flight PR and spin-control experts to try to counter the opinions in the film. What is Wal-Mart hiding? The DVD will be available in video and music stores everywhere (except Wal-Mart, which refuses to stock it) for $12.95 -- with such extras as commentary by director Robert Greenwald, behind-the-scenes info, eight parody commercials and more -- from The Disinformation Company.

For music lovers there's "Ed Sullivan's Rock 'N' Roll Classics," a three-disc set that includes rare and extraordinary performances by rock legends including Ike & Tina Turner, Dusty Springfield, The Mamas & the Papas, Elvis Presley, The Beatles, Janis Joplin, The Bee Gees, The Byrds and many, many more (64 performances in all), culled from the legendary Sunday night variety show, $39.99 from Ventura Entertainment ... There's more music in "Loggins & Messina Live -- Sittin' In Again at the Santa Barbara Bowl" (2005), a live concert from their 2005 reunion tour; the DVD also Includes six bonus performances from a 1973 TV appearance on "Midnight Special"; from Rhino.

Lastly, there's "The Oprah Winfrey Show: 20th Anniversary Collection," a six-disc set celebrating 20 years of Oprah Winfrey, with exclusive never-before-seen footage as Winfrey takes a candid, open and intimate look back at all the most memorable moments of her years of history-making television, $40.00 from Paramount. (Posted November 15)

Coming Soon:
Internet thriller "Cry_Wolf," starring Julian Morris, Lindy Booth, Jared Padalecki, Jon Bon Jovi, Sandra McCoy, Kristy Wu, Jane Beard and Gary Cole, will creep its way to DVD on December 20 from Universal ... Due December 27 is acclaimed documentary "The Wild Parrots of Telegraph Hill," a wild audience favorite about a man and his flock in San Francisco, from Docurama ... Weak thriller "The Cave," starring Cole Hauser, Morris Chestnut, Lena Headey, Piper Perabo and Eddie Cibrian floats to video on January 3 from Sony ... Also on that day "My Date With Drew," a funny "documentary" about a young man's obsession with Drew Barrymore, arrives from First Look Home Entertainment ... On January 10 DreamWorks will release airplane thriller "Red Eye," directed by horrmeister Wes Craven and starring Rachel McAdams, Cillian Murphy, Brian Cox and Jayma Mays ... On January 17 Sony will release comedy "Junebug," starring Amy Adams, Ben McKenzie, Alessandro Nivola, Embeth Davidtz, Scott Wilson ... Compelling drama "Proof," starring Gwyneth Paltrow, Anthony Hopkins, Jake Gyllenhaal and Hope Davis, will arrive February 14 from Miramax. (Posted November 8)

DVD Collectibles:
Three fine foreign films come to DVD this week: "Pickpocket" (1959), Robert Bresson's masterful investigation of crime and redemption that tells the story of arrogant, young Michel, who spends his days learning the art of picking pockets in the streets, subway cars, and train stations of Paris. As Michel grows bolder and more adept at his crime, so too grows his fear that his luck is about to run out. And despite the pleadings of his sick mother and the lovely Jeanne to return to the world of the honorable, he is consumed by his compulsion to steal. Tautly choreographed and stylistically rigorous, Pickpocket reveals Bresson at his enigmatic, virtuosic best. From The Criterion Collection, with extras ... In "Ugetsu
(1953), the great Japanese director Kenji Mizoguchi draws on sources from both East and West for this, his crowning achievement. Set in 16th century Japan, a period of bloody civil war, the film is equally rooted in the postwar psyche of 1950s Japan. Focusing on an ambitious potter haunted by a beautiful ghost and a farmer who dreams of becoming a samurai, the film offers a commentary on the delusions of lust and power, the folly of war, and the stoic suffering of women. Renowned cinematographer Kazuo Miyagawa helps Mizoguchi seamlessly interweave the supernatural with reality, resulting in one of the most beautiful films of all time. Also from Criterion, in a two-disc set with extras, including a booklet featuring the original stories on which the film was based ... "La Dolce Vita Deluxe Collector's Edition" (1960), directed by Federico Fellini and starring Marcello Mastroianni, Anita Ekberg and Anouk Aimee, has been digitally remastered and restored in a three-disc set. The package includes a 40-page collector's book, five 5x7 photo cards, an 11x17-inch limited edition poster as well as a host of extras; from Koch Lorber for $79.98.

Modern titles this week include "Edward Scissorhands Collector's Edition," (1990), directed by Tim Burton and starring Johnny Depp, Winona Ryder, Dianne Wiest, Anthony Michael Hall, Kathy Baker and Alan Arkin, with extras for $14.98; also available in a collectible tin with six souvenir photos from the film, $19.98 from Fox ... Just in time for the theatrical release of "Zathura," based on the book by Chris Van Allsburg, Sony is releasing the DVD of another film based on work by Van Allsburg, "Jumanji Deluxe Edition." The 1995 film as directed by Joe Johnston and starred Robin Williams, Bonnie Hunt, Kirsten Dunst, Bebe Neuwirth, David Alan Grier, Patricia Clarkson, Bradley Pierce, Jonathan Hyde and Adam-Hann-Byrd. The two-disc set -- which includes tons of extras -- is packaged in an outer sleeve that opens to reveal a playable board game; $19.95.

And don't forget the cultural milestone, "The Lenny Bruce Performance Film" (1967), the only complete stand-up performance by Lenny Bruce captured on film, recorded live at San Francisco's Basin Street West in 1965. Includes Lenny Bruce's short "Thank You Masked Man"; $19.98 from Koch Vision. (Posted November 8)

From TV to Video:
Due this week: "Beavis & Butthead: The Mike Judge Collection -- Volume One," a three-disc set of uncut episodes, $39.99 from Paramount ... "Blue Collar TV: The Complete First Season," a five-disc set with 31 episodes, $39.98 from Warner ... "A Different World: Season One," a four-disc set, $39.99 from UrbanWorks Entertainment ... "Five Mile Creek: The Complete First Season," a four-disc set with 13 episodes, $39.99 from Disney ... "Jeopardy!" is a single-disc with five of the most-watched episodes, including Alex Trebek's premiere episode, the last episode of Ken Jennings' famous winning streak, and all three episodes from the 2005 Ultimate Tournament of Champions, from Sony ... "The Kingdom: Series One" (1994), with three episodes from the Danish supernatural TV series -- directed by Lars von Trier -- that inspired Stephen King's "Kingdom Hospital," in a two-disc set, $34.98 from Koch Lorber ... "Miracle's Boys," a Spike Lee-directed 2005 Nickelodeon urban teen telefilm starring LeVar Burton, Ernest Dickerson, Neema Barnette, Bill Duke, Sean Nelson, Pooch Hall, Julito McCullum and Jorge Posada, from Paramount ... "The Partridge Family: The Complete Second Season," a three-disc set with 24 episodes, $29.95 from Sony ... "Remington Steele Season Two" (1983-84), a four-disc set with 21 episodes, $39.98 from Fox ... "Tales From Avonlea: The Complete First Season," a three-disc set of the live-action television series set in the village of Avonlea on picturesque Prince Edward Island circa 1910, $34.99 from Disney ... "The White Shadow Season One" (1979-80), a four-disc set with 15 episodes, $39.98 from Fox. (Posted November 8)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
"Dot.Kill" (2005) is a thriller about a morphine-addicted detective on the trail of a sophisticated psychopath who is setting up murders and broadcasting them live on the Internet, starring Armand Assante, on VHS and DVD from First Look Home Entertainment ... Teen idol Aaron Carter stars in the family comedy "Pop Star" (2005) about a pop star who goes back to school and must pass math or forfeit his summer tour; naturally he falls in love with the school math nerdess; on DVD from new Line. (Posted November 8)

For the Kids:
"Popular Mechanics for Kids Box Set" is a six-disc set with 24 episodes from the Discovery Kids TV series inspired by the magazine, $54.98. Each disc is available separately at $14.98: "Slither and Slime and Other Yucky Things," "Super Sea Creatures and Awesome Ocean Adventures," "Rip-Roaring Rollercoasters and All Access to Fun," "Radical Rockets and Other Cool Cruising Machines," "Gators & Dragons and Other Wild Beasts" and "X-treme Sports & Other Action Adventures"; from Koch Vision ... "What's New Scooby-Doo? Vol. 7: Ghosts on The Go!" contains four episodes from the "What's New Scooby-Doo?" hit animated television series airing on Cartoon Network; $14.95 from Warner ... Two from Disney: "Ducktales Volume 1," a three-disc episodes 1-27 featuring Scrooge McDuck's wild adventures, $34.99; and "Rescue Rangers Volume 1," featuring episodes 1-27 of the adventures of Chip and Dale as the leaders of the international organization devoted to tackling unsolved mysteries and oddball crimes, in a three-disc set for $34.99. (Posted November 8)

Special Interest:
"Las Vegas: An Unconventional History is a 2005 PBS American Experience special, $24.99 from Paramount ... "Pioneers of Primetime is a 2005 documentary tribute to the icons of early television: Milton Berle, Bob Hope, Red Skelton, Sid Caesar, Morey Amsterdam, Rose Marie, Donald O'Connor, Sammy Davis Jr. and Steve Allen; $16.99 from Paramount ... "Weapons of Mass Destruction: The Murderous Reign of Saddam Hussein," is a documentary on the rise and fall of Iraq's dictator, $19.95 from Monarch Home Video.

Comedy: "Assassin" is Margaret Cho's latest stand-up act, recorded at the Warner Theatre in Washington, D.C., in May 2005. The $19.98 DVD includes such extras as "The Making of Assassin: Inside the Mind of Margaret Cho," "Margaret Cho's Belly Dancing" segment, "Ode to Margaret Cho" short film an animated rap video by MCMC, more, from Koch Vision... "Big Black Comedy Show Volume 4" is a live comedy show hosted by Ralphie May, $19.98 from Key Video/Fox.

Music and more: "The Who: Tommy and Quadrophenia Live With Special Guests" is a three-disc set containing "Tommy" performed in 1989 at the Universal Amphitheatre in Los Angeles (Disc 1), "Quadrophenia" performed live, from their 1996-97 tour, which marked the first time the work was performed as Pete Townshend and Roger Daltrey had envisioned it (Disc 2) and a third disc with nearly two hours of live hits; from Rhino ... "Live 8" (2005) is a four-disc set that contains three discs of live footage taken from the Live 8 shows staged in London and Philadelphia, with the fourth disc sporting key highlights from the seven other events staged across the world. Every artist who performed at London's Hyde Park and Philadelphia's Museum of Art appear on the DVD, many of them with their full sets; $53.98. (with a 12-page booklet) from EMI ..."50 Cent: Refuse to Die" is a 2005 documentary on the hip-hop artist, $19.97 from Warner ... "Soundstage: Lindsey Buckingham With Stevie Nicks" (2005) spans the various eras of Lindsey Buckingham's career; songs include "Big Love," "Go Your Own Way" as well as a special appearance by Stevie Nicks on two songs including the "Rumours" hit "Never Going Back Again"; $19.98 from Koch Vision ... "Reefer Madness -- The Movie Musical." (2005) stars Neve Campbell, Christian Campbell, Kristen Bell, Alan Cumming, Ana Gasteyer, Amy Spanger, Robert Torti and Steven Weber; extras include the complete original black & white version of the 1936 film, housed in a chocolate brownie smelling Amaray case; from Showtime.

Sports: Warner Home Video has a slug of sports DVDs this week: "NBA Dynasty Series: The Complete History of the New York Knicks" is a five-disc set that chronicles one of the most storied franchises in the history of the NBA, $49.98 ... "NBA's Top 10 Greatest" is a five-disc set that spans the history of the NBA and profiles the greatest NBA Finals moments, the greatest duel, the greatest new star, landmark games and much more, $32.92 ... four new "NBA Hardwood Classics" titles: "NBA Hardwood Classics: Michael Jordan's Playground" ($12.98), "NBA Hardwood Classics: Michael Jordan: Come Fly With Me" ($12.98), "NBA Hardwood Classics: NBA Showmen: The Spectacular Guards" ($9.98) and "NBA Hardwood Classics: Courtside Comedy" ($9.98) ... and, lastly, now that the NHL is back on the ice, check out "Honor & Courage: Tough Guys of the NHL," a behind-the-scenes look at the game's toughest players, $19.98. (Posted November 8)

Coming Soon:
Due December 20 is "The Exorcism of Emily Rose," based on a true story and starring Laura Linney, Tom Wilkinson, Campbell Scott, Jennifer Carpenter and Colm Feore, from Sony ... Also on that day Buena Vista will release Terry Gilliam's weird take on "The Brothers Grimm," starring Matt Damon, Heath Ledger, Peter Stormare, Jonathan Pryce, Monica Bellucci and Lena Headey ... Driving its way to home video on January 10 is "Transporter 2," starring Jason Statham, from Fox. (Posted November 1)

DVD Collectibles:
John Hughes fans and followers of popular culture will love "The Brat Pack Movies & Music Collection," a three-disc set in a collectible 3-ring binder package containing "The Breakfast Club," "Sixteen Candles" and "Weird Science," plus a CD of eight memorable songs from the films, $39.98 from Universal. (Posted November 1)

From TV to Video:
Due this week: "The Adventures of Pete and Pete -- Season Two," a two-disc set with all the episodes from the second season, $49.99 from Paramount ... "All the King's Men" is a 1999 Masterpiece Theatre drama that chronicles the true story of England's vanished army regiment, one of the most compelling and curious legends of World War I. Stars Maggie Smith, David Jason and David Troughton, from WGBH Boston Video ... "American Chopper: The Series -- Third Season" is a three-disc set with 13 episodes, $29.96 from Sony ... "Backstairs at the White House" is a four-disc set with the complete 1979 nine-hour NBC mini-series based on the autobiographical novel by Lillian Rogers Parks, with a stellar cast that includes Olivia Cole, Leslie Uggams, Louis Gossett Jr., Robert Hooks, Leslie Nielsen, Cloris Leachman, Paul Winfield, Julie Harris, Victor Buono, Robert Vaughn, Kim Hunter, Claire Bloom, Celeste Holm, George Kennedy, Ed Flanders, Lee Grant, Larry Gates, Jan Sterling, Eileen Heckart, John Anderson, Harry Morgan, Estelle Parsons, Barbara Barrie and Andrew Duggan, $59.99 from Acorn Media ... "The Brady Bunch -- The Complete Fourth Season" is a four-disc set, $38.99 from Paramount ... "The Dick Cavett Show -- John & Yoko Collection" is a two-disc set with three complete episodes of the legendary late-night talk show featuring off-the-cuff, unreserved interviews as well as rare live performances by John and Yoko, $24.98 from Shout! Factory ... "Fame: The First Season," a four-disc set with 16 episodes from the 1982 season, $49.95 from Sony ... "A Foreign Field" is a 1993 Masterpiece Theatre drama about two British WWII vets and one American WWII vet who return to Normandy on the 50th anniversary of D-Day, starring Alec Guinness, Leo McKern, Edward Herrmann, John Randolph, Geraldine Chaplin, Lauren Bacall, Dorothy Grumbar and Jeanne Moreau, $24.99 from Acorn Media ... "Foyle's War, Set 3" is a four-disc set with four episodes of the WWII British mystery series, $59.99 from Acorn media ... " The Inspector Lynley Mysteries -- 1, 2 and 3" is a 13-disc set with 13 murder mysteries based on the characters created by mystery novelist Elizabeth George, from WGBH Boston Video ... Six volumes of Inspector Morse mysteries, starring John Thaw as the suave detective, will be released by BFS Entertainment and Multimedia Limited with an $89.98 price tag: "The Dead of Jericho," "The Last Enemy," "The Infernal Serpent," "The Dead on Time," "The Absolute Conviction" and "The Remorseful Day", each contains five to six full-length adventures ... "Monster Garage: Season 3," a three-disc set with 13 episodes, $29.96 from Sony ... "The Moonstone" is a 1996 Masterpiece Theatre production of Wilkie Collins' classic mystery thriller, starring $19.95 from WGBH Boston Video ... "The New Outer Limits: Season 1" contains 22 episodes, $54.96 from Sony ... "Sex and the City: The Complete Series" is a 19-disc set with all 94 episodes from all six seasons in a deluxe collectible packaging with a plexiglass case, $299.95 from HBO Video ... Since 1993 Sean Bean has starred as Richard Sharpe, a maverick British officer during the Napoleonic Wars; BFS Entertainment and Multimedia Limited has released three sets of his U.K. adventures: "Sharpe's Rifle Collection," "Sharpe's Sword Collection" and "Sharpe's Revenge Collection," each eight-hours long and priced at $79.98 ... "Star Trek: Enterprise -- The Complete Fourth Season" is a six-disc set with all the episodes from the fourth and final season, $129.99 from Paramount; meanwhile "Star Trek: Enterprise -- The Complete Series" sells for $479.98, from Paramount ... "21 Jump Street: Season Four" is a four-disc set, $44.98 from Anchor Bay ... "War of the Worlds -- The Complete First Season," a six- disc set with 23 episodes, $39.99 from Paramount ... "World Poker Tour -- The Best of Season Three," a four-disc set, $39.98 from Shout! Factory. (Posted November 1)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
"Convicted" is a 2004 thriller about a convicted murderer spending her final days on death row whose fate falls into the hands of an investigator who uncovers untold secrets that may set her free, from director Bille August and starring Connie Nielsen, Aidan Quinn and Kelly Preston, on VHS and DVD from First Look Home Entertainment ... Based on an Asian mythical hero, "Forbidden Warrior" is a 2004 actioner about a young Seki who discovers that she is the only living person with the power to control an all-powerful book of spells that controls the destiny of the world, starring Marie Matiko, Sung Yang, Karl Yune and James Hong, on VHS and DVD from MTI Home Video. (Posted November 1)

For the Kids:
"Alvin and the Chipmunks: A Chipmunk Christmas" is a compilation of Chipmonk Christmas specials from 1981, 1988 and 1989, $14.99 from Paramount ... "Duel Masters -- The Day the Duel Stood Still" and "Duel Masters -- Frankly Shobu, I Don't Give a Duel!" each contain four episodes from the TV series based on the hot-selling Duel Masters boy's trading card game showcasing battle creatures, $16.99 each from Paramount ... Disney has three holiday-themed releases due this week: "Disney Channel Holiday DVD" with holiday-themed episodes from "Lizzie McGuire," "That's So Raven," "The Suite Life of Zack & Cody," "Even Stevens" and "Kim Possible," $19.99 VHS and DVD; "The 3 Wise Men," a 2003 animated Christmas tale with the voices of Martin Sheen, Emilio Estevez, Lupillo Rivera and Marcos Witt, $19.99 DVD; and the preschool-oriented "A Very Playhouse Disney Holiday," featuring episodes from "Jojo's Circus," "Higglytown Heroes" and "Shanna's Show," $19.99 VHS and DVD. (Posted November 1)

Special Interest:
"Motown Gold on the Ed Sullivan Show" features historic musical performances videotaped between 1964 and 1971 on Sullivan's iconic Sunday night show, highlighting 20 performances by some of Motown's greatest artists including Gladys Knight, Stevie Wonder, The Jackson 5, Diana Ross and the Supremes, Smokey Robinson and the Miracles, The Four Tops and Marvin Gaye, $24.95 from Ventura Entertainment ... "The Forgetting: A Portrait of Alzheimers" is a 2004 PBS Emmy-winning documentary on the disease, $19.99 from Paramount ... In 1985 Whoopi Goldberg made her HBO debut with a solo special from Broadway directed by Mike Nichols; 20 years later she returned for another outing. "Whoopi: Back to Broadway -- The 20th Anniversary" includes both solo Broadway comedy specials, $24.98 from HBO Video. (Posted November 1)

DVD Collectibles:
Lots of great releases this week. First there's two new versions of "The Wizard of Oz" (1939), with a new digital transfer and remastered sound, in a two-disc Special Edition and a three-disc Collector's Edition. Extras on both editions include commentary by historian John Fricke; four documentaries, including one on the restoration process; outtakes and deleted scenes; home movies made on the "Oz" set by composer Harold Arlen; an "Oz Jukebox" of recording session materials; radio shows; promo spots. On the Collector's Edition extras include a new documentary about "Oz" author L. Frank Baum; five pre-1939 "Oz" movies, the earliest of which dates back to 1910; reproductions of the invitation and program for the film's Aug. 15, 1939 premiere at Grauman's Chinese Theatre. From Warner Home Video ... Paramount will release this week "Jerry Lewis -- 'The Legendary Jerry' Collection," a 10-disc set with: "The Stooge," "The Delicate Delinquent," "The Bellboy," "Cinderfella," "The Ladies Man," "The Errand Boy," "The Nutty Professor Special Edition," "The Patsy," "The Disorderly Orderly" and "The Family Jewels"; $62.99 from Paramount ... Paramount also will release "Detective Story" (1951), directed by William Wyler and starring Kirk Douglas, Eleanor Parker, William Bendix, Cathy O'Donnell, George Macready, Horace McMahon, Gladys George, Joseph Wiseman and Lee Grant; and "The Strange Love of Martha Ivers" (1946). starring Barbara Stanwyck, Kirk Douglas, Van Heflin, Lizabeth Scott, Judith Anderson, Roman Bohnen and Darryl Hickman.

The Criterion Collection will release two superb foreign outings: "Le Samourai" (1967 -- France), directed by Jean-Pierre Melville and starring Alain Delon in a career-defining performance, in which he plays blue-eyed Jef Costello, a fedora- and trench-coat-wearing contract killer with samurai instincts. When Jef assassinates a nightclub owner, he finds himself confronted by a series of witnesses, who drop his perfect world into the hands of a persistent police investigator and Jef's shadowy employer, both of whom are determined to put an end to the smooth criminal. A razor-sharp cocktail of 1940s American gangster cinema and 1960s French pop culture -- with a liberal dose of Japanese lone-warrior mythology -- maverick director Jean-Pierre Melville's masterpiece defines cool ... "The Wages of Fear" (1953 -- France), directed by Henri-Georges Clouzot and starring Yves Montand, Charles Vanel, Peter van Eyck, Antonio Centa, Darling Legitimus, Luis De Lima, in a two-disc set with a new, restored high-definition digital transfer. In the squalid, impoverished South American town of Las Piedras, desperate men and women from all over the world scrape out a living and dream of escape, under the watchful eye of the ruling Southern Oil Company. When a well explodes 300 miles away, the American company conscripts four of these unfortunates to drive trucks loaded with volatile nitroglycerin through treacherous mountains, a suicide mission that is their only way out. With "The Wages of Fear," legendary director Henri-Georges Clouzot created one of the greatest thrillers ever committed to celluloid -- an epic portrait of courage and cowardice, bursting with white-knuckle suspense and raw emotion. As with all Criterion releases, both titles are loaded with extras.

Rebellion! The political and cultural tumult of the 1960s shook Japan as it did the rest of the world. Japanese filmmakers responded to the changing times by disguising themes of dissent in the traditional form of the swordplay film, or chanbara. Previously populated by heroic samurai, self-sacrificing ronin, and historical figures who exemplified noble Japanese virtues, the genre began embracing a new kind of hero, or antihero: the lone outcast, distrustful of authority but maintaining a personal code of honor. In "Rebel Samurai: Sixties Swordplay Classics," four classic films, from four masters of Japanese cinema, turn a genre upside down, redefining for a modern generation the meaning of loyalty and honor, as embodied by the iconic figure of the samurai. The boxed set from Criterion includes "Samurai Rebellion," "Sword of the Beast," "Samurai Spy" and "Kill!"; $99.95 or $29.95 each.

Two horror films from the 1960s, "The Flesh Eaters" and Japanese sci-fi thriller "Terror Beneath the Sea" will be released by Dark Sky Films this week. "The Flesh Eaters" (1964) is a cult classic and considered the first "gore" film of the genre. A down-on-his luck charter pilot (Byron Sanders) gets more trouble than he bargained for when he agrees to fly an alcoholic actress and her personal assistant to Provincetown. But, mechanical problems and bad weather force them to land on an uninhabited island, where a German scientist is breeding flesh-eating organisms in the ocean ... In "Terror Beneath the Sea" (1966), starring legendary action hero Sonny Chiba, two reporters sense something sinister in the water after watching a Navy test of a new torpedo which ends abruptly when a strange creature swims into view. The two go deep-sea diving to investigate, but unbeknownst to them, an evil scientist is busily creating a new race of water cyborgs to populate his futuristic underwater kingdom.

For "Titanic" fans, Paramount will release this week "Titanic Special Collector's Edition" directed by James Cameron and starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Kate Winslet, Billy Zane, Kathy Bates, Frances Fisher, Gloria Stuart, Bill Paxton, Bernard Hill and David Warner, in a three-disc set, with such extras as commentary by Cameron, a cast and crew commentary, alternate ending, 29 deleted scenes, historical commentary, stunts featurette, and a Celine Dion music video, $29.99 from Paramount.

What's up doc? There's more delightful cartoon madness when Bugs Bunny and the entire Looney Tunes gang join Tom and Jerry for another round on DVD via Warner Home Video. Following the success of the first two Looney Tunes volumes, Warner will bring two brand new installments of the animated classic to DVD with "Looney Tunes Golden Collection Volume Three," a four-disc collector set that includes 60 uncut, re-mastered and restored animated shorts, some of which have never been released before, $64.92; "Looney Tunes Movie Collection," a two-disc set with two animated features: "The Bugs Bunny/Road-Runner Movie" and "Bugs Bunny's 3rd Movie: 1001 Rabbit Tales"; $26.99; and "Tom and Jerry Spotlight Collection Volume 2," a two-disc set with 38 original, uncut shorts (including their screen debut "Puss Gets the Boot"), $26.99. (Posted October 25)

From TV to Video:
"Alias: The Complete Season Four," a six-disc set with 22 episodes, $59.99, from Buena Vista ... "The Ambassador" (1998), a U.K. TV series starring Pauline Collins and Russell Lewis in a three-disc set, $49.98 from BFS Entertainment and Multimedia Limited ... "American Gothic: The Complete Series" features 22 episodes plus four "lost" episodes, $49.98 from Universal ... "Best Of MADtv Seasons 8, 9 & 10" is a single-disc with the most popular sketches from seasons 8, 9 and 10, specially picked by the producer, $14.97 from Warner ... "The Beverly Hillbillies and Petticoat Junction Ultimate Christmas Collection" features "The Beverly Hillbillies" episodes "Home for Christmas" (1962) and "Christmas at the Clampetts" (1963) and "Petticoat Junction" episode "Cannonball Christmas" (1963), $14.98 from MPI Home Video ... "Bewitched: The Complete Second Season" is a five-disc set with 38 episodes, $39.95 from Sony ... "The Charles Dickens Collection" is a five-disc set with "Oliver Twist," "Great Expectations" and "David Copperfield," $59.95 from WGBH Boston Video ... "Degrassi Junior High: The Complete Series," a nine-disc set with 42 episodes, $99.95 from WGBH Boston Video ... "The Doris Day Show, Season 2" (1969-70), a four-disc set with 26 episodes, $39.98, from MPI Home Video.

"Empires Collection: Dynasties," a five-disc gift set compilation of five outstanding PBS stories of some of history's greatest dynasties: "The Greeks: Crucible of Civilization" (2000), "The Roman Empire in the First Century" (2001), "Egypt's Golden Empire" (2002), "Japan: Memoirs of a Secret Empire" (2004), "The Medici: Godfathers of the Renaissance" (2004); $89.99 from Paramount ... "Hart to Hart: The First Season" is a six-disc set with 23 episodes, $49.95 from Sony ... "The Hilarious House of Frankenstein" features four of the most memorable and spook-tacular 30-minute episodes from the campy cult television classic that starred Vincent Price and Billy Van and ran on Canadian and U.S. TV for over 25 years, beginning in 1971; $14.98 from Empire Pictures ... "In Living Color Season Four" is a three-disc set with 33 episodes, $39.98 from Fox ... "Ken Burns American Lives" is an eight-disc gift set of seven outstanding PBS biographies and stories about some of America's most celebrated pioneers and historical events: "Thomas Jefferson" (1997), "Lewis and Clark" (1997), "Frank Lloyd Wright" (1998), "Not for Ourselves Alone: The Story of Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony" (1999), "Mark Twain" (2002), "Horatio's Drive" (2003), "Unforgivable Blackness: The Rise and Fall of Jack Johnson" (2005); $139.99 from Paramount.

"The L Word: The Complete Second Season" is a four-disc set, $69.99 from Showtime ... "Little House on the Prairie -- The Complete Season 9" (1982-83) is a six-disc set, $49.95 from Goldhil Entertainment ... "The Masterpiece Theatre Collection -- Romance" is a seven-disc set with three romance stories from Masterpiece Theatre: "Anna Karenina," "Wuthering Heights" and "Reckless"; $79.95 from WGBH Boston Video ... "The Munsters: The Complete Second Season" features 32 episodes, $49.98 from Universal ... "The Mystery! Collection" is a five-disc set with "The Inspector Lynley Mysteries: A Great Deliverance," "Second Sight 1" and "Touching Evil 1," $59.95 from WGBH Boston Video ... "Point Pleasant," a three-disc set with all 13 episodes, including five that never aired, $39.98 from Fox ... "Seesaw" is a 1998 three-part U.K. series starring David Suchet and Geraldine James in a two-disc set, $29.98 from BFS Entertainment and Multimedia Limited ... "Tales From the Crypt: The Complete Second Season" is a three-disc set with 18 episodes, $39.98 from Warner ... "3rd Rock From the Sun Season Two" is a four-disc set, $39.98 from Anchor Bay ... "Tripping the Rift: Complete First Season" is a three-disc set with 13 episodes, $29.98 from Anchor Bay ... "The Woman in White," a 1997 Masterpiece Theatre production of Wilkie Collins' classic Victorian mystery novel, from WGBH Boston Video. (Posted October 25)

For the Kids:
There's three new releases from Scholastic Video Collection: "The Wheels on the Bus ... And More Musical Favorites," featuring four animated sing-along stories (six on DVD) including the title story, "Dem Bones," "Over in the Meadow" and "There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly," $9.95 VHS and $14.95 DVD; "Danny and the Dinosaur ... And More Friendly 'Monster' Stories," and "Bear Snores On ... And More Stories That Celebrate the Seasons," each with three tales on $9.95 VHS and five on $14.95 DVD ... "My Little Pony: A Very Minty Christmas" is a new animated adventure based on the Hasbro My Little Pony franchise, $9.95 VHS and $16.99 DVD from Paramount ... The latest release from Disney's Baby Einstein Company is On the Go: Riding, Sailing, Soaring," a fun-filled introduction to three modes of transportation, for 9-month-old and older babies, $14.99 VHS and $19.99 DVD. (Posted October 25)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
"Nothing" (2003) is a wacky film about a pair of losers -- beset by nasty neighbors, callous bosses, malicious bureaucrats, thieving girlfriends and lying kids -- who get the power to make everything they hate disappear ... and use it, directed by Vincenzo Natali ("Cypher," "Cube"), and starring David Hewlett and Andrew Miller, on DVD from MTI Home Video ... "The Truth About Love" (2004) stars Jennifer Love Hewitt as a happily married woman who sends her husband an anonymous note on a dare from her sister, starting a affair of misunderstanding, on VHS and DVD from First Look Home Entertainment ... In "Hockey Mom" a no-nonsense single mom who once had a shot at playing hockey in the Olympics organizes a male- female hockey match to prove to her male worker friends that a woman "doesn't belong in the kitchen," starring Jessalyn Gilsig, Jason Priestly and Margot Kidder, on VHS and DVD from Monarch Home Video. (Posted October 25)

Foreign:
New Yorker will release this week a DVD containing three short films by acclaimed German filmmaker Werner Herzog: "The Great Ecstasy of the Sculptor Steiner," a study of the psychology of a champion ski jumper; "How Much Wood Would a Woodchuck Chuck," about the world of cattle auctioneers; and "La Soufriere," in which the director takes a film crew to Guadaloupe Island to film a volcano eruption; $29.95. (Posted October 25)

Special Interest:
"Broadway's Lost Treasures III" is a PBS pledge special compilation of great musical performances from the archives of the Tony awards, featuring 23 performances; $24.99 from Acorn Media ... Motley Crue: Carnival of Sins" (2005) is a two-disc set with the group's carnival-style show, $24.98 from Ventura Entertainment ... "Here's Looking at You!" is a 2005 documentary on the many choices Americans are making to celebrate themselves by shaping, designing and adorning their bodies; $19.95 from WGBH Boston Video ... "With God on Our Side: George W. Bush and the Rise of the Religious Right" is a 2004 Sundance Channel provocative but balanced documentary that examines the rise of the born-again Christian movement and its influence on modern politics, $29.95 from First Run Features ... "Street Fighter Alpha: Generations" is a 2005 anime prequel to "Street Fighter Alpha," $24.98 from Manga Entertainment/Anchor Bay ... "Origins of the Da Vinci Code" (2005) is a further investigation and exploration into the Knights Templar and the idea that they and/or the Priory of Sion may have been protecting a bloodline descent from Jesus, $19.95 from The Disinformation Company ... "The Amazing Kreskin: Mental Marvels, Feats and Stunts From the World's Greatest Mentalist" (2005) has the mentalist show off his stunts and effects, recorded live at the Friar's Club in New York, $19.99 from Kultur ... "The Original Amateur Hour" highlights memorable clips from the granddaddy of all talent search shows, in a two-disc set (hosted by Pat Boone), $29.98 from Kultur/SRO Entertainment ... "Point of Order" (1964), directed by Emile de Antonio, is a devastating portrait of legendary Senator Joseph McCarthy; the extraordinary Cold War-era film is the definitive documentary about television's coming of age, and its burgeoning role in exposing the abuse of power, from New Yorker. (Posted October 25)

Coming Soon:
On December 13 Buena Vista will release "Valiant," an animated family film about World War II carrier pigeons with the voices of Ewan McGregor, Ricky Gervais, Tim Curry, Jim Broadbent, Hugh Laurie, John Cleese and John Hurt ... Romantic comedy "Must Love Dogs," starring Diane Lane, John Cusack, Elizabeth Perkins, Christopher Plummer, Stockard Channing, Ali Hillis and Dermott Mulroney, will arrive December 20 from Warner ... also on that day Courteney Cox starrer "November" will arrive from Sony. (Posted October 18)

DVD Collectibles:
Classics due this week: Alfred Hitchcock's "Lifeboat" (1944), starring Tallulah Bankhead, William Bendix, Walter Slezak, John Hodiak, Henry Hull, Hume Cronyn and Canada Lee, restored with extras, from Fox; "American Movie Musicals Collection," a three-disc set with "West Side Story," "Fiddler on the Roof" and "Guys and Dolls," $35.95 from MGM/Sony; and "The Man With the Golden Arm" (1955), directed by Otto Preminger and starring Frank Sinatra, Eleanor Parker, Kim Novak, Arnold Stang and Darren McGavin, from Hart Sharp Video ... Comic book capers: coinciding with the release this week of "Batman Begins" Warner will also release "Batman: The Motion Picture Anthology 1989-1997," a gift set of all four previous Batman movies (in two-disc special editions), $79.92; Sony jumps on the Batman bandwagon with "The Batman: The 1943 Serial Collection," a two-disc set of the 15-episode cliffhanger serial ... Swingin' heroes: Disney will release this week the 1999 animated version of "Tarzan," featuring the voices of Tony Goldwyn, Minnie Driver, Glenn Close, Alex D. Linz, Rosie O'Donnell, Lance Henriksen, Nigel Hawthorne and Wayne Knight, in a two-disc set; and "The Mark of Zorro" (1940), starring Tyrone Power, Linda Darnell, Basil Rathbone and Gale Sondergaard, from Fox ... And, lastly, "The Big Lebowski Collector's Edition" (1998), directed by Joel Coen and starring Jeff Bridges, John Goodman, Julianne Moore, Steve Buscemi, David Huddleston, Philip Seymour Hoffman and Tara Reid; also available as a limited "Achiever's Edition" gift set with the DVD, a "Big Lebowski" bowling towel, four collectible coasters, eight exclusive postcards from Jeff Bridges' photo collection taken on the set, from Universal. (Posted October 18)

From TV to Video:
"The Adventures of Superman: The Complete First Season," a five-disc set with 26 episodes of the 1950s TV series starring George Reeves, $39.98 from Warner ... "Atomic Betty Volume 1: Betty, Set, Go!" and "Atomic Betty Volume 2: Betty to the Rescue!" both single discs with eight 11-minute episodes of the animated series, $19.97 each from Warner ... "CSI: NY The First Season," a seven-disc set with 24 episodes, $64.99 from Paramount ... "Dark Shadows: The Complete Revival Series" (1991), a three-disc set, $39.95 from Sony ... "He-Man and the Masters of the Universe -- Season One, Volume 1" (1983) is a six-disc set with 33 episodes, $49.98 from Bci Eclipse ... "Pet Alien: Aliens Unleashed" and "Pet Alien: Atomic Tommy" each contain four episodes from the Cartoon Network animated series; $14.98 each from Fox ... "Unscripted: The Complete First Season," a two-disc set with 10 episodes, $34.98 from HBO Video ... "Yu-Gi-Oh! Volume 3.5: The Final Face-Off" (2005), with five episodes of the Kids' WB! Series, $14.98 from 4Kids Entertainment. (Posted October 18)

For the Kids:
Lots of fun stuff this week: "The Batman vs. Dracula" is a 2005 made-for-video animated feature film, $19.95 from Warner ... "Five Children and It & The Return of It" is a two-disc set of the 1991 BBC miniseries based on E. Nesbit's turn-of-the-century children's classic about a magical creature who makes fantastic wishes come true, $39.95 from Home Vision Entertainment ... "Nick Jr. Favorites Volume 2" is a single-disc compilation of eight episodes across six Nick franchises: "Dora the Explorer: Super Map," "LazyTown: Sleepless in LazyTown," "The Backyardigans: Quest For the Flying Rock," "Blue's Clues: Blue's Big Pajama Party," "Little Bill: Little Bill's Giant Space Adventure" and three "Max & Ruby" episodes: "Ruby's Lemonade Stand," "Ruby's Rummage Sale" and "Ruby's Magic Act," $16.99 from Paramount ... "Nick Picks Volume 2" is a single-disc compilation of nine episodes across seven Nicktoons franchises: "The Fairly OddParents: The FOP Big Superhero Wish," "All Grown Up: Interview With a Campfire," "SpongeBob SquarePants: I'm With Stupid," "SpongeBob SquarePants: Meets the Strangler," "My Life As a Teenage Robot: Gridiron Glory," "Adventures of Jimmy Neutron: Party At the Neutrons," "Danny Phanton: Splitting Images" and "Rugrats: 10th Anniversary Parts 1 & 2," $16.99 from Paramount ... "The Wheels on the Bus -- Mango Helps the Moon Mouse" is a 2005 pre-school kids musical adventure -- a mix of live-action, puppetry and 3-D CGI animation -- that follows Mango and Papaya as they leave their zoo home on a bus driven by Argon the Dragon in search of someone to help, with the voice talents of Roger Daltrey and "Saturday Night Live" alumna Victoria Jackson, with songs by Laura Hall from "Whose Line Is It Anyway?" from Starlight Home Entertainment ... "Strawberry Shortcake: Dress Up Days" includes two animated episodes from the popular franchise, $14.98 from Fox ... "The Care Bears Big Wish Movie" is a direct-to-video animated feature, $19.98 from Lions Gate ... "Ferngully: The Last Rainforest Family Fun Edition" (1992), with the voices of Tim Curry, Samantha Mathis, Christian Slater, Jonathan Ward, Robin Williams, Grace Zabriskie, Geoffrey Blake, Robert Pastorelli, Cheech Marin, Tommy Chong and Tone Loc, is a two-disc set loaded with "family fun" extras, $19.98 from Fox. (Posted October 18)

Special Interest:
"The Harlem Globetrotters: The Team That Changed the World" is a 2005 documentary -- narrated by Chuck D. -- that chronicles the team's history and its travels and includes behind-the-scenes action and interviews with such celebs as Bill Cosby, Henry Kissinger and Lakers coach Phil Jackson, $19.98 from Warner. (Posted October 18)

DVD Collectibles:
Due this week are two classic John Wayne actioners: "Hondo Special Collector's Edition" (1953), starring Wayne, Geraldine Page, Ward Bond, Michael Pate and James Arness; and "Mclintock! Authentic Collector's Edition" (1963), starring Wayne, Maureen O'Hara, Patrick Wayne, Stefanie Powers, Jack Kruschen, Chill Wills, Yvonne De Carlo, Jerry Van Dyke, Edgar Buchanan and Strother Martin; both loaded with extras, from Paramount ... From Fox comes the "Bruce Lee Ultimate Collection," a five-disc set with "The Big Boss," "Fist of Fury," "Way of the Dragon," "Game of Death" and "Game of Death II," $49.98. (Posted October 11)

From TV to Video:
"The Beginning and Best of the Chris Rock Show Volumes 1 & 2" is a two-disc set, $19.96 from HBO Video ... "CSI: NY The First Season," a seven-disc set with 24 episodes, $64.99 from Paramount ... "The Duchess of Duke Street, Series 1," a five-disc set with the entire run of the 1979 Masterpiece Theatre BBC series, $79.99 from Acorn Media ... "The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air: The Complete Second Season," a four-disc set, $29.98 from Warner ... "The Jeffersons: The Complete Fourth Season," a three-disc set with 26 episodes, $29.95 from Sony ... "Kingdom Hospital: Post-Mortem," is a two-disc set with the final five episodes of the miniseries, $19.94 from Sony ... "Philip Marlowe: Private Eye Collection," a three-disc set with 11 episodes of the TV series starring Powers Boothe, $29.98 from Goldhil Entertainment ... "Soap: The Complete Fourth Season," a three-disc set with all 22 episodes from the last season, $29.98 from Sony ... "South Park: The Complete Sixth Season" (2002), a three-disc set with 17 episodes, $49.99 from Paramount ... "Veronica Mars: The Complete First Season," a six-disc set with 22 episodes, $59.98 from Warner ... "Young Sherlock: Mystery of the Manor House," a three-disc set, $29.98 from Goldhil Entertainment ... and "Z-Channel: A Magnificent Obsession" (2005), a fascinating documentary on the groundbreaking cable channel that pioneered uncut movies (the grandfather to such outlets as IFC, Sundance and TCM) and its founder, Jerry Harvey, from Hart Sharp. (Posted October 11)

Foreign:
New Yorker Video will release to DVD for the first time this week two films by acclaimed Senegalise filmmaker Ousmane Sembene: the feature "Black Girl" and the short "Borom Sarret," both on one disc for $29.95. (Posted October 11)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
New Line Cinema will release this week "11:14," a 2003 thriller that tells an intricately connected (non-linear) story of incidents that all converge at 11:14 p.m. one evening, starring Hilary Swank, Colin Hanks, Rachael Leigh Cook and Henry Thomas ... In "Hammerhead: Shark Frenzy," a 2005 telefilm, a misguided scientist combines DNA from a shark and a man, spawning a vicious, man-eating creature that can't be stopped, starring Jeffrey Combs and William Forsythe, from First Look Home Entertainment. (Posted October 11)

For the Kids:
"All Grown Up: RV Having Fun Yet?" (2005) is an animated adventure with the grown-up Rugrats on a cross country trek with their mothers to NYC in a dilapidated RV, with two bonus episodes: "The Science Pair" and "It's Karma, Dude"; extras include an "R.V. Moving Along?" road trip trivia game; $16.99 from Paramount ... "Dora the Explorer: Dance to the Rescue" (2005) is a double-length musical special with Dora and her loyal pal Boots, with two bonus episodes: "Rescue, Rescue, Rescue" and "Leon the Circus Lion," $19.99 from Paramount ... "Ziggy's Gift" (1982) is an Emmy-winning Christmas animated adventure featuring newspaper cartoon character Ziggy; $12.98 from BFS Entertainment & Multimedia Limited. (Posted October 11)

Special Interest:
"Guerrilla: The Taking of Patty Hearst" is a 2004 documentary on the Symbionese Liberation Army and the kidnapping of Patty Hearst; $26.95 from Docurama ... Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia/Warner has three Martha Stewart DVDs this week: "Martha Stewart: Martha's Classic Thanksgiving," "Martha Stewart: Martha's Favorite Family Dinners" and "Martha Stewart: Martha's Homemade Holidays," each containing the best Martha Stewart TV segments on the particular topic, $19.98 ... "Project Grizzly" (1996) is a wacky film about a highly eccentric Canadian naturalist who creates the world's first armored suit designed for the sole purpose of thwarting a bear attack; the film has become an underground cult documentary favorite; from Ventura Entertainment ... "Ellen DeGeneres: Here and Now" is a 2003 stand-up special in a two-disc set, $19.96 from HBO Video ... "New York Yankees: The Fall Classic Collector's Edition, 1996-2001" is a seven-disc set with original complete game broadcasts of 1996 World Series Game 4 vs. the Atlanta Braves, 1998 World Series Game 3 vs. San Diego Pirates, 1999 World Series Game 3 vs. the Braves, 2000 World Series Game 5 vs the New York Mets and 2001 World Series Game 4 vs. the Arizona Diamondbacks; two bonus discs feature rarely-seen World Series footage. The set is housed in a SleeveStats package that displays official stats, trivia, game summaries, player information; $79.95 from A&E Home Video. (Posted October 11)

Coming Soon:
On November 29 Buena Vista will release kids super hero film "Sky High," starring Kurt Russell and Kelly Preston ... Due December 6 is "The Dukes of Hazzard," starring Johnny Knoxville, Seann William Scott, Jessica Simpson, Wiilie Nelson and Burt Reynolds, from Warner ... On December 13 Universal will release the surprise comedy hit "The 40-Year-Old Virgin," starring Steve Carell and Catherine Keener ... Also on that day director Michael Bay's sci-fi film "The Island," starring Ewan McGregor, Scarlett Johansson, Djimon Hounsou, Steve Buscemi, Sean Bean and Michael Clarke Duncan, will fly home from DreamWorks... War drama " The Great Raid," starring Benjamin Bratt, James Franco and Robert Mammone, will fight its way home December 20 from Buena Vista ... And kicking off the New Year on January 3 is "Hustle & Flow," starring Terrence Howard, Anthony Anderson, Taryn Manning, Taraji P. Henson, DJ Qualls, Paula Jai Parker, Elise Neal, Isaac Hayes and Ludacris, from Paramount. (Posted October 4)

DVD Collectibles:
Leading the pack this week is Disney's splendid animated classic "Cinderella" (1950) in a two-Disc platinum edition, digitally restored, with enhanced picture and sound; $29.99 ... From Warner Home Video comes an impressive boxed set with the films of horror producer Val Lewton: The "Val Lewton Horror Collection" is a five-disc set with three double-feature discs: "Cat People"/"The Curse of the Cat People," "I Walked With a Zombie"/"The Body Snatcher" and "Isle of the Dead"/"Bedlam," each of which will also be available separately, and two double-feature discs exclusive to the set: "The Leopard Man"/"The Ghost Ship" and "The Seventh Victim"/"Shadows in the Dark: The Val Lewton Legacy" (new bonus documentary about the famous RKO producer). The five-disc gift set will sell for $59.92; the three separate double-feature DVDs will be available for $19.97 each ... "Alfred Hitchcock: The Masterpiece Collection" is a massive 15-disc set with 14 Hitchcock films ("Saboteur," "Shadow of a Doubt," "Rope," "Rear Window," "The Trouble With Harry," "The Man Who Knew Too Much," "Vertigo," "Psycho," "The Birds," "Marnie," "Torn Curtain," "Topaz," "Frenzy" and "Family Plot") and a bonus disc containing "AFI'S Salute to Alfred Hitchcock," $119.98 from Universal ...Hitchcock fans will also appreciate "Alfred Hitchcock Presents: Season One," a three-disc set with 39 episodes, $39.98. Many of the episodes (from 1955) are directed by the master himself. Extras include "Alfred Hitchcock Presents: A Look Back" featurette, also from Universal ... "The Fly Collector's Edition" (1986) is David Cronenberg's take on the classic horror flick, starring Jeff Goldblum and Geena Davis, in a two-disc set with such extras as commentary by Cronenberg, "Fear of the Flesh: The Making of the Fly" featurette, "The Fly Papers: The Buzz on Hollywood's Scariest Insect" featurette, "The Brundle Museum of Natural History," more, from Fox ... "The Warriors Ultimate Director's Cut" (1979), directed by Walter Hill and starring Michael Beck, Tom McKitterick, James Remar, Marcelino Sanches, Dorsey Wright, Terry Michos, Brian Tyler and Deborah Van Valkenburgh, finally arrives in a special edition as befits this classic; the DVD features a three-part behind-the-scenes documentary; from Paramount ... also from Paramount is the massive "Star Trek: The Motion Pictures Collection," a boxed set of Special Collector's Editions of all 10 Star Trek motion pictures, with dozens of hours of special features, $166.99 ... Geneon Entertainment this week launches its Cinema Deluxe line of off-beat American cult films and "midnight movies," featuring some of Hollywood's most well-known names, available for under $10. The first wave features a collection of 10 cult-favorites including the 1973 thriller "The Baby" starring Anjanette Comer; action-packed "Bad Man's River" starring Lee Van Cleef, James Mason and Gina Lollobrigida; "Pancho Villa" starring Telly Savalas; and the drama-horror "Psychomania" starring Nicky Henson as the nihilistic leader of a motorcycle gang ... "The Best of Abbott and Costello Volume 4" is a two-disc set with three films ("Abbott and Costello Meet Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde," "Abbott and Costello Meet the Keystone Cops" and "Abbott and Costello Meet the Mummy") and three documentaries ("The World of Abbott and Costello," "Abbott and Costello Meet Jerry Seinfeld" and "Abbott and Costello Meet the Monsters"), $19.98 from Universal. (Posted October 4)

From TV to Video:
Due this week: "Arrested Development: The Complete Second Season," a three-disc set with 18 episodes, $39.98 from Fox ... "The Bob Newhart Show: The Complete Second Season," a three-disc set with 24 episodes, $29.98 from Fox ... "Butterflies, Series 2," a two-disc set with eight episodes of the classic Britcom about a bored housewife on the verge of a midlife crisis, $29.99 from Acorn Media ... "Count Duckula: The Complete First Season," a three-disc set with 26 episodes, $39.98 from Capital Entertainment ... "Drawn Together Season One," a two-disc set with seven episodes, $26.99 from Paramount ... "Into the West," a four-disc set with the 2005 six-part TNT miniseries, $49.99 from DreamWorks ... "Kolchak: The Night Stalker" (1974-75), a three-disc set with 20 episodes starring Darren McGavin, $39.98 from Universal. (Posted October 4)

Foreign:
Silvana Mangano, Terence Stamp and Massimo Girotti star in Pier Paolo Pasolini's "Teorema" (1968 -- Italy), in which the director puts a sexual and religious spin on the idea of a mysterious stranger infiltrating a bourgeois family. Stamp portrays a handsome stranger who enters the lives of an Italian family and proceeds to seduce each member psychologically and physically, including the maid. He's both God and the Devil and his divine and diabolical interaction with each person causes them to re-evaluate their beliefs; from Koch Lorber Films. (Posted October 4)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
"Animal" is an urban thriller about a ruthless gangster, James "Animal" Allen (Ving Rhames), who's locked up in a maximum security prison where he meets a revolutionary (Jim Brown) who changes his life. Now a reformed man, James is released only to find that his own son (Terence Howard) has assumed a life of crime and violence. From First Look Home Entertainment on VHS and DVD. (Posted October 4)

Special Interest:
"Beyond the Fringe" (1964) is a gala farewell performance in London by Alan Bennett, Peter Cook, Dudley Moore and Jonathan Miller, better known as Beyond the Fringe (1960s West End and Broadway revue); $24.99 from Acorn Media ... "Not Only but Always" is a 2004 telefilm about Beyond the Fringe, starring Rhys Ifans, Aidan McArdle, also from Acorn Media for $24.99 ... "Beyond the Gates of Splendor" is a 2005 documentary on five missionaries who went to Ecuador in the mid-1950 and were slain by Waodani tribesmen, from Fox ... "Fangoria Blood Drive II" (2005) spotlights eight winning short films in the second nationwide search for the Best Short Horror Film; the compilation is hosted by metal maven Mistress Juliya of Fuse TV's Uranium and Slave to the Metal; $19.98 from Koch Vision ... "From Tragedy to Triumph: The Jewish Experience 1933-1967" (2005) features seven award-winning and critically acclaimed documentaries that pay tribute to the resilient spirit of the Jewish people, from the devastation of the Holocaust to the creation of the Israeli State; the seven-disc set sells for $99.98 from Koch Lorber Films ... "Secrets of Angels, Demons & Masons" (2005) is a two-part documentary that investigates the Illuminati and the Freemasons, taking the viewer on a suspenseful journey from baroque Rome to historic Washington, D.C., based on Dan Burstein and Arne de Keijzer's best-selling book; $19.98 from Koch Vision ... The "Pixies Sell Out" is a compilation of 27 songs from seven different Pixies reunion concerts held in 2004, from Rhino Video ... The Happy Tree Friends are cute, cuddly animals whose daily adventures always end up going horribly wrong. No matter how innocently their day begins, it always ends in mayhem. The ensemble cast includes Cuddles, the cutest darn rabbit you'll ever meet, and Petunia, a sweet girl skunk always mindful to wear air freshener. Traveling through picturesque settings and speaking in a kooky language all their own, the Happy Tree Friends never know what chaos lingers just around the bend. The show appears on Comcast Cable G4 Videogame TV and has become a cult fav; "Overkill" is a three-disc set of their adventures ("First Blood," "Second Serving" and "Third Strike") available from StudioWorks/Ventura for $34.99 ... French record label Uncivilized World has released a DVD documenting the amazing story of an underground social revolution of the Techno-Traveller Movement. From the 1990s to the present, several devoted artists of raving and free partying -- legendary sound system Spiral Tribe -- took to the roads through Bosnia, India, South America, the U.S. and Africa, crossing geographical borders to export their music through political protest and/or cultural exchange. "World Traveller Adventures" ($19.98) consists of four films documenting the artists' treks. For more info: http://www.uncivilizedworld.com. (Posted October 4)

Coming Soon:
Due November 15 are "The Beat That My Heart Skipped," directed by Jacques Audiard and starring Romain Duris, Niels Arestrup, Jonathan Zaccai, Gilles Cohen, Linh Dan Pham, Aure Atika and Emmanuelle Devos, from Wellspring and "The Skeleton Key" starring Kate Hudson, Gena Rowlands, John Hurt and Peter Sarsgaard, from Universal ... On November 29 nasty comedy "Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo," starring Rob Schneider, Eddie Griffin, Jeroen Krabbe and Til Schweiger, will grovel to video from Sony ... also on that day documentary "March of the Penguins" will arrive, from Warner ... "Bad News Bears," directed by Richard Linklater and starring Billy Bob Thornton, Greg Kinnear and Marcia Gay Harden, will slide home December 13 from Paramount ... Revenge is on the docket on December 20 with the release of "Four Brothers," directed by John Singleton and starring Mark Wahlberg, Tyrese Gibson, Andre Benjamin, Garrett Hedlund, Terrence Howard, Josh Charles, Sofia Vergara and Fionnula Flanagan, from Paramount ... also on December 20, Fox will release Martin Lawrence starrer "Rebound." (Posted September 27)

DVD Collectibles:
Two fine films from director Nicolas Roeg are due this week from The Criterion Collection: The U.S. home video premiere of "Bad Timing," a masterful, deeply disturbing foray into the dark world of sexual obsession set amid the decaying elegance of cold-war Vienna, starring Art Garfunkel, Theresa Russell and Harvey Keitel; and the full, uncut version -- in an exclusive new director-approved high-definition widescreen transfer -- of "The Man Who Fell to Earth," adding back 20 minutes cut in the U.S. theatrical release. The film -- in a two-disc set -- stars David Bowie, Candy Clark, Buck Henry and Rip Torn. Both titles also feature Criterion's extensive suite of extras. (Posted September 27)

From TV to Video:
Warner Home Video has launched a new TV-DVD line this week: Warner TV Favorites, featuring value-priced compilations of fan favorite and/or pivotal episodes of classic TV series, priced at $9.95 each. The first outing, due this week, includes "Cheyenne," "Chico and the Man," "Dukes of Hazzard," "F-Troop" and "Maverick."

Also due this week are: "The Amazing Race -- The First Season," a four-disc set, $42.99 from Paramount ... "The Beverly Hillbillies, Volume 1," a four-disc set with 26 episodes, $34.98 from MPI Home Video ... "The Complete Monty Python's Flying Circus 16-Ton Megaset," a massive compilation of everything Monty Python, in a sixteen-disc set, $199.95 from A&E Home Video ... "The Conquerors," a three-disc History Channel set that chronicles 12 of the greatest military commanders of all time, from King David through William the Conqueror though Cortez through General Sherman; $49.95 from A&E Home Video ... "Creature Comforts -- The Complete First Season," a single disc with all 13 nine-minute episodes of the Nick Park-created series that originally aired to great acclaim on British television and Comedy Central, $19.94 from Sony ... "Dark Shadows DVD Collection 20," a four-disc set with 40 episodes, $59.98 from MPI Home Video ... "Gilmore Girls: The Complete Fourth Season" is a six-disc set with 22 episodes, $59.98 from Warner ... "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit: The Second Year" (2000--2001) contains 21 episodes, $59.98 from Universal ... "Look Back in Anger" is a 1989 Thames TV production of John Osborne's play, directed by Judi Dench ands starring Kenneth Branagh and Emma Thompson; $24.95 from A&E Home Video ... "Love in a Cold Climate" is a ravishing 2002 Masterpiece Theatre tale of privilege and passion, based on Nancy Mitford's novels "The Pursuit of Love" and "Love in a Cold Climate," $29.95 from Acorn Media ... "Lost Empires" (1986) is a three-disc set of the Masterpiece Theatre production of J.B. Priestley's novel that chronicles the last days of Britain's innocence before WWI and the glamorous, magical world of the great music halls, starring Colin Firth, John Castle, Pamela Stephenson and Laurence Olivier, $29.98 from Goldhil Entertainment ... "Mary Pickford" is a 2005 PBS documentary on the rise and fall of the actress who became the most powerful woman in Hollywood, from Paramount ... "Rugrats: Tales From the Crib: Snow White" is a new full-length animated feature from Paramount... "Sharks, Flipper and Lopaka," from Australia, contains three hours of the animated TV series about a boy who lives on a tropical island with his dolphin friend Flipper, $14.99 from Miramax ... "SpongeBob SquarePants: The Complete Third Season" is a three-disc set with 37 episodes, $54.99 from Paramount ... "Star Trek Enterprise: The Complete Third Season" (2003--2004) is a seven-disc set with 24 episodes, $129.99 in a nifty plastic case, from Paramount ... "Stephen King Presents Kingdom Hospital: Making the Rounds" is a two-disc set with six episodes of the 2004 mini-series, $19.94 from Sony ... "Tales of the Unexpected, Set 3" is a three-disc set with 21 episodes of the macabre series for adults inspired by the work of Roald Dahl, $39.99 from Acorn Media ... "A Touch of Frost Seasons 7 & 8" is a two-disc set with four episodes, $39.98 from MPI Home Video ... "The X-Files Mythology: Colonization" is a four-disc set with 16 themed episodes centering around the alien plot to colonize the Earth, featuring Part III of Chris Carter's new documentary "Threads of Mythology"; $39.98 from Fox.

Also due this week from Fox is "Family Guy Presents Stewie Griffin: The Untold Story," a 2005 made-for-DVD movie with the voices of Drew Barrymore, Ron Livingston, Jason Priestley, Jennie Garth, Tori Spelling, $29.98. The 83-minute, unrated feature is based on the animated "Family Guy" series that aired on Fox Television in the late 1990s. The irreverent series, aimed at adults rather than kids, went on the air in early 1999 and was canceled in 2003, only to be resurrected after an overwhelming demand for the show on DVD. The first DVD set sold more than 2.5 million units, the second-highest sales tally of any TV-DVD release behind the first season of "Chappelle's Show," prompting Fox to take the unprecedented step of bringing back the show. The new season debuted in May. (Posted September 27)

Buzzin the 'B's:
In "Ice Queen," from MTI Home Video, a female humanoid from the Ice Age is awakened when the airplane carrying her tomb of amber crashes; naturally she immediately goes on a killing spree ... "7 Times Lucky" stars Kevin Pollak as a worn-out grifter who has just broken the most important rule among con artists: donŐt bet with the boss' money. His beautiful protege offers him a simple solution -- a no-brainer con -- but in their seedy world of thieves and hustlers, nothing is ever simple; from BFS Entertainment & Multimedia Limited. (Posted September 27)

For the Kids:
In honor of Disneyland's 50th Anniversary, Walt Disney Home Entertainment is releasing four Disney Resort-themed sing-along songs for the first time on DVD. A favorite with children and families, each "Sing-Along Song" title features songs and on-screen lyrics. Available for $14.99 each are "Sing-Along Songs: Disneyland Fun," "Sing-Along Songs: Beach Party at Walt Disney World," "Sing-Along Songs: Campout at Walt Disney World" and "Sing-Along Songs: Flik's Musical Adventure"; "Blue's Clues: Blue's Room: Holiday Wishes" features two episodes: "Blue's Room Holiday" and "Can You Help?" $16.99 from Paramount. (Posted September 27)

Special Interest:
"The Billy Nayer Show: The Early Years" celebrates over a decade of independence in both music and film created by this experimental art-music-film group. The short films gathered here range from stream of consciousness musicals to animated obsessions, recalling David Lynch, Guy Maddin and the Quay Bros.; $19.95 from Facets Video ... "Experiments in Terror" (2003) is a compilation of six short experimental horror films, from Peter Tscherkassky ("Outer Space"), David Sherman ("Tuning the Sleeping Machine"), Lloyd M. Williams ("Ursula"), Damon Packard ("Dawn of an Evil Empire"), Kerry Laitala ("Journey Into the Unknown") and J.X. Williams ("The Virgin Sacrifice"), $24.95 from Facets Video ... "Patsy Cline: Sweet Dreams Still, the Anthology" chronicles the singer's rare televised appearances beginning in 1956 to her final appearance filmed just days before her death in 1963, $19.98 from MPI Home Video ... "Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex, 2nd Gig: Volume 1" includes four episodes of the manga TV series, in a standard edition single disc for $24.98 and a special edition three-disc set with Dolby and DTS versions as well as the soundtrack CD in a limited edition exclusive collector's tin, $49.98 from Manga/Bandai/Anchor Bay ... "The Right Spectacle: The Very Best of Elvis Costello -- The Videos" features 27 videos -- from 1978 to the present, with ultra-rare television archive footage culled from an array of channels in the Netherlands, Sweden, and the U.K.; from Rhino Video. (Posted September 27)

Coming Soon:
Due November 8 is Rob Zombie's ultra-violent "The Devil's Rejects" starring Sid Haig, Bill Moseley, Sheri Moon, William Forsythe, Ken Foree, Matthew McGrory, Leslie Easterbrook, Geoffrey Lewis and Priscilla Barnes, in rated single-disc and unrated two-disc editions, from Lions Gate ... On January 3, New Line will release the smash hit "Wedding Crashers," starring Owen Wilson, Vince Vaughn, Christopher Walken, Rachel McAdams, Isla Fisher and Jane Seymour, in R-rated and unrated, "Uncorked" editions. (Posted September 20)

DVD Collectibles:
The highlight of the week -- and maybe the year -- is "No Direction Home: Bob Dylan," Martin Scorsese's feature-length film biography of Dylan, which premieres on PBS's American Masters series September 26-27 and in the U.K. on the BBC's Arena series September 26 and October 1. In advance of those airings, Paramount has released a two-disc set of the film this week -- with extensive bonus features -- for $29.98. The two-part film, which focuses on the singer-songwriter's life and music from 1961-66, includes never-seen performance footage and interviews with artists and musicians whose lives intertwined with Dylan's during that time. Dylan talks openly and extensively about this critical period in his career, detailing the journey from his hometown of Hibbing, Minnesota, to Greenwich Village, New York, where he became the center of a musical and cultural upheaval. For the first time, The Bob Dylan Archives has made available rare treasures from its film, tape and stills collection, including footage from Murray Lerner's film "Festival," documenting performances at the 1963, 1964 and 1965 Newport Folk Festivals, previously unreleased outtakes from D.A. Pennebaker's famed 1967 documentary "Don't Look Back," and interviews with Allen Ginsberg, Pete Seeger, Joan Baez, Maria Muldaur, and many others. In anticipation of the film, members of Dylan's worldwide community of fans also contributed rarities from their own collections. This is a stunning outing -- and a rare glimpse of the greatest songwriter of the 20th century candidly talking about himself. If you think you knew Dylan, think again. The saga of a man who has consistently -- and successfully -- recreated himself time after time is a must for every serious student of American culture, pop music, and history -- meaning everyone.

Francis Ford Coppola brings his 1983 film of the S.E. Hinton novel "The Outsiders" back to DVD as "The Outsiders: The Complete Novel." The film, starring C. Thomas Howell, Matt Dillon, Diane Lane, Ralph Macchio, Rob Lowe, Patrick Swayze, Emilio Estevez, Tom Cruise and Leif Garrett, has been reconfigured as a two-disc set with an all-new digital transfer from restored picture elements. Coppola added 22 minutes, including a new beginning and an ending which is more true to the book and enriches the characters' relationships; new rock 'n' roll soundtrack with six songs from Elvis Presley and from Van Morrison, Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins, The Marketts, Sandy Nelson and others; soundtrack score remastered in Dolby Digital 5.1.; and loads of extras, from Warner.

From The Criterion Collection comes three important films: Jean-Luc Godard's "Masculin, feminin" (1966), starring Jean-Pierre Leaud, Chantal Goya, Marlene Jobert and Michel Debord. With this film, ruthless stylist and iconoclast Godard introduced the world to "the children of Marx and Coca-Cola" through a gang of restless youths engaged in hopeless love affairs with music, revolution, and each other. French new wave icon Leaud stars as Paul, an idealistic would-be intellectual struggling to forge a relationship with adorable pop star Madeleine (real-life ya-ya girl Chantal Goya). Through their tempestuous affair, Godard fashions a candid and wildly funny free-form examination of youth culture in throbbing 1960s Paris, mixing satire and tragedy as only Goddard can ... In "An Angel at My Table" (1990), director Jane Campion brings to the screen the harrowing true-life story of Janet Frame, New Zealand's most distinguished author. The film follows Frame along her inspiring journey, from a poverty-stricken childhood to a misdiagnosis of schizophrenia and electroshock therapy to, finally, international literary fame. Beautifully capturing the color and power of the New Zealand landscape, the film earned Campion a sweep of her country's film awards and the Special Jury Prize at the Venice Film Festival. ... "Naked" (1993) is one of the essential films of the 1990s. Mike Leigh's brilliant and controversial story stars David Thewlis as Johnny, a charming, eloquent, and relentlessly vicious drifter in London. Rejecting all those who would care for him, the volcanic Johnny hurls himself into a nocturnal odyssey through the city, colliding with a succession of the desperate and the dispossessed and scorching everyone in his path. With a virtuoso script and raw performances by Thewlis and co-stars Katrin Cartlidge and Lesley Sharp, Leigh's panorama of England's crumbling underbelly is a showcase of black comedy and doomsday prophecy, and was the winner of the best director and actor prizes at the 1993 Cannes Film Festival. As with all of Criterion's output, these three films are packaged beautifully and loaded with extras.

On a lighter side there's "Wallace & Gromit in Three Amazing Adventures," an expanded DVD edition of an out-of-print BBC Video/Fox DVD featuring three short films starring Wallace and his ever faithful dog Gromit: Oscar-winners "A Close Shave" and "The Wrong Trousers" as well as Academy Award-nominee "A Grand Day Out." Extras on the DreamWorks' release include "Cracking Contraptions," 10 clay-animated mini-shorts never-before-released in the United States, showcasing many of Wallace's most hilariously ill-conceived inventions, plus a behind-the-scenes look at how the filmmakers brought the plasticine pair to life; a sneak peek of the September 30 DreamWorks' theatrical film "Wallace & Gromit: Curse of the Were-Rabbit," with a behind-the-scenes featurette that includes outtakes from the film, along with interviews with Wallace & Gromit creator and two-time Academy Award-winning writer and director Nick Park ("Chicken Run," "The Adventures of Wallace & Gromit"). $19.99.

And on the extremely gruesome side there's "Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer, 20th Anniversary Special Edition" of the 1986 shocker directed by John McNaughton and starring Michael Rooker, Tom Towles and Tracy Arnold. The two-disc set includes more than 100 minutes of bonus material; new high definition transfer from original 16mm film negatives, supervised by McNaughton. From Dark Sky Films/MPI Home Video. (Posted September 20)

From TV to Video:
Due this week: "Battlestar Galactica: Season One" (2004--2005), a five-disc set with all 13 episodes plus the four-part miniseries that launched it all, $59.98 from Universal ... "Crime Story: Season 1" and "Crime Story: Season 2," four-disc sets $39.98 each from Anchor Bay Entertainment ... ""Desperate Housewives: The Complete First Season," a six-disc set with 24 episodes, $59.99 from Buena Vista ... "From the Earth to the Moon: The Signature Edition," (1998) a four-disc set of the HBO miniseries, remastered with DTS sound with tons of extras, $99.98 from HBO ... "Hogan's Heroes -- The Second Season" (1966--1967), a five-disc set with 30 episodes, $39.99 from Paramount ... "Ned and Stacey: The First Season," a three-disc set with 24 episodes, $39.95 from Sony ... "The Pretender Season Two," a four-disc set with 22 episodes, $39.98 from Fox ... "The Ren & Stimpy Show -- Seasons Five & Some More of Four," a three-disc set with 17 episodes, $39.99 from Paramount ... "See Arnold Run," a 2005 telefilm about California's governor, starring Jurgen Prochnow, Nicole DeHuff, Roland Kickinger, Nora Dunn and Mariel Hemingway, from Paramount ... "SpongeBob SquarePants: Absorbing Favorites," five episodes, $16.99 from Paramount ... "Widow on the Hill/Lies My Mother Told Me," a Lifetime Original Movie Double Feature with two telefilms in a two-disc set for $14.95: "Widow on the Hill" (2005), starring Natasha Henstridge and James Brolin; "Lies My Mother Told Me" (2005), starring Joely Richardson and Hayden Panettiere; from Warner. (Posted September 20)

Foreign:
The Brothers Grimm meet David Lynch in international award-winning director Alex van Warmerdam's twisted and darkly comic fairy tale "Grimm" (2003 -- Netherlands) that transports viewers from bleak, snow-frosted woods to a windswept ghost town. Abandoned by their impoverished parents, adult siblings Jacob and Marie embark on a surreal, often nightmarish odyssey to Spain to live with their uncle. Menacing characters, offbeat situations and fantastic circumstance make "Grimm" a haunting experience that is anything but your ordinary happily-ever-after bedtime story. In Dutch and Spanish with English subtitles from Home Vision Entertainment. (Posted September 20)

Special Interest:
At the top of this week's list is "The Sixties: The Years That Shaped a Generation," an absorbing and informative 2005 PBS documentary that traces the events of one of the most turbulent and influential periods of political and cultural change in the 20th century and the powerful impact forced on an entire generation; the "sixties" actually began in the early 1960s with the rise of the anti-Vietnam War movement and the counter-culture and ended in the mid-1970s; from Paramount ... Two documentaries about rebel-with-a-cause James Dean make their appearance today: the original "James Dean: Forever Young" (2005), narrated by Martin Sheen, $19.97; and "James Dean: Sense Memories," a 2005 American Masters documentary on the ill-fated actor, $14.97; both from Warner ... "Ring of Fire: The Emile Griffith Story" (2005) is the acclaimed film about the six-time world boxing champ who in 1962 killed his opponent, Benny "The Kid" Paret, in the ring, on live television, from Anchor Bay ... "The Carter Family: Will the Circle Be Unbroken" is a 2005 PBS documentary narrated by Robert Duvall about the famous musical family, from Paramount ... "New Order: Item" is a two-disc set with 23-videos and a two-hour documentary of the group's history with personal interviews, and interviews with musicians such as U2's Bono on the band's effect on music, $24.98 from Rhino Video ... There's two interesting documentaries from First Run Features this week: "Monumental: David Brower's Fight for Wild America," the Story of how a 1930s rock climber became the greatest conservationist of the 20th Century, documenting the life of outdoorsman, filmmaker and environmental crusader Brower, whose fiery dedication and activism not only saved the Grand Canyon (among other accomplishments) but also transformed the Sierra Club into a powerful national political force, giving birth to the modern environmental movement, $24.95; and the new documentary "The Knowledge of Healing," an illuminating examination of Tibetan medicine, a practice which has developed over two millennia into a modern day successful method of healing that rivals Western medical practices, $29.95. (Posted September 20)

Coming Soon:
Due September 20 is director Renny Harlin's action-thriller bomb "Mindhunters," starring Val Kilmer, Jonny Lee Miller, Kathryn Morris, Christian Slater, LL Cool J and Patricia Velasquez, from Dimension ... November 8 will see the release of two blockbusters: "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory," directed by Tim Burton and starring Johnny Depp, Freddie Highmore, David Kelly, Helena Bonham Carter, Noah Taylor, Missi Pyle, James Fox, Deep Roy, Christopher Lee, Adam Godley, Franziska Troegner, Annasophia Robb, Julia Winter, Jordan Fry, Philip Wiegratz, a host of Oompa-Loompas and squirrels, in a single disc and a two-disc Special Edition, from Warner; and 2004's "Christmas With the Kranks," starring Tim Allen, Jamie Lee Curtis, Dan Aykroyd, M. Emmet Walsh, Elizabeth Franz, Erik Per Sullivan, Cheech Marin, Jake Busey, Tom Poston, Julie Gonzalo, Rene Lavan, Caroline Rhea and Felicity Huffman, from Sony ... "Stealth," directed by Rob Cohen and starring Josh Lucas, Jessica Biel, Jamie Foxx and Sam Shepard, crashes to home video on November 15 from Sony ... And the frightening "War of the Worlds," directed by Steven Spielberg and starring Tom Cruise, Dakota Fanning, Justin Chatwin, Miranda Otto, Tim Robbins and some slimy aliens, demolishes video stores November 22 in a loaded two-disc set from DreamWorks. (Posted September 13)

DVD Collectibles:
Due this week is "Ben-Hur," William Wyler's 1959 biblical epic starring Charlton Heston, Stephen Boyd, Jack Hawkins, Haya Harareet, Hugh Griffith, Martha Scott, Cathy O'Donnell and Sam Jaffe, presented in a four-disc collector's edition, newly remastered from original 65mm film elements with more than 10 hours of bonus material, including the 1925 silent "Ben-Hur," restored by Thames Television with Stereophonic orchestral score by composer Carl Davis; from Warner. (Posted September 13)

From TV to Video:
Due this week: "Cheers -- The Complete Sixth Season" (1987--1988), a four-disc set with 25 episodes, $39.99 from Paramount ... "Da Ali G Show: Da Compleet Second Season," a two-disc set with six episodes, $29.95 from HBO Video ... "Empire Falls" (2005), the HBO miniseries directed by Fred Schepisi and starring Ed Harris, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Helen Hunt, Paul Newman, Robin Wright Penn, Aidan Quinn, Joanne Woodward and Estelle Parsons, from HBO Video ... "Everybody Loves Raymond: The Complete Fourth Season," a five-disc set with 24 episodes, $44.98 from HBO Video ... "Frasier -- The Complete Sixth Season" (1998--1999), a four-disc set with 23 episodes, $39.99 from Paramount ... "Las Vegas: Season Two Uncut & Uncensored," a three-disc set with 24 episodes, $59.98 from Universal ... "Midsomer Murders, Set Six," a five-disc set with five episodes of the U.K. mystery series about detectives investigating murder and mayhem in a cluster of quaint British villages, $59.99 from Acorn Media ... "One Tree Hill: The Complete Second Season," a six-disc set with 23 episodes, $59.98 from Warner ... "SCTV Volume 4," a six-disc set with 12 episodes, $89.98 from Shout! Factory ... "Smallville: The Complete Fourth Season," a six-disc set with 22 episodes, $59.98 from Warner ... "Taxi -- The Complete Third Season" (1980--1981), a four-disc set with 21 episodes, $39.99 from Paramount. (Posted September 13)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
"Earthquake: Nature Unleashed" is a 2005 Sci Fi Channel telefilm about an earthquake in Russia that threatens a nuclear power plant, from MTI Home Video on DVD and VHS ... "I Accuse" (2003) stars John Hannah and Estella Warren in a Lifetime telefilm about a woman who sets out to expose the family doctor who drugged and sexually assaulted her, from First Look Home Entertainment on DVD and VHS ... "Chasing Freedom" is a 2004 telefilm about an ambitious lawyer (Juliette Lewis) who takes on the case of a woman seeking asylum in the U.S. after escaping the Taliban regime in Afghanistan, on DVD and VHS from First Look Home Entertainment. (Posted September 13)

Foreign:
"Twin Sisters" (2002 -- Netherlands) is a WWII drama about two sisters, orphaned at six, who are split up, with one sister going to relatives in the Netherlands and the other to Germany. When WWII breaks out, the girls find themselves on opposite sides of the conflict; $29.99 DVD from Miramax. (Posted September 13)

For the Kids:
For kids young and old there's "Sigmund and the Sea Monsters: The Complete First Season," a three-disc set with 17 episodes of the Sid and Marty Krofft 1973 TV series; $34.95 from Rhino Home Video ... For the wee ones, wobbly action, comedy and life lessons come to the fore with the roly-poly characters in "Weebles: Sharing the Fun," wirh three episodes on $9.95 VHS and five on $14.99 DVD, from Paramount ... Also for pre-schoolers there's "Pooh's Heffalump Halloween Movie," a 2005 direct-to-video animated feature from Disney for $19.99 VHS and DVD ... Teen girls are the target of "Bratz Rock Angelz," a 2005 CG-animated feature that has the Bratz girls start their own teen magazine and become rock stars; $19.98 VHS and DVD from Fox ... And older boys will appreciate "Transformers -- Cybertron: Robots in Disguise: A New Beginning," featuring two battle-filled episodes on $9.95 VHS and four on $16.99 DVD, from Paramount. (Posted September 13)

Special Interest:
"George Lopez: Why You Crying?" (2004) is George Lopez's first stand-up comedy special, from Paramount ... "EXPO: Magic of the White City," is a 2005 documentary on the 1893 Chicago World's Fair, narrated by Gene Wilder; $24.95 from Inecom Entertainment ... ""The Directors Label Series Two" offers four new volumes highlighting the work of talented, innovative directors: Music video director Mark Romanek (Volume 4), music video and commercial director Jonathan Glazer (Volume 5), designer, photographer, video director and artist Anton Corbijn (Volume 6), photographer and director Stephane Sednaoui (Volume 7). Each DVD is a unique director-created and compiled volume featuring music videos, shorts and commercials, special features including interviews, alternate versions, unseen short films and documentaries, behind-the-scenes footage and commentaries from the various featured artists and collaborators. Each volume is specially packaged with never-before-seen photographs, storyboards, drawings and interviews. $24.98 each from Palm Pictures. (Posted September 13)

Coming Soon:
Due October 18 is the fourth picture in George A. Romero's "Dead" series, "Land of the Dead," in which the dead have pretty much inherited the earth, starring Simon Baker, John Leguizamo, Dennis Hopper, Asia Argento, Robert Joy and Eugene Clark, from Universal ... On December 6 Fox will release "Fantastic Four," starring Ioan Gruffudd, Jessica Alba, Chris Evans, Michael Chiklis, Julian McMahon, Hamish Linklater and Kerry Washington, with a full regimen of extras. (Posted September 6)

DVD Collectibles:
Another beautiful set from Warner Home Video arrives this week: "Garbo: The Signature Collection," a 10-film, 10-disc collection celebrating Greta Garbo's 100th birthday. Included in the package are seven feature films on seven discs, a "TCM Archives: Garbo Silents" two-disc set with three features, and a bonus feature-length documentary from acclaimed filmmaker Kevin Brownlow and Turner Classic Movies, "Garbo," featuring interviews with Garbo's friends and colleagues, available exclusively with the gift set. The 10-disc collection sells for $99.92; the "TCM Archives: Garbo Silents" three-disc set will be available as a separate set for $39.92; each "Garbo: The Signature Collection" title will also be available individually for $19.97. The silent films: "The Temptress" (1926), "Flesh and the Devil" (1927) and "The Mysterious Lady" (1928). The talkies: "Anna Christie" (1930), "Anna Karenina" (1935), "Camille" (1936), "Grand Hotel" (1932), "Mata Hari" (1931), "Ninotchka" (1939) and "Queen Christina" (1933).

Another nice package this week is "The Lina Wertmuller Collection," a six DVD Collector's set featuring "Swept Away" and "Seven Beauties," newly restored and presented in 5.1 Surround Sound; three films available for the first-time: "The Nymph," "Summer Night," and "Ferdinando and Carolina"; and a bonus disc of extras including an interview with Wertmuller by Italian film critic Carlo Lizzani; and a 16-Page collector's booklet with essay by film critic John Simon, from Koch Lorber for $99.98.

More compilations, this time for horror buffs: Universal has released a single-double-sided disc collection of five Bela Lugosi films titled, appropriately enough, "The Bela Lugosi Collection": "Murders in the Rue Morgue," "The Raven," "The Invisible Ray," "Black Friday" and "The Black Cat"; $26.98 ... and "The Hammer Horror Series," a two-disc set with eight horror films from England's Hammer Films: "Brides of Dracula" (1960), "The Curse of the Werewolf" (1961), "Phantom of the Opera" (1962), "Paranoiac" (1963), "The Kiss of the Vampire" (1963), "Nightmare" (1964), "Night Creatures (Captain Clegg)" (1962) and "The Evil of Frankenstein" (1964); $29.98.

Single classics due this week worth owning: Preston Sturges' "The Miracle of Morgan's Creek" (1944), starring Eddie Bracken, Betty Hutton and William Demarest, with two featurettes: "Preston Sturges and The Miracle of Morgan's Creek" and "Censorship: Morgan's Creek vs. the Production Code," from Paramount ... Three from Universal's new Legacy Series, all digitally remastered with fully restored audio with all-new enhanced 5.1 tracks, in limited edition two-disc sets: "The Deer Hunter" (1978), directed by Michael Cimino and starring Robert De Niro, John Cazale, John Savage, Christopher Walken, Meryl Streep and George Dzundza; "The Sting" (1973), directed by George Roy Hill and starring Paul Newman, Robert Redford, Robert Shaw, Charles Durning, Ray Walston, Eileen Brennan and Harold Gould; and "To Kill a Mockingbird" (1962), directed by Robert Mulligan and starring Gregory Peck, Mary Badham, Phillip Alford, Robert Duvall, John Megna, Frank Overton, Rosemary Murphy, Ruth White and the recently deceased Brock Peters.

Fox has added three films to its Film Noir collection: "The House on 92nd Street" (1945), directed by Henry Hathaway and starring William Eythe, Lloyd Nolan, Signe Hasso, Gene Lockhart and Leo G. Carroll; "Somewhere in the Night" (1946), directed by Joseph L. Mankiewicz and starring John Hodiak, Nancy Guild, Lloyd Nolan and Richard Conte; and "Whirlpool" (1949), directed by Otto Preminger and starring Gene Tierney, Richard Conte, Jose Ferrer, Charles Bickford.

More horror this week: The original "House on Haunted Hill" (1958), directed by William Castle and starring Vincent Price, Carolyn Craig, Richard Long and Elisha Cook Jr. and the very very frightening "The Innocents" (1961), based on Henry James' "The Turn of the Screw," directed by Jack Clayton and starring Deborah Kerr, Peter Wyngarde, Megs Jenkins, Michael Redgrave, Martin Stephens and Pamela Franklin; both from Fox.

And don't forget "Toy Story 10th Anniversary Edition" (1995) in a two-disc set, with the film encoded with a high bit rate from Pixar's digital source with remastered sound and tons of extras, $29.99 from Buena Vista. (Posted September 6)

From TV to Video:
"A Certain Justice" (1998) starring Roy Marsden, Sarah Winman, Penny Downie is a Mystery! suspense-thriller production of P.D. James' best-selling novel by the same name; $19.95 from WGBH Boston Video ... "Charmed -- The Complete Second Season" (1999--2000), a six-disc set with 22 episodes; $49.99 from Paramount ... "Degrassi Junior High: Season Three," a three-disc set with 16 episodes; $39.95 from WGBH Boston Video ... "Doogie Howser, M.D.: Season 2," a four-disc set with 25 episodes; $39.98 from Anchor Bay ... "Lost: The Complete First Season," a seven-disc set with 24 episodes; $59.99 from Buena Vista ... "Macgyver -- The Complete Third Season" (1987--1988), a five-disc set with 20 episodes; $36.99 from Paramount ... "Nero (aka Imperium: Nerone)" (2004) a six-episode miniseries starring Hans Matheson, Laura Morante, Mattias Habich and Rike Schmid; $24.96 from Sony ... "Nunsense 3: The Jamboree" (1998), the third edition of the tongue-in-cheek parody starring Vicki Lawrence and Rue McClanahan; $14.98 from Koch Vision ... "Oliver's Twist Season 2" is a two-disc set with 15 episodes of the British cooking show; $29.98 from Capital Entertainment ... "Stephen King Presents Kingdom Hospital: The Beginning," a single disc featuring the first two episodes of the miniseries; $19.94 from Sony ... ""21 Jump Street: Season Three," a six-disc set; $44.98 from Anchor Bay. (Posted September 6)

Buzzin the 'B's:
"Den of Lions" (2003) is a mystery-thriller that takes place behind the former Iron Curtain involving the FBI, the Russian Mafia, and terrorists, starring Stephen Dorff and Bob Hoskins, on DVD from Miramax ... From Dimension comes direct-to- video additions to two horror franchises: "Hellraiser: Hellworld" (2005), in which the dreaded Pinhead returns for more fun and games with computer hackers, starring Lance Henriksen; and "The Prophecy: Forsaken" (2005), in which another ancient manuscript with arcane knowledge is coveted by the legions of darkness, starring Kai Wuhrer and Jason Scott Lee, on DVD ... "The Marksman (aka The Painter)" (2005) is a direct-to-video actioner starring Wesley Snipes as the leader of a special ops team that must save the world from nuclear destruction, on DVD and VHS from Sony ... "Written in Blood" is a 2002 crime thriller about a cop who investigates a murder that his partner is convicted of committing, starring Michael T. Weiss and Peter Coyote, on DVD from Dimension. (Posted September 6)

Foreign:
"Fear and Trembling" (2004 -- France/Japan) is director Alain Corneau's perversely funny adaptation of Amelie Nothomb's 1999 autobiographical novel that loses nothing in translation in deftly dissecting the universal absurdities of corporate culture; the film follows Amelie, a Japanese-born Belgian woman, who suffers a series of increasingly humiliating demotions after she lands a job as an interpreter at a large Japanese corporation; from Home Vision Entertainment on DVD only ... "Save the Green Planet" (2003 -- S. Korea) is a wacky film about an ordinary, sensitive, blue collar sad sack hopped up on conspiracy theories and sci-fi films whose life has been derailed by one bad break after another but who takes it upon himself to save the world from nasty, disgusting Andromedan aliens; from Koch Lorber Films ... In "The Coast Guard (Hae anseon)" (2002 -- S. Korea), directed by Ki-duk Kim, private Kang, a member of Coast Guard Platoon 23 which monitors a stretch of beach lined with barbed-wire fencing, mistakes a promiscuous couple for a North Korean spy and shoots without hesitation. Despite receiving honors, Kang slowly begins to unravel under the grief of his actions and loses his grip on reality; from Tartan Video. (Posted September 6)

For the Kids:
For the wee ones, WGBH Boston Video will release three new-to-DVD compilations from the Emmy-winning series "Between the Lions," about a family of lions who run a library: "The Popcorn Popper," "To the Ship, To the Ship!" and "Farmer Ken's Puzzle"; each DVD has three episodes and sells for $12.95 ... from Disney comes "Disney Princess Stories Volume Three: Beauty Shines From Within," featuring three animated stories with three Disney princesses -- Cinderella, Jasmine and Ariel"; and "Sing Along Songs: Disney Princess Enchanted Tea Party Volume 2," a collection of 12 princess-themed songs from "Sleeping Beauty," "Cinderella," "The Little Mermaid," "Snow White" and others; $19.99 VHS and DVD ... "The Adventures of the Little Prince: The Complete Animated Series" is a four-disc set with 26 episodes of the 1980s Nickelodeon animated series, $49.98. Two three-episode single-disc collections, "The Adventures of the Little Prince: Higher Than Eagles Fly" and "Somewhere in Space," will also be made available at $9.98 each; from Koch Vision ... Koch Vision will release this week the final three episodes in "Shelley Duvall's Tall Tales & Legends" TV series: "Legend of Annie Oakley,"starring Jamie Lee Curtis as "Little Miss Sure Shot"; "Ponce de Leon" with Michael York starring as the famous explorer; and "Legend of Sleepy Hollow" featuring Ed Begley Jr. as Ichabod Crane ($14.98 each DVD and $12.98 VHS); and "Shelly Duvall's Tall Tales & Legends: The Complete Series," a nine-disc set with "Annie Oakley," "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow," "Ponce de Leon," "Johnny Appleseed," "John Henry," "Darlin' Clementine," "Casey at the Bat," "Davy Crockett" and "Pecos Bill," $79.98 ... Coming to DVD and VHS for the first time are two releases from the ever-popular older boy's show Power Rangers: "Power Rrangers S.P.D. Stakeout (Vol. 2)" and "Wired (Vol. 3)," from Buena Vista; $19.99 ... Warner will release two feature-length animated films based on the girl-friendly Trollz franchise: "Trollz Volume 1: Best Friends for Life" and "Trollz Volume 2: Magic of the Five," both featuring a "Personal Memory Book" digital Trollz journal for girls to write in their daily adventures as well as Trollz "printables" and set-top games, $19.98 DVD ... and, lastly, for those "spooky" kids, Fox will release three episodes from the "Goosebumps" TV series based on the work of R.L. Stine: "Chillogy," "The Ghost Next Door" and "Scary House"; $9.98 each on DVD. (Posted September 6)

Special Interest:
"The Cutting Edge: The Magic of Movie Editing" (2005) is an impressive documentary that traces the history and critical role of the motion picture film editor, looking at the art of Academy Award-winning editors and their directors, including George Lucas, Quentin Tarantino, Ridley Scott, Rob Cohen, Alexander Payne and Lawrence Kasdan, $14.98 from Warner ... "Ace in the Hole," a 2005 Military Channel documentary on the pursuit and capture of Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein, $19.94 from Sony ... "Battlefield Diaries Extended Cut" is a three-disc set of the Military Channel's six-episode documentary of real-life military diaries, from WWII through the Korean War to the war in Iraq, $39.95 from Sony ... "Brubeck Returns to Moscow" (1997) has the Dave Brubeck Quartet performing with the Russian National Orchestra at Bolshoi Hall; $14.98 from Koch Vision ... "The Songwriters Collection" is a four-disc set featuring eight intimate evenings -- recorded at New York's 92nd Street Y -- of songs and stories from Broadway and Hollywood legends Kander & Ebb, Alan Jay Lerner, E.Y. "Yip" Harburg, Sheldon Harnick, Burton Lane, Mitchell Parish, Charles Strouse and Arthur Schwartz, $49.98 from Koch Vision ... "Cirque du Soleil: Midnight Sun" is a celebration of the 20th anniversary of Cirque du Soleil and the 25th anniversary of the Festival International de Jazz de Montreal, $24.95 from Sony ... "Lipstick & Dynamite: The First Ladies of Wrestling" is a 2004 documentary on the forgotten first ladies of the ring, including Gladys 'Killem' Gillem, who wrestled women, men, alligators, and bears, the Fabulous Moolah, the Great Mae Young and midget wrestler Diamond 'Lil, $19.98 from Koch Vision ... "Paris Is Burning" (1990), the famous documentary on Harlem drag balls, thrown by predominantly inner city African-American and Latino gay men, in the 1980's, $29.99 from Miramax ... "Punk: Attitude," the definitive punk rock documentary, featuring interviews with Henry Rollins, Jello Biafra, Tommy Ramone, David Johansen and a colorful cast of luminary narrators, delving into the roots of punk, borne of the Velvet Underground, MC-5, and the New York Dolls, connecting the musical dots from the 70s London scene to New York's CBGB. Features vintage footage and archival performances of the Sex Pistols, the Ramones, the Clash and the Damned; a two-disc set, $39.98 from Capital Entertainment ... "Tracey Ullman: Live & Exposed" (2005) is an autobiographical stand-up HBO Comedy Special, $19.97 from HBO Video. (Posted September 6)

Coming Soon:
"High Tension," a gory French thriller, will arrive on DVD October 11 from Lions gate ... Two documentaries arrive in October: "Mad Hot Ballroom," about New York City public school kids and the world of ballroom dancing, due October 18 from Paramount, and "Rize," about a new dance phenomenon that's exploding on the streets of South Central Los Angeles, due October 25 from Lions gate ... Also on October 25 comes "Dominion: Prequel to the Exorcist," director Paul Schrader's version of "The Exorcist" prequel, from Warner ... Due November 1 is "The Perfect Man," starring Hilary Duff, Heather Locklear, Chris Noth, from Universal ... Due the day after Christmas are two Disney outings: The thriller "Dark Water," starring Jennifer Connelly and Tim Roth, and a special edition DVD of the 1999 animated blockbuster "Toy Story 2." (Posted August 30)

DVD Collectibles:
The trendsetting "The Blues Brothers" (1985) arrives this week in a 25th Anniversary Edition. The film, directed by John Landis and starring John Belushi, Dan Aykroyd, James Brown, Cab Calloway, Ray Charles, Aretha Franklin, Steve Cropper, Donald Dunn, Murphy Dunne and Carrie Fisher, arrives on DVD with theatrical and extended director's cut versions and such extras as an introduction by Aykroyd, "Stories Behind the Making of The Blues Brothers," "Going Rounds: A Day on The Blues Brothers Tour" all-access pass to a Blues Brothers concert at the House of Blues in San Diego, "Transposing the Music" highlights the many spin-offs, tributes, merchandising developments, stage shows, impersonators and everything else inspired by the film, from Universal ... Paramount will release "Clueless: The Whatever Edition" to mark the 10th anniversary edition of the film that helped define a moment in pop culture, directed by Amy Heckerling and starring Alicia Silverstone, Brittany Murphy, Paul Rudd, Donald Faison and Stacey Dash -- loaded with extras ... "The Shirley Temple Collection Vol. 1" is a three disc set with "Heidi" (1937), "Curly Top" (1935) and "Little Miss Broadway" (1938), $29.98 or $14.98 each, from Fox. (Posted August 30)

From TV to Video:
Due this week: "The Complete Ripping Yarns," a two-disc set with all nine episodes of the late-70s British TV series spoofing schoolboy adventure stories, starring Michael Palin with guest shots by John Cleese and Eric Idle; $39.99 from Acorn Media ... "Curb Your Enthusiasm: The Complete Fourth Season," a two-disc set with 10 episodes, $39.98 from HBO Video ... "Faith of My Fathers," the 2005 A&E biodrama about Senator John McCain, starring Shawn Hatosy and Scott Glenn, from Sony ... "Garfield and Friends Volume Four," a three-disc set with 25 episodes, $39.98 from Fox ... "Highway to Heaven: Season Two," a six-disc set with 24 episodes, $79.96 from A&E Home Video ... "House: Season One," a three-disc set with 22 episodes, $59.98 from Universal ... "Lackawanna Blues," a 2005 HBO drama starring Epatha Merkerson, Marcus Carl Franklin, Mos Def, Carmen Ejogo, Louis Gossett Jr., Macy Gray, Terrence Dashon Howard, Ernie Hudson, Delroy Lindo, Rosie Perez, Ruben Santiago-Hudson, Liev Schreiber, Jimmy Smits, Patricia Wettig, from HBO Video ... "The Librarian: Quest for the Spear," a 2004 TNT original movie starring Noah Wyle, Sonya Walger, Bob Newhart, Kyle MacLachlan and Kelly Hu, from Warner ... "Married ... With Children: The Complete Fourth Season," a three-disc set with 23 episodes, $39.95 from Sony ... "Monty Python's Flying Circus: Eric Idle's Personal Best," and "Monty Python's Flying Circus: Michael Palin's Personal Best," both featuring 15 handpicked sketches, $19.95 each from A&E Home Video ... "Nip/Tuck: The Complete Second Season," $59.98 from Warner ... "The Petticoat Junction Ultimate Collection," a three-disc set with 20 first-year restored episodes, $29.98, from MPI Home Video ... "Pirates of Silicon Valley," a 1999 TNT original movie starring Anthony Michael Hall and Noah Wyle, from Warner ... "The Saint: The Early Episodes -- Set 2," a four-disc set with all 27 black-and-white second season episodes, from A&E Home Video ... "Warm Springs", a 2005 telefilm about FDR's struggle with polio, starring Kenneth Branagh, Cynthia Nixon, David Paymer and Tim Blake Nelson, from HBO Video. (Posted August 30)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
In Southern gothic "Chrystal" (2004) a man (Billy Bob Thornton) returns home looking for redemption 16 years after he killed his son and permanently injured his wife in an auto accident, also starring Lisa Blount, Ray McKinnon and Harry Dean Stanton, from First Look Home Entertainment ... "Cup of My Blood" (2005) is a horror-thriller in which a photographer gets possession of a holy relic and must fend off Evil's relentless assault of blood, murder and deceit, starring Daniel Patrick Sullivan, Janina Gavankar, Roger Anderson and Lance Mulvaney, from MPI Home Video ... Dark Sky Films/MPI will release two thrillers this week: In the film noir "Without Warning" (1952), a psychopathic gardener develops a lust for murder when he catches his wife cheating on him, starring Adam Williams and Ed Binns; and german mystery "College Girl Murders" (1967), starring Uschi Glas and Joachim Fuchsberger in a tale about the killing of co-eds on a college campus ... New Line will release this week "The Purifiers" (2004), a martial arts thriller about gang warfare in modern-day Britain, starring Dominic Monaghan and Kevin McKidd. (Posted August 30)

For the Kids:
"Lilo & Stitch 2: Stitch Has a Glitch" is a direct-to-video animated sequel with the voices of Dakota Fanning, Chris Sanders, Tia Carrere, David Ogden Stiers, Kevin McDonald and Jason Scott Lee, from Disney on $29.99 DVD and VHS ... New Video Kids celebrates the 90th anniversary of the beloved childhood classic Raggedy Ann with the first two releases to DVD of the childhood series: "The Adventures of Raggedy Ann & Andy: The Mabbit Adventure and Other Exciting Tales" and "The Adventures of Raggedy Ann & Andy: The Pixling Adventure and Other Exciting Tales," $12.95 each ... "My Scene Goes Hollywood" is a 2005 direct-to-video animated feature starring dolls from Mattel's My Scene toy line, featuring a Lindsay Lohan doll, $19.99 VHS and DVD from Buena Vista ... "The Fairly OddParents: Scary Godparents" features four animated episodes from the Nick hit, $16.99 from Paramount ... Fox will release three episodes from "Goosebumps," the TV series based on the work of R.L. Stine: "Chillogy," "The Ghost Next Door" and "Scary House," $9.98 each ... "Piano: The Melody of a Young Girl's Heart -- Volume 2: Confessions" is the second installment of the sweet animated series that follows a young girl as she discovers how to express her heart through music, $29.99 DVD from The Right Stuff International ... Fox celebrates the 25th anniversary of Strawberry Shortcake with the release of "Moonlight Mysteries," an animated adventure in which Strawberry and her friends go on an overnight camping trip, $14.98 DVD (with games) and $12.98 VHS. (Posted August 30)

On the Indie Front:
Empire Pictures Home Entertainment will release two cult independent films to DVD this week: The comedy "The Rosebud Beach Hotel" (1984), in which a young couple take over a failing beachfront hotel and try to turn it into a brothel, starring Colleen Camp, Peter Scolari, Christopher Lee and Fran Drescher; and "The Big Score," a 1983 action flick about an incorruptible cop wrongly accused of a crime he didn't commit, directed by and starring Fred Williamson. (Posted August 30)

Special Interest:
A critical triumph across the board, "The Staircase" is a real-life thriller from Academy Award-winning documentary filmmaker Jean-Xavier de Lestrade. With all the trappings of a classic murder mystery, the documentary chronicles the sensational story of North Carolina author Michael Peterson, who stood trial in 2003 for the murder of his wife, Kathleen Peterson. Granted unprecedented access to Peterson's lawyers, his family, the prosecution, the detectives and the trial, de Lestrade presents a gripping, inside look at the high-profile murder case in an absorbing eight-part series that will leave you on the edge of your seat. If you enjoy any of the real-life crime procedurals on A&E, Court TV or Discovery, you'll be drawn into this like a moth to a flame. The two-disc set with all eight episodes of the 2004 miniseries, with behind-the-scenes extras as well as unaired footage, sells for $39.96 from Docurama/Sundance Channel Home Entertainment.

"George Carlin: Doin' It Again" is the comedian's seventh HBO stand-up special, recorded at the State Theater in New Brunswick, New Jersey in 1990, $19.98 from MPI Home Video ... "The Serial Killers" is a three-disc set with 13 half-hour episodes delving inside the twisted minds of psychopaths, $39.98 from Dark Sky Films/MPI Home Video ... "Conquest of America" is a two-disc set of the History Channel miniseries about the exploration of America, $29.95 from A&E Home Video ... "Twelfth Night" is the acclaimed 1988 Thames Television and Renaissance Theatre Company's production of Shakespeare's play, directed by Kenneth Branagh and starring Richard Briers and Caroline Langrishe, from A&E Home Video ... "Vincent: The Life & Death of Vincent Van Gogh" is a 1987 documentary, directed by Paul Cox and narrated by John Hurt, from Docurama ... PBS' "Victory in the Pacific" is a 1995 American Experience documentary that takes a look at the end of World War II in the Pacific; the release coincides with the Sept. 2 60th anniversary of Japan's surrender; $24.99 DVD from Paramount ... "Heimat: A Chronicle of Germany" is a monumental 11-part series that covers German history from 1919 to 1982, focusing on a fictional German village and a fictional German family as they struggle through the post-WWI rubble, the rise of Nazism and the rebuilding of the country after WWII. Originally broadcast on german TV in 1984, Facets Video brings "Heimat" to DVD in a six-disc boxed set for $99.95 (www.facets.org). (Posted August 30)

DVD Collectibles:
Coinciding with the release of "The Ring Two" this week, DreamWorks will also debut the smash hit Japanese films that gave inspiration to the hugely successful $200 million "Ring" franchise. "Ringu 2," the sequel to the international phenomenon "Ringu," makes its North American DVD debut day-and-date; $19.95 DVD only. For the ultimate Japanese "Ring" experience, DreamWorks will also release "Ringu Anthology of Terror," a four film set featuring the original four Japanese films: "Ringu," "Ringu 2," "Rasen" and "Ringu 0," for $34.99 ... From The Criterion Collection comes two classics of the international cinema: Jean Renoir's 1932 "Boudu Saved From Drowning" and Roberto Rossellini's 1950 "The Flowers of St. Francis." "Boudu" is about a well-to-do bookseller who rescues a tramp from a suicidal plunge into the Seine and who adopts the bum with the hopes of reforming him. The irrepressible Boudu shows his gratitude by shaking the household to its foundations, challenging the hidebound principles of his hosts and seducing them with his anarchic charm. An effervescent satire of bourgeois complacency. "St. Francis" is a timeless and moving portrait of the search for spiritual enlightenment. In a series of simple and joyous vignettes, director Rossellini and co-writer Federico Fellini lovingly convey the universal teachings-of humility, compassion, faith, and sacrifice of the People's Saint. Shot in a neorealist manner, with monks from the Nocere Inferiore monastery playing the roles of St. Francis and his disciples.

"The Defa Sci-Fi Collection" is a newly re-mastered collection of three seminal works from the legendary DEFA film studio in East Germany: "The Silent Star" (1960), "Eolomea" (1972) and "In the Dust of the Stars" (1976), uncut and unaltered; $59.95 the set or $24.95 each. Always provocative, hugely influential and highly entertaining, these mind-bending stories of space exploration, alien races and utopian dreams (or nightmares) are finally available, unaltered and unedited, in all their space-age glory. DEFA (Deutsche Filmaktiengesellschaft) was made up of the state-run studios of the former German Democratic Republic or East Germany. DEFA was headquartered in the legendary UFA Studios of the "film city" of Babelsberg near Berlin and was famous for the work of such artists as Fritz Lang, Billy Wilder and Marlene Dietrich. Spanning from 1946 to the 1990s, this body of films represents Europe's largest cohesive national cinema collection. "The Defa Sci-Fi Collection" is from First Run Features.

For a more guilty pleasure, there's "The Transporter Special Delivery Edition" (2003), directed by Corey Yuen and starring Jason Statham, Qi Shu, Matt Schulze, Francois Berleand and Ric Young. The film -- shot in the French Riviera -- is a star vehicle for Statham and highlights Yuen's fast-paced action style (car chases, great martial arts action, impressive fireworks -- but with a soul). Released by Fox in time for the September 2 theatrical release of the sequel. (Posted August 23)

From TV to Video:
"Adam-12: Season One" is a two-disc set with 26 episodes, $39.98 from Universal ... "ALF: Season 2" is a four-disc set for $39.98 from Lions Gate ... "Boy Meets World: Season Three" is a three-disc set with 22 episodes, $39.99 from Buena Vista ... "Emergency! Season One" is a two-disc set with 11 episodes, $39.98 from Universal ... "Futurama Monster Robot Maniac Fun Collection" features Matt Groening's favorite four episodes: "Hell Is Other Robots," "Anthology of Interest I," "Roswell That Ends Well" and "The Sting," $14.98 from Fox ... "Good Times: The Complete Fifth Season is a three-disc set with 24 episodes, $29.95 from Sony ... "Homeland Security" is a 2004 telefilm starring Scott Glenn, Kal Penn and Tom Skerritt, from Paramount ... Kung Fu: The Complete Third Season" is a four-disc set with all 24 episodes from the final season, $39.98 from Warner ... "Life as We Know It: The Complete Series" is a three-disc set, $39.99 from Buena Vista ... "The O.C.: The Complete Second Season" is a seven-disc set with 24 episodes, $69.98 from Warner ... "Once and Again: Season Two" is a five-disc set with 22 episodes, $59.99 from Buena Vista ... "Six Feet Under: The Complete Fourth Season" is a five-disc set with 12 episodes, $99.98 from HBO Video ... "That's My Mama: The Complete First Season" is a three-disc set with 26 episodes, $29.95 from Sony ... "That's My Mama: The Complete Second Season" is a two-disc set with 13 episodes, $29.95 from Sony ... "Virus Buster Serge: The Collection" is a three-disc set with 12 episodes of the anime series set in Neo Hong Kong 2097, in which genetic engineering and advanced cybernetics have successfully fused man and machine, creating an insidious new threat -- digital viruses capable of controlling their hosts; $39.98 from Manga Entertainment ... "What's Happening!!: The Complete Third Season" is a three-disc set with 22 episodes, $29.95 from Sony. (Posted August 23)

For the Kids:
The Walt Disney Company and The Baby Einstein Company have teamed on a new video line, "Disney's Little Einsteins," featuring six Little Einsteins in learning adventures that will spark the curiosity of children with fun ways to enjoy, see and hear classical music, celebrated works of art, and the wonders of nature. The first release, "Our Huge Adventure," takes the Little Einsteins on an exciting mission to help a large caterpillar on his quest to become a Monarch butterfly, set to the music of Beethoven's Ninth Symphony and featuring classic artworks including Van Gogh's "Wheat Field of Cypress," Monet's "Woman in a Garden" and Navajo woven art; $19.99 VHS and DVD ... Paramount will release this week additions to three kids TV franchises: "Caillou's Family Fun," with eight adventures of the inquisitive 4-year-old and his family on $14.99 DVD and four VHS adventures ($9.95), for preschoolers; "Boohbah: Big Windows," with three adventures from the PBS KIDS series on $9.95 VHS and $14.99 DVD, also for preschoolers; and "Cyberchase: Ecohaven CSE," featuring the three kid heroes of cyberspace in two adventures, on $14.99 DVD (with a bonus episode) and $9.95 VHS, for kids six to 11 ... "Codename: Kids Next Door -- Sooper Hugest Missions File 2" features seven episodes from the Cartoon Network series about a group of neighborhood sleuths who want to make the world safe for kids, candy and staying up all night long, on $14.97 DVD from Warner ... Fox will debut this week two inspiring short family films from the new hit series "Roach Approach": "Roach Approach: Don't Miss the Boat!" in which grandpa roach relates the story of Noah and the Ark, and "Roach Approach: The Mane Event!" in which grandpa retells the tale of Daniel in the Lion's Den; $12.98 VHS and $14.98 DVD. (Posted August 23)

Foreign:
"Oldboy" (2003 -- S. Korea) is director Chan-wook Park's harrowing tale about an ordinary Seoul businessman with a wife and little daughter who, after a drunken night on the town, is locked up in a strange, private "prison" for 15 years, until he finds himself unexpectedly deposited on a grass-covered high-rise roof as if nothing ever happened. While eating in a Japanese restaurant, his cell phone rings and a voice dares him to figure out why he was imprisoned -- in just five days. Winner of the Grand Prize of the Jury at the 2004 Festival de Cannes. From Tartan Asia Extreme on DVD only ... "La Petite Lili" (2003 -- French) is director Claude Miller's modern day retelling of Anton Chekhov's "The Seagull." Ludivine Sagnier stars as Lili, the love and muse of an idealistic young filmmaker named Julien. At odds with the serenity of the breathtaking French countryside, Julien rebels against his mother and her guests, while multiple intrigues of lust and power play out behind the scenes. When the young and overly sensitive filmmaker Julien screens his new DV art-film starring his girlfriend Lili -- a sexy young local girl -- to his famous actress mother Mado, and her lover Brice, an accomplished film director, an unraveling of the delicate peace in their house begins. From First Run Features. (Posted August 23)

Special Interest:
"Home of the Brave (Special Edition DVD)" is a 2004 documentary on Viola Liuzzo, a 39-year-old Detroit Teamster's wife and mother of five, who was the only white woman killed during the civil rights movement. Narrated by Stockard Channing, Paola di Florio's powerful and poignant documentary rescues from obscurity Liuzzo's tragic untold story. Dramatic archival footage recaptures this turbulent era, and compelling interviews with her children etch a vivid portrait of a shattered family determined to uncover the truth about their mother's murder and the government's campaign to smear her name; $29.95 from Home Vision Entertainment ... World Wrestling Entertainment has two releases this week: "The Great American Bash!" featuring the Smackdown! superstars in their annual summer celebration (180 minutes, $24.95 DVD) and "Tombstone: The History of the Undertaker," a three- disc set (10 hours) featuring 21 of the Undertaker's best matches with additional footage and histories of his many opponents, $34.95 DVD. (Posted August 23)

Just announced:
Warner Home Video will release on October 18 "Batman Begins," directed by Christopher Nolan and starring Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Liam Neeson, Katie Holmes, Gary Oldman, Cillian Murphy, Tom Wilkinson, Rutger Hauer and Ken Watanabe. The DVD will be released in two versions: A single-disc with the film only and a two-disc deluxe edition with such extras as documentaries on the genesis of the Dark Knight and the reinvention of the Batmobile; Bale's transformation into Batman; a spoof, "Tankman Begins"; a featurette on the creation of Gotham City, the Batcave and Wayne Manor; and a 72-page collectible comic book ... Also from Warner, on November 15, comes the final goodbye from "Friends": "Friends: The Complete Tenth Season," a four-disc set with 18 episodes from the final season, $44.98, with such extras as never-before-seen footage and a 45-minute gag reel. A complete set of all "Friends" is in the works for $299.98. (Posted August 18)

Coming Soon:
Due October 25: "Bewitched," based on the classic TV show, starring Nicole Kidman, Will Ferrell, Shirley MacLaine, Michael Caine, Jason Schwartzman and Kristin Chenoweth, from Sony; "Herbie: Fully Loaded," starring Lindsay Lohan, Michael Keaton and Matt Dillon, from Buena Vista; and Woody Allen's "Melinda and Melinda," starring Will Ferrell, Jonny Lee Miller, Radha Mitchell, Amanda Peet, Chloe Sevigny, Wallace Shawn and Larry Pine, from Fox ... Due November 15 is the animated smash comedy "Madagascar," with the voice talent of Ben Stiller, Chris Rock, David Schwimmer, Jada Pinkett Smith, Sacha Baron Cohen, Cedric the Entertainer and Andy Richter, from DreamWorks ... On November 29 Fox will release the sexy action comedy "Mr. & Mrs. Smith," starring Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, with commentary by director Doug Liman and deleted scenes on the DVD ... and Ron Howard's "Cinderella Man," starring Russell Crowe, Renee Zellweger, Paul Giamatti and Craig Bierko, slugs it way to VHS and DVD from Universal. (Posted August 16)

DVD Collectibles:
Another fine classics set is due this week from Warner: "Astaire and Rogers Collection Volume One," a five-disc set with the Fred Astaire-Ginger Rogers' collaborations "The Barkleys of Broadway," "Follow the Fleet," "Shall We Dance," "Swing Time" and "Top Hat"; each DVD is loaded with extras; $59.92 the set or $19.97 each ... also from Warner comes "Jamboree," a 1957 rock 'n' roll exploitation film about the rise and fall and rise of "America's singing sweethearts" (played by Paul Carr and Freda Holloway, who's voice is supplied by Connie Francis), notable only for its brief performances by Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins, Slim Whitman, and Count Basie and Joe Williams ... The folks at Disney will release to DVD this week "Walt Disney's Timeless Tales, Volume 1," a collection of favorite animated stories from the Disney vaults: "The Prince and the Pauper," "The Three Little Pigs," "The Tortoise and the Hare," "The Grasshopper and the Ants" and "The Pied Piper"; and "Walt Disney's Timeless Tales, Volume 2," with "The Wind in the Willows," "The Ugly Duckling," "Ferdinand the Bull" and "The Country Cousin"; $19.99 each ... From Buena Vista comes two modern classics of Japanese animation directed by Studio Ghibli's Isao Takahata: "My Neighbors the Yamadas" (1994) with the original Japanese language track plus English-track featuring the voices of Jim Belushi, Molly Shannon, David Ogden Stiers; and "Pom Poko" (1999) with the original Japanese language track plus English-track featuring the voices of Jonathan Taylor Thomas, Clancy Brown and Olivia D'Abo, in a two-disc set. (Posted August 16)

From TV to Video:
"The Andy Griffith Show -- The Complete Third Season," a four-disc set with 32 episodes, $39.99 from Paramount ... "I Love Lucy -- The Complete Fifth Season" (1955-56), a four-disc set with 26 episodes, $54.99 from Paramount ... "The Mind of the Married Man: The Complete First Season," a two-disc set with 10 episodes of Mike Binder's offbeat series about marriage and men, $39.98 from HBO Video ... "The Office: Season One" is a single disc with the first six episodes of the quirky mockumentary on life in a dysfunctional paper supply company in Scranton, Pennsylvania, starring Steve Carell with episodes directed by Amy Heckerling and Ken Kwapis, $29.98 from Universal ... "Phil of the Future: Volume 1," with four episodes, $19.99 on VHS and DVD from Buena Vista ... "The Simpsons: The Complete Sixth Season," a four-disc set with 25 episodes in a cool box shaped like Homer's head, $49.98 loaded with extras, from Fox ... "That's So Raven: Volume 2: Disguise the Limit," four episodes, $19.99 from Buena Vista on DVD and VHS ... "Undeclared: The Complete Series" (2001-2002), a four-disc set with all 17 episodes, $49.98 from Shout! Factory. (Posted August 16)

On the Indie Front:
"Girl Play" (2004) is a sensual romantic comedy about two actresses who fall in love while rehearsing a play. starring Robin Greenspan, Lacie Harmon, Mink Stole and Dom Deluise, $24.95 DVD from Wolfe Releasing. (Posted August 16)

Special Interest:
"Alien Planet" is a 2005 Discovery Channel special that merges science and futuristic simulation to create a dramatic virtual mission to a "newly discovered" (fictional) planet, Darwin 4. Extras include interviews with George Lucas and noted scientists Stephen Hawking, Craig Venter, Jim Garvin, Jack Horner and Michio Kaku; $19.94 from Sony ... "Dave Chappelle: For What It's Worth" is a Showtime special recorded live at San Francisco's legendary Fillmore Theatre; $19.94 from Sony ... Demolition Pictures has released two DVDs of "underground" female fighting: "Extreme ChickFights Volume 1" and "Extreme ChickFights Reloaded" at $19.95 each VHS and DVD; check out www.extremechickfights.com for more information. (Posted August 16)

DVD Collectibles:
Fox has added three titles to its Studio Classics line: "Hush ... Hush, Sweet Charlotte" (1964), starring Bette Davis, Olivia de Havilland, Joseph Cotton, Agnes Moorehead, Cecil Kellaway, Victor Buono and Mary Astor; "In Old Chicago" (1937), starring Tyrone Power, Alice Faye, Don Ameche, Alice Brady, Andy Devine and Brian Donlevy (includes both the 96-minute theatrical version and the 109-minute "Road Show" version); and "The Man in the Gray Flannel Suit" (1956), starring Gregory Peck, Jennifer Jones, Marisa Pavan, Lee J. Cobb, Ann Harding, Keenan Wynn, Gene Lockhart and Gigi Perreau ... "Agatha Christie's Romantic Detectives" is a must-have for the writer's fans: It features more than 17 hours of classic Christie sleauthing couples (mixing crime and romance). The seven-disc set includes all 11 episodes of PBS Mystery!'s "Tommy & Tuppence: Partners in Crime" (set in the 1920s and starring Francesca Annis and James Warwick as a zany upper class couple who take over a defunct detective agency) on four discs; two feature-length mysteries, "Why Didn't They Ask Evans?" and "Seven Dials Mystery," each on one disc; and "Agatha Christie: A Life in Pictures," a BBC bio-drama that explores Christie's shadowy personal life (starring Olivia Williams) on the seventh disc; $99.99 from Acorn Media. (Posted August 9)

From TV to Video:
Due this week: "Dallas: The Complete Third Season," a five-disc set with 25 episodes, $39.98 from Warner ... "The David Steinberg Show," a four-disc set with 21 episodes, $49.98 from Koch Vision ... ""Hetty Wainthropp Investigates: Complete Second Series," a three-disc set with six episodes of the BBC series starring Patricia Routledge as a housewife-turned-detective, $59.99 from Acorn Media ... "A Married Man," a 1983 miniseries starring Anthony Hopkins, Julian Sands and Ciaran Madden, in a $29.98 two-disc set from Koch Vision ... "The Muppet Show: Season One," a four-disc set with 24 episodes, and such extras as Jim Henson's original "pitch reel," "Muppet Morsels," the original pilot, and a Season 1 promotional gag reel; $39.99 from Buena Vista ... "The Muppets' Wizard of Oz," a 2005 telefilm starring the Muppets, Queen Latifah, Quentin Tarantino, Jeffrey Tambor, David Alan Grier in an extended version with 20 extra minutes, outtakes, bloopers, and a making-of featurette; $24.99 DVD and VHS from Buena Vista ... "Murder at the Presidio," a 2005 telefilm about the only murder ever committed at San Francisco's famed Presidio army base, starring Lou Diamond Phillips and Jason Priestly, from Sony ... "Roswell Season Three," a five-disc set with 18 episodes, $59.98 from Fox ... "T.J. Hooker: The First Two Seasons," a six-disc set with 27 episodes, $49.95 from Sony ... and two telefilms starring four-time Academy Award winner Katharine Hepburn: "Mrs. Delafield Wants to Marry" (1986), about a wealthy widow who falls in love with her doctor to the consternation of her family, also starring Bibi Besch, Denholm Elliott and Harold Gould; and "Laura Lansing Slept Here" (1988), about a novelist who moves in with a suburban family to prove she's not lost touch with her readers, also starring Karen Austin, Joel Higgins and Nicolas Surovy; $9.98 each from Koch Vision. (Posted August 9)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
In the 2005 direct-to-video "Sunland Heat" a world-class Olympic martial artist moves to Brazil in a desperate attempt to begin a new life with her daughter after a failed marriage to a millionaire -- but her past catches up with her and she finds herself fighting for her and her daughter's lives, starring Alex Van Hagen, J.J. Perry and Laura Putney, on DVD and VHS from MTI Home Video ... "Volcano Disaster" is a 2004 SciFi Channel actioner about a scientist who predicts -- to a disbelieving public -- that a local volcano will erupt. Guess what -- it does. The film, shot in Bulgaria, stars Chris William Martin and Antonella Elia, on DVD and VHS from First Look Home Entertainment. (Posted August 9)

For the Kids:
Paramount and PBS KIDS have two Teletubbies releases this week: "Time for Teletubbies," a three-disc gift set that features three adventures with Tinky Winky, Dipsy, Laa-Laa and Po: "Teletubbies: Again-again," "Here Come the Teletubbies" and "Teletubbies: Look!" $39.99; and "All Together Teletubbies: Playful Pals and Delightful Days," featuring a silly play day with the frolicking quartet, on $9.95 VHS and $14.99 DVD (with extras). (Posted August 9)

Foreign:
Due this week is "Three Men and a Cradle" (1985) (the original French film that inspired "Three Men and a Baby"), directed by Coline Serreau and starring Roland Giraud, Philippine Leroy-Beaulieu, Dominique Lavanant, Andra Dussollier and Michel Boujenah, with such extras as an interview with director Coline Serreau, "Au Clair de la Lune": video lullaby, the original French trailer, and "Toy giraffe": a brief homage; $24.95 from Home Vision Entertainment. (Posted August 9)

Special Interest:
"John Cleese: Wine For the Confused" is a Food Network special hosted by the comedy legend. Cleese offers viewers a fun-filled introduction to the world of winemaking and wine drinking without any of the snobbery associated with the subject. The show includes visits to several California wineries from last year's critically acclaimed "Sideways" along with tips and conversations with wine experts; $19.98 from Koch Vision ... Koch Vision will also release two live performances from the PBS Soundstage series: "Soundstage: Chris Isaak" a one-hour concert with such hits as "Wicked Game," "Somebody's Crying" and "Baby Did a Bad Bad Thing"; and "Soundstage: Steve Winwood," featuring work from his album "About Time" as well as performances from his days with Traffic; $19.98 each ... "The Big Black Comedy Show Volume 3" features standups Retha Jones, Ricky Harris, Shawn Morgan and Wil Sylvince, from Fox. (Posted August 9)

Coming Soon:
Soccer comedy "Kicking and Screaming," starring Will Ferrell, Robert Duvall, Mike Ditka and Kate Walsh, will arrive October 11 from Universal ... Also on that day Warner will release teen girl comedy-adventure "The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants," starring Amber Tamblyn, Alexis Bledel, America Ferrera, Blake Lively, Jenna Boyd, Bradley Whitford, Nancy Travis, Rachel Ticot and Mike Vogel ... Due October 18 is "The Honeymooners," starring Cedric the Entertainer, Mike Epps, Gabrielle Union, Regina Hall, Eric Stoltz, Jon Polito, John Leguizamo, from Paramount ... and from Warner oozes "House of Wax," starring Elisha Cuthbert, Chad Michael Murray, Brian Van Holt and Paris Hilton, due October 25. (Posted August 2)

DVD Collectibles:
Here's another great classic set from Warner Home Video: Nick and Nora Charles (William Powell and Myrna Loy), the world's most popular, glamorous and sophisticated detectives, arrive on DVD in "The Complete Thin Man Collection." The seven-disc set contains all six "Thin Man" films: "The Thin Man," "After the Thin Man," "Another Thin Man," "Shadow of the Thin Man," "The Thin Man Goes Home" and "Song of the Thin Man"; the seventh disc, "Alias Nick & Nora," includes documentaries "William Powell: A True Gentleman" and "Myrna Loy: So Nice to Come Home To"; shorts; radio dramas; 1957 episode from "The Thin Man" TV series starring Peter Lawford and Phyllis Kirk. $59.92 or $19.97 each. Today, by the way, is Myrna Loy's 100th birthday. (Posted August 2)

The long-awaited "The High and the Mighty" finally flies to home video -- in a two-disc Special Collector's Edition to boot. The 1954 William A. Wellman film -- kept off TV and home video for a variety of rights and restoration reasons, stars John Wayne, Robert Stack, Claire Trevor, Laraine Day, Jan Sterling and Phil Harris. The edition features an introduction by Leonard Maltin; commentary by Maltin, William Wellman, Jr., Karen Sharpe, Pedro Gonzales-Gonzales and aviation expert Vincent Longo; featurettes "The Batjac Story," "Stories From the Set," "On Director William A. Wellman," "The Music and World of Dimitri Tiomkin," "Restoring a Classic," "A Place in Film History," "Ernest K. Gann: Adventurer, Author, Artist," "Flying in the Fifties"; theatrical trailer; TV trailer; Batjac montage; "The High and the Mighty" premiere footage; photo gallery. Another "lost" John Wayne film, "Island in the Sky" (1953), also directed by Wellman, arrives today as well. Both DVDs are from Paramount. (Posted August 2)

Also due today: "Ghostbusters Double Feature Gift Set," a two-disc set with "Ghostbusters" (1984) and "Ghostbusters II" (1989), $19.94, from Sony ... The Merchant Ivory Collection adds five titles to its series of James Ivory films: "Bombay Talkie," "The Bostonians," "The Europeans," "Heat and Dust" and "Quartet." (Posted August 2)

From TV to Video:
Due this week: "Austin Stevens: Snakemaster," a three-episode compilation of the Animal Planet series, $14.94 from Sony ... "Candid Camera: Five Decades of Smiles," a 10-disc collection with 44 episodes of the grand-daddy of all reality shows. Extras in the $99.95 set include the NBC premiere from May 1949; a two-hour "Greatest Moments" disc produced exclusively for this DVD set; the 25th and 40th anniversary specials; celebrity appearances over the years, featuring the likes of Woody Allen, Muhammad Ali, Buster Keaton and Jayne Mansfield; and five featurettes, hosted by Peter Funt, creator Allen Funt's son, that put the show in context with the times; from Rhino Home Video ... "Columbo: The Complete Third Season," a two-disc set with 15 one-hour mysteries, $29.98 from Universal ... "The Cosby Show: Season 1," a four-disc set with 24 episodes, $49.99 from UrbanWorks Entertainment ... "The Dukes of Hazzard: The Complete Fourth Season," a nine-disc set with 27 episodes, $39.98 (timed for the theatrical release this weekend) from Warner ... "Hearts Afire: The Complete First Season," a four-disc set, $39.99 from Image Entertainment ... "The Inspector Lynley Mysteries 3," a four-disc set with four feature-length episodes of the BBC Mystery! series, $39.95 from WGBH Boston Video ... "Jeff Corwin Experience: Out on a Limb -- Monkeys, Orangutans and More," featuring three-episodes of the Animal Planet series, $14.94 from Sony ... "McCloud Seasons 1 & 2," a three-disc set with 11 episodes, $29.98 from Universal ... "McMillan & Wife: Season 1," a two-disc set, $29.98 from Universal ... "Over There" pilot episode of the hit FX series on the war in Iraq, $9.98 from Fox ... "Saturday Morning With Sid & Marty Krofft," featuring pilot episodes from the first seven Krofft Saturday morning series (including "Land of the Lost," "Lidsville," "H.R. Pufnstuf," "The Bugaloos," "Sigmund and the Sea Monster," "The Lost Saucer" and "Far Out Space Nuts") uncut with original music and content, $14.95 from Rhino Home Video ... "When Billie Beat Bobby," a 2001 telefilm about the infamous 1973 "battle of the sexes" match between tennis champs Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs, starring Holly Hunter and Ron Silver, from Miramax ... "Wuthering Heights," a 1998 Masterpiece Theatre production of the classic romance, starring Orla Brady and Robert Cavanah, from WGBH Boston Video ... "The X-Files Mythology: Black Oil," a four-disc set that brings together 15 episodes following the "Black Oil" thread; $39.98 from Fox. (Posted August 2)

Buzzin the 'B's:
C. Thomas Howell and Stella Stevens star in "Glass Trap" (2004), a horror thriller about genetically engineered ants who turn into giant, out-of-control creatures on the hunt for human flesh, from First Look Home Entertainment on DVD and VHS. (Posted August 2)

For the Kids:
Due this week: "Pippi Longstocking," a 1997 animated version of the kids tale, with the voices of Melissa Altro, Catherine O'Hara and Dave Thomas, $9.97 DVD from Warner ... "Pooh's Heffalump Halloween Movie," a 2005 direct-to-video animated feature, $14.95 VHS and DVD from Disney ... "Blue's Clues: Blue's Room: Alphabet Power," two animated episodes on VHS ($9.98) and six on DVD ($16.99) from Paramount ... kids can celebrate the last days of summer with "Berenstain Bears: Bears Out and About," Sony's seventh compilation of episodes from the popular PBS Kids series; six episodes on $14.95 DVD and four on $9.95 VHS ... Sony will also release another pre-school kids favorite this week: "Dragon Tales: Sing and Dance in Dragon Land," featuring 20 songs from the PBS Kids series, $9.95 VHS and $14.95 DVD. (Posted August 2)

Special Interest:
"Hoover Street Revival" is a 2002 documentary about the lives of worshippers from the congregation of the Greater Bethany Community Church in South Central, L.A., from Tartan Video ... "This Old Cub" is a 2004 documentary about former nine-time all-star third baseman, broadcaster, and Chicago Cubs' legend Ron Santo and his lifelong battle with diabetes, featuring Ernie Banks, Fergie Jenkins, Brooks Robinson, Johnny Bench, Tommy La Sorda, Willie Mays, Joe Morgan, Dennis Farina, Gary Sinise, William Petersen, Bill Murray; narrated by Joe Mantegna, from Home Vision Entertainment ... "Ryan" is a 2004 Oscar-winning short film that brings to life the story of Canadian animator Ryan Larkin, who produced some of the most influential animated films of the early 1970s, and who now lives on welfare and panhandles for small change in downtown Montreal, from Rhino Home Video ... WGBH Boston Video will release the five-disc set "A Science Odyssey" that looks at 100 years of revolutionary scientific and technological discoveries, from the discovery of penicillin to NASA and the space race, narrated by Charles Osgood; the programs are "Matters of Life and Death," "Mysteries of the Universe," "In Search of Ourselves," "Bigger, Better, Faster" and "Origins"; $79.95 ... Warner Home Video kicks off the football season early this year with three new DVD titles: "NFL: The Complete History of the Pittsburgh Steelers," "NFL: The Complete History of the Chicago Bears," in two-disc sets for $26.95; and "Pro Football Hall of Fame: 85 Years of Greatness," a three-disc set for $39.92. (Posted August 2)

Coming Soon:
The big news that everyone has been waiting for: "Star Wars: Episode III -- The Revenge of the Sith," will arrive on November 1 from Fox. The two-disc set will include a new full-length documentary produced by Lucasfilm; two new featurettes, one exploring the prophecy of Anakin Skywalker as the Chosen One and the other on the movie's stunts; and a 15-part collection of Lucasfilm "Web documentaries" ... The controversial Vincent Gallo film "The Brown Bunny," which caused quite a stir at Cannes two years ago for its very raw sex scene between Gallo and Chloe Sevigny, will arrive August 16 in not rated Superbit form from Sony ... Also from Sony comes "Lords of Dogtown," directed by Catherine Hardwicke and starring John Robinson, Emile Hirsch, Rebecca De Mornay, William Mapother, Julio Oscar Mechoso, Victor Rasuk, Nikki Reed and Heath Ledger, due Sept 27 in theatrical and unrated extended cut editions ... "The Amityville Horror," starring Ryan Reynolds, Melissa George, Jesse James, Jimmy Bennett, Chloe Moretz, Rachel Nichols and Philip Baker Hall, will try to scare up audiences on October 4, from MGM ... "Unleashed," starring Jet Li, Morgan Freeman, Kerry Condon and Bob Hoskins, will fight its way home from Universal on October 11 ... Street date change: "A Slightly Pregnant Man," the 1973 French comedy directed by Jacques Demy and starring Catherine Deneuve and Marcello Mastroianni, has been pushed to a February 2006 release by Koch Lorber Films. (Posted July 26)

DVD Collectibles:
Two fascinating films this week from director Seijun Suzuki: "Gate of Flesh" (1964 -- Japan), a stylish adaptation of the often-filmed novel that seethes with brilliant color and raw passion, about a band of prostitutes who scratch out a meager existence, trying to maintain their self-dignity In the black markets of bombed-out post-WWII Tokyo; and "Story of a Prostitute" (1965 -- Japan), a tragic love story about one of seven "comfort women," expected to serve hundreds of soldiers on the Manchurian front during World War II, who falls in love with a sensitive young soldier, challenging the code of honor among men and country. Both releases are $29.95 from The Criterion Collection ... The legendary clubs, their patrons and pioneer DJs that paved the way for the present day global DJ and Club Culture finally get their due in a two-disc DVD release of the internationally acclaimed documentary film "Maestro," from Sanctuary Records ($21.95). Directed, written and produced by Cuban born, New York raised, Josell Ramos, "Maestro" puts into perspective the period of time spanning the late 60s into the early 80s when New York City saw the birth of the Underground Dance Music Culture, a musical and a cultural movement that deeply impacted social rules and ultimately set the groundwork for the Chicago House Music scene, the Disco era and present day global DJ Culture. A soundtrack CD will be simultaneously released. (Posted July 26)

From TV to Video:
"Benny Hill: Complete and Unadulterated -- The Naughty Early Years: Set 3" is a three-disc set with 10 episodes (never broadcast in full-length form in the U.S.) from 1975 to 1977; $49.95 from A&E Home Video ... "The Brady Bunch -- The Complete Second Season," a four-disc set with 24 episodes, $30 from Paramount ... "Cold Feet: Complete 3rd Series" is a three-disc set with eight episodes of the BBC series about three young couples facing the realities of love, sex, friendship and parenthood; $39.99 from Acorn Media ... "Dark Shadows DVD Collection 19" is a four-disc set with 40 episodes, $59.98 from MPI Home Video ... "Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman: The Complete Season 6" is a six-disc set with the final 22 episodes, $89.95 from A&E Home Video ... "Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex, Volume 7" contains three half-hour episodes of the anime hit, on a single disc for $24.98 or in a two-disc special edition that includes a Laughing Man T- Shirt, collectors Tachikoma card and a custom metal container that can hold the entire seven-volume series, from Anchor Bay Entertainment ... "Gilligan's Island: The Complete Third Season" is a three-disc set with 30 episodes, $39.98 from Warner ... "The Mary Tyler Moore Show: Season Two" is a three-disc set with 24 episodes, $29.98 from Fox ... "Remington Steele: Season 1" is a four-disc set with 22 episodes, $39.98 from Fox ... "Rumpole of the Baily, Set 3" is a six-disc set with all 12 episodes from the fifth, sixth and seventh (final) season of the PBS show starring Leo McKern, $99.95 from A&E Home Video ... "Star Trek Enterprise: The Complete Second Season" is a seven-disc set with 26 episodes, $129.98 from Paramount ... "3rd Rock From the Sun Season 1" comes in a four-disc set with 20 episodes, $39.98 from Anchor Bay. (Posted July 26)

For the Kids:
New Video will release this week two additions to the quite wonderful Scholastic Video Collection library of animated tales based on award-winning stories: "Tikki Tikki Tembo ... and More Favorite Tales" and "The Day Jimmy's Boa Ate the Wash." "Tikki Tikki Tembo," adapted from a Chinese folk tale by Arlene Mosel, answers the question What's in a name? A great deal according to the Chinese of long ago, who honored their first son with the grand, long name Tikki Tikki Tembo-No Sa Rembo-Chari Bari Ruchi-Pip Peri Tembo. The volume also features the stories "Hot Hippo" and "The Tender Tale of Cinderella Penguin" (DVD bonus stories include "The Happy Lion," "The Magic of Anansi" and "Little Red Riding Hood"). In the second volume, a class trip to the farm starts out pretty dull -- until the cow starts crying, the pigs get on the bus, and Jimmy's pet boa gets loose. Other stories to go along with "The Day Jimmy's Boa Ate the Wash" are "Shrinking Violet" and "Will I Have a Friend?" (DVD bonus stories are "The Sweater" and "Wings: A Tale of Two Chickens"). VHS suggested retail price is $9.95; the DVDs sell for $14.95. (Posted July 26)

Other kids releases this week: "All Grown Up: Dude, Where's My Horse?" is a double-length two-part Rugrats special -- with two bonus episodes --for $16.99, from Paramount ... "The Wind in the Willows: The Complete Second Series" is a two-disc set with 13 episodes of the stop-motion animated series; $29.95 from A&E Home Video. (Posted July 26)

Special Interest:
"Balseros" (2002) is a documentary account of seven Cuban refuges who, in 1994, risked everything to escape Cuba on homemade rafts in pursuit of the American Dream; $26.95 from Docurama ... "FDR: A Presidency Revealed" is a comprehensive documentary on FDR, with never-before-seen home movies and rare audio recordings, narrated by Edward Herrmann , in a two-disc set, $29.95 from History Channel ... "A Night in Havana: Dizzy Gillespie in Cuba" (1989) features the godfather of bebop playing with Arturo Sandoval and Gonzalo Rubalcaba, recorded live at the Fifth International Jazz Festival in Havana; $26.95 from Docurama ... UrbanWorks Entertainment Soul Theatre Series will release this week "He Say, She Say, But What Does God Say?" (2005), a dramatic stage production -- filmed in multi-camera format in Dolby 5.1 -- that tells the story of a struggle between church-goers and ruthless gangsters battling for domination in the community ... "The History Channel Presents: Julius Caesar's Rome" is a two-disc set with six programs about Rome and its emperors: "The Republic of Rome," "The Age of Emperors," "Building an Empire," "The Enduring Legacy," "Biography: Julius Caesar" and "Antony and Cleopatra"; $29.95 from History Channel ... Major League Baseball and A&E Home Video have teamed for a monumental video event: "The Boston Red Six 2004 World Series Collector's Edition," a 12-disc set with the unedited, original broadcasts of all seven American League Championship series games against the Yankees and all four of the World Series games against the Cardinals, plus a bonus disc with more than three hours of extras including wireless on-field player recordings, the Ring Ceremony, celebrity fan interviews, and pre- and post-game interviews; each DVD in the set is packaged in what is dubbed "SleeveStats," providing a host of statistics, trivia and information (line scores, series stats, attendance, time & temperature, Hall of Fame artifacts, etc.) on each game; $79.95. (Posted July 26)

From TV to Video:
Due this week: "Cleopatra 2525: The Complete Series" is a three-disc set with all 28 episodes, $49.98 from Universal ... "Dead Like Me: The Complete Second Season" is a four-disc set, $49.96 from MGM ... "Earth 2: The Complete Series" is a three-disc set with all 21 episodes, $49.98 from Universal ... "Laguna Beach: The Complete First Season" is a three-disc set with 11 episodes, about $30 from Paramount ... "Lost in Space: Season Three, Vol. 2" is a three-disc set with the final nine episodes, $29.98 from Fox ... "Sliders: The Third Season" is a four-disc set with 25 episodes, $59.98 from Universal. (Posted July 19)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
"Charlie" is a gritty crime adventure that chronicles the true story of the rise and fall of Charlie Richardson, England's most notorious and brutal gang leader, starring Luke Goss, on DVD from Fox ... "The Crow: Wicked Prayer" is the fourth installment in "The Crow" series, here starring Edward Furlong, Tara Reid and Dennis Hopper, as The Crow resurrects a young man so he can get even with a gang of satanic bikers, from Dimension on DVD ... "Nowhere Man" is a quirky thriller about a man who searches for his missing member, severed and stolen by his girlfriend after a fight, from First Run Features on DVD ... Roy Scheider, Michael Pare and Oleg Taktarov star in "Red Serpent," about an American businessman in Russia who turns to a washed-up KGB officer for help after his daughter is kidnapped by a deadly drug smuggling ring, from MTI Home Video on VHS and DVD ... First Look Home Entertainment has two actioners due this weekend: "Tornado," about a photographer who teams with his ex-wife to track deadly storms, and "Blast," about a Navy SEAL who must fight off terrorists who hijack an offshore oil rig, starring Eddie Griffin, Breckin Meyer and Vivica A. Fox; both on VHS and DVD. (Posted July 19)

Foreign:
"The Farewell" (2000 -- Germany) depicts one day in the life of Bertolt Brecht as he prepares to leave his lakeside home and his mistresses in the summer of 1956 to return to Berlin for the fall theater season, directed by Jan Schutte and starring Josef Bierbichler and Monika Bleibtreu, on VHS and DVD from New Yorker ... "Slim Susie" (2003 -- Sweden) is a viscerally exhilarating black comedy in the tradition of "Pulp Fiction" and "Trainspotting.," about a quaint rural village filled with small town madness, in which former beauty queen Susie goes missing. When her brother Erik returns from Stockholm to find out what happened to her, he's shocked to discover his sweet and innocent sister was anything but! Directed by Ulf Malmrosis and starring Tuva Novotny, Jonas Rimeika, Bjoorn Starrin and Kjell Bergqvist, from Home Vision Entertainment. (Posted July 19)

For the Kids:
Due this week is "Dora The Explorer: Super Babies" (2005), featuring four animated episodes from the best-selling Nick Jr. series, on VHS and DVD from Paramount ... Warner Home Video will release two new DVDs of animated adventures for pre-schoolers, "A Pup Named Scooby-Doo, Vol. 1" and "A Pup Named Scooby-Doo, Vol. 2," featuring the Mystery Inc. gang as kids and Scooby as a pup; each DVD has four episodes and sells for $14.98 ... The latest installment in "The Baby Einstein" series for toddlers is "Baby Wordsworth," created to expose children to first words and the idea that communication can take various forms; the show is hosted by the classic Baby Einstein puppets and includes a special guest appearance by Marlee Matlin; on $14.99 VHS and $19.99 DVD from Walt Disney. (Posted July 19)

Special Interest:
Docurama has three interesting releases this week: "Balseros" (2002), a documentary account of seven Cuban refuges who risked everything to escape Cuba on homemade rafts in pursuit of the American Dream; "Guerilla: The Taking of Patty Hearst (aka Neverland: The Rise and Fall of the Symbionese Liberation Army)" (2004), a documentary on the infamous terrorist group; and "A Night in Havana: Dizzy Gillespie in Cuba" (1989), a stirring jazz performance recorded live at the Fifth International Jazz Festival in Havana; $26.95 each on DVD only ... "The Errol Morris DVD Collection" is a three-disc set with "Gates of Heaven," "The Thin Blue Line" and "Vernon, Florida"; $19.98 each or $49.96 the set from MGM ... "Russell Simmons Presents Def Poetry: Season Three" culls seven half-hour editions of the HBO late-night series that showcases practitioners of def poetry, $19.96 from HBO Video ... First Run Feature's offerings this week are "The Open Road: America Looks at Aging," a PBS documentary that examines the personal and social impact of the impending retirement of America's 77 million Baby Boomers, $19.95 on DVD; and "Hiroshima No Pika" and "Hellfire: A Journey From Hiroshima," a DVD with two films that confront the dropping of the Bomb; the first an animated film based on the award-winning book by Japanese artist Toshi Maruki that tells the story of a young girl and her family who live through the horrific bombing, narrated by Susan Sarandon; the second a documentary on artists Iri and Toshi Maruki, who have spent decades creating a testament to the effects of the atomic bomb -- the Hiroshima Murals; $29.95. (Posted July 19)

Coming Soon:
Ridley Scott's actioner "Kingdom of Heaven," starring Orlando Bloom, Liam Neeson, Jeremy Irons, Ghassan Massoud and Nathalie Cox, will arrive on home video October 11 from Fox; the DVD will include an interactive production grid that allows viewers to assemble their choice of 16 custom documentaries, ranging in length from eight minutes to 90 minutes and based on their own interests; as well as streaming text commentary with historical notes about the Crusades ... Robert Rodriguez's "The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl in 3-D" will fly to DVD on September 27 from Buena Vista; the package will include both 2-D and 3-D versions as well as four 3-D glasses. (Posted July 12)

DVD Collectibles:
Warner has three Gene Hackman films due this week: "Night Moves" (1975), directed by Arthur Penn and also starring Jennifer Warren, a very young Melanie Griffith, Susan Clark, Ed Binns, Harris Yulin, Kenneth Mars, Janet Ward and James Woods; "Scarecrow" (1973), co-starring Al Pacino; and "Twice in a Lifetime" (1985), directed by Bud Yorkin and also starring Ann-Margret, Ellen Burstyn, Ally Sheedy, Brian Dennehy and Amy Madigan ... From The Criterion Collection comes "Le Notti Bianche" (1957 -- Italian), Luchino Visconti's adaptation of Fyodor Dostoyevsky's short story, starring Marcello Mastroianni and Maria Schell as two strangers whose chance encounter on a canal bridge results in a series of twilight rendezvous, entangling both of them in a web of longing and self-delusion; and "Unfaithfully Yours" (1948) starring Rex Harrison, Linda Darnell, Barbara Lawrence and Kurt Kreuger in a pitch-black comedy from legendary writer-director Preston Sturges. Harrison stars as Sir Alfred De Carter, a world-famous symphony conductor consumed with the suspicion that his wife is having an affair. During a concert, the jealous De Carter entertains elaborate visions of vengeance, set to three separate orchestral works. But when he attempts to put his murderous fantasies into action, nothing works out quite as planned. (Posted July 12)

From TV to Video:
Due this week: "Butterflies: Series 1," a single disc with six episodes of the classic Britcom about a bored housewife on the verge ... $29.99 from Acorn Media ... "Dawn Anna," a 2005 Lifetime Original Movie starring Debra Winger, from Warner ... "The Maigret Collection," a four-disc set with 12 episodes of mystery, starring Michael Gambon as Georges Simenon's Inspector Maigret; $99.98 from Koch Vision ... "The Nanny: The Complete First Season," a three-disc set with 22 episodes, $29.95 from Sony ... "The Old Man and the Sea," a 1990 TV version of the Hemingway story, starring Anthony Quinn, Gary Cole and Patricia Clarkson, from Koch Vision ... "Poirot: The Classic Collection," featuring all 36 hour-long episodes from the hit series starring David Suchet as Agatha Christie's star detective, in a 12-disc media book, $199.99 from Acorn Media ... "Sealab 2021: Season Three," a two-disc set with 13 episodes of the Cartoon Network's Adult Swim series, $29.98 from Warner ... "Stone Pillow," the second-highest rated TV movie of 1985, starring Lucille Ball as a bag lady on the streets of New York, from Koch Vision ... "Tales from the Crypt: The Complete First Season," a two-disc set with six episodes, $26.98 from Warner ... "Wire in the Blood Season One," a three-disc set of the British drama series about a criminal profiler, $59.98, and "Wire in the Blood Season Two," a four-disc set, $59.98 from Koch Vision. (Posted July 12)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
Dimension will release today the final chapter in the Wes Craven-produced Dracula trilogy, "Dracula III: The Legacy" (2005). In this outing, vampire hunters Jason Scott Lee and Jason London are lured back to Eastern Europe where powerful warlords are assisting Dracula by delivering humans to his castle; also stars Rutger Hauer and Roy Scheider; on DVD only. (Posted July 12)

For the Kids:
With the fall release of Disney's version of C.S. Lewis' "The Chronicles of Narnia" fast approaching, Home Vision Entertainment has re-released and repackaged the 1988-1990 British TV series version in a three-disc set, housed in a slipcase, for $49.95. Each volume -- "The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe," "Prince Caspian and the Voyage of the Dawn Treader" and "The Silver Chair" -- will be available for $19.95 each on DVD and VHS. (Posted July 12)

Foreign:
Koch Lorber has three interesting releases this week: "The Story of Marie and Julien" (2003 -- French), director Jacques Rivette's latest film, a tale of love, blackmail and murder, starring Emmanuelle Beart and Jerzy Radziwilowicz (by the way, the French New Wave master turned 77 this year) ... "A Slightly Pregnant Man" (1973 -- French), Jacques Demy's tongue-in-cheek look at human relations and what happens when the world discovers that a man is carrying a child, starring Catherine Deneuve and Marcello Mastroianni ... and "Divine Intervention" (2002 -- Arabic, Hebrew), a slightly askew comic look at life in the Middle East ... Sister label Koch Vision will release the samurai epic "The Bushido Blade" (1981), starring Richard Boone, Toshiro Mifune, Frank Converse, Sonny Chiba and James Earl Jones. Other foreign film releases this week include "The Boys & Girl From County Clare" (2005), directed by John Irvin and starring Bernard Hill, Charlotte Bradley, Andrea Corr, Colm Meaney and Shaun Evans, revolving around a delightful musical feud between two Irish brothers, from First Look Home Entertainment ... "J.S.A. (Joint Security Area)" (2000 -- South Korea) is a murder-mystery set in the DMZ zone between North and South Korea, from Palm Pictures ... "Wishing Stairs" (2003 -- South Korea) is a horror tale about two girls at a dance school who take advantage of an urban legend -- if you climb the 28 steps behind the school's dormitory, counting each aloud, a 29th step will appear and your wish will be granted -- with harrowing consequences, from Tartan Asia Extreme. (Posted July 12)

Special Interest:
Six releases this week from Kultur Video: "Alexander the Great: Myth and Reality," a three hour documentary that presents the story of one of the most famous leaders of all time through ancient writings, world renowned historians and top-notch archaeologists; $34.99 ... "Happy Birthday, Oscar Wilde," celebrating the October 2004 150th anniversary of this literary genius, presents more than 150 of his best quotes, delivered by 150 of today's leading artists of stage, screen and music including: Bono, Annie Lennox, Martin Sheen, Tyne Daly, Rosie Perez, Allison Janney, Eric Stolz, Julianna Margulies, Edward Asner, Larry Mullen, Gabriel Byrne, Frank McCourt, Ken Loach, Gavin Friday, Estelle Parsons, Geoffrey Rush, Stewart Copeland, Brian Cox, Harvey Fierstein, Jim Sheridan, Joan Rivers, Lee Grant, James Cromwell, Stephanie Beacham, Lily Tomlin, Fionnula Flanagan and Liam Neeson. $19.99. ... "History of Talk Radio," a documentary on the controversial broadcast medium; $19.99 ... "The LBJ Tapes," a DVD of tapes from the Johnson years (1963-1969), during which the president -- paranoid and fearful of history's verdict -- secretly placed a bugging device on his own line, to leave a permanent record of his years in the presidency; $39.95 .... and two musical releases, Strong>"Louisiana Hayride," featuring rare archival photographs, film clips and live transcriptions of old radio show recordings from the live radio show that rivaled even Nashville's famed Grand Ole Opry in the number of country music careers that it launched; and "Why Elvis?" an uncommon documentary about the unbelievable musical and cultural phenomenon that continues to arouse curiosity around the world; both $14.99.

Commemorating the 50th anniversary of Disneyland, the folks at Disney have released "Disneyland -- The Secrets, Stories and Magic of the Happiest Place on Earth," a feature-length "behind-the-scenes" look at the Magic Kingdom, $19.99; "Mickey Mouse Club: The Best of the Original Mickey Mouse Club," featuring the best episodes from the original series, $14.99; "Mickey Mouse Club: The Best of Britney, Justin, and Christina," featuring episodes from the shows that featured the childhood performances of Britney Spears, Justin Timberlake and Christina Aguilera, $14.99; and "Vintage Mickey," a feature-length compilation of Mickey Mouse's best black & white appearances, $19.99.

More music: Just one week after Live 8, Rhino will release "Live Aid: 20 Years Ago Today," a special collectible highlight disc featuring top performances from artists such as U2, Eric Clapton, Paul McCartney, Queen, David Bowie, The Pretenders, The Who, Elton John, Santana, Madonna, Tom Petty, Sting, Bob Dylan and many more, $9.99. (Posted July 12)

Coming Soon:
Buena Vista has just announced a September 13 release date for "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy," the wacky sci-fi tale based on Douglas Adams' novel, starring Martin Freeman, Bill Bailey, Anna Chancellor, Warwick Davis, Mos Def, Zooey Deschanel and Stephen Fry. (Posted July 5)

DVD Collectibles:
Due this week is Warner Home Video's impressive "Film Noir Classic Collection Volume Two," a five-disc set with "Born to Kill" (1947), directed by Robert Wise and starring Walter Slezak, Claire Trevor and Lawrence Tierney; "Clash by Night" (1952), directed by Fritz Lang and starring Barbara Stanwyck, Paul Douglas, Robert Ryan, and Marilyn Monroe; "Crossfire" (1947), directed by Edward Dmytryk and starring Robert Mitchum, Robert Young, Robert Ryan and Gloria Grahame; "Dillinger" (1945), directed by Max Nosseck and starring Lawrence Tierney and Anne Jeffreys; and "The Narrow Margin" (1952), directed by Richard Fleischer and starring Charles McGraw and Marie Windsor. Digitally remastered; $49.92 or $14.95 each.

Also due this week is John Boorman's trippy "Point Blank" (1967), starring Lee Marvin, Angie Dickenson, Carroll O'Connor, Keenan Wynn and Lloyd Bochner, from Warner ... And "The Good Father" (1985), directed by Mike Newell and starring Anthony Hopkins, Jim Broadbent, Harriet Walter, Frances Viner, Simon Callow, Miriam Margolyes and Joanne Whalley in an intimate drama about an embittered divorced man who feels betrayed by the woman's movement he once supported; the film is a gritty and devastating look at the emotional fallout of a shattered marriage and a powerful portrait of the decline of 1960s idealism in Margaret Thatcher's London; from Home Vision Entertainment. (Posted July 5)

From TV to Video:
Due this week: "Fantastic Four: The Complete Animated Series," a four-disc set featuring the complete 1994-1995 animated television series, $49.99 from Buena Vista (just in time for the theatrical release of the big screen "Fantastic Four") ... "Monk: Season Three," a four-disc set, $59.98 from Universal ... "Tour of Duty: The Complete Third Season," a five-disc set with 21 episodes, $49.95 from Sony. (Posted July 5)

For the Kids:
"Roughnecks: Starship Troopers Chronicle -- The Complete Campaigns" is a four-disc set with all 40 episodes, $49.98, with a collectible mini poster from Japanese artist Naoyuki Katoh, from Sony. (Posted July 5)

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July 1, 2006
OnVideo News (ISSN 1094-3676).