OnVideo is a one-stop source for all your home video and movie review
information needs, with up to the minute information on past, present and future
home video releases: film reviews (with exclusive Rentability Index), coming
attractions/release schedules/rental guide, hot Hollywood and video news, links
to online and mail order video sales, kidvid, sell-through and widescreen
information, a tutorial on searching for videos (including rare and
hard-to-find), a bibliography and more. Lists current videos on DVD. It provides
links to sources for general release films, animated, art and culture videos,
classics, foreign films, cult and nostalgia, special interest and TV shows.
There are also links to the studios and other video- and movie-related sites.


Back to Home Page


More News: July -- December 2008

Top 10 DVD sellers of the year:
As of December 28, here's the top 10 best-selling DVDs for 2008 (includes standard DVDs and Blu-ray Discs):

Dark Knight
Iron Man
I Am Legend
WALL-E
Alvin and the Chipmunks
Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull
Enchanted
National Treasure 2 : Book of Secrets
Mamma Mia!
Kung-Fu Panda

More Yearend Favs
Guilty Pleasures of 2008? Glenn Abel, the bleary-eyed L.A. entertainment writer and Webmaster of the great DVD blog DVD Spin Doctor, says his guilty pleasures this year include "Mamma Mia!" "Baghead," "Burn After Reading" and "Ghost Town." For Glenn's adroit comments, jump on over to The DVD Spin Doctor.

And, according to Yahoo! Movies, here's the Top 10 Domestic Grossing films of 2008:
The Dark Knight $530,750,228
Iron Man $318,313,199
Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull $317,023,851
Hancock $227,946,274
WALL-E $223,749,872
Kung-Fu Panda $215,434,591
Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa $172,332,000
Quantum Of Solace $161,300,000
Twilight $158,461,000
Horton Hears a Who! $154,529,439

(Posted December 31)

From TV to Video:
"Greek: Chapter Two" (2008), a three-disc set with 12 episodes, $29.99 from Disney ... "Kyle XY: The Complete Second Season -- Revelations" (2007-08), a six-disc set with 23 episodes, $39.99 from Disney ... "Nip/Tuck Season 5, Part 1," a five-disc set with 14 episodes, $59.98 from Warner ... "The Secret Life of the American Teenager: The First Season" (2008), a three-disc set with 11 episodes, $39.99 from Disney ... "10 Items or Less: The Complete First and Second Seasons," a two-disc set with 13 episodes, $29.95 from Sony. (Posted December 29)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
In "Surfer Dude" (2008), starring Matthew McConaughey, Woody Harrelson, Scott Glenn and Willie Nelson, soulful longboard surfer Steve Addington (McConaughey) returns to Malibu for the summer to find his cool hometown vibe corrupted ... the sport has been taken over by corporate sponsors. In order to survive, must he change his ways? From Anchor Bay. (Posted December 29)

On the Indie Front:
"Towelhead" (2008), starring Aaron Eckhart, Toni Collette, Maria Bello, Peter Macdissi and Summer Bishil, follows the dark, bold and shockingly funny life of Jasira, a 13-year-old Arab-American girl, as she navigates the confusing and frightening path of adolescence when she's sent to Houston to live with her strict Lebanese father, where she quickly learns that her new neighbors find her and her father a curiosity.From Warner. (Posted December 29)

Foreign:
Two fine releases this week from New Yorker Video: "Dona Flor and Her Two Husbands" (2007 -- Brazil): This intoxicating carnival of a film concerns a widow who remarries and gets the respectable husbands she's always yearned for, but her libido recalls her gambling, whore-mongering first husband from the grave ... and "Woman on the Beach" (2006 -- South Korea), in which filmmaker Joong-rae, suffering from writer's block, takes a trip to the coast and starts an affair with vivacious Moon-sook before returning home. The film turns into a burlesque "Vertigo" when he returns to the coastal resort and attempts to recreate the original romance with a woman who resembles Moon-sook. (Posted December 29)

Special Interest:
"42 Ways to Kill Hitler" is a National Geographic documentary that explores the multiple assassination attempts on Hitler's life and how they could have changed history; $19.98 from Warner ... "The History of Black New York: New York Noir" (2008)is a documentary that examines the history of New York's black citizens and culture, from the early 1600s to today, with rare historical footage and segments on Civil Rights, politics, business, military heroes and entertainment, from Little Dizzy Home Video ... "Comedy Central Roast of Bob Saget: Uncensored" (2008) is headlined by roastmaster John Stamos, $19.99 from Paramount. (Posted December 29)

photo This, of course, is the season for top 10 lists. Before you get sick of them, here's a sampling so far. What are the Top 10 Horror DVDs of 2008? According to Glenn Abel, the bleary-eyed L.A. entertainment writer and Webmaster of the great DVD blog DVD Spin Doctor: (in ascending order) "Black House," "The Mummy" (1932), "Sublime," "Rogue," "Brotherhood of the Wolf," "Dark City," "The Nightmare Before Christmas," "The Orphanage," "Psycho" and "Vampyr." For Glenn's adroit analysis, jump on over to The DVD Spin Doctor. (Posted December 22)

Venerable Rolling Stone Magazine chimes in with their top DVDs of the year (compiled by film critic Peter Travers): "The Dark Knight," "WALL-E," "Godfather Trilogy," "Iron Man," "Shine a Light," "Wanted," "Man on Wire," "Hancock," "Bottle Rocket," "Dr. No (Bond on Blu-ray)," "Journey to the Center of the earth" and "Cool hand Luke." Check out Travers' comments at The Top 12 DVDs of 2008.

Amazon has put together their "Best of the Year: Top 100 Customer Picks," with "Dark Knight," "John Adams" and "Stargate" leading the list. For more info, jump on over to Amazon's list, which includes both DVD and Blu-ray and reflects the best sellers of the year. (Posted December 22)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
Due this week: "Resident Evil: Degeneration" (2008), a CG-animated sequel set seven years after the Raccoon City incident that launched the franchise: a horde of zombies is unleashed at a major U.S. airport and special agents are sent to combat the rampage in classic, high octane "Resident Evil" style; from Sony ... Seven must be the lucky number for horror sequels: In "Pulse 3" (2008), seven years after "Pulse 2" the survivors on Earth have settled into a primitive lifestyle completely void of electronics. The clusters of human survivors live together in refugee camps as the phantoms have taken over the cities ... until teenager Justine escapes to the city and opens a working laptop, unleahing death and destruction. Stars Jamie Bamber of "Battlestar Galactica" fame; from The Weinstein Co./Genius Products ... "Savage Grace" (2008), starring Julianne Moore, Stephen Dillane and Hugh Dancy, is the true story of the Baekeland family -- the inventors of Bakelite -- and their descent into sexual obsession and murder. The journey is told though the dramatization of the shocking Barbara Daly Baekeland murder case, which happened in a posh London flat in 1972; from Genius Products. (Posted December 22)

For the Family:
"Beethoven's Big Break" (2008), starring Jonathan Silverman, Moises Arias, Stephen Tobolowsky, Eddie Griffin and Jennifer Finnigan, is another direct-to-video sequel featuring the misadventures of the loveable St. Bernard. Here Beethoven and his family crash Tinseltown when a Hollywood animal handler adopts the larger-than-life dog. (Posted December 22)

And the Blu-ray Releases Keep Comin':
Warner Home Video has just announced another bevy of BD releases, all due April 7: "Point of No Return," "The Wedding Singer," "American History X," "Final Destination," "Tango & Cash," "2010," "Above the Law" and "Collateral Damage" ... Sony will release on January 20 the Jennifer Garner-Mark Ruffalo comedic love story "Going on 30" with such added delights as commentary by the directors and producers, 18 deleted scenes, two music videos, and a featurette exclusive to Blu-ray: "The Making of a Teen Dream: Another Take"; $28.95. (Posted December 18)

More Glowing Blu-ray:
On January 20 Sony will release a Blu-ray Disc version of Steve Martin's "The Pink Panther," loaded with such extras as commentaries, documentaries, fetaurettes, deleted scenes, music videos, more, $28.95 ... Hop over to the dark side in high-definition on February 10 when Fox Home Entertainment releases the Blu-ray version of "Donnie Darko," $34.99. A second standard def disc is also included and presented with English Dolby Surround 2.0 and English Dolby Digital 5.1 in widescreen. Bonus features include commentaries, a Donnie Darko Production Diary with optional commentary by director of photography Steven Poster, "They Made Me Do It Too: The Cult Of Donnie Darko," a storyboard to screen featurette, "#1 Fan: A Darkomentary" and the director's cut theatrical trailer ... Mel Gibson's "The Passion of the Christ" arrives February 17 on Blu-ray, and includes the theatrical and less violent, re-cut versions of the film, filmmaker commentary, production commentary, theologian commentary, music commentary, an extensive collection of "making-of" featurettes, deleted scenes, historical texts, a standard definition disc and more; $34.99 from Fox ... Rodgers & Hammerstein's Classic Musical "South Pacific," in a 50th Anniversary Collector's Edition Blu-ray version, starring Mitzi Gaynor and Rossano Brazzi, is due March 31 from Fox Home Entertainment. Extras include commentary, behind-the-scenes featurettes, the road show version of the film, much more; $34.99. (Posted December 17)

Glowing Blu-ray:
photo It's the 10th anniversary of one of the most influencial sci-fi yarns of recent cinema history, and Warner Home Video is celebrating the event with a new single Blu-ray book release on March 31: "The Matrix 10th Anniversary Blu-ray Book" will be packaged in a collectible bonus book that includes 37 pages of insightful essays, trivia and photos. Previously only available as part of a collection, this new edition includes the In-Movie Experience and a digital copy for use with Windows Media and iTunes. Other extras include commentaries and a host of featurettes; $34.99 ... Sony has just announced a January 27 release for the Bill Murray/Andie MacDowell comedy Groundhog Day"; extras include "Needle Nose Ned's Picture-in-Picture Track," commentary by director Harold Ramis, three featurettes and six deleted scenes; $26.95 ... Paramount is pushing out several Blu-ray releases on December 30: "The Truman Show," "Ghost," ""Last Holiday," "Days of Thunder" and "Event Horizon," all at $39.99 each. (Posted December 15)

From TV to Video:
"Crime 360: The Complete Season One" is a three-disc set with eight episodes, $29.95 from A&E Home Video ... "Gangland: The Complete Season Two" is a three-disc set with 12 episodes, $34.95. from A&E Home Video ... Based on the national best-selling book by Evan Wright, "Generation Kill" is an authentic and vividly detailed seven-part 2008 HBO miniseries that presents an intimate portrait of the first 40 days of the Iraq war from the perspective of the Marines of the First Recon Battalion; three-disc set, $59.99 ... "Get Smart: The Complete Series" is a gift set with 25 discs spanning five seasons and 138 episodes, $199.95 from HBO Video ... "Ice Road Truckers: The Complete Season Two" is a four-disc set with 13 episodes, $39.95 from A&E Home Video ... "Petticoat Junction: The Official First Season" is a five-disc set with 38 episodes, $42.99 from Paramount ... "Poor Little Rich Girl" is a two-disc set of the six-part 1987 miniseries about gorgeous, lonely, and rich beyond imagination Barbara Hutton, who inherited the vast Woolworth fortune when she was only a child. Craving affection, she burned through the money in high style, and found herself poor and alone after seven failed marriages to princes, a baron, a count, and an American movie star; stars Farrah Fawcett. $29.95 from A&E Home Video. (Posted December 15)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
In "Spiker" (2007), starring Frank Zagarino, David "Shark" Fralick, Lou Martini Jr. and Ginger Kroll, a massive pink-eyed albino and a maniac killing machine whose physical endurance borders on the fantastic escapes from an asylum and returns to the small town he terrorized years before; from MTI Home Video. (Posted December 15)

On the Indie Front:
In "The Elder Son" (2006), starring Rade Serbedzija, Shane West, Leelee Sobieski, Eric Balfour, Regina Hall and Ed Begley Jr., an alcoholic Russian clarinetist living with his children in Los Angeles is charmed into believing that a fugitive car thief is his son, although his daughter remains suspicious of his motives, while finding herself attracted to her "brother"; from Peace Arch Entertainment ... In "Crossroads (aka The Novice)" (2006), starring Alan Arkin, Jacob Pitts, Amy Acker, Frank Langella, Matthew Carey and Orson Bean, the life of a young Jesuit seminarian is turned upside down when he falls in love with a young woman while working as a volunteer at a soup kitchen; from MTI Home Video. (Posted December 15)

Foreign:
Two wonderful releases from New Yorker Video:
"Same Old Song" (1997 -- France) is a charming, romantic musical comedy directed by Alain Resnais ("Hiroshima, Mon Amour," "Last Year at Marienbad"). The film revolves around two Parisian sisters caught in a web of dysfunctional relationships and romantic confusion. In a tribute to the classic films of Dennis Potter ("Pennies From Heaven" and "The Singing Detective"), Resnais has his characters lip-synch to fragments of musical recordings from Josephine Baker, Maurice Chevalier, Edith Piaf, Johnny Halliday and contemporary pop songs, allowing them to express their innermost thoughts and feelings. Set against the glittering Paris skyline, "Same Old Song" is a captivating and playful, round-robin game of romance ... In "The Wedding Director" (2006 -- Italy), Franco Elica is a dissolute movie director who slides into despair after being asked -- to his horror -- to make a film. Hoping to avoid a looming sexual-harassment scandal, Franco flees to Sicily where he hides out and meets a host of colorful characters: a man who makes his living shooting wedding films, a film director who is faking his own death to finally achieve fame, and a cultured Prince. Beneath the film's farcical surface is a scathing vision of a cinema in decline. Stars Sergio Castellitto, Donatella Finocchiaro and Sami Frey ... From Genius Products comes "Sangre de mi sangre (Blood of My Blood)" (2007), starring Jesus Ochoa, Armando Hernández, Jorge Adrián Espíndola and Paola Mendoza: A Mexican boy smuggles himself to Brooklyn to meet his long-lost father, only to have his identity stolen upon arrival by an impostor who seeks to steal the fathers' fortune. (Posted December 15)

For the Family:
In "Goldilocks & the 3 Bears" (2008), with the voices of Brooke Shields, Tom Arnold, Jamie Lynn Spears, the classic fairy tale is remade as a reality TV show; $19.97 from The Weinstein Company, Genius Products, The Jim Henson Co. ... "The Cheetah Girls: One World Extended Music Edition" (2008) is the third Disney Channel Original Movie featuring the Cheetah Girlss; $29.99 from Disney ... For boys there's "Power Rangers -- Jungle Fury: Way of the Master" and "Jungle Fury: Into the Jungle" (2008), two feature-length adventures featuring three skilled warriors who are the Earth's only defense against evil spirits; $19.99 each from Disney ... "Transformers Energon: The Ultimate Collection" is a four-disc set of adventures in which the Autobots and Decepticons work together with humankind to find the rare and precious substance Energon; $61.99 from Paramount. (Posted December 15)

Special Interest:
"Will Shakespeare" (1978) stars Tim Curry and Ian McShane in a two-disc set of the six-part miniseries, about the Bard, $29.95 from A&E Home Video ... Due December 21 is "American Teen" (2008), a documentary portrait that reveals five quintessential members of the classic teen social groups -- the popular princess, the enviable jock, the rowdy rebel, the handsome heartthrob and the introverted geek -- through the lives of Indiana teens Megan Krizmanich, Colin Clemens, Hannah Bailey, Mitch Reinholt and Jake Tusing; from Paramount. (Posted December 15)

DVD Collectibles:
At the very first Academy Awards in May, 1929, two directors cemented their place in cinematic history as F.W. Murnau's "Sunrise" took home the prize for Unique and Artistic Picture and Frank Borzage garnered Best Director for "7th Heaven." At the time, both men were under contract with William Fox, owner of Fox Film Corp., who had invested heavily on making sure that movie directors were the stars of his films, gambling that audiences would gravitate to strong stories told by brilliant filmmakers. These awards validated Fox's vision for movies as an art form and these two director's craft. (Posted December 8)

Fox Home Entertainment releases this week a collection saluting Murnau and Borzage, whose daring camera movements and visually extravagant styles were integral in the development of modern movies and the studio that allowed them to flourish with "Murnau, Borzage and Fox." Celebrating their collected works, their influence on director's to follow and their collaborations with William Fox in the late 1920s and early 1930s, the set features 12 films from the Hollywood legends including newly remastered versions of Murnau's "Sunrise" and Borzage's "7th Heaven," as well as an all-new feature length documentary from filmmaker John Cork. Additionally, the set features two exclusive hard-cover books showcasing rare, unpublished photos from the careers of both filmmakers, one of which focuses solely on Murnau's "4 Devils," the lost film considered by those that saw it to be the greatest movie ever made, pushing the boundaries of what Hollywood movies were at the time.

photo While his career was cut short due to a fatal auto accident in 1931 at the age of 42, the impact of Murnau on the film community can still be felt to this day. William Fox brought the expressionist director from Germany to Hollywood after he saw his 1924 film "The Last Laugh." Borzage's career at Fox lasted only seven years, but it would be the silent films he helmed at the studio that would come to define his career as he won the first Best Director Oscar for "7th Heaven" and again in 1931 for "Bad Girl."

A rich collection of true historical significance, "Murnau, Borzage & Fox" will be available for a suggested retail price of $239.99. For a complete listing of the set's contents, Click here. (Posted December 8)

From TV to Video:
"Deadwood: The Complete Series," a 19-disc gift set, $179.97, with such extras as "The Meaning of Endings": David Milch on the conclusion of "Deadwood," "The Real Deadwood: Out of the Ashes," Q&A with the cast and creative team, Deadwood 360 tour, more, from HBO Video ... "Gunsmoke: Season Three, Volume One" (1957-58), a three-disc set with 19 episodes, $39.99 from Paramount ... "Happy Days: The Fourth Season" (1976-77), a three-disc set with 23 episodes, $39.99 from Paramount ... "McLeod's Daughers: The Complete Seventh Season," an eight-disc set with 32 episodes of the series about a largely-female workforce at a large family-owned Australian cattle ranch; airs on WE: Women's Entertainment channel in the States; $79.98 from Koch Vision ... "Rawhide: Season Three, Volume Two" (1960-61), a four-disc set with 15 episodes, $39.99 from Paramount) ... "The Wire: The Complete Series," a 23-disc gift set of all five seasons, $249.99, with such extras as three prequels that explore life before "The Wire," gag reel; from HBO Video. (Posted December 8)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
A seasoned NYPD detective (Willem Dafoe) is drawn into a gruesome case involving a string of unusual serial murders, perpetrated by a killer who fashions himself an artist in "Anamorph" (2007), also starring Scott Speedman and Clea Duvall; from Genius Products ..."Blue Blood (aka If I Didn't Care)" is 2007 indie thriller about a seasoned private investigator tasked with untangling a murder in the exclusive community of the Hamptons, starring thre late, great Roy Scheider along with Bill Sage, Susan Misner, Noelle Beck and Ronald Guttman, from Koch Vision ... "The Man Who Came Back " (2008) is a traditional Western about one man who stood fearlessly against injustice: Framed for murder and left for dead, Paxton (Eric Braeden) fights back to seek revenge at all costs against those who killed his family. Also stars George Kennedy, Armand Assante, Sean Young, Billy Zane, Peter Jason and Carol Alt; from Lionsgate. (Posted December 8)

Foreign:
SKD USA/Koch have two offkilter films this week: First up is "Change My Life" (2001 -- France), starring Fanny Ardant and Rochdy Zem. Two fallen angels help each other pick up the pieces of their shattered lives: Unemployed actress Nina staggers through the streets of Paris, succumbing to a massive overdose of tranquilizers and ultimately collapsing into unconsciousness. Only one person comes to her aid -- Sami, a lonely Algerian jogging by. But after saving her life, he disappears into the night ... "Total Western" (2000 -- France) stars Samuel Le Bihan and Jean-Pierre Kalfon. After a drug deal goes wrong, a young man goes into hiding at a reform school in the countryside; when his location is discovered, he and the kids have to protect themselves with whatever means they can. (Posted December 8)

For the Family:
In the animated adventure "Elephant Tales" (2006), orphaned elephants Zef and Tutu set off across the African plains to search for their kidnapped family; $26.98 from MGM. (Posted December 8)

Special Interest:
Three unusual documentaries arrive this week, all from First Run Features: "A Hole in a Fence" (2008) is a new documentary from filmmaker D.W. Young that chronicles the changing fortunes of Red Hook, Brooklyn, one of New York City's most unique neighborhoods. It's the story of a vanished homeless community and the young architect who documented it; of an urban farm run by local kids amidst a landscape of industrial decay; of young graffiti writers losing their stomping grounds; of the arrival of a controversial Ikea megastore; of a photographer's vision of nature's renewal; of the doomed struggle to save a rare part of the neighborhood's working waterfront; and of a filmmaker's discovery of a fleeting, hidden world on the other side of a rusty old fence. $19.95 ... "The Early Works of Cheryl Dunye" (1990-94) includes six shorts by the director Newsday called "the lesbian Spike Lee"; her acclaimed first feature was "The Watermelon Woman" (1996). Extras include an interview with Cheryl Dunye, " More About The Watermelon Woman." $24.95 ... "Passion & Power: The Technology of Orgasm" (2008) is based on Rachel Maines' bestselling book, "The Technology of Orgasm, Passion & Power." This documentaryt explores the history of the vibrator, from the Victorian era -- when doctors used the device to relieve women of "hysteria" -- through the sexual revolution of the 1960s to the postfeminist present. Extras include behind the scenes, antique vibrators, a "Dancing Vibrator" trailor, more. $24.95. (Posted December 8)

DVD Collectibles:
Due this week:
Robert Wise's 1951 anti-war and pro-United Nations "The Day the Earth Stood Still" -- a plea for peace and unity in a post-war era riddled by fear and irrational anti-communism -- is the epitome of intelligent science fiction on film. From the class acting of Michael Rennie and Patricia Neal to the understated but solid special effects, "Day" is a true classic. Fox has brought out a new Special Edition of the film (just in time for the remake starring Keanu Reeves) with such goodies as commentary by Wise and Nicolas Meyer; an isolated score track; "The Mysterious, Melodious Theremin"; "The Making of The Day the Earth Stood Still," "Decoding 'Klaatu, Barada, Nikto': Science Fiction as Metaphor" featurette; "A Brief History of Flying Saucers" featurette; and more. Also available on Blu-ray Disc. (Posted December 1)

"White Dog" (1982), Samuel Fuller's throat-grabbing expose on American racism, was misunderstood and withheld from release when it was made in the early eighties; today, the notorious film is lauded for its daring metaphor and gripping pulp filmmaking. Kristy McNichol stars as a young actress who adopts a lost German shepard, only to discover through a series of horrifying incidents that the dog has been trained to attack black people. Paul Winfield plays the animal trainer who tries to cure him. A snarling, uncompromising vision, "White Dog" is a tragic portrait of the evil done by that most corruptible of animals: the human being. In a new, restored high-definition digital transfer of the uncut version, approved by producer Jon Davison, loaded with extras. From The Criterion Collection. (Posted December 1)

From TV to Video:
In "The Best of Dr. Katz" (2008), America's favorite animated shrink analyzes today's funniest comedians, including Dave Chappelle, Denis Leary, Sarah Silverman, Conan O'Brien, Janeane Garofalo, Ray Romano, more; $19.99 from Paramount ... "Cannon: Season One, Volume Two" (1971-72) is a four-disc set with 13 episodes, $39.99 from Paramount ... "Growing Up 5 DVD Gift Set" is a five-disc set from the Animal Planet series with five episodes: "Growing Up Arctic." "Growing Up Wildcats," "Growing Up Safari," "Growing Up Wilderness" and "Growing Up Primates"; $39.92 from Genius Products ... "Jake and the Fatman: Season One, Volume Two" (1988) is a three-disc set with 11 episodes, $39.99 from Paramount ... "Law & Order: The Sixth Year" (1995-96) is a five-disc set with 23 episodes, $59.98 from Universal ... "Perry Mason: Season Three, Volume 2" (1959-60) is a four-disc set with 14 episodes, $54.99 from Paramount ... "Saturday Night Live: The Complete Fourth Season" (1978-79) is a seven-disc set with 20 episodes, $69.98 from Universal. (Posted December 1)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
"Lower Learning" (2008) stars Jason Biggs, Eva Longoria Parker and Rob Corddry in a comedy about students and teachers trying to take back their school -- where the teachers are drunk, lazy or psychotic, every child has been left behind, and the burned-out vice principal is barely holding on -- from an insanely corrupt principal. From Anchor Bay Entertainment ... "Rise of the Footsoldier" (2007) is inspired by the shocking true story of one man's rise to power as the most feared and respected criminal in England -- Carlton Leach, who became a member of a notorious gang of criminals who rampaged their way through London and Essex in the late 1980s and early 1990s. From Lionsgate ... "Wisegal" (2008) stars Alyssa Milano, Jason Gedrick and James Caan in the story of Patty Montanari, a Brooklyn widow and mother who sells contraband cigarettes to make ends meet. She soon begins a torrid love affair with Frank Russo, a captain in a crime family she's fallen in with, but eventually comes to the realization that this "Family" is ruthless, and begins to fear for her life. From Anchor Bay Entertainment. (Posted December 1)

For the Family:
Two gems from the sixties arrive this week: "Hey There, It's Yogi Bear" (1964) and "The Man Called Flintstone" (1966), both remastered and selling for $19.98, from Warner ... "Curious George: Leads the band and Other Musical Mayem" features eight episodes of the PBS Kids TV series, $16.98 from Universal. (Posted December 1)

Special Interest:
"A Galaxy Far, Far Away: Special Edition" (2001) is a cult-classic documentary that follows rabid "Star Wars" fans eagerly awaiting the release of George Lucas' first "prequel" to the original trilogy, "Episode I: The Phantom Menace." This updated version is loaded with out-of-this-world extras: from over-the-top fan conventions and nationwide premieres (where many waited in line for 40+ days), into the homes of devoted fans showing off their treasures, offering new insights into the powerful franchise that has captivated generations of moviegoers. From Cinevolve Studio. (Posted December 1)

There's a nice medley of releases this week from the impetuous folks at The Criterion Collection: In "Bottle Rocket" (1996), Wes Anderson first illustrated his lovingly detailed, slightly surreal cinematic vision in this witty and warm portrait of three young middle-class misfits. Fresh out of a mental hospital, gentle Anthony (Luke Wilson) finds himself once again embroiled in the machinations of his best friend, elaborate schemer Dignan (Owen Wilson). With the aid of getaway driver Bob (Robert Musgrave), they develop a needlessly complex, mildly successful plan to rob a small bookstore-then go "on the lam." Also featuring Lumi Cavazos as Inez, the South American housekeeper Anthony falls in love with, and James Caan as local thief extraordinaire Mr. Henry, "Bottle Rocket" is a charming, hilarious, affectionate look at the folly of dreamers. Shot against radiant southwestern backdrops, it's the film that put Anderson and the Wilson brothers on the map. On standard DVD and Blu-ray Disc. In a new, restored high-definition digital transfer supervised and approved by director Wes Anderson and director of photography Robert Yeoman; Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack (DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 on Blu-ray). (Posted November 25)

The whiplash, double-pronged "Chungking Express" (1994) is one of the defining works of nineties cinema and the film that made Hong Kong filmmaker Wong Kar-wai an instant icon. Two heartsick Hong Kong cops (Takeshi Kaneshiro and Tony Leung), both jilted by ex-lovers, cross paths at the Midnight Express take-out restaurant stand, where the ethereal pixie waitress Faye (Faye Wong) works. Anything goes in Wong's gloriously shot and utterly unexpected charmer, which cemented the sex appeal of its gorgeous stars and forever turned canned pineapple and the Mamas and the Papas' "California Dreamin'" into tokens of romantic longing. In a new, restored high-definition digital transfer on standard DVD and Blu-ray Disc. Remastered Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack supervised by director Wong Kar Wai (DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 on Blu-ray) ... and lastly there's "The Spy Who Came in From The Cold" (1965). John Le Carre's acclaimed bestselling novel, about a Cold War spy on one final, dangerous mission, is every bit as precise and ruthless onscreen in this adaptation directed by Martin Ritt. Richard Burton delivers one of his career-defining performances as Alec Leamas, whose hesitant but deeply felt relationship with a beautiful librarian (Claire Bloom) puts what he hopes will be his last assignment, in East Germany, in jeopardy. An intelligent, hard-edged, and even tragic thriller, "The Spy Who Came in from the Cold" is etched with realism and suffused with genuine political and personal anxiety. In a two-disc set with a new, restored high-definition digital transfer. As alwYS, each Criterion release is loaded with impressive extras; each set includes a booklet of essays. (Posted November 25)

At the other end of the cinematic spectrum is the "Pink Panther Ultimate Collection," an 18-disc combination of film and cartoon classics for the Pink Panther completist: "The Pink Panther Collector's Edition," "A Shot in the Dark," "Inspector Clouseau," "The Pink Panther Strikes Again," "Revenge of the Pink Panther," "Trail of the Pink Panther," "Curse of the Pink Panther," "Son of the Pink Panther," "The Pink Panther" (2006), "Pink Panther Cartoon Collection Volumes 1-9; $199.98 from MGM. (Posted November 25)

From TV to Video:
"Arctic Exposure With Nigel Marven" (2007) is a five-part Animal Planet series that explores the wildlife and surrounding area of the Canadian Arctic, $39.92 from Genius Products ... "Beverly Hills 90210: The Sixth Season" (1995-96), a seven-disc set with 32 episodes, $61.99 from Paramount ... "24: Exile" (2008), starring Kiefer Sutherland, Cherry Jones, Robert Carlyle, Gil Bellows, Tony Todd and Jon Voight, is a feature-length program that bridges the gap between Seasons 6 and 7, picking up with Jack Bauer in exile in Africa, from Fox. (Posted November 25)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
"The Line" (2007 ) is a gritty, explosive thriller from Down Under. When a member of an Asian crime syndicate is brutally murdered amidst a volatile underworld, a recently promoted detective is teamed with a rogue undercover cop to solve the crime and prevent gang warfare. Stars David Barry and Andy McPhee; from Cinevole Studio. (Posted November 25)

On the Indie Front:
"Beautiful Ohio" (2006) is a quiet family drama that focuses on two young brothers and explores the elaborate family dynamics during the changing social attitudes at the beginning of the 1970s. Directed by Chad Lowe and starring William Hurt, Rita Wilson, Michelle Trachtenberg and Julianna Margulies; from Genius Products. (Posted November 25)

Foreign:
In "Still Life" (2008 -- China), citizens return to a flooded town to salvage what they can and say good-bye to things they lost -- both material and spiritual. An empathetic portrait of those left behind by a modernizing society and, as in director Jia Zhang-ke's earlier films, it is a unique hybrid of documentary and fiction; from New Yorker Video. (Posted November 25)

For the Family:
"The Nutty Professor" (2008) is an animated sequel that has the grandson of professor Julius Kelp -- who created a potion to transform his personality -- getting his hands on the secret elixir, unleashing his destructive alter ego; $19.97 from The Weinstein Company/Rainmaker Entertainment/Genius Products ... "Superman Doomsday" (2007) is an animated feature based on "The Death of Superman" story line that appeared in DC Comics in the 1990s. Two-disc set, $24.98 from Warner. (Posted November 25)

Special Interest:
"It's Bad For Ya, " (2008) is George Carlin's Emmy nominated 14th and final HBO special, recorded March 2008; $19.98 from MPI Home Video ... "A Colbert Christmas: The Greatest Gift of All" (2008) is a one-hour original musical holiday special premiering Sunday, Nov. 23 at 10 p.m. on Comedy Central. Stephen Colbert is supposed to meet Elvis Costello in New York, but gets snowed in. He decides to trudge through the storm with some help from musical performers Feist, Toby Keith, Elvis Costello and others. Songs performed include "Another Christmas Song" - Stephen Colbert, "Have I Got a Present for You" -- Toby Keith, "Little Dealer Boy" -- Stephen Colbert and Willie Nelson, "Hannukah" -- Stephen Colbert and Jon Stewart, "Nutmeg" -- Stephen Colbert and John Legend, "Please Be Patient" -- Feist , more. A portion of the proceeds will benefit the Charity Feeding America. $19.99 from Paramount. (Posted November 25)

DVD Collectibles:
Highlight of the week is the release of "Heathers 20th High School Reunion Limited Edition Locker Set" (1989), starring Winona Ryder, Christian Slater, Shannen Doherty, Lisanne Falk and Kim Walker. The two-disc DVD and Blu-ray Disc set features a new high quality transfer and remastered feature presentation. Extras include a "Return to Westerburg High Documentary"; commentary by Michael Lehmann, writer Daniel Waters and producer Denise Di Novi; "Swatch Dogs and Diet Coke Heads" documentary, original ending screenplay excerpt (DVD-ROM), one of three possible T-shirts ("Greetings and Salutations," "What's Your Damage?" or "Big Fun") in a collectible box that resembles a Westerburg Algebra book; a hardcover Westerburg High School Class of 1988 Yearbook full of fun facts, photos, bios and more; set of 14 Heathers magnets; numbered, deluxe teal tin locker. From Anchor Bay. (Posted November 18)

While in a dark comedy mood check out "The Complete Monty Python's Flying Circus Collector's Edition." Inside this decorative carton lurk four seasons of Monty Python's Flying Circus, two new-to-DVD documentaries, two Monty Python live performances, and six "Personal Best" compilations. The whole great mess -- Spam tins, parrot carcasses, blancmanges, and all -- has been safely digitized, compressed into microscopic "funny bits," pressed onto 21 shiny discs, and sealed within this whimsy-proof receptacle. Beware: there's new material you can't repeat verbatim (yet). "Before the FLying Circus" employs rare vintage footage to explore the influences that shaped six young lunatics, while "Monty Python Conquers America" documents their tremendous, yet astonishingly unlikely, American success. The six "Personal Best" collections present the best sketches and songs, as selected, arranged, and hosted by the individual Pythons themselves. And, of course, "Monty Python Live" shows what happens when absurd TV sketches are inflicted on live audiences. Twenty-one disc set, $159.95. (A&E Home Video). (Posted November 18)

For the family there's "The Films of Michael Sporn," a six-disc Collector's Edition box set with award-winng animated films "Whitewash," "The Talking Eggs," "Champagne," "The Hunting of the Snark," "The Marzipan Pig," "Jazztime Tale," "Abel's Island," "The Dancing Frog," "The Red Shoes," "The Little Match Girl," "The Emperor's New Clothes" and "Nightingale"; $49.95 from First Run Features ... and for Trekkies there's "Star Trek: The Original Series: Season Three Remastered Edition," a seven-disc set with 24 fully restored episodes, new CGI special effects, and re-recorded score; $99.99. Extras include two versions of the famous "The Cage" episode (the original pilot plus the extended version) and nine featurettes, from Paramount. (Posted November 18)

From TV to Video:
"Bones: Season Three Totally Decomposed Edition," a five-disc set with 15 episodes, $59.98 from Fox ... "Daniel Boone: The Final Season" (1969-70), a seven-disc set with 22 episodes, $49.95 from Liberation Entertainment ... "Doctor Who: The Complete Fourth Series," a six-disc set with 13 episodes, $99.98 from Warner ... "Gene Simmons Family Jewels: The Complete Season Three," a four-disc set with 29 episodes, $24.95 from A&E Home Video ... "Night Gallery: Season Two" (1971-72), a five-disc set with 61 stories, $59.98 from Universal. (Posted November 18)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
Filmed in a hand-held documentary style, "Zombie Diaries" (2006), weaves together three different storylines of survivors of a viral outbreak in a post-apocalyptic world of the living dead; stars James Fisher, Russell Jones, Imogen Church and Craig Stovin; from The Weinstein Co.'s Dimension Extreme/Genius Products ... "The Clique" (2008) is a teen high school fashion adventure based on the best-selling book series by Lisi Harrison; from Warner ... In "Garden Party" (2008), starring Vinessa Shaw, Willa Holland, Richard Gunn, Patrick Fischler, Fiona Dourif and Erik Smith, five adventurous souls attempt to navigate the treacherous urban landscape of contemporary Los Angeles: April is an ambitious beauty in search of success, Sally St. Clair is a sexy realtor with a secret past, Nathan moved to Los Angeles from Nebraska seeking success as a dancer, Todd is a porn-addicted artist, and Sammy is a starry-eyed street musician; from Lionsgate. (Posted November 18)

On the Indie Front:
In "Mister Lonely" (2008), directed by Harmony Korine and starring Diego Luna and Samantha Morton, a lonely Michael Jackson impersonator (Luna) falls for a beautiful Marilyn Monroe look-a-like (Morton) who suggests he move to a commune of impersonators in the Scottish Highlands. At the seaside castle, Michael discovers everyone preparing for the commune's first-ever gala: Abe Lincoln, Little Red Riding Hood, the Three Stooges, the Queen, the Pope, Madonna, Buckwheat, Sammy Davis Jr. ... and also Marilyn's daughter Shirley Temple and her possessive husband Charlie Chaplin; from The Weinstein Co./Genius Products. (Posted November 18)

Foreign:
"Priceless" (2006 -- France) stars Audrey Tautou as a seductive enchantress who finds solace in the glamorous French Riviera where money is abundant and beauty is cherished. She weaves herself into the lives of older wealthy men who dazzle her with diamonds and cater to her love for couture ... until she meets her match in a lowly bartender who she mistakes for a wealthy bachelor; from First Look Studios. (Posted November 18)

For the Family:
For the twen set there's "Hannah Montana: The Complete First Season," a four-disc set with 17 episodes of the smash kids TV series, $39.99 from Disney ... "How'd They Build That?" is a new series for preschoolers designed to pique children's curiosity about big rigs, combining live action with 3-D animation. First two episodes: "Fire Truck" and "Big Truck," $8.99 each; from Marvelous Media ... "Winky's Horse" (2005 - Belgium/Netherlands) is a family film about a young girl who only wants one thing: a horse. Since she knows that her parents would never allow her to get one, she turns to Santa in the hope of making her dreams come true; $19.99 from Peace Arch Entertainment. (Posted November 18)

Special Interest:
Klezmer music, sometimes called Jewish "soul" music, has a rich and lengthy past, and now, a revitalized future. This festive Jewish band music originated in pre-World War II Poland, but now resonates in a cultural and musical revival all across America. "The Last Klezmer" (1994) looks at one of the pioneers of this music, a remarkable, 69-year-old man named Leopold Kozlowski. An actor and musical consultant in Steven Spielberg's "Schindler's List," Kozlowski is the last active Klezmer musician trained in the original, prewar tradition. This spirited documentary follows Kozlowski as he returns, for the first time in 50 years, to the Polish village where he was raised. Though his parents were killed by the Nazis, and he himself spent much of the war in concentration camps, Kozlowski emerged from the experience devoted to keeping alive his cultural heritage and Klezmer music. As this charming and moving film shows, both Kozlowski and his music have survived and remain vibrant and inspiring; from New Yorker Video ... "Wu: The Story of the Wu-Tang Clan" (2007) traces the history of the legendary hip-hop group through interviews and never before seen concert footage. In the summer of 1993, the Wu-Tang Clan emerged from the slums of Staten Island, N.Y., and took the hip-hop world by storm. Their legacy spanned more than a decade, selling nearly 20 million albums. Their talents brought them success, and their music made them egends; $22.99 from Paramount ... In "Encounters at the End of the World" (2007) filmmaker Werner Herzog travels to Antarctica to capture its landscape's rarely seen beauty on film. He interviews the quirky and idiosyncratic people who make their daily lives in the icy South Pole, from physicists to plumbers, biologists to bus drivers, and captures their fascinating stories. Two-disc set, $27.98 from Image Entertainment ... "The Adventure Collection" is a 14-disc set with feature-length A&E favorites "Horatio Hornblower," "Longitude," "The Lost Battalion," "Napoleon," "Shackleton" and "Benedict Arnold," $99.95 from A&E Home Video. (Posted November 18)

DVD Collectibles:
It's an amazing week for collectible DVDs:
Koch Vision and The Archive of American Television have launched a new partnership with the DVD release of the distinguished television series "Studio One Anthology." The inaugural release under the new banner, The Archive of American Television Presents, "Studio One Anthology" includes 17 hand-picked episodes from the anthology drama series which ran on CBS from 1948-1958, and featured a weekly, one-hour live televised play featuring some of the greatest teleplays and stars of all time. The $99.98 five-disc set includes a 52-page booklet, archival interviews and footage, excerpts from the Paley Center's "Studio One Seminar" and "Studio One Video History," original commercials, more. From Koch Vision. For a complete list of titles in this set, Click here. (Posted November 11)

From Warner Home Video comes "Warner Brothers and the Homefront," a three-disc set with three new-to-DVD films: "Hollywood Canteen" (1944) starring a bevy of Hollywood stars in a "documentary" look at Hollywood's effort to support the war effort in its own home town; "Thank Your Lucky Stars" (1943) starring Bette Davis, Humphrey Bogart, Errol Flynn, and Dinah Shore in a breezy, behind-the-Hollywood-scenes story about young talents hoping for a big break; and "This Is the Army" (1943), directed by Michael Curtiz and starring George Murphy, Joan Leslie and Alan Hale in an Irving Berlin World War II spirit-lifter; $39.92 ... Warner will also release the restored and remastered costumer "Quo Vadis" (1951), directed by Mervyn LeRoy and starring Robert Taylor, Deborah Kerr, Peter Ustinov and Elizabeth Taylor, in a two-disc set ... and the "JFK Ultimate Collector's Edition" (1991), directed by Oliver Stone and starring Kevin Costner, Tommy Lee Jones, Kevin Bacon, Gary Oldman, Michael Rooker, Jack Lemmon, Laurie Metcalf, Sissy Spacek, Joe Pesci, John Candy, Pruitt Taylor Vince, Jay O. Sanders, Walter Matthau, Sally Kirkland and Donald Sutherland. The two-disc special edition includes 17 minutes of additional footage, commentary by Stone, "Beyond JFK: A Question of Conspiracy" documentary, "The Kennedys: America's Emerald Kings" documentary, a book of rare production photos, five photo cards profiling the film's major characetsr, a collection of letters and photos of the Kennedy family including JFK's Inaugural address, more. The title is also available on Blu-ray Disc. (Posted November 11)

"Walt Disney Treasures Wave VIII" hads to its collection three new two-disc sets, hosted by Leonard Maltin: "The Mickey Mouse Club Presents Annette," "Dr Syn, Alias the Scarecrow" and "Chronological Donald, Volume 4." Each limited edition, individually numbered volume includes an authenticity certificate, exclusive lithograph and comes in a unique, collectible tin. $32.99 each.

  • "The Mickey Mouse Club Presents Annette" (1957-58). Annette. To legions of Mickey Mouse Club fans she was magic. Chosen by Walt himself as an original cast member, Annette soon became the most popular Mousketeer and was given a daily series of her own. Showcased here is the entire fish-out-of-water series, about an innocent girl from the country who moves to the suburbs to live with her well-to-do aunt and uncle. The 20-episode series aired during the third and final season of The Mickey Mouse Club.
  • "Dr. Syn, Alias the Scarecrow," which first aired as three separate episodes on Disney's weekly TV show under the title "The Scarecrow of Romney Marsh," was edited for theatrical releases in England and the U.S. This set includes all three of the original TV episodes plus the theatrical version of the film that was released in England. Stars Patrick McGoohan.
  • Disney fans will delight in "Chronological Donald, Volume 4," which includes 31 classic shorts starring Donald Duck. Each of these meticulously animated adventures was created between 1951 and 1961 and has rarely been seen. All of Donald's CinemaScope shorts will be presented in their original widescreen aspect ratio for the first time on video. (Disney).
(Posted November 11)

Meanwhile, Paramount has inaugerated its new Paramount Centennial Collection, a new line of classics that are digitally mastered and restored in two-disc sets with eight-page booklets, with three titles: "Roman Holiday" (1953), directed by William Wyler and starring Gregory Peck, Audrey Hepburn; "Sabrina" (1954), directed by Billy Wilder and starring Humphrey Bogart, Audrey Hepburn and William Holden; and "Sunset Blvd." (1950), directed by Billy Wilder and starring Gloria Swanson, William Holden, Erich von Stroheim and Jack Webb. Each release is loaded with bonus features. Paramount will alo release this week "The Boys in the Band" (1970), directed by William Friedkin and starring Kenneth Nelson, Leonard Frey, Cliff Gorman, Frederick Combs and Laurence Luckinbill. To celebrate the play's 40th anniversary, the film has been restored under Friedkin's direction, using a unique color correction process and remixed in stereo. (Posted November 11)

From TV to Video:
"The Commander, Set 1" is a gritty new British crime drama that introduces Clare Blake, the steely head of the elite Murder Review Team and the highest-ranking woman officer in New Scotland Yard; in a four-disc set, $59.99 from Acorn Media ... "The Cosby Show -- The 25th Anniversary Commemorative Edition" is an impressive 26-six disc set with all episodes from the eight-season run; the $124.98 price tag includes a hard cover book, commemorative Bill Cosby photo,more, from First Look Studios ... "George Gently, Series 1" is a new mystery series based on the long-running series of detective novels by Alan Hunter. Martin Shaw stars as Commander George Gently, an incorruptible, uncompromising cop transplanted from London's Scotland Yard to England's North Country in the mid-1960s; in a three-disc set, $49.99, from Acorn Media ... "I Dream of Jeannie: The Complete Series" (1965-69) is a 26-disc set with 139 episodes, $174.95 from Sony ... "M Squad: The Complete Series" is a 15-disc set with all 117 episodes of one of the groundbreaking programs from the golden age of television. The police drama, staring Lee Marvin, debuted on NBC in 1957 and aired for three seasons. $119.98 from Timeless Media ... "Mind of Mencia: Uncensored Season 4" is a two-disc set with 10 episodes, $26.99 from Paramount ... "Scrubs: The Complete Seventh Season" is a two-disc set with 11 episodes, $29.99 from Disney ... "Seventh Heaven: The Seventh Season" (2002-03) is a five-disc set with 22 episodes, $49.99 from Paramount ... "Son of the Beach: Volume 2" is a three-disc set with the unreleased episodes from Season Two and all of Season Three, $39.99 from Shout Factory! ... "The Sopranos: The Complete Series" is a 33-disc boxed set with all 86 episodes, $399.99 from HBO Video ... "Streets of San Francisco: Season Two, Volume 2" (1973) is a three-disc set, $42.99 from Paramount ... "World's Most Amazing Videos: Volume One" is a singe-disc compilation, $14.98 from Universal. (Posted November 11)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
In "We All Fall Down" (2000), starring Darcy Belsher, Martin Cummins, Ryan Reynolds, Barry Pepper and Helen Shaver, a struggling actor -- whose drug abuse intensifies after the recent passing of his mother -- can't quite get a grip on his life. As he turns to his best friend, the two go on a ruthless journey of drugs, prostitutes and violence until their deadly routines catch up with them; from Somerville House/Critical Mass and Koch Entertainment ... "Raw Feed Horror Collection" features three thrillers from the Warner Home Video Raw Feed filmmaking team: "Rest Stop," "Sublime" and "Believers," $23.97 from Warner. (Posted November 11)

On the Indie Front:
In "Noelle" (2007), a priest arrives in a tiny fishing village the week before Christmas to shut down a dying parish ... and becomes entangled in the lives of the town's eccentric characters while learning the power of forgiveness and redemption. Stars David Wall, Sean Patrick Brennan, Kerry Brennan and Brennan Wall; from Paramount. (Posted November 11)

Foreign:
It's a lovely week for love at the foreign film checkout counter; in fact, there's two French films titled "Love Songs." First up is 1984's "Love Songs," starring Catherine Deneuve and Christopher Lambert in the heart-warming tale of a woman torn between her family, career, and marriage, on the verge of an alluring affair with a handsome stranger; from Somerville House/Koch Entertainment ... then there's 2008's "Love Songs," starring Ludivine Sagnier, Louis Garrel and Clotilde Hesme. This one's a contemporary musical homage to French cinema of the 1960s. Parisian lovers Ismael and Julie add a third person to their relationship to add spice to their dying romance. Alice works with Ismael in his job at a newspaper and she shows instant chemistry with both partners. But tragedy soon divides the lovers, and Ismael is left to cope in the best way he can: through love; from Genius Products ... Isabelle Huppert, Jean-Francois Balmer and Christophe Malavoy star in "Madame Bovary" (1991 -- France), Claude Chabrol's meticulously authentic adaptation of one of modern literature's most celebrated and controversial novels; from Koch Lorber Films ... "Opium: Diary of a Madwoman" (2007 -- Hungary) is a fact-based thriller about Dr. Jozsef Brenner, a morphine-addicted Hungarian neurologist who believes drugs will cure his bad case of writer's block. After he travels to a remote asylum for women, hoping to secure morphine under the pretext of conducting a psychoanalytic study, he becomes drawn to a deeply disturbed patient, Gizella, who believes her soul has been captured by the devil; from Koch Lorber Films. (Posted November 11)

For the Family:
For the preschool set this week there's "Pingu's South Pole Adventures," featuring eight snowy animated adventures, $14.98 from HIT Entertainment/Lionsgate; and "Shaun the Sheep: Off the Baa!," with eight episodes of the "Wallace & Gromit" spinoff series (Shaun first appeared in Aardman Animations' "A Close Shave")" airing on the Disney Channel; $19.98 from HIT Entertainment/Lionsgate ... for older kids there's "Storm Hawks: Showdown in the Skies," a two-disc set with 13 episodes of the Cartoon Network's kids 3-D animated series, $24.94 from Sony. (Posted November 11)

Special Interest:
What do beer cans, car tires and water bottles have in common? Not much unless you're renegade architect Michael Reynolds, in which case they are the tools of choice for producing thermal mass and energy-independent housing. For 30 years New Mexico-based Reynolds and his green disciples have devoted their time to advancing the art of "Earthship Biotecture" by building self-sufficient, off-the-grid communities where design and function converge in eco-harmony. "Garbage Warrior" (2007) documents Reynolds struggle to build experimental structures that defy state building standards and create conflict between him and the authorities, who are backed by big business; $24.98 from Morningstar Entertainment ... "Remembering Vietnam: The Wall at 25" (2008) presents decorated Vietnam veteran Jan Scruggs, whose vision in 1979 to build a Vietnam memorial was met with cynicism and opposition, and Maya Lin, the Yale undergraduate whose etched granite memorial was once called a black gash of shame, nearly halting the project. Now, 25 years later, Smithsonian Networks explores the very personal story of The Wall, from its unlikely beginnings to its current status as Washington's most-visited monument, drawing millions each year to grieve, pay tribute or heal old wounds; $14.98 from Infinity Entertainment Group ... "Live From Abbey Road: Best of Season 1" brings together some of the best performances from the premiere season, including, among others, John Mayer, Dr. John, Wynton Marsalis, The Goo-Goo Dolls, Iron Maiden, Dave Matthews, David Gilmour and Norah Jones; $19.98 from BCI. (Posted November 11)

DVD Collectibles:
At the top of the release stack this week is Fox's "The Films of Budd Boetticher Box Set." Known for their sparse style, dramatic rocky locations, and recurring themes of a lone man seeking vengeance amidst a brutal landscape, Boetticher's films have, decades after their release, come to be regarded as some of the most influential westerns ever made. This set brings together five of his best films: "The Tall T" (1957), starring Randolph Scott, John Hubbard, Richard Boone and Maureen O'Sullivan; "Decision at Sundown" (1957), starring Randolph Scott and John Carroll; "Buchanan Rides Alone" (1958), starring Randolph Scott; "Ride Lonesome" (1959), starring James Best, Randolph Scott and Lee Van Cleef; "Comanche Station" (1960), starring (Randolph Scott, Nancy Gates, Claude Akins, Skip Homeier and Richard Rust. Extras include the documentary "Budd Boetticher: A Man Can Do That," introductions, and commentary by Clint Eastwood, Taylor Hackford, and Martin Scorsese. (Posted November 4)

A fun collectible is "A Christmas Story 25th Anniversary Ultimate Collector's Edition" (1983), a two-disc set housed in a Cookie Tin Cannister. Extras for the beloved film, directed by Bob Clark and starring Melinda Dillon, Darren McGavin and Peter Billingsley, include commentary, a making-of featurette, a "Red Ryder Rifle" featurette, a "Leg Lamp" featurette, a 50-plus page book, five cookie cutters inspired by the film, and a custom chef's apron; $39.99. Also available on Blu-ray Disc for $49.99; from Warner ... For nostalgic boomers there's "The Howdy Doody Show," a five-disc set with 40 episodes of the seminal TV series. "The Howdy Doody Show" made its debut in 1947; at the time there were only 20,000 American homes with television sets and NBC only had stations in six markets. The show was credited as a major factor in the growth of NBC. "Howdy" went on to air 2,543 episodes, before running its final episode on Dec. 30, 1960; $29.98 from Mill Creek Entertainment ... Other collectibles this week: photo "Pee-wee's Big Advenutre" (1985), directed by Tim Burton and starring Paul Reubens, Elizabeth Daily, Mark Holton and Diane Salinger, from Warner; "The Wild Wild West: The Complete Box Set" (1965-69), a 27-disc set, $144.99, from Paramount ... and "The Gregory Peck Film Collection," a six-disc set with "To Kill a Mockingbird," "Cape Fear," "Arabesque," "Mirage," "Captain Newman, M.D." and "The World in His Arms," $59.98 from Universal. (Posted November 4)

From TV to Video:
"Futurama: Bender's Game" (2008) is the third installment in the series of all-new feature-length "Futurama" animated adventures. With fuel prices skyrocketing, the Planet Express crew sets off on a dangerous mission to infiltrate the world's only dark-matter mine, source of all spaceship fuel. But deep beneath the surface, they discover a far stranger place ... a medieval land of dragons and sorcery and intoxicated knights who look suspiciously like Bender; from Fox ... "JAG: The Seventh Season" (2001-02) is a five-disc set with 24 episodes, $64.99 from Paramount ... When strange anomalies in time start to appear all over England, Professor Cutter and his team have to help track down and capture all sorts of dangerous prehistoric creatures from Earth's distant past in BBC TV's "Primeval: Volume 1" (2007), $49.98 from Warner ... "Project Runway: The Complete Fourth Season" is a four-disc set with 14 episodes, $27.95 from Genius Products ... "Spin City: The Complete First Season" Is a four-disc set with 24 episodes, $39.99 from Shout! Factory. (Posted November 4)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
An ancient legend says that the fiery entrance to hell exists in an elaborate underworld that lies beneath the city of Moscow. A priest delves into this eerie underground system of catacombs and caves, supposedly inhabited by demons, in search of his friend who disappeared while researching the legend in "Moscow Zero" (2006), starring Vincent Gallo, Oksana Akinshina, Val Kilmer, Sage Stallone, Joaquim de Almeida and Rade Serbedzija; from Sony ... "Termination Point" (2007) stars Jason Priestley and Lou Diamond Phillips in a sci fi tale about a rogue time-travel scientist who must be found before repercussions from potential time shifts threaten to destroy the Earth; from Sony ... "Return to Sleepaway Camp" (2008), stars Vincent Pastore, Jonathan Tiersten, Paul DeAngelo and Isaac Hayes in the fourth sequel to the 1983 slasher film; from Magnolia Home Entertainment. (Posted November 4)

On the Indie Front:
"When Did You Last See Your Father?" (2008), starring Colin Firth, Jim Broadbent, Juliet Stevenson, Gina McKee, Claire Skinner and Matthew Beard, is an unflinching exploration of a father/son relationship, as a man faces his father's terminal illness and imminent death; from Sony ... "Dear Me, a Blogger's Tale" (2008) stars Sarah Thompson in a tale about a copywriter whose personal blog is hijacked by an evil co-worker; from Porchlight Home Entertainment ... "The Good Life" (2007), starring Mark Webber, Zooey Deschanel, Chris Klein, Bill Paxton, Drea De Matteo, Donal Logue, Patrick Fugit and Harry Dean Stanton, is a comedy/drama about a young man who is encouraged by a new friend to cope with living in the small football-obsessed town where he doesn't fit in, retreating into classic old movies ... until he meets a beautiful and mysterious young woman; from Image ... "Cruel but Necessary" (2005), directed by Saul Rubinek and starring Wendel Meldrum, Mark Humphrey and Luke Humphrey, is the story of a suburban housewife's strange journey of soul-awakening in the traumatic years following the revelation, on videotape, of her husband's infidelity; from Sommerville House/Critical Mass/KOCH Entertainment ... In "Flashbacks of a Fool" (2008), starring Daniel Craig, Harry Eden, Eve, Helen McCrory and Olivia Williams, a fading Hollywood star looks back at the days of his youth as he returns home from his best friend's funeral; from Anchor Bay Entertainment ... "What We Do Is Secret" (2007), stars Shane West, Bijou Phillips, Rick Gonzalez, Noah Segan and Ashton Holmes in a biopic of punk legend Darby Crash and his seminal L.A. band the Germs; from Peace Arch Entertainment. (Posted November 4)

For the Family:
In "Shrek the Halls"(2008), all the "Shrek" characters return to celebrate Christmas in this 22-minute animated short; with the voices of Mike Myers, Eddie Murphy, Cameron Diaz and Antonio Banderas; from DreamWorks/Paramount ... Two Jim Henson features arrive this week from HIT Entertainment/Lionsgate: "The Christmas Toy" (1987), a tale about toys coming alive on Christmas Eve; $14.98; and "Emmet Otter's Jug-Band Christmas" (1977), an HBO TV special about a poor but tight-knit family of otters struggling to make ends meet during the holidays; $14.98 ... "Batman: The Complete Animated Series" is a 17-disc set with 109 episodes, $107.92; from Warner ... "HIT Favorites: Snow Days" is a collection of six winter-themed offerings for the pre-school set from "Barney," "Thomas & Friends," "Bob the Builder," "Angelina Ballerina," "Fireman Sam" and "Pingu"; $14.98 from HIT/Lionsgate. (Posted November 4)

Special Interest:
What a difference eight years makes -- in the life of a troubled nation, a battleground state, and an American family. All three meet head-on in "Swing State" (2008), which chronicles the 2006 Ohio Governor's race, a campaign in which J. Kenneth Blackwell, responsible for "delivering" Ohio to George W. Bush in 2004, meets his match: Democratic candidates for Governor and Lieutenant Governor Ted Strickland and Lee Fisher. In "Swing State," the whole process is documented, with an intimate look at not only a critical fight in a key state, but also the experience of the Fisher family as they put it all on the line to avenge Lee's devastating loss for governor in 1998. $19.98 from Morningstar Entertainment ... "Creatures of the Deep" is a four-disc set with four National Geographic specials: "Dolphins: The Wild Side," "Tiger Shark: Predator Revealed," "Devils of the Deep: Jumbo Squid" and "Killer Whales: Wolves at Sea"; $39.98 from Warner ... "NFL History of the New England Patriots" is a five-disc set that covers all the great games, all the star players and all the unforgettable moments; $26.95 from Warner. (Posted November 4)

DVD Collectibles:
"10 Years of Rialto Pictures" Since 1997, Rialto Pictures has been helping to keep classic cinema alive and invigorated by bringing the world's greatest films to theaters across the United States, in phenomenal restored 35mm prints. This special gift box set, in celebration of Rialto's 10th anniversary, features 10 films that display the breadth of its collection, including works by Rialto favorites Jean-Luc Godard, Robert Bresson, Luis Bunuel, and Jean-Pierre Melville: "Army of Shadows" (1969), "Au hasard Balthazar" (1966), "Band of Outsiders" (1964), "Billy Liar" (1963), "The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie" (1972), "Mafioso" (1962), "Murderous Maids" (2000), "Rififi" (1955), "The Third Man" (1949) and "Touchez pas au grisbi" (1954). $149.95 from The Criterion Collection. (Posted October 28)

For fans of Golden Age comedy, there's "The Little Rascals: The Complete Collection" an eight-disc set that includes all 80 shorts created under the supervision of legendary film producer Hal Roach from the dawn of the talkies (1929) until the series was sold to MGM in 1938, presented in chronological release order. Each short has been remastered from the original camera negatives, restored using DVNR technology and available uncut for the first time in years. Also included with the set is a collectible photo booklet containing classic images from the series, original movie posters, fun facts, and lobby cards; $89.95 from RHI/Genius Products ... "Abbott and Costello: The Complete Universal Pictures Collection" is a 15-disc set with all 28 films produced during the height of the duo's popularity at Universal Pictures (1940-1955); $119.98. Packed in a "suitcase" with a collectible book. Includes the classic routines "Who's on First?" "Two Tens for a Five" and "Mustard." Extras: "The World of Abbott and Costello," "Abbott and Costello Meet Jerry Seinfeld," "Abbott and Costello Meet the Monsters," more; from Universal. For a complete list of films in this set, click here.

photo For more recent cinematic fun there's "Animal House 30th Anniversary Edition" (1978), directed by John Landis and starring John Belushi, Tim Matheson, John Vernon, Verna Bloom, Tom Hulce, Cesare Danova, Peter Riegert, Mary Louise Weller, Stephen Furst, James Daughton, Bruce McGill, Mark Metcalf, DeWayne Jessie and Karen Allen, in a two-disc set with such extras as two "Scene It?" mini-game experiences, "Where Are They Now? A Delta Alumni Update" and "The Yearbook: An Animal House Reunion" new featurette. An "Animal House 30th Anniversary Gift Set" comes packed in a commemorative fraternity house box with additional extras "National Lampoon's Animal House: The Inside Story" new documentary and a collectible Faber College Yearbook; from Universal. (Posted October 28)

From TV to Video:
"Agatha Christie: Mystery Lover's Collection" is a four-disc set with five Agatha Christie mysteries: "The Secret Adversary," "The Affair of the Pink Pearl," "The Body in the Library," "The Mysterious Affair at Styles" and "The Pale Horse"; $39.99 from Acorn Media ... "Cathouse: The Series" is a four-disc set with 17 episodes, $29.98 from HBO Video ... "The Complete Inspector Lynley Mysteries" is a 12-disc set with all 23 mysteries of the British series on PBS, $199.95 from WGBH Boston Video ... "Dark Shadows: The Beginning #6" features the early, pre-Barnabas episodes from the spooky soap opera, $59.98 from MPI Home Video ... "The Donna Reed Show, Season One" is a four-disc set with 37 episodes, $39.95 from Arts Alliance America ... "Doris Day: Christmas Memories" features all three Christmas episodes from the five-year run of "The Doris Day Show," $14.98 from MPI Home Video ... "The 4400: The Complete Series" (2004-07) is a 15-disc set, $108.99 from Paramount ... "Girlfriends: The Fifth Season" (2004-05) is a three-disc set with 22 episodes, $39.99 from Paramount ... "Good Times: The Complete Series" (1974-79) is a 17-disc set with 133 episodes, $59.95 from Sony ... "The L-Word: The Complete Fifth Season" is a four-disc set with 12 episodes, $62.99 from Paramount ... "Mother and Son: Season 2" is a two-disc set with seven episodes of the Australian series about the relationship between a newly divorced man and his aging and very eccentric mother, $29.98 from BFS Entertainment ... "NewsRadio: The Complete Series" (1995-99) is a 15-disc set with 97 episodes, $59.95 from Sony ... "Psychic Kids: Children of the Paranormal" is a two-disc set with six episodes of the spin-off from A&E's "Paranormal State" series, $29.95 from A&E Home Video ... "Sanford and Son: The Complete Series" (1972-77) is an 18-disc set that includes all six seasons, $59.95 from Sony ... "Sister, Sister: The First Season" is a two-disc set with 12 episodes, $39.99 from Paramount ... "War and Remembrance: The Complete Series" (1988) is a 13-disc set with all 14-parts of the miniseries based on Herman Wouk's classic novel, $129.98 from MPI Home Video. (Posted October 28)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
There's four creepy, gory and outlandish exploitation films due just in time for Halloween from Severin Films/RYKO: As the "body-count" genre stabbed its way into audiences' hearts in the early '80s, EuroTrash auteur Jess Franco was asked to create his own saga of slaughtered schoolgirls complete with gratuitous nudity, graphic violence and gory set pieces, and he came up with "Bloody Moon" (1981). But just when you thought you'd seen it all, Franco shocked the world by delivering surprising style, genuine suspense and a cavalcade of depravity that includes incest, voyeurism and roller disco. Banned in England; "Stone" (1974) is an Australian biker film about an undercover cop who infiltrates the outlaw Grave Diggers on a one-way trip to hell; In "Devil Hunter" director Franco takes on the '80s Cannibal genre and delivers a jungle sickie about a safari of sexy women and violent boneheads who venture into a native-crazed wilderness; and "In the Folds of the Flesh" (2007), an ultra-lurid epic packed with decapitations, creepy incest, groovy fashions, cyanide baths, swirly psychedelics, inexplicable plot twists and more ... A tough group of bikers seek to avenge the death of a loved one by the hands of a sadistic, rival motorcycle gang in "Hell Ride" (2008), starring Dennis Hopper, Michael Madsen and Vinnie Jones, from The Weinstein Company Dimension Extreme/Genius Products ... The girls of Community College University's Bikini Carwash become fodder for the resurrected Chef Death in "Bikini Bloodbath Carwash" (2008), from MVD Entertainemnt Group ... In "Shiver" (2008 -- Spain), Santi, a lonely teenager, suffers from photophobia and moves with his mother to a far-off village in the mountains to avoid sunlight, but soon after they arrive, locals and livestock start turning up butchered and Santi becomes the main suspect; from Dark Sky Films/MPI Home Media ... In "Red" (2008), starring Brian Cox, Tom Sizemore, Robert Englund and Amanda Plummer, a reclusive man sets out for justice and redemption when three troublesome teens kill his dog for no good reason; from Magnolia Home Entertainment. (Posted October 28)

On the Indie Front:
On a tour of Britain in 1926, Harry Houdini enters into a passionate affair with a psychic out to con the famous magician in "Houdini's Death Defying Acts" (2008), starring Catherine Zeta-Jones, Guy Pearce, Timothy Spall and Saoirse Ronan; from The Weinstein Company/Genius Products ... Shot in breathtaking 70mm in 24 countries on six continents, "Baraka" (1992) is a transcendent global tour that explores the sights and sounds of the human condition with an emphasis on the environment; fully restored from its original camera negative via state-of-the-art 8K UltraDigital mastering; from MPI Home Video ... "Eight Miles High" (2008) is the true story of European wild-child and Rolling Stones companion Uschi Obermaier. The film tracks her restless life from a small town girl in rural Bavaria to a fast-living fashion icon in Munich; from free-loving groupie to ultimately becoming the embodiment of the 60's generation of sex, drugs, and rock 'n' roll; from Dokument Films/MPI Home Video ... "Together Again for the First Time" (2008) stars Julia Duffy and David Ogden Stiers in the story of a blended family reuniting on Christmas Eve, the first time they've all been in the same house at the same time since their parent's marriage seven years before, which wouldn't be a problem except that they can't stand each other; from PorchLight Home Entertainment. (Posted October 28)

Foreign:
In "Woman on the Beach" (2006 -- South Korea), filmmaker Joong-rae, suffering from writer's block, takes a trip to the coast with his production designer Chang-wook, who brings along the vivacious Moon-sook. Soon after their arrival, Moon-sook falls for Joong-rae's advances; however, the fickle hero can't commit and he awkwardly parts with her. What had been a sardonic "Jules and Jim" turns into a burlesque "Vertigo" when Joong-rae returns to the coastal resort and attempts to recreate the original romance with a woman who resembles Moon-sook, until his jilted lover shows up; from New Yorker Video. (Posted October 28)

For the Family:
"The Night Before Christmas and More Holiday Tales" includes the title story plus six additional colorfully animated holiday stories: "n the Month of Kislev" (narrated by Theodore Bikel), "Seven Candles for Kwanza" (narrated by Alfre Woodard), "Too Many Tamales" (presented both in English and Spanish), "The Little Drummer Boy" (with animated illustrations by Ezra Jack Keats) and two Rosemary Wells classics, "Max's Christmas" (narrated by Jenny Agutter and Rex Robbins) and "Morris' Disappearing Bag"; $14.95 from Scholastic Storybook Treasures ... "The Flight Before Christmas" (2007) is a CGI-animated tale about an ambitious young reindeer named Niko who wants to fly with Santa, featuring the voices of Emma Roberts and Norm MacDonald; $19.97 from The Weinstein Co./Genius Products ... In "The Berenstain Bears: Christmas Tree, " Bear Country's most loveable family learns that the best Christmas gifts are not under the tree but in your heart; $12.99 from Sony ... "The Flintstones: The Complete Series" is a 24-disc set with 166 episodes, in custom Bedrock-themed packaging, $129.72 from Warner. (Posted October 28)

Special Interest:
"Annie Leibovitz: Life Through a Lens" (2006) is an American Masters documentary that traces the arc of Annie Leibovitz's photographic life, her aspirations to artistry and the trajectory of her career that produced some of today's most recognizable and iconic photos; $19.98 from Warner ... "On Trial: Lee Harvey Oswald" (1986) is a Showtime special that recalls all of the surviving witnesses to determine the guilt or innocence of the man believed to have murdered JFK; $24.98 from MPI Home Video ... "The Speeches Collection Volume 2: Republicans vs. Democrats" is a two-disc set that features excerpts and entire speeches spanning the political careers of former U.S. Presidents Franklin D. Roosevelt, Harry S. Truman, Dwight D. Eisenhower and Richard M. Nixon; $19.98 from MPI Home Video ... "Dale Earnhardt 10 Greatest Wins" is a five-disc set tribute to the driver that best defined NASCAR, $39.95 from &E Home Video ... "Carlos Mencia: Performanced Enhanced" is an incensored performance recorded at the Hard Rock Hotel in Hollywood, Florida; $19.99 from Paramount. (Posted October 28)

DVD Collectibles:
As the holiday shopping season begins to kick into gear there's plenty of nifty special editions and gift sets being offered by the studios. At the top of the list is "Warner Bros. Pictures Gangsters Collection Volume 4," a six-disc set with "The Amazing Dr. Clitterhouse," "The Little Giant," "Larceny, Inc.," "Invisible Stripes," "Kid Galahad" and the feature-length documentary "Public Enemies: The Golden Age of the Gangster Film"; $59.92; "Kid Galahad" will be available as a single title for $19.97; from Warner. (Posted October 21)

"Casino Royale Collector's Edition" (1967), starring Peter Sellers, Ursula Andress, David Niven, Orson Welles, Joanna Pettet, Daliah Lavi, Woody Allen, Deborah Kerr, William Holden, Charles Boyer, John Huston, George Raft, Jean-Paul Belmondo, Barbara Bouchet, Jacqueline Bisset and Peter O'Toole, with such extras as commentary by James Bond historians Steven Jay Rubin and John Cork, "The Making of Casino Royale," " Bond, James Bond?" featurette, "A 3 Ring Circus" featurette, "More Directors, More Stars" featurette, "The Big Climax" featurette, more, from MGM ... "Looney Tunes: Golden Collection Volume 6" is the concluding release from the Golden Collection Series, a four-disc set with 60 more of the most looneytic Looney Tunes ever unleashed, with 15 bonus shorts; $64.92 from Warner ... When six acclaimed directors each contribute a short film about a different Paris neighborhood, the result is "Six In Paris" (1965), a wry, loving portrait of the city and its inhabitants by the masters of the French New Wave. Among them: A battle-fatigued hooker picks up a virginal dishwasher in Jean-Daniel Pollet's "Rue St. Denis." In Eric Rohmer's "Place de L'Etoile" a timid sales clerk thinks he has committed murder. Jean-Luc Goddard shows us a woman who is afraid she has mixed up letters to her two boyfriends in "Montparnasse-Levallois." And a young boy finds a way to ignore his obnoxious parents in Claude Chabrol's "La Muette." Together, the six tales paint a tableau of a noisy, vibrant, colorful Paris - a city where everything is possible; from New Yorker Video ... And last but not least, there's two fine releases from The Criterion Collection: "Eclipse Series 13: Kenji Mizoguchi's Fallen Women" featuring four fims by famed director Kenji Mizoguchi that look at the plight of women in male-dominated Japanese society: "Osaka Elegy" (1936), "Sisters of the Gion" (1936), "Women of the Night" (1948) and "Street of Shame" (1955); a no-frills set for $59.95; and a restored high-definition digital transfer double-disc set of Costa-Gavras' 1982 "Missing," starring Jack Lemmon, Sissy Spacek, Melanie Mayron and John Shea, with such extras as a new video essay with Peter Kornbluh, author of "The Pinochet File," examining declassified documents concerning the 1973 military coup in Chile and the case of Charles Horman; video highlights from the 2002 Charles Horman Truth Project event honoring the 20th anniversary of "Missing," with Spacek, Shea and Mayron; a booklet featuring a new essay by critic Michael Wood, an interview with Costa-Gavras, the U.S. State Department's official response to "Missing," and much much more.(Posted October 21)

From TV to Video:
"Blood +: Volume Three, " a single disc with five episodes of the animated Adult Swim series, based on the anime movie "Blood: The Last Vampire," $24.96 from Sony ... "Dynasty: Season Three, Volume Two" (1982-83), a three-disc set, $36.99 from Paramount ... "Family Guy: Volume Six," a three-disc set with 12 episodes, $39.98. from Fox ... "The Incredible Hulk: The Complete Fifth Season," a two-disc set with seven episodes, $29.98 from Universal ... "LA Ink: Season One, Volume 2," a three-disc set with 13 epiosdes, $24.95 from TLC/Genius Products ... "The Man From U.N.C.L.E.: The Complete Series" is a 41-disc set with 105 episodes in a spy attache case, $199.92 from Warner ... "The New Adventures of Old Christine: The Complete Second Season," a four-disc set with 22 epiosdes, $39.98 from Warner ... "The Outer Limits: The Original Series Complete Box Set," a seven-disc set with all 49 episodes, $59.98 from MGM ... "Rain Shadow, Series One," a two-disc set with six episodes of the Australian series that pits two strong women against the odds and each other in a small community in the natural rain shadow region in the Adelaide Hills; stars Rachel Ward, Victoria Thaine; $39.99 from Acorn Media ... "Route 66: Complete Second Season," an eight-disc set with 32 episodes, $49.98 from Infinity Entertainment.(Posted October 21)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
In the DVD sequel "Anaconda 3: Offspring" (2007), a ruthless mercenary joins a team out to capture a pair of dangerous, genetically-altered anacondas when they escape from a top-secret lab; stars David Hasselhoff, Crystal Allen and John Rhys-Davies; from Sony ... "The Lazarus Project" (2008) is a thriller about a man who is executed but inexplicably wakes up with a second chance at life near an eerie psychiatric ward, where he soon realizes he may be part of something far more sinister; directed by John Glenn and starring Paul Walker, Linda Cardellini, Malcolm Goodwin, Tony Curran and Bob Gunton; from Sony ... In "Linewatch" (2008), a U.S. Border Patrol officer must return to the secret past of his brutal street ways in order to protect his family from a vicious gang leader out to smuggle drugs across the Mexican border, starring Cuba Gooding Jr, Omari Hardwick, Sharon Leal and Evan Ross; from Sony ... "Zombie Strippers" (2008) is a comedy-horror film set in the not-too-distant future, when a secret government re-animation "chemo-virus" gets released and lands in an underground strip club. The virus turns the dancers into flesh-craving Super Zombie Strippers, with killer moves on the dance floor; stars Jenna Jameson, Robert Englund, Roxy Saint and Joey Medina; from Sony ... "Vice" (2008) stars Michael Madsen, Daryl Hannah and Mykelti Williamson in a crime thriller about a tough detective who serves his own brand of justice; when a drug deal goes bad, the cops in his unit are killed off one at a time and the detective must uncover the corruption at the core of the crime; from Genius Products ... In "Forfeit" (2007), a religious sociopath returns to L.A. years after killing his abusive father and attempts to reunite with his old girlfriend but, driven by revenge against those who wronged him in the past, he schemes the perfect heist and the ultimate vengeance; stars Billy Burke, Sherry Stringfield, Gregory Itzin and Wayne Knight; from MTI Home Video ... In "Trailer Park of Terror" (2008), a group of troubled high school kids seek shelter in a seemingly deserted trailer park but as soon as the sun goes down they are terrorized by a redneck reaper and her gang of undead trailer trash; stars Nichole Hiltz and Hayley Marie Notman; from Summit Home Entertainment.(Posted October 21)

On the Indie Front:
Just in time for the November election is "The F-Word: Election Edition" (2005), starring Josh Hamilton, Callie Thorne and Sam Rockwell. Radio DJ Joe Pace (Hamilton), who's forced off the air after racking up $1M in unpaid indecency fines, takes to the streets of New York for his final show to cover the 2004 Republican National Convention, joining the rallies, protests, delegates and citizens of NYC. Indie outing combining fictional scenes, shot cinema verite-style among actual protests; from Cinevolve Studios.(Posted October 21)

Foreign:
In "Flight of the Red Balloon" (2007 -- French), starring Juliette Binoche, a little boy and his babysitter inhabit the same imaginary world: through their adventures they are followed by a strange red balloon. Homage to director Albert Lamorisse's 1956 Academy Award-winning short "The Red Balloon"; from Genius Products.(Posted October 21)

For the Family:
"Global Wonders" is a new cross-cultural entertainment and education brand that introduces children to the vibrant and varied cultures of their family, friends, neighbors and the world. Created by a mother of two young children, Rashmi Turner (former executive producer of Disney's "Baby Einstein"), and a team of experts from the world of children's entertainment and developmental education, Global Wonders helps children discover and share the everyday customs, music, heritage, language and lifestyles in the "kaleidoscope" of cultures that surround them. Each title features colorful and detailed hand-drawn animation; new musical sing-alongs and stories; original, culturally authentic music; all-new, animated characters; personally relevant cultural themes; and real-world footage from around the globe. The first four DVD programs, for children ages 2-7: "Global Wonders: Around the World," "Global Wonders: India," "Global Wonders: Mexico" and "Global Wonders: African-American" ... "The Legend of Sasquatch" (2007) is an animated story of a family who moves to a secluded log cabin and discovers a family of friendly Bigfoot living nearby; $27.98 from Image Entertainment.(Posted October 21)

Special Interest:
"Comedy Central Salutes George W. Bush" is a compilation of comedic bits dishonoring our 43rd President, from Paramount ... "Discovery Essential Dinosaur Pack" is a two-disc set of The Discovery Channel's extraordinarily popular series of dinosaur programs: "Valley of the T. Rex," "Rex: New Science, New Beast," "When Dinosaurs Roamed America," "Utah's Dino Graveyard," "Dinosaur Planet," "The Mystery Dinosaur," "Dinosaurs: Return To Life?"; from Genius Products ... Three environments showcase the mystery and beauty of life on the planet in the National Geographic documentary "Atmospheres: Earth, Air and Water," $28.99 from Warner ... "Sex & Justice" (1993) presents the dramatic confrontation between Anita Hill and Clarence Thomas at his Supreme Court confirmation hearings before the United States Senate in 1991; narrated by Gloria Steinem; $24.95 from First Run Features.(Posted October 21)

There's a wellspring of collectible titles this week: "Touch of Evil 50th Anniversary Edition" (1958), directed by Orson Welles and starring Charlton Heston, Janet Leigh, Ray Collins, Dennis Weaver, Akim Tamiroff, Orson Welles, Marlene Dietrich. This two-disc set includes three versions of the film: The Restored Version re-edited in 1998, based on a 58-page memo written by Orson Welles and sent to the studio in 1957; Theatrical Version seen by audiences in 1958; Preview Version created prior to the theatrical version, incorporating some of Welles' changes, discovered by Universal in 1976; includes a specially printed reproduction of the complete 58-page Welles memo; from Universal. (Posted October 7)

Three Alfred Hitchcock classics have been reissued in two-disc Universal Legacy Series Special Editions: Pyscho," "Rear Window" and "Vertigo," each loaded with extras ... Disney has restored 1959's "Sleeping Beauty in high definition for DVD and Blu-ray for its 50th Anniversary Platinum Edition, and loaded the release with such extras as an all new documentary ÒPicture Perfect: The Making of Sleeping BeautyÓ; a fascinating fully-immersive 3-D experience documentary recreating the original Sleeping Beauty Castle walk-through that Walt Disney supervised more than 50 years ago; an alternate opening sequence; and more ... "The Picture of Dorian Gray" (1945), starring Hurd Hatfield, Donna Reed, Angela Lansbury, George Sanders and Peter Lawford, from Warner ... "The Alice Faye Collection Volume 2," a five-disc set with "Hollywood Cavalcade," "Rose of Washington Square," "The Great American Broadcast," "Hello, Frisco, Hello" and "Four Jills In A Jeep," $49.98; each title is also available individually for $19.98; from Fox ... Two classic Jean-Pierre Melville crime dramas make their debut from The Criterion Collection: "Le Deuxieme Souffle" (1966) follows the parallel tracks of French underworld criminal Gu (the inimitable Lino Ventura), escaped from prison and roped into one last robbery, and the suave inspector, Blot (Paul Meurisse), relentlessly seeking him; and "Le Doulos" (1962), in which a stone-faced Jean-Paul Belmondo stars as enigmatic gangster Silien, who may or may not be responsible for squealing on Faugel (Serge Reggiani), just released from the slammer and already involved in what should have been a simple heist. By the end of this brutal, twisty, and multilayered policier, who will be left to trust? ... and lastly, there's "Ray Harryhausen Collectible DVD Gift Set" featuring "It Came From Beneath the Sea," "Earth vs. the Flying Saucers," "20 Million Miles to Earth: 50th Anniversary Edition" and "The 7th Voyage of Sinbad: 50th Anniversary Edition," from Sony. (Posted October 7)

From TV to Video:
"The Beverly Hillbillies: The Official Second Season" (1963-64) is a four-disc set with 36 episodes, $49.99 from Paramount) ... "Brotherhood: The Complete Second Season" (2007) is a three-disc set with 10 episodes, $42.99 from Paramount ... "Doctor Who: The Trial of the Time Lord" is a four-disc set with all four episodes of Doctor Who's immortal adventure, "The Trial of the Time Lord," starring Colin Baker as the Doctor; $59.98 from Warner ... "How I Met Your Mother: Season Three," a three-disc set with 20 episodes, $39.98 from Fox ... "Keeping Up With the Kardashians: Season One" (2007), featuring eight episodes, $19.98 from Lionsgate ... "Kimora: Life in the Fab Lane: Season One" (2007) featuring seven episodes, $19.99 from Lionsgate ... "Martin: The Complete Fifth Season," a four-disc set with 24 episodes, $29.98 from HBO Video ... "Midsomer Murders, Set Eleven," a four-disc set with four contemporary, stand-alone mysteries from the top-selling British mystery franchise that combines quirky characters and surprising mysteries with postcard-perfect English village settings; $49.99 from Acorn Media ... "Mission Impossible: The Fifth TV Season" (1970-71), a six-disc set with 23 episodes, $54.99 from Paramount ... "The Munsters: Complete Series" is a 12-disc set with all 70 episodes, $69.98 from Universal ... "Robot Chicken: Season 3" is a two-disc set with 20 episodes of the Adult Swim series, $29.98 from Warner ... "The Simpsons: The Complete Eleventh Season" is a four-disc set with 22 episodes, $49.98 from Fox ... "South Park: The Cult of Cartman" is a two-disc set with 12 episodes with Cartman at his very worst, $26.99. from Warner ... "30 Rock: Season 2" is a two-disc set with 15 episodes, $39.98 from Universal ... "TV Sets: Holiday Treats" features holiday episodes from eight favorite TV shows, ranging from "The Honeymooners" and "I Love Lucy" to "Frasier" and "Wings," from Paramount. (Posted October 7)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
"The Devil's Chair" (2006) is a gore-drenched tale that focuses on a strange chair located in a terrifying old lunatic asylum that's a portal to the meeting place between insanity and the supernatural, from Sony ... A couple and their six-year-old son move into an old Connecticut house where the boy soon becomes distraught with thoughts of monsters dwelling in the attic in "The Devil's Mercy" (2008), starring Stephen Rea, Hannah Lochner and Deborah Valente, from Peace Arch Entertainment ... "20 Years After" (2008) is a post-apocalyptic tale about the journey of a young woman to deliver the first child in 15 years after wars and plagues have devastated the earth, from MTI Home Video ... "Normal" (2007), starring Carrie-Anne Moss, Kevin Zegers, Callum Keith Rennie and Cameron Bright in a drama in which a deadly car accident brings together a group of previously unrelated people, each of whom is forced to deal with the emotional fallout, from PorchLight Home Entertainment ... "Icons of Horror 3" is a two-disc set with four classic horror films from the legendary Hammer Studios: "The Curse of the Mummy's Tomb" (1964), "The Gorgon" (1964), "The Two Faces of Dr. Jekyll" (1960) and "Scream of Fear" (1961); $24.96 from Sony ... "Edgar Wallace Collection: Volume 2" contains two creepy films based on novels by the prolific British writer Edgar Wallace: "Curse of the Yellow Snake" (1963 - Germany), in which two brothers are pitted against an Asian cult that is willing to kill anyone standing between it and possession of the Yellow Snake, an ancient talisman; and "The Phantom of Soho" (1964 - Germany), who stalks his victims wearing a skull mask and glitter gloves, from Infinity Entertainment ... and, lastly, there's a raft of sequels this week: "Joy Ride 2: Dead Ahead" (2008), a sequel to 2001's "Joy Ride," from Fox; "Feast II: Sloppy Seconds" (2008), a sequel to 2005's "Feast," from The Weinstein Company/Dimension Extreme/Genius Products and "Rest Stop: Don't Look Back" (2008), a direct-to-DVD sequel from Warner. (Posted October 7)

For the Family:
For the young one's this week there's "SeeMore's Playhouse: Car & Pedestrian Safety" (2008) with two episodes from the television series, put together by the American red Cross and Safety4Kids, that's designed to entertain preschoolers while teaching them the vital basics of safety through puppetry, animation, live action and original music; $12.98 from Monarch Home Video ... "The Smurfs: Season One, Volume Two" is a two-disc set with 20 cartoons, $26.99 from Warner ... "Sing a Song of Wiggles!" (2008) is a new collection of nursery rhymes, $14.98 from Warner ... "Growing Up Wilderness" features four episodes from the Animal Planet series that follows the lives of wild baby animals, $14.95 from Genius Products .... and a remastered edition of the stop-motion animated classic "Jack Frost Deluxe Edition" (1979), with the voices of Buddy Hackett, Robert Morse and Larry Storch, from Warner. (Posted October 7)

Special Interest:
"Michael Palin: Full Circle" is a three-disc set featuring 50,000 miles of adventure and humor-packed incidents in which Michael Palin attempts a complete circle around the world's largest ocean. Palin sets off from Diomede, in the Bering Strait and hopes to return there one year later via Russia, Japan, Korea, China, Vietnam, the Philippines, Borneo, Indonesia, Australia, New Zealand and the whole length of the Americas. But right from the start things don't go according to plan. $49.98 from Warner ... "Slacker Uprising" (2008) is strategically timed to mobilize and inspire voters. Framed like a concert film, it captures Moore's activities as he set out on a campaign trip almost as rigorous and far-reaching as the candidates' own. Targeting young people as the demographic that could make the most difference in the election, Moore visited 62 cities in 45 days, and held large rallies on college campuses in an event the filmmaker dubbed the "Slacker Uprising Tour." Features special appearances by Eddie Vedder, R.E.M., Steve Earle, Joan Baez, Roseanne Barr, Viggo Mortensen and more. $9.95 from Disinformation Co./Brave New Films. (Posted October 7)

Just Announced:
photo Warner Home Video has announced a December 9 release date for "The Dark Knight," the second-highest grossing film of all time (behind "Titanic"). The follow-up to the action hit "Batman Begins" reunites director Christopher Nolan and star Christian Bale, who reprises the role of Batman/Bruce Wayne in his continuing war on crime. The highly anticipated release features behind-the-scenes featurettes, documentaries, and more, and will be available as a single-disc DVD, a two-disc Special Edition DVD, and a two-disc Blu-ray edition. (Posted September 30)

From TV to Video:
"Adam 12: Season Two" is a four-disc set with 24 episodes, $34.99 from Shout! Factory ... "Ax Men: The Complete Season One," is a four-disc set with 13 episodes, $39.95 from A&E Home Video ... "B.L. Stryker: The Complete Series " is a seven-disc set with all 12 episodes, $54.95 from Arts Alliance America ... "Banacek Complete Series" is a five-disc set with all 16 of the original shows and the original pilot program that was part of the Sunday Night Mystery Movie in the early 1970s; $49.95 from Arts Alliance America ... "Beauty and the Beast: The Complete Series" is a sixteen-disc set with 55 episodes, $90.99 from Paramount ... "The Best of Mr. Bean: Volume 2" features six of the all-time top-rated and most inspired episodes in Bean history, $9.95 from A&E Home Video ... "Click & Clack: As the Wrench Turns" (2007) is an animated sitcom revolving around the Tappet Brothers and their NPR "Car Talk" radio show; two-disc set, $34.99 from Paramount ... "Edward the King" (1975) is a four-disc set of the British miniseries ("Edward the Seventh") portaying the fascinating and scandalous life of King Edward VII; $59.99 from Acorn Media ... "Gangland: The Complete Season One" is a four-disc set with 13 episodes, $39.95 from A&E Home Video ... "The Hudson Brothers Razzle Dazzle Show" (1974-75) features sixteen episodes of the Saturday morning family series hosted by the singing group The Hudson Brothers; three-disc set, $29.95 from MVD Visual ... "My Name Is Earl: Season Three" is a four-disc set with 22 epiosdes, $49.98 from Fox ... "My Three Sons: Season One, Volume One" (1960-61) is a three-disc set, $42.99 from Paramount ... "Numb3rs: The Fourth Season" is a five-disc set with 18 episodes, $61.99 from Paramount ... "Sports Night: The Complete Series 10th Anniversary Edition" is an eight-disc set with all 45 episodes, $69.99 from Shout! Factory ... "Trial & Retribution, Set 1" (2007) is a four-disc set with the first four two-part episodes (1997-2000) of the long-running, ongoing, smash hit British crime drama series; $59.99 from Acorn Media. (Posted September 30)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
"Pulse 2"(2008), starring Jamie Bamber and Boti Bliss, is a direct-to-video sequel in which the world has been reshaped by the invasion of ghosts via the wireless Internet. Cities are deserted, technology has been destroyed and the few remaining human beings eschew anything electrical in order to avoid a confrontation with the soulless ghosts that now wander the planet; from The Weinstein Co./Genius Products ... "Chapter 27" (2007) stars Jared Leto and Mark Lindsay Chapman in a psychological portrait of Mark David Chapman and the chilling events that led up to his murder of John Lennon, from Peace Arch Entertainment ... Set in Vietnam in the 1920s, anti-French rebels band together to fight an epic battle against foreign occupation in "The Rebel" (2007), starring Johnny Tri Nguyen, Veronica Ngo and Dustin Nguyen; in a two-disc edition from The Weinstein Co. Dragon Dynasty/Genius Products ... "Drive-In Double Feature" is a B-film delight, with "Island Fury" (1983), about two young girls visiting a remote vacation island who discover a cache of mob money, as well as a clan of bloodthirsty cannibals who pick off the vacationers one by one; in "Barracuda" (1978), a quaint seaside town is home to upstanding citizens, good ol' fashioned hospitality, and a deadly rash of barracuda attacks; from Dark Sky Films/MPI Media Group ... In "Ghost Boat" (2006), starring David Jason and Ian Puleston-Davies, an ill-fated British sub that sank during WWII resurfaces in 1981, and the government sends for the sole survivor to head up a mission to salvage the boat -- which mysteriously takes on a life of its own; from MPI Home Video. (Posted September 30)

On the Indie Front:
A magical TV remote control sends two guys tumbling into an un-PC TV land where the channel keeps changing and the shows get more and more bizarre in the sketch comedy compilation "Universal Remote" (2007), starring Charlie Murphy, Robert Hays, Jill Marie Jones and Dean Edwards, from Peace Arch Entertainment ... "Soccer Mom" (2008) is a family comedy about a compulsive soccer mom who masquerades as a famous Italian soccer star to coach her daughter's losing team, starring Missi Pyle, Emily Osment, Dan Cortese, Victoria Jackson and Master P, from Anchor Bay. (Posted September 30)

Foreign:
In "OSS117" (2006), comic star Jean Dujardin, a boxoffice sensation in France, stars as secret agent Hubert Bonisseur de la Bath, a.k.a. OSS 117, who in the tradition of Maxwell Smart and Inspector Clouseau somehow succeeds in spite of his ineptitude. After a fellow agent and close friend is murdered, Hubert is ordered to take his place at the head of a poultry firm in Cairo. This is to be his cover while he investigates the death, monitors the Suez Canal, checks up on the Brits and Soviets, burnishes France's reputation, quells a fundamentalist rebellion and brokers peace in the Middle East; from Music Box Films/MPI Media Group. (Posted September 30)

For the Family:
Two animated storybooks arrive this week from Scholastic Storybook Treasures: "Harry the Dirty Dog ... And More Playful Puppy Stories" (2007) includes Gene Zion's classic tale about wayward little Harry, who runs away before bath time and plays outside until he changes into a black dog with white spots; also with "No Roses for Harry," "Officer Buckle and Gloria," "Dot the Fire Dog," plus two bonus stories: "The Beast on Monsieur Racine" and "Angus Lost"; "Make Way for Ducklings ... And More Delightful Duck Stories" (2007) includes the title story based on Robert McCloskey's Caldecott Medal book concerning Mr. and Mrs. Mallard's search for the perfect spot to raise their young in Boston's Public Garden; also with "The Story About Ping," "The Ugly Duckling," "Angus and the Ducks," plus two bonus stories: "Cat and Canary" and "Wings: A Tale of Two Chickens"; $14.99 each ... "R.L. Stine's Mostly Ghostly" (2008) is the latest in a long, long line of books and videos from kids horrormeister R.L. Stine. This new feature follows the adventures of a typical 11-year-old boy who's the only one who can see the two spirits haunting his house. And the two spirits make him an offer he can't refuse: They'll turn him into the most popular kid in school if he helps them find their missing parents and battle a wicked ghoul; stars Sterling Beaumon and Ali Lohan, from Universal. (Posted September 30)

Special Interest:
There's a profundity of documentaries due this week: "Larry Flynt: The Right to Be Left Alone" (2007) is a sensational portrait of America's best-known smut peddler and his legendary First Amendment battles during the past 30 years. An often polarizing figure, Flynt has long struggled to expand the parameters of free speech; $19.97 from Liberation Entertainment ... In "The Unforeseen" (2007), the American dream of owning a house with a white picket fence goes head-to-head with environmental sustainability in this urgent, beautifully crafted documentary. When an ambitious real estate developer sets out to transform thousands of acres of pristine hill country around Austin, Texas into a suburban development -- threatening a nearby natural spring and local treasure -- the community fights back; from New Yorker Video ... "Unforgotten: Twenty-five Years After Willowbrook" (2007) is a documentary on the aftermath of Geraldo Rivera's shocking expose, recounting the scandalous conditions at what was then the world's largest institution for children with developmental disabilities. It was a nightmare that shocked all of America and rocketed Geraldo Rivera to national prominence; from City Lights Home Entertainment ... In America, we define ourselves in the superlative: we are the biggest, strongest, fastest country in the world. Is it any wonder that so many of our heroes are on performance enhancing drugs? Director Christopher Bell explores America's win-at-all-cost culture in the documentary "Bigger, Stronger, Faster" (2008), from Magnolia Home Entertainment ... Are we safer now than we were before the War on Terror? Alex Gibney ("Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room") gives an in-depth look at the torture practices of the United States in Afghanistan, Iraq and Guantanamo Bay in the Academy Award winning documentary "Taxi to the Dark Side" (2007), from ThinkFilm ... "The Beach Boys and the Satan" is a documentary that simultaneously details the Beach Boys' rise to success -- using rarely seen footage of the band -- and exposes the Summer of Love's darkest side by investigating the connections between some of the counter-culture's most controversial personalities (Anton La Vey, Kenneth Anger, Dennis and Brian Wilson) and the Manson Family; $19.95 from MVD Visual ... "The Mindscape of Alan Moore" (2003) is a documentary on the visionary graphic novel writer ("V for Vendetta," "The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen," "Watchmen") in a two-disc set with a 20-page book; $29.95 from The Disinformation Co. (Posted September 30)

In the world of music there's "Lou Reed's Berlin" (2008), in which the former lead singer and songwriter for The Velvet Underground revisits his solo venture "Berlin," a tragic rock opera about a doomed couple; from The Weinstein Company's Miriam Collection/Genius Products and "Jewel: The Essential Live Songbook," a two-disc set of two intimate 2007 PBS Soundstage performances, recorded in High-Definition video and mixed in 5.1 Surround Sound, containing 48 songs; from Koch Vision. (Posted September 30)

For history buffs there's "Rome: Rise and Fall of an Empire" (2008), a four-disc set of the History Channel recreation, $39.95 from A&E Home Video) and "When We Left Earth -- The NASA Missions," a Discovery Channel four-disc set that celebrates 50 years of space exploration, from Image. (Posted September 30)

And lastly, for some well-deserved laughs there's "Lewis Black's Root of All Evil" (2008), a two-disc set of the Comedy Central show with the abrasive comedian as he and his brethren take on pop culture, politics and all the things that most stupefy and pervert our society; $26.99 from Paramount. (Posted September 30)

Flash: (September 25)

Just Announced:
photo The DVD fourth quarter is getting hot with three announcements of November releases: On November 4, Warner Home Video will release the spy comedy "Get Smart," a $129 million hit starring Steve Carell, Anne Hathaway, Dwayne Johnson, Alan Arkin and Terence Stamp. The film will be made available as a single-disc DVD, a two-disc Special Edition DVD, and a three-disc Blu-ray Disc. A special Comedy Optimization Mode with alternate versions of jokes is said to give viewers "62% more laughs" than the theatrical release, according to the studio ... On November 11 Universal will release "Hellboy II: The Golden Army," directed by Guillermo del Toro and starring Ron Perlman, Selma Blair, Doug Jones, Jeffrey Tambor, Luke Goss and John Hurt. The studio will make the film available in single-disc DVD, three-disc Special Edition DVD and two-disc Blu-ray Disc versions, all loaded with extras ... and lastly, Warner will release "Star Wars: The Clone Wars," basically the big screen teaser to the fall TV series, on November 11. (Posted September 25)

Flash: (September 23)

DVD Collectibles:
Sony has inaugurated a new label, "Martini Movies," a collection of classic and cool Hollywood films that have never before been released to DVD. The first five features: "Affair in Trinidad" (1952), directed by Vincent Sherman and starring Rita Hayworth and Glenn Ford; "The Anderson Tapes" (1971), directed by Sidney Lumet and starring the very cool Sean Connery, Dyan Cannon, Christopher Walken, Martin Balsam, Ralph Meeker and Alan King; "$ (Dollars)" (1971), directed by Richard Brooks and starring Warren Beatty and Goldie Hawn; "The Garment Jungle" (1957), directed by Vincent Sherman and starring Kerwin Matthews, Lee J. Cobb, Robert Loggia, Gia Scala and Richard Boone; and "The New Centurions" (1972), directed by Richard Fleischer and starring Stacy Keach, George C. Scott and Jane Alexander. $19.94. Special features include such useful featurettes as "How to Hold Your Liquor" and "How to Pull Off a Heist." $19.98 each. (Posted September 23)

For a really really cool film there's "L.A. Confidential" (1997), directed by Curtis Hanson and starring Kevin Spacey, Russell Crowe, Guy Pearce, James Cromwell, Kim Basinger, David Strathairn, Danny DeVito, Graham Beckel, Paul Guilfoyle and Ron Rifkin. The two-disc special edition includes such extras as commentary by film critic Andrew Sarris, a music only track, a "Nite Owl Action" featurette, "Whatever You Desire: Making L.A. Confidential" featurette, "Sunlight and Shadow: The Visual Style of L.A. Confidential" featurette, "A True Ensemble: The Cast of L.A. Confidential" featurette, "L.A. Confidential: From Book to Screen" featurette, Off the Record" featurette, "The L.A. of L.A. Confidential Hollywood Center Motel" featurette, more; from Warner. (Posted September 23)

And don't forget Paramount's latest collaboration with Francis Ford Coppola: "The Godfather: The Coppola Restoration," a meticulous restoration of "The Godfather" and "The Godfather: Part II" by Paramount Pictures and Francis Ford Coppola. Both films have been fully restored and will arrive on DVD and Blu-ray, along with a newly remastered version of "The Godfather: Part III." All three films will be available individually ($19.99 each) or in a five-DVD collection ($72.99) or four-disc Blu-ray collection ($119.99); each set is loaded with a host of all-new special features. (Posted September 23)

From TV to Video:
"Agatha Christie's Poirot: The Definitive Collection," a five-disc set with 12 mysteries, $99.99 from A&E Home Video ... "Boston Legal: Season Four," a five-disc set with 20 episodes, $59.98 from Fox ... "Brothers & Sisters: The Complete Second Season," a five-disc set with 16 episodes, $59.99 from Disney ... "Cashmere Mafia: The Complete Series" (2008) , a two-disc set with all seven episodes, $29.95 from Sony ... "CSI: NY The Fourth Season," a six-disc set with 21 episodes, $72.99 from Paramount) ... "Friday the 13th - The Series: The First Season," (1987-88), a six-disc set with 26 episodes, $54.99 from Paramount ... "Horatio Hornblower: Collector's Edition," an eight-disc set with all eight A&E Hornblower films, $59.95 from A&E Home Video ... "Rob & Big: The Complete Uncensored Third Season," a three-disc set with 15 episodes, $39.99 from Paramount ... "Samantha Who?: The Complete First Season," a two-disc set with 15 episodes, $29.99 from Disney ... "Supernatural: The Complete Third Season," a five-disc set with 16 episodes, $59.98 from Warner ... "Two and a Half Men: The Complete Fourth Season," a four-disc set with 24 episodes, $44.98 from Warner. (Posted September 23)

"Mother of Tears" (2007) is the latest Dario Argento horror thriller, starring daughter Asia Argento, about an art student in the Holy City who must fight off the last of three powerful witches who have been spreading terror and death for centuries; from The Weinstein Co./Genius Products ... In "Pathology" (2008), starring Milo Ventimiglia, Alyssa Milano and Michael Weston, a group of medical students working in a Washington, D.C. morgue start a sinister game to see which one of them can commit the perfect murder; from MGM ... Tony Leung stars as Special Agent Lam, joined by his entourage of butt-kicking ladies as they jet off to Korea to help retrieve counterfeiting plates from a double-crossing CIA agent, a beautiful cat burglar and a dangerous Korean gangster, in "Seoul Raiders" (2005 -- Homg Kong); from Arts Alliance America ... "Foot Fist Way" (2008) is a comedy about an inept karate instructor who struggles with marital troubles and an unhealthy obsession with fellow karate enthusiast Chuck "The Truck" Williams; stars Danny R. McBride, Ben Best and Mary Jane Bostic; from Paramount. (Posted September 23)

For the Family:
Highlight of the week for pre-teens surely will by "High School Musical 2: Deluxe Dance Edition" (2007) , a to-disc set timed for the October 23 release of "High School Musical 3." This edition includes deleted scenes, a virtual scrapbook featuring the cast and crew, new musical number, more; from Disney. (Posted September 23)

For preschoolers there's "Alvin and the Chipmunks: Alvin's Thanksgiving Celebration," (1987), $14.99 from Paramount ... "Alvin and the Chipmunks Classic Holiday Gift Set," a three-disc set with "Trick or Treason," "Alvin's Thanksgiving Celebration," "A Chipmunk Christmas," $37.99 from Paramount ... "Mama Mirabelle's Home Movies: It's Movie Time" with eight episodes from the PBS Kids show, $14.98 from Warner ... "Caillou's Winter Wonders" (2008), four new-to-DVD animated episodes of the PBS Kids series; $14.99 from Paramount. (Posted September 23)

For older kids there's "Peanuts Deluxe Holiday Collection," a three-disc set with remastered editions of "It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown," "A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving" and "A Charlie Brown Christmas," plus a CD of Peanuts holiday songs, $44.76 or $19.98 each, from Warner ... "Dinosaur King: The Adventure Begins" (2008), the first five episodes of the Fox 4KidsTV fantasy adventure about three young dinosaur enthusiasts whose discovery of some mystifying artifacts pull them into an incredible world of adventure, danger -- and dinosaurs, $14.99 from Shout! Factory ... "Scooby-Doo & The Goblin King" (2008), the newest animated Scooby-Doo feature, from Warner ... "iCarly Season 1, Volume 1," a two-disc set with 13 episodes of the Nickelodeon series, $26.98 from Paramount. (Posted September 23)

And for those kids who haven't grown up, there's "Schoolhouse Rock: The Election Collection" (2008). As all eyes turn to the Presidential election, it couldn't be a better time for this collection of classic election-themed tunes including "I'm Just a Bill," "Shot Heard 'Round the World" and "I'm Gonna Send Your Vote to College," the timeless songs that taught a generation of 1970s Americans that learning can be fun. Also features the entertaining new to DVD song "Presidential Minute" with two surprise endings and an exclusive Election Tracking Kit with stickers to help viewers keep track of the actual voting results in all 50 states; $19.99 from Disney. (Posted September 23)

There's a host of collectible DVDs out this week, ranging from some classics of the 1930s and 40s, to 1950s and 60s nostalgia, to post-World War II French cinema, to more modern outings. Beginning chronologically there's the "Busby Berkeley Collection Volume 2," a four-disc set with four musical extravaganzas, $39.92; single titles available for $19.97: "Gold Diggers of 1937" (1936), "Gold Diggers in Paris" (1938), "Hollywood Hotel" (1937) and "Varsity Show" (1937), all featuring era-specific bonuses, from Warner ... the "Charlie Chan Collection -- Volume Five" is a four-disc set with the final seven Charlie Chan films (from the early 1940s): "Charlie Chan at the Wax Museum," "Murder Over New York," "Dead Men Tell," "Charlie Chan in Rio," "Charlie Chan in Panama," "Charlie Chan's Murder Cruise" and "Castle in the Desert," as well as the retrospective featurette "The Era of Chan"; $49.98 from Fox. (Posted September 16)

Next up are three films by Max Ophuls from The Criterion Colelction: "La ronde" (1950). Simone Signoret, Anton Walbrook, and Simone Simon lead a roundelay of French stars in Ophuls's delightful, acerbic adaptation of Arthur Schnitzler's controversial turn-of-the-century play "Reigen." Soldiers, chambermaids, poets, prostitutes, aristocrats -- all are on equal footing in this multicharacter merry-go-round of love and infidelity; "The Earrings of Madame de ..." (1953) is an emotionally profound, cinematographically adventurous tale of false opulence and tragic romance. When the aristocratic woman known only as Madame de (the extraordinary Danielle Darrieux) sells her earrings, unbeknownst to her husband (Charles Boyer), in order to pay personal debts, she sets off a chain reaction, the financial and carnal consequences of which can only end in despair; and "Le plaisir" (1952). Roving with his dazzlingly mobile camera around the decadent ballrooms, bucolic countryside retreats, urban bordellos, and painter's studios of late 19th century French life, Ophuls brings his astonishing visual dexterity and storytelling bravura to this triptych of tales by Guy de Maupassant about the limits of spiritual and physical pleasure. (Posted September 16)

From the 1950s comes "An American in Paris" (1951), directed by Vincente Minnelli and starring Gene Kelly, Leslie Caron, Oscar Levant and Nina Foch, in a two-disc set, restored and remastered, with "'S Wonderful," a making-of documentary and "Gene Kelly: Anatomy of a Dancer"; and "Gigi 50th Anniversary Special Edition" (1958), also directed by Vincente Minnelli and starring Leslie Caron, Maurice Chevalier, Louis Jourdan, Hermione Gingold and Eva Gabor, in a two-disc set, restored and remastered, with a "Thank Heaven! The Making of Gigi" documentary; both from Warner ... "The Adventures of Ozzie & Harriet: Christmas With the Nelsons" features five Christmas episodes of the classic 1950s TV series: "The Boy's Christmas Money" (Season 1), "Late Christmas Gift" (Season 2), "The Fruitcake" (Season 3), "The Day After Christmas" (Season 4) and "The Christmas Tree Lot" (Season 5); $9.99 from Shout! Factory. Moving on to the Sixties there's "The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour: The Best of Season Three" (1968-69), a four-disc set with 11 uncensored episodes from the third and final season, with guests George Harrison, Harry Belafonte, Bob Newhart, Steve Martin, George Carlin, The Doors, Donovan, Ray Charles, Jackie Mason, Cass Elliot, Jonathan Winters, Joan Baez, Ike and Tina Turner, Judy Collins, David Steinberg, more; $49.95 from Time Warner. (Posted September 16)

In modern times there's the cult classic "Ladies and Gentlemen, the Fabulous Stains" (1981), starring Diane Lane, Laura Dern, Ray Winstone, Christine Lahti, Peter Donat and Cynthia Sikes, in the rarely seen film about a trio of misfit teenage girls who start a punk band; directed by Lou Adler; from Rhino Rock 'N' Roll Cinema Series ... "Risky Business" (1983), the film that created Tom Cruise and Rebecca De Mornay, in a restored and remastered edition with commentary and other extras ... and "Beetlejuice" (1988), directed by Tim Burton and starring Michael Keaton, Alec Baldwin, Geena Davis, Winona Ryder, Sylvia Sidney, Jeffrey Jones, Catherine O'Hara and Robert Goulet; remastered and also available on Blu-ray Disc; from Warner. (Posted September 16)

From TV to Video:
"Chuck: The Complete First Season," a four-disc set with 13 episodes, $39.98 from Warner ... "Criminal Minds: The Third Season" (2007-08), a five-disc set with 20 episodes, $64.99 from Paramount ... "Cybill: The Collector's Edition Volume 1," a two-disc set with 10 episodes, $24.98 from First Look Studios ... "Dirty Sexy Money: The Complete First Season," a three-disc set with 10 episodes, $39.99 from Disney ... "Duckman: Seasons One and Two," a three-disc set with 22 episodes of the adult animated series, $49.99 from Paramount ... "First Among Equals" (1986), the 10-part BBC adaptation of Jeffrey Archer's international best-seller about sex, money and power in the halls of parliament, $49.99 from Acorn Media ... "Private Practice -- The Complete First Season: Extended Edition," a three-disc set with nine episodes, $39.99 from Disney ... "Pushing Daisies: The Complete First Season," a three-disc set with nine episodes, $39.99 from Warner ... "Star Trek: Alternate Realities Collective," a five-disc set of 20 episodes selected from all five Star Trek franchises that focus on mirror universes, parallel dimensions, twisted realities and alternate lives, $42.99 from Paramount ... "Torchwood: The Complete Second Season," a five-disc set with 13 episodes, $79.98 from BBC Video/Warner. (Posted September 16)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
A television producer with a penchant for drinking and gambling tries to redeem himself by going to Las Vegas to convince his troubled niece, a prostitute, to enter rehab in the lackluster comedy "Finding Amanda" (2008), starring Matthew Broderick, Brittany Snow, Moira Tierney and Steve Coogan; from Magnolia Home Entertainment ... A 17-year-old wires his house with cameras and broadcasts his family live to the Internet on a site called I-See-You.Com, upsetting his home life but making a financial killing in "I-See-You.Com" (2006), starring Beau Bridges, Rosanna Arquette, Mathew Botuchis, Shiri Appleby, Dan Castellaneta; from Warner ... A teenager turns her babysitting service into a call-girl service for married guys after fooling around with one of her customers in "The Babysitters" (2007), starring Katherine Waterston, John Leguizamo and Cynthia Nixon; from Peace Arch Entertainment ... Strong>"Lone Riders" (2008) stars Lou Diamond Phillips, Vincent Spano and Stacy Keach in an American West tale about a man who returns home from the war and finds himself engaged in a life-and-death struggle to protect himself and his family from a corrupt landowner; from Genius Products ... "Tortured" (2008) is a crime thriller about an FBI agent working undercover for a mysterious and unseen crime lord and the moral dilemmas he must face, starring Cole Hauser, James Cromwell, Laurence Fishburne, Emmanuelle Chriqui and James Denton; from Sony ... When 16-year-old Loren and her family greet a new neighbor -- a good-looking single guy and his dog -- she senses something mysterious and dangerous about him. Her suspicions become further aroused when some of the locals begin disappearing one by one, in "Never Cry Werewolf" (2008), starring Kevin Sorbo and Nina Dobrev; from Genius Products. (Posted September 16)

"Kabluey" (2007) stars Lisa Kudrow, Scott Prendergast, Teri Garr, Christine Taylor, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Chris Parnell and Conchata Ferrell in a comedy about a struggling army wife trying to balance work, two out-of-control kids, and a never-ending pile of bills who begrudgingly asks her out-of-work brother-in-law to move in and lend a hand until her husband comes home; from Sony ... "Snow Angels" (2007) is a drama that interweaves the life of a teenager with his old baby sitter, her estranged husband, and their daughter, starring Kate Beckinsale, Sam Rockwell, Michael Angarano, Griffin Dunne and Amy Sedaris; from Warner ... Life is tough for 14-year-old Harold: not only has he moved to a new school, but he's bald in "Harold" (2008), starring Spencer Breslin, Ally Sheedy, Nikki Blonsky and Cuba Gooding Jr.; from City Lights Entertainment ... "Stalag Luft" (1993) stars Stephen Fry, Nicholas Lyndhurst and Geoffrey Palmer in a British spoof of World War II escape films; from BFS Entertainment. (Posted September 16)

For the Family:
"My Little Pony Live! The World's Biggest Tea Party" (2008) is a Little Pony adventure recorded live on stage for preschoolers, $16.99, from Paramount ... "Alvin & the Chipmunks: The ALVINNN!!! Edition" is a two-disc set celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Chipmunks in December, featuring 14 cartoons, $26.99 from Paramount ... Three compilations from the "Goosebumps" TV series, based on the best-selling series by R.L. Stine, arrive this week from Fox: "One Day at HorrorLand" (with the episodes "One Day at Horrorland" and "Welcome To Camp Nightmare"), "A Night in Terror Tower" (with the episodes "A Night in Terror Tower" and "Stay Out of the Basement") and "Monster Blood" (with the episodes "Monster Blood I," "More Monster Blood," "How to Kill a Monster" and "The Girl Who Cried Monster"); $14.98 each ... Disney has three 101 Dalmatians reissues this week: "101 Dalmatians" (1996), the live-action version starring Glenn Close, Jeff Daniels and Joely Richardson; "102 Dalmatians" (2000), the live-action sequel to the 1996 film; and "101 Dalmatians II: Patch's London Adventure Special Edition" (2003), an animated sequel to the animated original. (Posted September 16)

Special Interest:
Three unusual documentaries arrive from First Run Featues: "Constantine's Sword" (2008) is an exploration of the dark side of Christianity, based on the best-selling book by James Carroll, a National Book Award winner and columnist for the Boston Globe: from the Emperor Constantine's vision of the cross as a sword and symbol of power, to the rise of genocidal anti-Semitism, to modern day wars sparked by religious extremism; "The Search for Mengele" (1985), which traces the 40-year odyssey of Josef Mengele, the "Angel of Death," the most notorious SS doctor at Auschwitz who sent hundreds of thousands of Jews to their deaths and performed appalling experiments on adults and children; Mengele escaped from Germany to Italy, then to Argentina, Paraguay and Brazil, where he finally met his end; and "Breaking the Maya Code" (2007), which chronicles the 200-year struggle to unlock the lost secrets of the ancient Maya civilization, who recorded their history and ideas in intricate and beautiful hieroglyphics; $24.95 each. (Posted September 16)

Also due this week: "The NFL's Funniest Players -- Hosted by Michael Strahan" uses sound, action and exclusive interviews to profile hilarious moments from the National Football League, $19.98 from Warner ... and "Get Thrashed: The Story of Thrash Metal" (2007), a heavy metal documentary featuring Metallica, Megadeath, Slayer, Anthrax, Pantera, Exodus and many, many more; $19.97 from Warner. (Posted September 16)

Code Three:
photo The long wait is over for fans of classic television and crime drama, as one of the groundbreaking programs from the golden age of television finally arrives on DVD. "M Squad," starring Oscar-winning actor Lee Marvin, comes home with all 117 episodes in a definitive 15-disc collector's set, "M Squad: The Complete Series." The show debuted on NBC in 1957 and aired for three seasons. "M-Squad" stood apart from other police series with its coarse, film noir look, unique story lines and first rate musical score. photo Filmed in Chicago, the high-contrast cinematography brought the city to life -- from the easily recognizable landmarks and swanky lake-front penthouses to the seedy, darker side of the city. "M Squad" (M stands for Murder), was inspired by actual Chicago crime-fighter Joseph Morris, and the series retained a sense of realism and intensity lost among the other dramas. "M Squad" stared a 33-year old Marvin (with his distinguished and distinctive premature white hair) as Lt. Frank Ballinger, a no-nonsense plainclothes cop working in the elite M-Squad division of the Chicago Police Department. Marvin's portrayal of the cool tough-guy character with a big heart gave him instant name recognition, and launched his career. "M Squad" will be released November 11 by Timeless Media for $119.98 (available at Amazon and via www.MSquadTV.com). The set also includes a CD of the series' soundtrack, which featured music by jazz man Benny Carter, John Williams and Count Basie. (Posted September 9)

DVD Collectibles:
There's an eclectic mix of collctible DVDs this week, beginning with "The Big Lebowski 10th Anniversary Edition" (1998), Joel and Ethan Coen's wonderful tale of the misadventures of "The Dude" and his friends, starring Jeff Bridges, John Goodman, Julianne Moore, Steve Buscemi, David Huddleston, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Tara Reid, Peter Stormare, Flea, Torsten Voges and John Turturro. Bonus features in the two-disc set include five featurettes: "The Dude's Life," "The Dude Abides: The Big Lebowski Ten years Later," "The Lebowski fest: An Achiever's Story," "Flying Carpets & Bowling Pin Dreams: The Dream Sequences of the Dude," "The Making of the Big Lebowski" as well as an interactive map of the film's locations and Jeff Bridges' photo book. The film is also available in an individually numbered limited edition two-disc set encased in a specially designed "bowling ball" package; from Universal. (Posted September 9)

"Fox Horror Classics Volume 3" is a three-disc set with "Chandu the Magician" (1932), which stars the legendary Bella Lugosi in a stunningly photographed thriller about an ingenious inventor with plans to dominate the human race at all costs; "Dr. Renault's Secret" (1942) takes place in a scientist's remote villa in the French countryside that offers forbidden terror for anyone who encounters it; and "Dragonwyck" (1946), a riveting, atmospheric tale of gothic secrets and forbidden love, directed by Joseph Mankiewicz and starring Gene Tierney, Walter Huston and Vincent Price; $19.98 ... Also due this wek is a remastered DVD and Blu-ray edition of "Cool Hand Luke" (1967), starring Paul Newman, George Kennedy, J.D. Cannon, Strother Martin and Jo Van Fleet; from Warner ... "Child's Play: Chucky's 20th Birthday Edition" (1988), starring Alex Vincent, Brad Dourif, Catherine Hicks and Chris Sarandon, with a host of interesting bonus features; from MGM ... "Pumpkinhead Collector's Edition" (1988), directed by Stan Winston and starring Lance Henriksen, from MGM ... and "Shelley Duvall's Faerie Tale Theatre," a seven-disc set with 26 of the most magical, classic fairy tales ever spun, hosted by Shelley Duvall and featuring a cast of Hollywood greats, culled from the six seasons of the show that ran from 1982 to 1987; $99.98 from Koch Vision. (Posted September 9)

From TV to Video:
"The Big Bang Theory," a three-disc set with 17 episodes, $29.98 from Warner ... "CSI Miami: The Sixth Season" (2007-08), a six-disc set with 21 episodes, $72.99 from Paramount ... "Grey's Anatomy: The Complete Fourth Season --- Expanded," a five-disc set with 16 episodes, $59.99 from Disney ... "Gulliver's Travels" (1996), starring Ted Danson, Mary Steenburgen, Peter O'Toole, Alfre Woodard and Omar Sharif, from RHI Entertainment/Genius Products ... "In Treatment," a nine-disc set with 43 episodes of the HBO series, $59.99 from HBO ... "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia: Season Three," a three-disc set with 15 episodes, $39.98 from Fox ... "Jon & Kate Plus Ei8ht Seasons 1 and 2," the TLC reality series about life with a set of twins and a set of sextuplets; $19.95 from The Weinstein Co./Genius Products ... "Last of the Summer Wine: Vintage 1977 (Season 4)," a two-disc set of the longest-running BBC comedy series, $34.98, from Warner ... "Medium: The Fourth Season" (2008), a four-disc set with 16 episodes, $61.99 from Paramount ... "Smallville: The Complete Seventh Season," a six-disc set with 20 episodes, $59.98 from Warner ... "To the Manor Born Silver Anniversary Special": Twenty-five years after their hugely popular love-hate relationship was finally resolved in marriage, we revisit the happy couple of BBC's "To the Manor Born" as they prepare to celebrate their silver wedding anniversary; $14.98 from Warner ... "Ugly Betty: The Complete Second Season" is a five-disc box set with 18 episodes, $59.99 from Disney ... "Wings: The Seventh Season" (1995-96) is a four-disc set with 26 episodes, $42.99 from Paramount. (Posted September 9)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
In "Fist of Legend" (1994), loosely based on the Bruce Lee martial arts classic "The Chinese Connection" (aka Fists of Fury), a Chinese student returns to Shanghai to find that his mentor has been murdered and his school has been overtaken by Japanese forces; he has no choice but to take justice into his own hands to restore their honor. Stars Jet Li, Yasuaki Kurata and Billy Chow; in a two-disc ultimate edition from The Weinstein Co./Genius Products ... "Light and the Sufferer" (2004) follows two estranged brothers as they try to leave New York City for a new life in California only to find their plans -- and lives -- forever changed by the appearance of a mysterious alien; stars Paul Dano and Michael Esper; from Warner ... In "Sarah Landon and the Paranormal Hour" (2007), starring Rissa Walters and Sylvia Enrique, a 17-year-old girl has mysterious encounters with paranormal activity in the small town of Pine Valley; from Sony ... Two high school girls kidnap the world's most popular boy band in order to save their reputations in "Taking 5" (2007), starring Daniella Monet, Alona Tal, Christy Carlson Romano, Bart Johnson and The Click Five; from Sony ... A conference center built on the grounds of a toxic dump is attacked by a black slime, a massive cellular organism that is highly intelligent and capable of inducing fearful hallucinations in its victims in "Something Beneath" (2007), starring Kevin Sorbo, Natalie Brown, Peter MacNeill and Brendan Beiser; from Genius Products ... In "Nympha" (2007), starring Tiffany Shepis, a young woman who goes to Italy to take her vows to become a nun has visions of past madness at the Convent; from MTI Home Video ... In "I Want Candy" (2007), starring Tom Riley, Tom Burke, Carmen Electra and Michelle Ryan, two film students try to break into the London movie biz but only interest a producer in bankrolling them if they make a porno film starring Candy Sideways; from Magnolia Home Entertainment. (Posted September 9)

Foreign:
"Water Lillies" is a 2007 French coming-of-age film about three 15 year-old girls - Marie, Anne and Floriane - who cross paths in the summer as part of a girl's winning synchronized swimming team at the vast municipal swimming pool and social hub in the Paris suburb of Cergy. It's here that love and desire make a sudden, dramatic appearance. Stars Pauline Acquart, Louise Blachere, Adele Haenel; from Koch Lorber Films. (Posted September 9)

For the Family:
For preschoolers this week from HIT Entertainment/Lionsgate there's "HIT Favorites: Halloween Spooktacular," five Halloween-themed adventures: "Barney & Friends: Sweet Treats," "Bob the Builder: Dizzy's Sleepover," "Angelina Ballerina: Midnight Muddle," "Fireman Sam: Mummy's Little Pumpkin," "Thomas & Friends: Halloween"; $14.98; "Best of Barney," featuring the best Barney moments from the show's 20-year history, along with 20 memorable songs, $19.99; and "Thomas & Friends: The Great Discovery," featuring the latest adventures on the Island of Sodor with a new engine (Stanley) and a new narrator (Pierce Brosnan); $19.98. (Posted September 9)

For slightly older kids there's "Sylvester and Tweety Mysteries: Season 1," a two-disc set with 13 episodes, $19.97 from Warner ... "Alvin and the Chipmunks Go to the Movies: Daytona Jones and the Pearl of Wisdom" (2008), in which the Chipmunks send up blockbuster Hollywood movies, including "Daytona Jones," "Batmunk" and "Robomunk"; $16.99 from Paramount ... "Unstable Fables: Tortoise vs. Hare" (2007) is a Jim Henson Company animation that races forward 15 years after the infamous rivalry between the Tortoise and the Hare, again pitting Walter the Tortoise and Murray the Hare against each other, but this time their kids join the race for an all-out competition; $19.97 from The Weinstein Co./Genius Products ... "Legion of Superheroes: Volume 3," with five animated episodes, $14.97 from Warner ... "The Spectacular Spider-Man: Attack of the Lizard!" (2008) is a full-length Spider-Man animated adventure based on the KidsWB! TV series, from Sony. (Posted September 9)

And, lastly, the Baby Einstein Co. and Disney have released "Baby Beethoven 10th Anniversary Edition" and "Baby Mozart 10th Anniversary Edition," digitally remastered editions of two of the best-selling Baby Einstein titles, $19.99; includes "Together Time Tips," "Discovery cards," and a retrospective feature. (Posted September 9)

Special Interest:
"Heckler" (2008) follows comedian Jamie Kennedy as he tours clubs and college campuses across the U.S., chronicling his encounters with hecklers and critics, from Echo Bridge Entertainment ... "Peter Cook & Dudley Moore: The Best Of ... What's Left Of ... Not Only ... But Also ..." is a single-disc with six episodes (the only remaining) of the seminal Peter Cook/Dudley Moore BBC series from the 1960s; remastered and restored; $24.98 from BBC Video/Warner ... "Brian Regan: The Epitome of Hyberbole" is a 2008 Comedy Central special; $19.99 from Paramount ... "The Life and Times of Mr. Perfect" (2008) is the life story (and matches) of World Wrestling Entertainment's Curt Hennig; a two-disc set, $29.95 from WWE/Genius Products. (Posted September 9)

DVD Collectibles:
Fox releases three film noir classics this week, all restored and remastered: "Boomerang!" (1947), directed by Elia Kazan and starring Lee J. Cobb, Arthur Kennedy, Dana Andrews, Jane Wyatt, Cara Williams, Sam Levene, Ed Begley and Karl Malden; "Moontide" (1942), starring Jean Gabin, Ida Lupino, Thomas Mitchell and Claude Rains; the disc includes "Turning of the Tide: The Ill-Starred Making of Moontide" featurette; and "Road House" (1948), directed by Jean Negulesco and starring Ida Lupino, Cornell Wilde, Richard Widmark and Celeste Holm; includes "Killer Instincts: Richard Widmark and Ida Lupino at Twentieth Century Fox" ... New DVD label Icarus Films will release four sets of films by visionary filmmaker Chris Marker ("La Jetee"): Single discs with "The Case of the Grinning Cat" (2004), "The Sixth Side of the Pentagon" (1967) and "Remembrance of Things to Come" (2001), and a two-disc set with "The Last Bolshevik" (1993), a documentary on Soviet filmmaker Aleksandr Medvedkin, along with Medvedkin's "Happiness" (1934). (Posted September 2)

From TV to Video:
"Cheers: The Tenth Season" (1991-92) is a four-disc set with 25 episodes, $42.99 from Paramount ... "Desperate Housewives: The Complete Fourth Season -- Sizzling Secrets Edition" is a five-disc set with 17 episodes, $59.99 from Disney ... "Doctor Who: The Invasion of Time" is a two-disc set, $34.98 from Warner ... "Doctor Who: The Invisible Enemy/K9 and Company: A Girl's Best Friend" is a two-disc set, $34.98 from Warner ... "Eli Stone: The Complete First Season" is a four-disc set with 13 episodes, $39.99 from Disney ... "Ghost Whisperer: The Third Season" (2007-08) is a five-disc set with 18 episodes, $68.99 from Paramount ... "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia: Season Three" is a three-disc set with 15 episodes, $39.98 from Fox ... "Life: Season One" is a three-disc set, $29.98 from Universal ... "Little People, Big World Season 2, Volume 1" is a three-disc set of the TLC reality series about the Roloff family of little people living on a lush 30-acre farm on the outskirts of Portland, Oregon, $24.95 from Genius Products ... "The Office: Season Four" is a four-disc set with 14 episodes, $49.98 from Universal ... "Start-Up Junkies: Season One" is a MOJO HD Money Night reality show that offers a front row seat to both the business challenges a new company must confront as well as the personal dramas of its employees, $24.98 from Infinity Entertainment ... "Supernatural: The Complete Third Season" is a five-disc set with 16 episodes, $59.98 from Warner. (Posted September 2)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
"Extreme Movie" (2008) is a sketch comedy movie about the joys and embarrassments of teen sex, starring Michael Cera, Frankie Muniz, Ryan Pinkston, Jamie Kennedy and Matthew Lillard, from The Weinstein Co./Genius Products/Dimension Extreme ... In "Flood" (2007), starring Robert Carlyle, Tom Courtenay, Joanne Whalley, David Suchet and Jessalyn Gilsig, a raging storm unleashes a colossal tidal surge that travels mercilessly down England's East Coast and into the Thames Estuary, overwhelming London, from RHI Entertainment/Genius Products ... After interrupting a bank robbery in progress, Jason "Jinx" Taylor (Nick Stahl) gets locked in the vault with sexy cyber-thief Jessica (Erika Christensen) and the pair must outsmart the bank robber in "How to Rob a Bank" (2007), from Genius Products ... Infinity Entertainment has two Christine Nguyen sex-pot films: "Super Ninja Doll" (2008), a live anime adventure with a super-powered, super-sexy heroine battling intergalactic villains as they attempt to escape the secret world of comic books and dominate the earth; and "Tarzeena: Jiggle in the Jungle" (2008), in which the queen of King Island swings into action and rules an untamed world with her loyal gorilla Tabonga. (Posted September 2)

On the Indie Front:
"Outsourced" (2007) stars Josh Hamilton, Asif Basra and Ayesha Dharker in a comedy about a young man whose job is outsourced to India; to make matters worse, he must travel to Bombay to train his replacement, from Porchlight Home Entertainment ... Middle-management hell comes to the fore as two men go head-to-head, vying for a single coveted management position at a local grocery store in "The Promotion" (2008), starring John C. Reilly, Seann William Scott, Jenna Fischer, Lili Taylor and Jason Bateman, from The Weinstein Co./Genius Products ... Six working class Irish men, hardened by years of disappointment and drink, reunite for a friend's funeral in "Kings" (2007), starring Colm Meaney, Brendan Conroy, Donal O'Kelly, Barry Barnes and Donncha Crowley, from BFS Entertainment ... "Ballet Shoes" (2007) is an adaptation of Noel Streatfeild's classic novel about three orphan girls (Pauline, Petrova, and Posy), adopted by an eccentric explorer, Great Uncle Matthew, and his niece Sylvia, in 1930s London, starring Emma Watson, Eileen Atkins, Richard Griffiths, Gemma Jones and Emilia Fox, from Koch Vision. (Posted September 2)

Foreign:
Two competitive friends, fueled by literary aspirations and youthful exuberance, endure the pangs of love, depression and burgeoning careers in "Reprise" (2006 -- Norway). One achieves commercial success and experiences the darker side of fame, the other leads the life of a struggling artist; from Disney. (Posted September 2)

For the Family:
"It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown" (1966) is a remastered deluxe edition with bonus episode "It's Magic, Charlie Brown" and a "We Need a Blockbuster, Charlie Brown!" featurette, $19.98 from Warner ... "Batman Double Feature" includes two feature-length animated movies: "Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker" and "Batman: Mystery of the Batwoman," $14.97 from Warner ... "Scooby-Doo Double Feature" includes two full-length animated features: "Scooby-Doo and the Ghoul School" and "Scooby-Doo and the Legend of the Vampire," $14.97 from Warner ... "Arthur -- Season 11" is a five-disc set with 11 episodes of the PBS series that chronicles the adventures of the world's most famous aardvark, eight-year-old Arthur Read, and his family and friends; $49.95 from WGBH Boston Video ... "The Case of the Coin Purloined" features two episodes from the public television animated series "Postcards From Buster," $12.95 from WGBH Boston Video ... "Bratz Girlz Really Rock" (2008) is an animated musical feature that has the Bratz dolls going to summer camp and auditioning for the camp's summer musical showcase, $19.98 from Lionsgate ... "The Blue Elephant" (2008) is a CGI animated tale from the Jim Henson Company that follows the adventures of an elephant and the many life lessons he learns along his journey; features the voice talent of Martin Short, Carl Reiner and Miranda Cosgrove; $19.97 from The Weinstein Co.,/Genius Products ... "Mickey Mouse Clubhouse: Mickey's Storybook Surprises" features four episodes from the Disney Channel pre-school series, $19.99 from Disney ... "My Friends Tigger & Pooh: Hundred Acre Wood Haunt" features four adventures from the Playhouse Disney series, $19.99 from Disney. (Posted September 2)

Special Interest:
There's a hefty dose of music out this week, headed up by two titles involving The Beatles: "The Beatles -- Magical Mystery Tour Memories" (1967) is an upbeat rockumentary featuring the vivid memories of those who witnessed the making of the Beatle movie "The Magical Mystery Tour" in 1967; features a celebrity cast along with anecdotal stories and unseen 8mm home movie footage, as well as eye-witness accounts from fans, on-lookers and the cast of the movie; $19.95 from MVD Visual ... "Desperately Seeking Paul McCartney" (2008) recounts the story of a woman who, in 1965, was a teenage "teen-beat" reporter for ABC-TV news, covering The Beatles. When she asked a young Paul McCartney if he had any plans for marriage, his response was "Only if you'll marry me." Forty years later she seeks McCartney in a search for "closure"; $19.95 from MVD Visual ... "America -- Live In Chicago" (2008) was recorded in high definition and 5.1 Surround Sound for PBS' acclaimed "Soundstage" series, featuring a 20-song set, from Koch Vision ... "Cat Stevens: Tea for the Tillerman Live" (1971) features a rare and classic Stevens' performance from 1971 as well as a delightfully animated short film by Stevens, "Teaser and the Firecat," with wacky narration by Spike Milligan; $14.95 from MVD Visual. (Posted September 2)

"Monster Camp" (2007) is a documentary on fantasy role playing, specifically a weekend of non stop fantasy in Seattle where players act out a dungeons and dragons world built upon fantasy, chivalry, and imagination; $24.98 from Lifesize Entertainment ... "Lagerfeld Confidential" (2007) is a documentary on the famed designer, $26.98 from Koch Lorber Films ... "Kordavision: The Man Who Shot Che Guevara" (2005) is an award-winning biography about Alberto Korda, one of the 20th century's most important photojournalists, who was responsible for one of the world's most iconic photographs -- the now ubiquitous portrait of revolutionary Che Guevara; $19.97 from Liberation Entertainment ... "Storm Over Everest" (2008) recounts the worst climbing tragedy in Mount Everest's history that occurred May 10, 1996; $24.95 from WGBH Boston Video. (Posted September 2)

Flash: (August 26)

DVD Collectibles:
It's Western week on the old DVD homestead, headed up by a restored and remastered edition (from the original three-panel Cinerama release) of 1962's photo "How the West Was Won." The breathtaking epic had four directors -- John Ford (segment "The Civil War"), Henry Hathaway (segments "The Rivers," "The Plains" and "The Outlaws"), George Marshall (segment "The Railroad") and Richard Thorpe (uncredited: transitional historical sequences) -- and a bevy of stars: Carroll Baker, Lee J. Cobb, Henry Fonda, Carolyn Jones, Karl Malden, Gregory Peck, George Peppard, Robert Preston, Debbie Reynolds, James Stewart, Eli Wallach, John Wayne, Richard Widmark, Walter Brennan, Andy Devine, Raymond Massey, Agnes Moorehead, Harry Morgan, Thelma Ritter, Mickey Shaughnessy, Russ Tamblyn and Spencer Tracy.Warners will release the film in a two-disc special edition, an Ultimate Collector's Edition and on Blu-ray Disc. The Collector's edition includes a 36-page souvenir book reproduction, 10 behind-the-scenes photos and 10 postcards, original theatrical release pressbook reproduction. (Posted August 26)

Other Western releases from Warner this week: "Errol Flynn Westerns Collection," a four-disc set with "Montana," "Rocky Mountain," "San Antonio," "Virginia City," $49.92 ... "Pale Rider" (1985), directed by Clint Eastwood and starring Eastwood, Michael Moriarty, Carrie Snodgress, Chris Penn, Richard Dysart, Charles Hallahan, Douglas Mc Grath, Marvin J. Mc Intyre, Sydney Penny and Billy Drago ... and "Warner Home Video Western Classics Collection," a six-disc set with "Escape From Fort Bravo," "Many Rivers to Cross," "Cimarron" "The Law and Jake Wade," "Saddle the Wind," "The Stalking Moon," $59.92. (Posted August 26)

From the sublime to the absurd: The Criterion Collection will release Pier Paolo Pasolini's notorious final film, "Salo, or the 120 Days of Sodom" (1975 -- Italy), which has been called nauseating, shocking, depraved, pornographic ... it's also a masterpiece. The controversial poet, novelist, and filmmaker's transposition of the Marquis de Sade's 18th-century opus of torture and degradation to 1944 Fascist Italy remains one of the most passionately debated films of all time, a thought-provoking inquiry into the political, social, and sexual dynamics that define the world we live in. In a new, restored high-definition digital transfer ... Universal will release the cult horror film "Brotherhood of the Wolf: Director's Cut" (2001 -- France), director Christophe Gans' wild take on a true story that took place in 18th century France when a mysterious beast kiled more than a 100 people in the wilds of the Gevaudan province; the King sends the Chevalier de Fronsac and his native American friend Mani to investigate the killings. Stars Samuel Le Bihan, Vincent Cassel, Emilie Dequenne, Monica Bellucci, Jeremie Renier and Mark Dacascos; in a two-disc set with deleted scenes, "Making of Brotherhood of the Wolf: The Guts of the Beast," behind-the-scenes documentary, more ... Sony will release "The Three Stooges Collection: 1940-1942, Volume Three," a two-disc set with 23 digitally-restored shorts, arranged chronologically, $24.96. (Posted August 26)

From TV to Video:
"Alfresco," a two-disc set with 13 episodes of the British sketch comedy series from the 1980s; launched the careers of Emma Thompson, Hugh Laurie, Robbie Coltrane, Stephen Fry, Ben Elton, others; $39.99 from Acorm Media ... "The Color Honeymooners Collection #4," a three-disc set with 12 episodes of the Jackie Gleason show that aired from Miami Beach in 1966-70; $39.98 from MPI Home Video ... "Dog the Bounty Hunter: The Best of Season 4" features the seven best episodes of Season 4, $19.95 from A&E Home Video ... "The Duchess of Duke Street: The Complete Collection" is a 10-disc set with all 31 episodes of the BBC/PBS Masterpiece Theatre series, $99.99 from Acorn Media ... "Entourage: The Complete Fourth Season" is a three-disc set with 12 episodes, $39.98 from HBO Video ... "Everybody Hates Chris: The Third Season" (2007-08) is a four-disc set with 22 episodes, $39.99 from Paramount ... "Haunted Histories Collection: Volume 2" is a five-disc set with five episodes of the History Channel spooky series, $24.95 from A&E Home Video ... "NCIS: The Fifth Season" (2007-08) is a five-disc set with 18 episodes, $64.99 from Paramount ... "One Tree Hill: The Complete Fifth Season" is a five-disc set with 18 episodes, $59.98 from Warner ... "The Shield: The Complete Sixth Season" is a four-disc set with 10 episodes, $59.95 from Sony ... "UFO Hunters: The Complete Season One" is a four-disc set with 13 episodes, $39.95 from A&E Home Video ... "The Untouchables: Season Two, Volume Two" (1961) is a four-disc set, $42.99 from Paramount. (Posted August 26)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
"Postal" (2008) stars Zack Ward, Dave Foley, Larry Thomas and Verne Troyer in Uwe Boll's controversial comedy about a cult leader, his nephew and a gang of sexy commandos who face off against the Taliban in Middle America; unrated from Vivendi Entertainment ... In the uncut sequel,"Phantasm IV: Oblivion" (1998), directed by Don Coscarelli and starring A. Michael Baldwin, Bill Thornbury, Bannister and Angus Scrimm, the original cast returns to undertake a surreal journey through the dimensions of time and space to understand the terrifying birthright of the Tall Man, as well as the origins of the infamous and lethal Sphere, ending with the Tall Man's final assault with his dark army, putting the future of the human race on the line; from Anchor Bay ... "Linda Lovelace for President" (1975) is an intentionally campy film designed to capitalize on Linda Lovelace's sudden fame following "Deep Throat": The Upright Party nominates Lovelace for president and she goes on a cross-country campaign trip; stars Linda Lovelace, Val Bisoglio and Micky Dolenz; from Dark Sky Films/MPI Home Video ... In "Vampire Diary" (2007), starring Morven Macbeth and Anna Walton, a female filmmaker making a documentary on trendy neo-vampires meets a highly enigmatic and beautiful woman who claims she is a real-life vampire and the two embark on a passionate affair; from Monrach Home Video. (Posted August 26)

On the Indie Front:
"Pope Dreams" (2007), starring Phillip Vaden, Stephen Tobolowsky, Julie Hagerty and Marnette Patterson, is a coming-of-age story about a directionless 19-year-old who works for his dad during the day and plays in a heavy metal band at night; his only clear goal is to get his ailing mother to meet the pope before she dies. Along the way he falls in love and gets discovered by two Broadway producers; from PorchLight Home Entertainment ... "Purple Violets" (2007), the latest from director Edward Burns, stars Selma Blair, Patrick Wilson, Edward Burns, Debra Messing and Dennis Farina. Infidelity, first loves and second chances are complexly intertwined in this comedy set in The Big Apple. A one-time promising writer saddled with a cheating husband, a successful crime novelist who lacks significant literary distinction, a tough-talking schoolteacher still smarting from a decade-old break-up and a smooth-talking lawyer determined to win back the one that got away, all seek to regain control of their lives; from he Weinstein Co./Genius Products ... "Chicago 10" (2008), with the voices of Hank Azaria, Dylan Baker, Nick Nolte, Mark Ruffalo, Roy Scheider, Liev Schreiber and Jeffrey Wright, is a highly-stylized and wildly original documentary-style film, chronicling the real-life events surrounding the anti-war protest of the 1968 Democratic National Convention held in Chicago and the charismatic protest organizers brought to trial by the city. Told through a visually-arresting animation style and a bold use of archival footage and music; from Paramount ... Two boys growing up in the dawning video age of the 1980s are blown away after first seeing "Rambo: First Blood," and, armed with a video camera, plan on making cinematic history by filming their own action-packed epic, setting them at odds with their parents and school in "Son of Rambow" (2008), starring Will Poulter, Bill Milner, Jules Sitruk, Charlie Thrift, Jessica Stevenson and Neil Dudgeon, from Paramount ... "August" (2008) is the story of two brothers fighting to keep their start-up dot-com company afloat as the bottom falls out of the stock market during August 2001, a month before the 9/11 terrorist attacks; stars Josh Hartnett, Naomie Harris, Adam Scott, Emmanuelle Chriqui, Robin Tunney, Rip Torn and David Bowie; from First Look Studios. (Posted August 26)

For the Family:
"Where the Wild Things Are ... And Five More Stories by Maurice Sendak" is a must for kids of all ages. The title tale -- originally published in 1963 -- is regarded as a landmark children's classic. It's the wildly imaginative story of Max, a young boy who misbehaves and is sent to his room without supper. There, he lets his imagination take him to a faraway place where, after donning a distinctive wolf costume, he befriends the strange, mythical creatures that inhabit the island. But, after a "wild rumpus" Max decides it's time to head back home, "where someone loved him best of all." From Scholastic Storybook Treasure ...For the little one's there's "The Little Mermaid: Ariel's Beginning" (2008) , a direct-to-video animated prequel, from Disney ... "The Care Bears: Care-A-Lot Collection" is a two-disc set with 22 episodes, $22.98 from Fox ... "Alvin and the Chipmunks: Trick or Treason" is a new animated feature, $14.99 from Paramount ... In the animated/live-action outing "Bob the Builder On Site: Houses & Playgrounds," Bob the Builder and his crew show kids what it takes to build a hardy house and a safe playground; $19.98 from HIT Entertainment/Lionsgate ... "Casper and Friends: Trick or Treat" and "Casper & Wendy: Scare Up Some Fun" each feature 12 Harvey Comics' Casper cartoons, $9.93 each from Classic Media ... "Curious George: Sails With the Pirates and Other Curious Capers" includes eight episodes of the animated series, $16.98. from Universal ... "Fat Albert's Halloween Special" (1977) is an animated/live-action feature from the popular TV series, $12.93 from Classic Media/Genius Products. (Posted August 26)

Special Interest:
With the Democratic National Convention in full swing, and with the GOP in the wings, it's time for a heavy dose of political videos between now and November. First off is "The Real McCain" (2008): Maverick or flip-flopper? Robert Greenwald's new documentary sheds light on John McCain's "straight talk," politics and policies,$9.95 from The Disinformation Company ... "Uncounted" (2008) takes and a look at the 2004 Presidential election to answer one fundamental question: was the election stolen and, if so, how? $19.95 from The Disinformation Company ... "Where in the World Is Osama Bin Laden?" (2008) is a tongue-in-cheek yet thought-provoking documentary by writer-director Morgan Spurlock about Osama bin Laden's continued success at evading capture; from The Weinstein Co./Genius Products ... "a.k.a. Tommy Chong" (2008) is a dynamic portrait of comedy legend Tommy Chong of Cheech and Chong set against the unfolding political horror story of post 9/11 America. Follows the tragic and absurd tale of Chong as he travels down the rabbit hole of America's war on drugs and the federal prison system after becoming the primary target in a government sting, code named "Operation Pipe Dreams." In February of 2003, the U.S. government spent $12 million to take down Chong for selling art glass water pipes, a/k/a bongs, over the internet. What emerges is an intimate portrait of a cosmic character, caught in the crosshairs of a surreal Cheech and Chong fantasy come to life. $24.98 from Infinity Entertainment ... "The President's Collection Gift Set" is a 14-disc set of the acclaimed American Experience series, comprised of 20th century presidential biographies profiling the lives and legacies of Theodore Roosevelt, Woodrow Wilson, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Harry S. Truman, John Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson, Richard Nixon, Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan, and George H.W. Bush; $125.99 from Paramount. (Posted August 26)

Other special interest offerings this week: "Battle 360: The Complete Season One" is a four-disc set of all 10 episodes of the History Channel series that follows the USS Enterprise and its crew through some of World War II's most intensive battles; packed in a collectible SteelBook case, $39.95 from A&E Home Video ... "Terry Pratchett's Discworld Collection" (2007) is comprised of two animated versions of two Terry Pratchett's sci-fi fantasy books featuring a world of funny wizards, witches, dwarfs, trolls and giants: "Wyrd Sisters: and "Soul Music"; $39.99 from Acorn Media ... "Best of Comedy Central Presents -- II" features uncensored routines by Dave Attell, Mike Birbiglia, Frank Caliendo, Zach Galifianakis, Patton Oswalt, Brian Posehn, Stephen Lynch, and Nick Swardson; $19.99 from Comedy Central/Paramount. (Posted August 26)

You Must Remember This:
photo Warner Home Video has just announced a December 2 release date for the impressive "Casablanca Ultimate Collector's Edition," available as a two-disc Blu-ray set or a three-disc DVD set, housed in a giftbox with a laser cut O-sleeve, 48-page photobook, 10 one-sheet reproduction cards, archival correspondence, exclusive passport holder and luggage tag. The 1942 film, No. 2 on AFI's list of the 100 Greatest American Movies, was directed by Michael Curtiz and stars Humphrey Bogart as the inimitable Rick Blaine, Ingrid Bergman, Paul Henreid, Claude Rains, Conrad Veidt, Sydney Greenstreet, Peter Lorre, and Dooley Wilson. photo Extras include commentaries by Roger Ebert and historian Rudy Behlmer, introduction by Lauren Bacall, additional scenes and outtakes, "Bacall on Boagrt" and "You Must Remember This: A Tribute to Casablanca" featurettes, production research gallery, "Carrotblanca" cartoon, premiere episode from the 1955 TV series, scoring session outtakes, bonus disc with "Jack L. Warner: The Last Mogul" documentary. The DVD set sells for $59.98; add $5 more for the Blu-ray version. (Posted August 19)

DVD Collectibles:
Due this week from Koch Lorber Films is an interesting box set of features: the "Marco Ferreri Collection" For 40 years, Italian filmmaker Marco Ferreri has stunned and shocked filmgoers with his confrontational and daring works. Politics, impossible relationships, alienation, madness and sexual frankness mark the eight films in this collection: "El Cochecito" (The Wheelchair) (1960) in which a man wants a motorized wheelchair so he can join in the races for the handicapped; "The Seed of Man (1969) in which a global plague wipes out most of Earth's population and a young couple argue about having a child; "La Grande Bouffe" (The Big Feast) (1973), Ferreri's greatest international success about four friends who hire prostitutes and hole up in a Parisian villa for group sex and to eat themselves to death, starring screen giants Marcello Mastroianni, Philippe Noiret, Michel Piccoli and Ugo Tognazzi; "Don't Touch the White Woman (1974) stars Catherine Deneuve and Marcello Mastroianni in this re-creation of General Custer's last stand, filmed in the midst of modern Paris; "Bye Bye Monkey" (1978), in which Gerard Depardieu and Marcello Mastroianni star as two foreign eccentrics decaying in a rat-infested NYC apartment; "Seeking Asylum" (1979) , a rare "family film" focusing on unorthodox schoolteacher Roberto Benigni as he takes over a fortress-like pre-school; "Tales of Ordinary Madness" (1981), in which Ben Gazzara plays a drunken poet dealing with the elusive possibility of love, based on the writings of Charles Bukowski; "The House of Smiles" (1988), in which Ingrid Thulin stars as an elderly woman struggling to survive inside an asylum. $39.98. (Posted August 19)

From The Criterion Collection comes "The Small Back Room" (1949), directed by Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger and starring Cyril Cusack, Jack Hawkins and Michael Gough. After the lavish Technicolor spectacle of "The Red Shoes," British filmmakers Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger retreated into the inward, shadowy recesses of this moody, crackling character study. Based on the acclaimed novel by Nigel Balchin, "The Small Back Room" details the professional and personal travails of troubled, alcoholic research scientist and military bomb-disposal expert Sammy Rice, who, while struggling with a complex relationship with secretary-girlfriend Susan, is hired by the government to advise on a dangerous new German weapon. Frank and intimate, deftly mixing suspense and romance, "The Small Back Room" is an atmospheric, post-World War II gem. As is always the case with Criterion, the DVD comes packed with worthwhile and illuminating extras. (Posted August 19)

From TV to Video:
"Dexter: The Complete Second Season" (2007) is a four-disc set with 12 episodes, $42.99 from Paramount ... "Gossip Girl: The Complete First Season" is a five-disc set with 18 episodes, $59.98 from Warner ... "House: Season Four" is a four-disc set with 16 episodes, $59.98 from Universal ... "Maneater Series Collection: Volume 2" includes three titles from the Sci Fi Channel "Maneater" series: "Croc," "Eye of the Beast" and "Grizzly Rage"; $26.95 from Genius Products ... "Married ... With Children: The Complete Ninth Season" is a three-disc set with 28 episodes, $39.95 from Sony ... "Perry Mason: Season Three, Volume One" (1959-60) is a three-disc set, $54.99 from Paramount ... "Recount" (2008) is the recent HBO telefilm that chronicles the turbulent weeks in Florida after the 2000 presidential election; stars Kevin Spacey, Bob Balaban, Ed Begley Jr., Laura Dern, John Hurt, Denis Leary and Tom Wilkinson; from HBO Video ... "Terminator -- The Sarah Connor Chronicles: The Complete First Season" is a three-disc set with nine episodes, $29.98 from Warner (Also available on Blu-ray Disc) ... "The Widowing of Mrs. Holroyd" (1976) stars Zoe Wanamaker and Colin Firth in a BBC adaptation of a D.H. Lawrence story about Lizzie Holroyd and her boorish husband Charles who scream their lives away until Lizzie falls in love with another man and wishes her husband dead -- a wish that comes horribly true; from BBC Video/Warner. (Posted August 19)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
A semi-paralyzed reporter sets out to investigate a story that leads him into a disturbing sub-culture where wheelchairs and braces are worshipped and people opt to have perfectly healthy limbs amputated to join the cult world of the "handicapped" in "Quid Pro Quo" (2008), starring Nick Stahl, Vera Farmiga, Ashlie Atkinson, Rachel Black, Dylan Bruno, Kate Burton and Anna Chlumsky; from Magnolia Home Entertainment ... In "Deal" (2008), starring Burt Reynolds, Bret Harrison and Shannon Elizabeth, a retired gambler (Reynolds) itching to get back in the game teams up with a hotshot college senior (Harrison) to take the poker world by storm. But a beautiful Vegas call girl (Elizabeth) complicates the plan, and soon the teacher and student find themselves in a heads-up battle for the championship; from MGM ... In "Love and Mary" (2007), starring Lauren German, Gabriel Mann and Whitney Able, a sophisticated pastry chef who's struggling to keep the doors of her bakery open decides to return back home with her fiance to collect a sizeable engagement gift from her eccentric Texan family. But when he's felled by allergies and unable to travel, she bails his identical twin brother out of jail and travels back home passing him off as her fiance; from MTI Home Video ...In "Her Best Move" (2007), soccer prodigy Sara Davis is on her way to becoming the youngest player ever selected to join the U.S. National Team, but her biggest challenge is balancing the demands of high school, a new boyfriend, a part-time job and her overbearing, sports obsessed father. Stars Leah Pipes, Scott Patterson, Lisa Darr and Drew Tyler Bell; from MGM ... "The Scorpion King 2: Rise of a Warrior" (2008) is a direct-to-DVD sequel, here starring Randy Couture; from Universal. (Posted August 19)

On the Indie Front:
Uma Thurman plays a suburban wife and mother who begins to question her seemingly perfect life and perhaps her sanity on the 15th anniversary of a tragic high school shooting that took the life of her best friend in "The Life Before Her Eyes" (2008), co-starring Evan Rachel Wood and Eva Amurri; from Magnolia Home Entertainment ... In "Keepin' the Faith: Lookin' for Mr. Right" (2008), a young woman patiently waiting for the Lord to send her the right man struggles with her friends, who want to hook her up with the main of their dreams. First in a new series of urban faith-based romantic comedies; from Warner. (Posted August 19)

Foreign:
"Chronicle of an Escape" (2006 -- Argentina) is a suspenseful thriller based on the horrifying true story of one man's dangerous journey to escape imprisonment after the military coup in Argentina in the late 1970s; from Genius Products. (Posted August 19)

For the Family:
Lots of cartoon action this week: "Adventures of the Galaxy Rangers -- The Collection: Volume 2" is a four-disc set with the final 33 episodes, $39.98 from Koch Vision ... "Jane and the Dragon: A Dragon's Tale" contains the first five episodes from the animated series adapted from Martin Baynton's popular children's books that follows the adventures of Jane and and her Dragon in 9th century England; $14.99 from Shout! Factory ... "George of the Jungle Swingin' 1st Season" is a three-disc set with 19 episodes from the Cartoon Network series, $23.98 from Classic Media/Genius Products ... "Transformers Animated: Season One" is a two-disc set with 16 episodes, $26.99 from Paramount ... "Wayside School: Season One" is a two-disc set with 13 episodes of the comically absurd tales of students on the top floor of Wayside, a quirky grammar school that was accidentally built 30-stories high; $19.99 from Paramount ... On the reality front there's "Orangutan Island: Season 1," the Animal Planet series that takes an up-close and personal look at rescued orangutans, from Genius Products. (Posted August 19)

Special Interest:
"Television Under the Swastika" (1999) is a fascinating look at the world's first television broadcast network. Nazi leaders, determined to beat Great Britain and the U.S. to be the world's first television broadcaster, began Greater German Television in March 1935. Making use of 285 reels of film discovered in the catacombs of the Berlin Federal Film Archive, filmmaker Michael Kloft explores both the technology behind this new medium and the programming the Nazis chose to put on it; $24.95 from First Run Features ... In the winter of 1945, Primo Levi, one of the century's great writers, was liberated from the Auschwitz concentration camp. With the war still underway, he embarked on a thousand-mile journey to his home in Turin, Italy -- a strange, beguiling odyssey memorialized in his book, "The Reawakening." Sixty years later, director Davide Ferrario set out to follow in Levi's footsteps in "Primo Levi's Journey" (2007 -- Italy). Retracing his historic trip, the film weaves a path through a modern Europe that has both changed and remained eerily the same -- from democratic rallies in the East to neo-Nazi demonstrations in the West. Narrated by Academy Award- winning actor Chris Cooper; from New Yorker Video ... On the lighter side there's "Dana Carvey: Squatting Monkeys Tell No Lies" (2008), an HBO comedy special taped before a live audience at the Wells Fargo Center of the Arts in Santa Rosa, Calif.; $19.97 from HBO Video ... and "John Oliver: Terrifying Times," an original stand-up special featuring John Oliver from "The Daily Show With Jon Stewart," recorded at Symphony Space Theatre in New York City; $19.99 from Comedy Central/Paramount. (Posted August 19)

This Just In:
photo Paramount and Lucasfilm have announced an October 14 release for the latest Indiana Jones adventure, "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull," which pulled in more than $775 million in worldwide boxoffice. The actioner -- which brings the Indy saga up to 1957 with the Soviets as Dr. Jones' nemesis -- will be available as a single-disc DVD, a two-disc Special Edition DVD and a two-disc Special Edition Blu-ray Disc. Both the Special Editions will be loaded with several hours of bonus materials. Among them: "The Return of a Legend," a documentary about the making of the film; a six-part production diary; several galleries of production stills and behind-the-scenes photos; three previsualization sequences; a preproduction visit with Spielberg and other cast and crew members as they prepare for the film; and six featurettes on the warrior makeup, the crystal skulls, the cultural impact of the Indiana Jones character, the film's props, the creative team behind the film and the postproduction process. The Blu-ray version also includes three interactive timelines -- on the story, the production and the real-world historical influences referenced in the film. (Posted August 12)

DVD Collectibles:
Two quirky releases hit the stores this week. First off is "Brand Upon the Brain!" (2006), a film that takes place in the weird and wonderful super-cinematic world of Canadian cult filmmaker Guy Maddin, where personal memory collides with movie lore for a radical sensory overload. This eerie excursion into the gothic recesses of Maddin's mad, imaginary childhood is a silent, black-and-white comic science-fiction nightmare set in a lighthouse on grim Notch Island, where fictional protagonist Guy Maddin was raised by an ironfisted, puritanical mother. Originally mounted as a theatrical event (accompanied by live orchestra, foley artists, and assorted narrators), the film is an irreverent, delirious trip into the mind of one of current cinema's true eccentrics. Stars Gretchen Krich, Sullivan Brown, Maya Lawson, Katherine E. Scharhon, Todd Moore. Loaded with extras from The Criterion Collection. (Posted August 12)

Also from Criterion comes "Eclipse Series 11: Larisa Shepitko", a bare-bones two-box set devoted to the work of Soviet filmmaker Larisa Shepitko. The career of Shepitko, an icon of sixties and seventies Soviet cinema, was tragically cut short when she was killed in a car crash at age 39, just as she was emerging on the international scene. This set includes: "Wings" (1966), her first feature after graduating from the State Institute for Cinematography, about a once heroic female Russian bomber pilot now living a quiet, disappointingly ordinary life as a school principal; and "The Ascent," (1977) her emotionally overwhelming final film that won the Golden Bear at the 1977 Berlin Film Festival. Set during the darkest days of World War II, the film follows the path of two peasant soldiers, cut off from their troops, who trudge through the snowy backwoods of Belarus evading the Nazis and seeking refuge from villagers. A true artist, who had deftly used the Soviet film industry to make statements both personal and universal, Shepitko remains one of the greatest unsung filmmakers of all time. $29.95. (Posted August 12)

From TV to Video:
"Blue Murder, Set 3" is a two-disc set with three BBC gritty police procedurals featuring single-mom Detective Chief Inspector Janine Lewis, $39.99 from Acorn Media ... "Caroline in the City: The First Season" (1995-96) is a three-disc set with 24 episodes, $42.99 from Paramount ... "Dave's World: The First Season" (1993-94) is a three-disc set with 23 episodes, $42.99 from Paramount ... "The Dick Francis Thriller: The Racing Game" is a two-disc set with all six episodes from the inaugural season of the PBS Mystery! series about a steeplechase rider who suffers a career-ending injury and returns to the track as a private investigator; based on the fiction of champion-jockey-turned writer Dick Francis; $39.99 from Acorn Media ... "Hustle: Complete Seasons 1-4" is an eight-disc set, $99.98 from BBC/Warner ... "The Love Boat: Season One, Volume Two" (1978) is a four-disc set, $39.99 from Paramount ... "P.D. James: The Essential Collection" is a 15-disc set featuring all nine PBS Mystery productions featuring James' indefatigable Scotland Yard Commander Adam Dalgliesh; $149.98. from Koch Vision ... In "P.D. James: Devices and Desires," the latest PBS Mystery adventure, Scotland Yard Commander Adam Dalgliesh tracks down a serial killer; $29.98 from Koch Vision ... "Prison Break: Season Three" is a four-disc set with 13 episodes, $49.98 from Fox ... "Wall Street Warriors: Season 2" is a two-disc set with 10 episodes of MOJO HD's reality series about Wall Street, $24.98 from Infinity Entertainment ... "The Wire: The Complete Fifth Season" is a four-disc set with all 10 episodes from the final season, $59.99 from HBO Video ... "Wire in the Blood: Prayer of he Bone" is the sixth season premiere of the critically acclaimed British crime series, $19.98. from Koch Vision. (Posted August 12)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
"The Killing Gene (aka Waz)" (2007) stars Stellan Skarsgard, Melissa George, Selma Blair and Ashley Walters in a sadistic tale that follows two detectives as they investigate a string of double murder crime scenes left with the mathematical equation "w delta z" carved into each victim's body. As the detectives begin to unearth the meaning of the equation, they realize that each victim is being offered a gruesome choice -- kill their loved one or be killed themselves; from The Weinstein Co./Genius Products ... The love of a happily married couple is tested in an unimaginable way when the wife dies and returns to haunt the body of their daughter in "The Secret" (2007) , starring David Duchovny, Lili Taylor and Olivia Thirlby, from Image Entertainment ... In "The Art of War II: Betrayal" (2008), agent Neil Shaw (Wesley Snipes) is called out of retirement and finds himself in the midst of a plot to assassinate several leading Senators - and then discovers that he's been set up as bait, from Sony ... A family man convicted of killing a burglar must cope with life in the violent penal system in "Felon" (2008), starring Val Kilmer, Stephen Dorff, Harold Perrineau, Sam Shepard and Anne Archer, from Sony ... "CJ7" (2008), directed by and starring Stephen Chow, is a family comedy about a poor Chinese laborer who learns important lessons after his son gets a strange new toy from the junkyard: A mysterious orb that is really a bizarre "pet" with extraordinary powers, from Sony ... "Watching the Detectives" (2007) stars Lucy Liu and Cillian Murphy in a comedy about a film noir buff whose life is turned on end by a femme fatale with a big adventure in mind, from Peace Arch Entertainment/Genius Products ... When a geeky, overweight rushee is found dead in the hottest sorority house on campus, three popular sorority sisters become suspects in "Legacy" (2008), starring Haylie Duff, Madeline Zima, Brett Claywell, Margo Harshman, Jane Sibbett, Kate Albrecht and Tom Green, from The Weinstein Co./Genius Products ... "The American Mall" (2008) is an MTV musical romantic comedy set in a mall and focused on the relationship between two young musicians who fall for each other and their respective personal and professional struggles, starring Nina Dobrev, Rob Mayes, Autumn Reese, Yassmin Alers and Al Sapienza, from Paramount ... In the South Korean Asian extreme thriller "Wide Awake" (2007), a young boy is improperly anesthetized during heart surgery and feels the entire procedure; from the scalpel slicing through his chest to the saw cutting through his rib cage, he remains completely aware and unable to cry for mercy. Decades later when a series of killings occur, a doctor and his wife wonder if their stalker is that same young boy, now grown up and hell-bent on revenge; from Genius Products ... In "Juncture" (2007), starring Kristine Blacport, Jeff Nicholson and John Hutton, a young woman with a brain tumor and only three months to live becomes a vigilante to hunt down the criminal miscreants who have slipped through the cracks in the criminal justice system; from MTI Home Video ... "Outside Sales" (2006) is a comedy about a depressed salesman coping with a cheating wife, his sadistic boss and the beautiful sales rep hired to replace him, starring Tricia O'Kelley, Lucas Fleischer, Danny Strong and Christopher John Fields, from Echo Bridge Home Entertainment. (Posted August 12)

For the Family:
"Eon Kid: Season One, Volume One" (2005) features five episodes of the Kids WB! series, $16.98 from Anchor Bay ... "Tom and Jerry Tales Volume 5" is an anthology of 12 cartoons from the Kids' WB series, $14.97 from Warner ... "Superheroes: The Filmation Adventures" is a two-disc set with 18 classic cartoon shorts, $24.98 from Warner ... "The Berenstain Bears: Family and Friendship" (2008) is a compilation of sharing, caring and growing up lessons with the animated bears based on the best-selling children's book series; six episodes, $12.99 from Sony ... "Adventures From the Book of Virtues" consists of three DVDs of animated stories from the PBS kids animated series based on William J. Bennett's "The Book of Virtues": "Adventures in Faith," "Adventures in Honesty" and "Adventures in Courage"; $12.98 each or available in a box set for $29.98, from PorchLight Home Entertainment ... In "Play With Me Sesame: Furry, Fun and Healthy Too" Grover, Frazzle Monster and Bert engage in interactive fun while teaching healthy habits such as exercise, good oral hygiene, healthy eating and getting plenty of rest, $14.93 from Genius Products ... "Strawberry Shortcake: Rockaberry Roll" is a new Strawberry Shortcake animated adventure in which Strawberry and her pals form their own band, Strawberry Jam, and enter the Strawberryland Talent Show, $14.98 from Fox ... "Yes to Running! Bill Harley Live" (2008) features songs and stories for kids by the Grammy-winning singer-songwriter; includes "Mom and the Radio," "Mrs. Ammons and the Boys' Room," "You're in Trouble," "The Ballad of Dirty Joe," more; $14.99 from Round River Records. (Posted August 12)

Special Interest:
"Aftermath: Population Zero" (2008) is a National Geographic look at what the Earth would be like if humans vanished from existence, $19.98 from Warner ... "Raw Spice: The Unofficial Story of the Making of the Spice Girls" (2005) is a documentary that charts the formation of the Spice Girls in 1994, highlighted with never-before-seen footage of the girls candidly discussing their ambitions and fears, as well as their trademark outrageous behavior and some titanic blowouts; $19.98 from Shout! Factory ... "Soundstage: Heart -- Live" is a PBS Soundstage concert recorded in 2005, in high-def video and 5.1 Surround Sound; $19.98 from Koch Vision ... "Soundstage: Reo Speedwagon -- Live: Up Close and Musical" is a 16-song set from the July 3 PBS Soundstage concert, recorded in high-def video and 5.1 Surround Sound; $19.98 from Koch Vision ... "Special Forces Volume 1" contains the war documentaries "The British SAS: Attack in the Desert" and "The Green Berets: Vietnam -- The Battle of Lang Ve"; $6.99 from Echo Bridge Home Entertainment ... "Special Forces Volume 2" contains the war documentaries "The Royal Dutch Marines: Terror Strikes Twice" and "Germany's GSG-9: Jihad in the Fatherland"; $6.99 from Echo Bridge Home Entertainment ... "Flying in the Secret Sky" (2008) chronicles the U.S. civilian pilots who volunteered to fly much-needed aircraft to Great Britain at the beginning of World War II, a time when the U.S. was neutral; these "cowboys of the air" are the forgotten heroes of WWII, men who embodied the improvisational spirit that was key to the Allied victory; from WGBH Boston Video. (Posted August 12)

DVD Collectibles:
"Joy House" is a claustrophobic 1964 outing by the great French director Rene Clement, starring his favorite leading man, Alain Delon, and a pair of sultry American temptresses, Jane Fonda and Lola Albright. A notorious playboy and con man (Delon) has an affair with the wife of a mobster and quickly finds himself a marked man. While on the lam, he meets a beautiful American widower and philanthropist (Albright) who hires him as a live-in chauffeur. With this new job, he figures he's found the perfect refuge, but, unfortunately, there's much more to the posh villa than he initially suspects. While his new employer makes blatant advances, and her curvaceous niece (Fonda) also attempts to seduce him, the small-time criminal discovers he's traded one deadly mistake for another. Digitally remastered from Koch Lorber Films. (Posted August 5)

Time for More Sex:
photo Warner Home Video/New Line has just announced a September 23 release date for "Sex and the City: The Movie," the $150 million big-screen adaptation of the long-running HBO series. Sarah Jessica Parker returns as Carrie Bradshaw, the style-maven journalist whose romantic exploits - and stories about sex, love and the fashion-obsessed -- were the key focus of the show. Also reprising their roles are Kim Cattrall, Kristin Davis, and Cynthia Nixon, with Chris Noth, David Eigenberg, Evan Handler and Jason Lewis returning as the women's love interests. The film will be released in three configurations: a theatrical DVD, a two-disc Special Edition DVD with an extended version of the film and extras, and a Blu-ray Disc edition with the extended version of the film and extras. (Originally posted August 3)

From TV to Video:
"BEN 10 Season Four" is a two-disc set with 12 episodes, $19.98 from Warner ... "Family Ties: The Fourth Season" (1985-86) is a four-disc set with 24 episodes, $42.99 from Paramount ... "The Five Doctors: 25th Anniversary Edition" is a two-disc set of Dr. Who classics; includes both the 1983 and 1995 versions of "The Five Doctors" as well as "The Black Orchid" and "The Time Meddler"; $34.98 from Warner ... "Foyle's War, Set 6" includes three new feature-length episodes of the British series that combines mystery and real history, set during World War II; aired on "PBS Mystery!"; $49.99 from Acorn Media ... "Get Smart: Season 1" is a four-disc set with 30 episodes, $24.98 from HBO Home Video ... "Life in Cold Blood" is a two-disc set with episodes of the Animal Planet show about the warm-hearted world of cold-blooded animals; narrated by Richard Attenborough; $34.98 from BBC/Warner ... "Lonesome Dove Collector's Edition" is a remastered edition of the 1989 Western starring Robert Duvall, Tommy Lee Jones, Angelica Huston, Diane Lane, Chris Cooper, Danny Glover, Frederic Forrest, D.B. Sweeney, Rick Schroder, Steve Buscemi and Robert Urich, in a two-disc set loaded with extras (and also available on Blu-ray Disc), $19.95 from Genius Products ... "Route 66: Complete First Season Television Series" is an eight-disc set with 30 episodes, $49.98 from Infinity Entertainment ... "Sensitive Skin: Complete First and Second Seasons" is a two-disc set with 12 episodes of the British dark comedy series about aging and marriage, starring Joanna Lumley, Denis Lawson and Anthony Stewart Head; $29.98 from Warner ... "Star Trek: The Original Series: Season Two" is an eight-disc set with 26 episodes, remastered from the original camera negative, presented in pristine condition with new state-of-the-art digital visual effects and a new 5.1 soundtrack, $99.99 from Paramount ... "Terminal City" is a three-disc set with all 10 episodes of the Sundance Channel series about a 43-year-old mother of three who's diagnosed with breast cancer and recruited to host a reality hospital show; the groundbreaking drama looks at the modern family through twin lenses of cancer and reality television; $36.98 from Koch Vision. (Posted August 5)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
"Hollywood Chainsaw Hookers " (1988) is a cult classic about a private detective tracking down a runaway who crosses paths with a sect of Egyptian chainsaw-worshipping prostitutes, starring Gunnar Hansen, Linnea Quigley, Jay Richardson and Dawn Wildsmith, from Infinity Entertainment ... When a mass of flesh-eating, super-intelligent army ants -- 200 million strong -- make their way through the jungles of Brazil devouring every living thing in their path, a scientist and an entomologist are called in to stave off the deadly attack -- and save the world in "The Hive" (2007), starring Kal Weber, Tom Wopat and Elizabeth Healey, from Genius Products ... Three twentysomething high school buddies return to their hometown following the untimely death of their friend Bender and relive some of their crazy high school antics, unexpectedly forcing them to confront some important issues about growing up in "Wasted" (2005), starring Eddie Kaye Thomas, Kip Pardue and Josh Cooke, from The Weinstein Company and Genius Products ... "Starship Troopers 3: Marauder" (2008) stars Casper Van Dien and Jolene Blalock in a direct-to-video sequel that reprises humanity's fight against the bugs; available on Blu-ray Disc and in a DVD and Blu-ray Disc set of all three films; from Sony. (Posted August 5)

On the Indie Front:
"The Killing of John Lennon" (2008)is a fine film that delves into the murder of the iconic rock star and Beatle. Mark David Chapman, a 25 year old security guard in Hawaii, bought a plane ticket to New York with the intention of killing The Beatles' John Lennon. Camping outside Lennon's apartment in New York waiting for an autograph, Chapman's childlike obsession descends into madness and murder. Writer-director Andrew Piddington explores Chapman's obsession with Lennon, basing his script on Chapman's own words from interviews and court transcripts. Retracing the events leading up to the shooting in December 1980, the film was shot in a quasi-documentary style at the actual locations where the events took place, including the sidewalk outside the Dakota. From Genius Products. (Posted August 5)

Foreign:
Set in a small Italian town in the 60's and 70's, "My Brother Is an Only Child" (2008 -- Italy) tells the story of two brothers who want to change the world -- but in completely different ways. The elder, Manrico (Riccardo Scarmaccio,) is a handsome, charismatic firebrand who becomes the prime mover in the local Communist party. Accio (Elio Germano,) the younger, more rebellious brother, finds his own contrarian voice by joining the reactionary Fascists. What starts as a typical tale of sibling rivalry becomes the story of the polarizing and paralyzing politics of those turbulent times, and the rift between the brothers is further intensified when Accio realizes that he loves his brother's girlfriend, Francesca who, like everyone else, is blind to Manrico's increasingly dangerous ideas. From ThinkFilm/Image Entertainment. (Posted August 5)

For the Family:
"Garfield's Fun Fest" (2008) is a new Garfield feature-length movie; $19.98 from Fox ... "He-Man and the Masters of the Universe: Volume Three" is a three-disc set with 13 episodes of the final battle of good vs. evil in the 2002 revival of the classic '80s cartoon series; $26.98. from BCI Entertainment. (Posted August 5)

Special Interest:
"Salvador Dali -- The Dali Dimension: Decoding the Mind of a Genius" is an award-winning film that delves into the psyche of the most important Surrealist artist who ever lived, Salvador Dali. Through a series of rare film clips and interviews with the artist, "Dali Dimension" explores the many inspirations that resulted in Dali's unforgettable masterpieces; $24.95 from MVD Visual ... "Pete Seeger: The Power of Song" (2007) is a documentary that chronicles folk singer Pete Seeger and his impact on music and social activism that is still being felt today. Includes interviews with Bruce Springsteen, Bob Dylan, Joan Baez, Arlo Guthrie, Peter, Paul & Mary and the inconvenient artist himself, Seeger, along with never-before-seen archival footage and Seeger's personal home movies; $24.95 from The Weinstein Co./Genius Products/Miriam Collection ... More music: "I Got The Feelin': James Brown in the '60s," a three-disc set with director's cut of "The Night James Brown Saved Boston" and the full-length concert performances "James Brown Live at The Boston Garden From April 1968" and "Man to Man -- James Brown Live at The Apollo Theater 1968"; from Shout! Factory ... "REO Speedwagon: Live From the Heartland" and "Heart: Live" are the two lastest PBS Soundstage performance releases from Koch Vision ... On the comedy front there's "Dana Carvey: Squatting Monkeys Tell No Lies," a 60-minute HBO stand-up special, $19.97 from HBO Video and "Citizen Jimmy" (2008), a one-hour comedy special by stand-up Jimmy Dore, featuring his topical takes on all the ills of the country, from George W. Bush's well-hidden genius, to health care, gas prices, Dick Cheney, and Christian Preachers who rail against gay marriage before getting caught in an Airport restroom, from Image Entertainment ... "Clash of the Cavemen" is a History Channel documentary that reconstructs prehistoric life circa 25,000 B.C.; $24.95 from A&E Home Video ... and, lastly, to prepare you for the Presidential campaign A&E Home Video has released "Biography: Barack Obama" and "Biography: John McCain," $12.95 each. (Posted August 5)

Flash: (July 31)

Blu-ray rules the fourth quarter:
photoIn addition to the previously announced much-anticipated Blu-ray versions of "Pirates of the Caribbean: 3-Movie Collection" (September 16 from Disney), "The Godfather Collection" (September 23 from Paramount), the "Matrix" films (October 14 from Warner Home Video), six James Bond features (October 21 from MGM) and "Young Frankenstein" (October 7 from Fox), Fox will release on November 4 the "Planet of the Apes: 40 Year Evolution Blu-ray Collection," with "Planet of the Apes," Beneath the Planet of the Apes, Escape From the Planet of the Apes, Conquest of the Planet of the Apes (in a unrated version), Battle for the Planet of the Apes, $159.98; each disc is packed with exclusive new High-Def content. On November 11, Warner will release "Harry Potter Years 1-5," a five-disc Blu-ray set of all the Potter films, in time for the theatrical release of "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince" on November 21; $129.95. Expect many more announcements soon. (Posted July 31)

Flash: (July 30)

photo"The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour: The Best of Season Three," One of the offbeat highlights of the late-1960s was "The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour," a weekly variety show that debuted in February 1967 on CBS. Showcasing the talents of irreverent folk-singer/comedians the Smothers Brothers (who had a bevy of folk-tinged musical/comedy album hits in the 60s), the show quickly morphed from a "hip" version of the typical comedy-music variety show of its era to a show that extended the boundaries of what was considered permissible in television satire, eventually turning hard into politics and anti-Vietnam War sentiments before CBS pulled the plug after Season 3 in 1968. Until now there have been no compilations of the show (In 2003 New Video put out a documentary, "Smothered -- The Censorship Struggles of the Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour," which looked at the trials and tribulations of the show). Now, Time Life has finally stormed the bulwarks and, on September 16, will release to stores a four-disc set with 11 episodes selected by the brothers -- loaded with extras -- for $49.95. Check our September DVD calendar for more information on the release. (Posted July 30)

DVD Collectibles:
From MPI Home Video comes "Classic British Thrillers," an anthology of three quirky British films from the 1930s and 1940s. The British Cinematograph Films Act of 1927 was passed to give motion pictures made in the U.K. an edge over Hollywood imports. These films, called "quota quickies," provided on-the-job training for some of the biggest stars of the Golden Age of British Cinema. This single disc includes three fine pieces of vintage British cinema: "The Phantom Light," a creepy "quickie" directed by Michael Powel; "Red Ensign," an expose of corruption and sabotage in the British shipping industry, directed by Powel; and "The Upturned Glass," a revenge thriller starring James Mason as a surgeon turned sleuth. An offbeat gem ... Also due this week is the "Tyrone Power Matinee Idol Collection," a five-disc set with 10 films starring the heartthrob from the 30s and 40s: "Cafe Metropole," "Day-Time Wife," "Girl's Dormitory," "I'll Never Forget You," "Johnny Apollo," "Love Is News," "Luck of the Irish," "Second Honeymoon," "That Wonderful Urge" and "This Above All"; $49.98 from Fox. (Posted July 29)

From TV to Video:
"Baldwin Hills: The Complete First Season," a two-disc set with 10 episodes, $26.99, from BET/Paramount) ... "Beverly Hills 90210: Season Five" (1994-95) is an eight-disc set with 32 episodes, $61.99 from Paramount ... "Birds of Prey: The Complete Series" is a four-disc set with 13 episodes about three female crimefighters in New Gotham City, $39.98 from Warner ... "Bobby G: Adventure Capitalist, Season 1" is MOJO HD's reality series about fearless entrepreneur Bobby "Bobby G" Genovese, $19.98 from Infinity Entertainment ... "Dark Shadows: The Beginning #5" includes Episodes 144-178 that originally aired from January 12, 1967 to March 1, 1967, from MPI Home Video ... "Girlfriends: The Fourth Season" (2003-04) is a three-disc set with 24 episodes, $39.99 from Paramount ... "The Hills: The Complete Third Season" is a four-disc set with 28 episodes, $39.99 from Paramount ... "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit: The Seventh Year" is a five-disc set with 22 episodes, $59.98 from Universal ... "Parking Wars: The Best of Season One" gives you the best from the A&E series about the ticket-givers of the Philadelphia Parking Authority, $12.95 from A&E Home Video ... "Robin Hood: Season Two" (2006 -- U.K. TV) is a five-disc set with 13 episodes of the BBC America series, $99.98 from Warner ... "Robin of Sherwood: The Complete Collection" (1984-86) is a 10 volume set with all 26 episodes of the British series that is a definitive retelling -- with gritty period realism -- of the Robin Hood legend; $99.99 from Acorn Media ... "Two Fat Ladies" (1997) is a four-disc set with all 24 episodes of the most popular cooking show in BBC history that was also a Food Network hit in the U.S.: Two oversized women jump aboard a classic motorcycle and sidecar and travel all over Britain, preparing meals for nuns, cricketers, diplomats, lumberjacks and an odd assortment of others; $59.99 from Acorn Media (You can find more on this release at Glenn Abel's wonderful DVD site, DVD Spin Doctor) ... "Witchblade" is a seven-disc set with 24 episodes, $69.98 from Warner ... "A Woman of Independent Means" (1995) is a two-disc set of the miniseries starring Sally Field, $29.95 from A&E Home Video. (Posted July 29)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
"Stargate: Continuum" (2008) is the second direct-to-video (DVD and Blu-ray) "Stargate SG-1" feature; from MGM ... "Masters of Horror Season Two Box Set" includes all 13 episodes of the second season of the blood-chilling Showtime anthology series, housed in a specially designed, limited edition "skull" package; $86.97 from Anchor Bay ... "Adventures of Johnny Tao" (2007) is a family-friendly action adventure about a young man whose prize possession, his father's guitar, is made of half of an ancient spear; the other half holds a curse and an evil spirit that unleashes an army of kung-fu, sugar-craving warriors that only Johnny and a beautiful Chinese warrior can stop. Stars Matthew Twining, Matt Mullins, Chris Yen, Kelly Perine, Lindsay Parker, Marianne Muellerleile, Michael Gregory, James Hong, Jason London; from MTI Home Video ... "WarGames: The Dead Code" (2008) stars Matt Lanter and Colm Feore in a sequel to the 1983 smash: A computer hacker who engages a super-computer named Ripley in an online terrorist-attack simulation game that is designed specifically to profile potential threats to the United States comes to the attention of Homeland Security, which becomes convinced that he's a potential threat; from MGM ... After two martial arts students and best friends are expelled from the legendary temple of Shaolin, they meet again as mortal enemies on the battlefield -- one a power-hungry general, the other a freedom-fighting rebel in "Tai Chi Master" (1993 -- Hong Kong), directed by Yuen Woo-Ping and starring Jet Li, Michelle Yeoh, Chin Siu Ho, Fennie Yuen, Yuen Cheung Yan and Lau Shun; in a two-disc set from The Weinstein Co./Genius Products/Dragon Dynasty ... "Inglorious Bastards" (1978) stars Fred Williamson, Bo Svenson, Ian Bannen, Massimo Vanni in director Enzo G. Castellari's EuroCult war movie about a gang of condemned criminals who escape from an Allied prison convoy with a plan to blast their way to the Swiss border, only to find themselves "volunteering" for a suicide mission deep inside Nazi occupied France. To be remade by Quentin Tarantino for The Weinstein Co. Available from Severin Films ... In "Puzzle" (2006 -- South Korea) , five ruthless criminals are recruited by an unknown boss to pull off a daring bank robbery. But when the team leader is found dead, each member suspects the other of betrayal; from Genius Products. (Posted July 29)

On the Indie Front:
Stranded and broke in India after the financing flops on her low-budget film, feisty B-list actress Marigold Lexton lands a role in a musical, where she has a whirlwind romance with the production's choreographer in the musical comedy "Marigold" (2007), starring Ali Larter and Salman Khan; from Echo Bridge Home Entertainment ... "Special Needs" (2006) is a mockumentary about a flamboyant TV producer and his bully sidekicks who want to produce a reality TV show featuring physically and mentally disabled contestants; from Troma ... "The Audience Strikes Back" (2008) is a Star Wars fan mockumentary in which a group of moviegoers who have just attended the Seattle premiere of "The Revenge of the Sith" participate in a taped discussion about the film; what starts out as a friendly conversation about the iconic movies quickly veers off into uncharted territory as the fans take up the war in Iraq, gay marriage, Christian fundamentalism, abortion, the Rapture, the environment and more; $28.95 from Indie-Pictures. (Posted July 29)

For the Family:
"Tiny Toon Adventures: Season 1, Volume 1," a four-disc set with 35 episodes from the animated programs first season, $44.98 from Warner ... "The Wiggles: You Make Me Feel Like Dancing" (2008) is the latest outing from the pre-schoolers ' favorite band offers 20 new songs to get the little ones up and moving, from Warner ... "Alice Upside Down" (2007) stars Alyson Stoner, Luke Perry, Lucas Grabeel and Penny Marshall in a tween film based on the popular best-selling Alice McKinley books by Newbery medalist Phyllis Reynolds Naylor, about 11-year-old Alice McKinley, who has moved to a new town with her widowed dad and teenage brother, leaving her the only girl in an all male household; from Anchor Bay ... "64 Zoo Lane" is a feature-length animation about the adventures of a little girl who lives next door to a zoo and who, every night, slides down the neck of Georgina the giraffe to listen to one of the animal's stories; $14.98 from PorchLight Entertainment ... "Phineas and Ferb: The Fast and the Phineas" includes a two-part adventure featuring the characters from the Disney Channel animated series, $19.99 from Disney ... "Wizards of Waverly Place: Wizard School" contains four episodes of the Disney Channel series, $19.99 from Disney ... "Avatar: The Last Airbender, Book 3 Volume 4" features six episodes of the Nick animated series, $16.99 from Paramount. (Posted July 29)

Special Interest:
"The Cool School" (2008) is a documentary that features the evolving art movement in Los Angeles during the 50's and 60's, focusing on the seminal Ferus Art Gallery, which groomed the L.A. art scene from a loose band of beatniks into a coterie of competitive and brilliant artists, featuring such artists as Ed Kienholz, Ed Ruscha, Craig Kauffman, Wallace Berman, Ed Moses, Andy Warhol and Robert Irwin; $29.95 from Arts Alliance America/Arthouse Films ... "A History of Britain: The Complete Collection" is a five-disc set of the BBC series, $39.95 from A&E Home Video ... "The Strauss Family" (1972) is a two-disc set of the eight-part British miniseries about the first family of 19th century music, starring Derek Jacobi and Jane Seymour, with glorious renditions of the Strauss' works by the London Symphony Orchestra; $29.95 from A&E Home Video ... "Love Story" (2005) is a feature-length documentary about the legendary Los Angeles band Love, and their singer, Arthur Lee; from Start Productions. (Posted July 29)

Flash: (July 22)

Cool Films:
No matter the decade, there's a place where icons, idols and the infamous flock for bottomless drinks and over-the-top trysts. photo Straight men and con artists, radicals and revolutionaries, flacks and scabs: they're all here -- shooting the breeze, working the room, cursing the past and toasting the future -- in Sony's intriguing selection of "Martini Movies," scheduled for release September 23. Making their U.S. DVD debut in the collection is Joseph Wambaugh's thin-blue-line cop saga "The New Centurions," directed by Richard Fleischer; Sidney Lumet's heist thriller "The Anderson Tapes," starring Sean Connery; "The Garment Jungle," a behind the scenes look at the famed New York City garment district, directed by Vincent Sherman; "Affair in Trinidad," a steamy film noir set in the Carribean, also directed by Vincent Sherman and starring Rita Hayworth and Glenn Ford; and "$(Dollars)," a quirky heist comedy directed by Richard Brooks and starring Warren Beatty and Goldie Hawn; available for $19.94 each. (Posted July 22)

DVD Collectibles:
The Criterion Collection releases another fine pair of classic films this week: Akira Kurosawa's "High and Low" (1963) and Carl Theodor Dreyer's "Vampyr" (1932).
Toshiro Mifune is unforgettable as Kingo Gondo, a wealthy industrialist whose family becomes the target of a cold-blooded kidnapper in Kurosawa's highly influential domestic drama and police procedural "High and Low." Adapting Ed McBain's detective novel "King's Ransom," Kurosawa moves effortlessly from compelling race-against-time thriller to exacting social commentary, creating a diabolical treatise on class and Japanese society. Two-disc set with a new, restored high-definition digital transfer, with newly restored original four-track surround sound. Extras include a new audio commentary by Akira Kurosawa scholar Stephen Prince; a 37-minute documentary on the making of "High and Low," created as part of the Toho Masterworks series "Akira Kurosawa: It Is Wonderful to Create"; a rare archival interview with Toshiro Mifune; a booklet featuring a new essay by critic Geoffrey O'Brien and a reprinted essay by Japanese film scholar Donald Richie.; more. (Posted July 22)

With "Vampyr," Danish filmmaker Dreyer's brilliance at achieving mesmerizing atmosphere and austere, profoundly unsettling imagery (as in "The Passion of Joan of Arc" and "Day of Wrath") was for once applied to the horror genre. Yet the result -- concerning an occult student assailed by various supernatural haunts and local evildoers at an inn outside Paris -- is nearly unclassifiable, a host of stunning camera and editing tricks and densely layered sounds creating a mood of dreamlike terror. With its roiling fogs, ominous scythes, and foreboding echoes, "Vampyr" is one of cinema's great nightmares. Two-disc set with a new, restored high-definition digital transfer. Extras include an optional all-new English-text version of the film; commentary featuring film scholar Tony Rayns; "Carl Th. Dreyer" (1966), a documentary by Jorgen Roos chronicling Dreyer's career; a visual essay by scholar Casper Tybjerg on Dreyer's influences in creating "Vampyr"; a book featuring Dreyer and Christen Jul's original screenplay and Sheridan Le Fanu's 1871 story "Carmilla," a source for the film; more. (Posted July 22)

Jazz at Warner: Warner home video will release four jazz-themed films to DVD this week: "Bird" (1988), directed by Clint Eastwood and starring Forest Whitaker, Diane Venora, Michael Zelniker, Samuel E. Wright and Keith David, in a two-disc special edition with a six-track CD of the soundtrack with special master recordings from legendary jazz musician Charlie Parker; "Blues in the Night" (1941), directed by Anatole Litvak and starring Priscilla Lane, Betty Field, Richard Whorf, Lloyd Nolan and Jack Carson; "Pete Kelly's Blues" (1955), directed by Jack Webb and starring Jack Webb, Janet Leigh, Edmond O'Brien, Peggy Lee, Andy Devine, Lee Marvin, Ella Fitzgerald and Martin Milner; and "'Round Midnight" (1986), directed by Bertrand Tavernier; Dexter Gordon, Francois Cluzet, Gabrielle Haker, Sandra Reaves-Phillips, Lonette McKee, Christine Pascal, Herbie Hancock and Bobby Hutcherson. (Posted July 22)

From TV to Video:
"Comedy Central's TV Funhouse" is a two-disc set featuring all eight uncensored episodes of the outrageous "broken kid's show for adults," featuring a stable of puppet and live animals (the Anipals), $28.49 from Paramount ... "LA Ink: Season One, Volume 1," a three-disc set with 13 episodes, $24.95 from Genius Products ... "Las Vegas: Season Five," a four-disc set with 17 episodes, $59.98 from Universal ... "Spaced: The Complete Series," a three-disc set of the British series about two twentysomething slackers; from the makers of "Shaun of the Dead" and "Hot Fuzz," $49.98 from Warner. (Posted July 22)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
In "Picture This" (2008), "High School Musical" star Ashley Tisdale stars as an unpopular high school senior who lands a date to the biggest party of the year with the school's hottest guy but there's one major problem: she's grounded; from MGM ... "Brutal Massacre: A Comedy" (2007) is a mockumentary about the horror film shoot from Hell, a hilarious look into the chaotic world of low budget independent filmmaking as a once-successful horror film director tries to make his comeback vehicle; stars David Naughton, Brian O'Halloran, Gerry Bednob and Gunnar Hansen; from Anchor Bay ... "The Last Winter" (2007) blends real-life environmental concerns over global warming with a supernatural story line. In the Arctic region of Northern Alaska, an oil company's advanced team struggles to establish a drilling base that will forever alter the pristine land. After one team member is found naked and dead in the snow, an environmentalist suspects sour gases may have accidentally been released in the area, provoking hallucinations, disorientation and insanity in the group ... instead, an unknown fear lurks in the snow. Stars Ron Perlman, James LeGros, Connie Britton, Zach Gilford and Kevin Corrigan; from Genius Products ... "Maneater Series Collection: Volume 1" is a box set with three titles in the popular "Maneater" TV movie series: "Maneater" (2007), starring Gary Busey; "BloodMonkey" (2007), starring F. Murray Abraham; and "In the Spider's Web" (2007) starring Lance Henrikson; $26.95 from Genius Products ... "The Boston Strangler" (2008), starring David Faustino and Andrew Divoff, is a retelling of the story of serial killer Albert De Salvo, aka The Boston Strangler; from The Weinstein Co./Genius Products. (Posted July 22)

On the Indie Front:
An American with an uncanny ability to speak Japanese and his roommate, a Japanese American who aspires to be a sumo wrestler but finds his weight and blood pressure are thwarting his dreams, struggle to find their place in a world where cultural identity is seldom what it seems in "Big Dreams Little Tokyo" (2006), starring Dave Boyle and Jayson Watabe; from Echo Bridge Home Entertainment ... It's 2009, Jeb Bush is the president, and the country has lost its social services, social graces, public parks, and common sense. Philip Baker Hall plays a widower who, having outlived his family and friends, now finds himself without a home. But he does have a duck, and together they travel the city in search of water and meaning in the desert that is L.A. That's the story of "Duck" (2007), starring Philip Baker Hall, Bill Brotchtrup, Noel Gugliemi, Bill Cobbs and French Stewart; from Westlake Entertainment. (Posted July 22)

For the Family:
There's two kids features this week from First Run Features: "Abel's Island" (1988), based on the award-winning classic from William Steig (author of "Shrek"); animated by award-winning producer-director Michael Sporn. It's the delightful story of Abel, an elegant and romantic mouse who gets swept away in a flood and stranded for more than a year on a desert island before his resourcefulness enables him to escape and return to his wife; features the voice of Tim Curry. Also includes the tale "The Story of the Dancing Frog," narrated by Amanda Plummer. "The Marzipan Pig" (1990) is based on the award-winning book by Russell Hoban; animated by award-winning producer-director Michael Sporn. A marzipan pig falls behind the sofa and is lost; in his loneliness, the pig's feelings of love reach out, in a strange chain of events, to an owl, a mouse, and a hibiscus flower. Narrated by Tim Curry. Also features "Jazztime Talk," narrated by Ruby Dee. $14.95 each ... Kids TV series this week: "The Batman: The Complete Fifth Season," a two-disc set with the final 13 episodes, $19.98 from Warner ... "Teen Titans: The Complete Fifth Season," a two-disc set with the final 13 episodes, $19.98 from Warner ... "Transformers Cybertron: The Ultimate Collection" (2005), a seven-disc set with 52 episodes of the Cartoon Network series, $61.99 from Paramount ... Lastly, there's a new edition of Sesame Street adventures: "Sesame Street: Count on Sports" (2008), in which the Sesame Street characters team with sports stars for math lessons for toddlers, $14.93 from Sesame Workshop/Genius Products. (Posted July 22)

Special Interest:
More jazz: "Clint Eastwood Presents Tony Bennett: The Music Never Ends" is a 2007 documentary -- directed by Bruce Ricker -- on the extraordinary career of one of music's greats: Tony Bennett. Bennett is considered to be one of the greatest living singers in American popular music, and this film reflects all that he has accomplished while living against the background of a changing America. The 90-minute film weaves archival footage with contemporary clips of Bennett performing live throughout his career including him singing his famous hits "I Left My Heart in San Francisco" and "For Once in My Life". Peppered throughout the film are interviews with celebrities reminiscing about their favorite moments with the legendary singer. The two-disc set sells for $24.98, from Warner ... "Black Coffee" is a three-disc set of the documentary that explores the dark side of dark roast, light roast and everything in between, examining the impact of the coffee bean on social, economic and sexual mores and the exploitation of third-world countries for the commercialization of the beverage; $29.98 from BFS Entertainment ... "Earth: The Biography" (2008) is a BBC/National Geographic Channel documentary that is a comprehensive history of the living planet, from Warner ... "Gulf Stream and the Next Ice Age" is a 2005 documentary on how the disruption of ocean currents could lead to a new ice age in Europe; $22.98 from BFS Entertainment ... "NFL: In Just One Play" showcases many of the most exciting National Football League players in the game today; $19.98 from Warner ... "Celine" is an unauthorized bio of the top-selling female vocalist, $19.95 from Monarch Home Video. (Posted July 22)

Flash: (July 17)

Fifty new titles have been announced for release to DVD for August, September, October and November, including three additions to the Fox Film Noir collection on September 2: "Boomerang!" (1947), directed by Elia Kazan and starring Lee J. Cobb, Arthur Kennedy, Dana Andrews and Jane Wyatt; "Moontide" (1942), starring Jean Gabin and Ida Lupino; and "Road House" (1948), directed by Jean Negulesco and starring Ida Lupino, Cornell Wilde and Ruchard Widmark.

(Posted July 17)

Flash: (July 15)

Just Announced:
photoOn September 16 Warner Home Video will release boxoffice disappointment "Speed Racer," based on the classic 1960s series created by anime pioneer Tatsuo Yoshida that later was retooled for North American audiences. The film, dircted by the Wachowski brothers and starring Emile Hirsch, Christina Ricci, John Goodman, Susan Sarandon and Matthew Fox, will be released on standard DVD and in a three-disc Blu-ray Disc set that includes a full-disc DVD game "Speed Racer Crucible Challenge" and a bonus digital copy disc. Also on that day Sony will release the comedy "Made of Honor," starring Patrick Dempsey and Michelle Monaghan. And, on September 23, Fox will release the slight thriller "Deception," starring Hugh Jackman, Ewan McGregor, Michelle Wiliams, Maggie Q and Natasha Henstridge. (Posted July 15)

DVD Collectibles:
The Criterion Collection will release this week Jacques Tati's 1971 "Trafic," the director-actor's followup to his successfull "Mr. Hulot's Holiday," "My Uncle" and "Play Time." In "Trafic," the bumbling Monsieur Hulot (Tati), outfitted as always with tan raincoat, beaten brown hat, and umbrella, takes to Paris's highways and byways. For this, his final outing, Hulot is employed as an auto company's director of design, and accompanies his new vehicle (a camper tricked out in all sorts of absurd gadgetry) to an auto show in Amsterdam. Naturally, the road is paved with modern-age mishaps. This late-career delight is a masterful demonstration of the comic genius's expert timing and sidesplitting visual gags, and a bemused last look at technology run amok. New, restored high-definition digital transfer in a two-disc set. Extras include "In the Footsteps of Monsieur Hulot" (1969), a two-hour documentary tracing the evolution of Jacques Tati's beloved alter ego; an interview from 1971 with the cast of "Trafic," from the French television program "Le journal de cinema"; "The Comedy of Jacques Tati," a 1973 episode from the French television program "Morceaux de bravoure"; and a new essay by film critic Jonathan Romney. (Posted July 15)

From TV to Video:
"Beau Brummell: This Charming Man" (2006), stars James Purefoy in a BBC telefilm about the dandy of Regency England, from Acorn Media ... "Best of Manswers: Season One's Top 25 manswers" is a top 25 list from the decidedly sexist TV show, $16.99 from Paramount ... "Dallas: The Complete Ninth Season" is a four-disc set with 31 episodes, $39.98 from Warner ... "Eureka: Season Two" is a three-disc set with 13 episodes, $39.98 from Universal ... "Evening Shade: Season One" is a five-disc set with 24 episodes, $42.99 from Paramount ... "Reno 911! The Complete Fifth Season Uncensored" is a three-disc set with 14 episodes, $39.98 from Paramount ... "Robbie Coltrane: Incredible Britain" (2007) features three episodes of the British series in which Robbie Coltrane travels the scenic back roads from London to Glasgow in a vintage Jaguar convertible; $29.99 from Acorn Media ... "Saving Grace: Season One" is a four-disc set with 13 episodes, $49.98 from Fox ... "Swamp Thing: The Series: Vol. 2" is a four-disc set with the first 25 episodes of Season 3; $39.99 from Shout! Factory. (Posted July 15)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
A group of beautiful coeds discover that their dorm was once a mental hospital where unspeakable experiments were performed by a deranged physician trying to "cure" troubled teens ... and the mad doctor's ghost is back to continue his torturous work in "Asylum" (2007), starring Sarah Roemer, Travis Van Winkle, Jake Muxworthy, Cody Kasch and Carolina Garcia; from MGM ... "Insanitarium" (2008) stars Jesse Metcalfe, Kiele Sanchez, Kevin Sussman, Olivia Munn and Peter Stormare in a thriller about a mental hospital that uses patients as test subjects, turning them into bloodthirsty, flesh-eating psychopaths; from Sony ... An ex-FBI negotiator uses all his skills to save a Los Angeles-bound jumbo jet from the terrorists who have placed a bomb on board in "Final Approach" (2007), starring Dean Cain, Anthony Michael Hall, Ernie Hudson, Sunny Mabrey, Lea Thompson, William Forsythe and Tracey Gold, from Genius Products ... In the Asian extreme "Voice" (2005 -- South Korea), a high school student is able to hear the voice of her deceased friend, from Genius Products ... In "Guardians" (2006), starring Tara Ketterer and Ben Budd, a small town is invaded by hideous creatures summoned into our dimension by occultists and the Guardians are the only ones capable of battling the monsters and saving the Earth; from Warner ... As an extravagant party unfolds on the top floor of an abandoned towering skyscraper, five guests receive a mysterious text message inviting them to join an exclusive VIP party being held on the 27th floor, where they find themselves trapped in a sadistic killer's deadly game, in "Steel Trap" (2007), starring Georgia Mackenzie, Mark Wilson, Pascal Langdale and Julia Ballard; from Dimension Extreme/The Weinstein Company/Genius Products. (Posted July 15)

Foreign:
Due this week: "The Year My Parents Went on Vacation" (2007 -- Brazil), starring Paulo Autran, Caio Blat, Simone Spoladore, Michel Joelsas, Germano Haiut, Daniela Piepszyk and Liliana Castro. Set in the turbulent year of 1970, this poignant and humorous coming of age story thrusts 12-year-old Mauro (Michel Joelsas) into a maelstrom of political and personal upheaval. When his left-wing militant parents are forced to go underground, Mauro is left in the care of his Jewish grandfather's neighbor in Sao Paulo. Suddenly finding himself an exile in his own country, he is forced to create an ersatz family from the religiously diverse and colorful population of his new neighborhood. Mauro befriends tomboyish, street smart Hanna (Daniela Piepszyk) and develops a crush on Irene (Liliana Castro,) a pretty waitress in a local bar where everyone, including Mauro, an ardent soccer fan, gathers to watch iconic star Pele in the 1970 World Cup. From City Lights Home Video. (Posted July 15)

For the Family:
In "Roxy Hunter and the Secret of the Shaman" (2008) Nickelodeon's favorite female pre-teen sleuth is back on the case to retrieve a missing priceless crystal jewel whose loss threatens the 150th anniversary of Serenity Falls; from Sony ... Join Huckleberry Larry and Tomato Sawyer for a wild ride down the Mighty Mississippi where they discover an important lesson in helping others inspired by the Bible: "Sometimes not helping someone can be just as bad as actually hurting them," in "VeggieTales: Tomato Sawyer and Huckleberry Larry's Big River Rescue," $14.99 from Big Idea ... "Hip Hop for Kids: School House Hop!" is the latest in the fitness series that helps kids stay in shape with easy-to-learn dance moves, featuring Roger G. and his energetic crew of teen hip-hoppers, with such extras as a "Schoolhouse Hop" music video and an eating right nutrition segment; $19.50 from Jumping Fish Productions. (Posted July 15)

Special Interest:
"America's Test Kitchen, Season 8" is a four-disc set with 26 episodes of the public television show, hosted by Chris Kimball, whose culinary team brings viewers the best recipes using techniques and ingredients that have been perfected in the test kitchen to ensure perfect results for great home cooking. In addition, the collection includes honest tastings of supermarket ingredients, detailed ratings of indispensable kitchen equipment and tools, and helpful kitchen science tips; $39.95 from WGBH Boston Video. (Posted July 15)

DVD Collectibles:
With three big-screen sequels-of-sorts coming out in the next few weeks (featuring Batman, the Mummy and the X-Files), Hollywood is mining catalog gold with extravagant DVD and Blu-ray Disc reissues. "Batman Begins Limited Edition Gift Set" (2005) is available in three configurations: a Batman Begins Limited Edition Gift Set Blu-ray Disc"Batman Begins Limited Edition Gift Set" standard DVD two-disc set in a gift box with a Batman-branded 128 MB flash drive with 18 images from the upcoming "The Dark Knight" (which opens July 18), five collectible Batman postcards, more; from Warner photo "The X-Files Revelations" (2005) is a two-disc set with eight critical episodes hand-picked by series creator Chris Carter just in time for the series' second trip to the big screen on July 25. These eight essential episodes -- "Pilot," "Beyond the Sea," "The Host," "Clyde Bruckman's Final Repose," "Memento Mori," "The Post-Modern Prometheus," "Bad Blood" and "Milagro" -- span seasons 1-6 and cover a variety of paranormal and unexplained cases centering on alien abductions, psychic phenomenon and life forms not quite human that set the stage for the eagerly anticipated sequel; from Fox ... "The Mummy: Deluxe Edition" (1999). "The Mummy Returns: Deluxe Edition" (2001), and the original "The Mummy" (1932), directed by Karl Freund and starring Boris Karloff and Zita Johann, all digitally restored in two-disc sets (with the two modern "Mummys" also on Blu-ray Disc), just in time for the August 1 theatrical release of "The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor," starring Jet Li and Brendan Fraser; from Universal. (Posted July 8)

"The Adventures of Ozzie & Harriet: Best of Ricky & Dave" is a four-disc set with 24 episodes, culled from the show's 14-year run, that focus on the trials and triumphs of the Nelson sons as they grow from boys to men. Includes such extras as early radio show episodes, a "Ricky Sings" featurette, an "Ozzie & Harriet Trivia Game," 12 music performances by Ricky; $34.99 from Shout! Factory. (Posted July 8)

"Mon oncle Antoine" (1971) is director Claude Jutra's evocative portrait of a boy's coming of age in wintry 1940s rural Quebec. Delicate, naturalistic, and tinged with a striking mix of nostalgia and menace, "Mon oncle Antoine" follows the everyday lives of both young Benoit, as he first encounters the twin terrors of sex and death, and his fellow villagers, living under the thumb of the local asbestos-mine owner. Set during one ominous Christmas, "Mon oncle Antoine" is a holiday film unlike any other, and an authentically detailed illustration of childhood's twilight. In a new, restored high-definition digital transfer, supervised and approved by director of photography Michel Brault, in a two-disc loaded with extras, from The Criterion Collection. (Posted July 8)

From TV to Video:
Construction workers break ground on what is said to be Indian holy ground, unleashing an evil spirit known as the Bone Eater in "Bone Eater" (2007), starring Bruce Boxleitner, William Katt, Walter Koenig, Veronica Hamel and Gil Gerard, from Lionsgate ... "Cannon: Season One, Volume One" is a four-disc set with 12 episodes, including the two-part pilot; $39.99 from Paramount ... "Fastlane: The Complete Series" is a six-disc set with 22 episodes, $59.98 from Warner ... "I Dream of Jeannie: The Complete Fifth Season," a four-disc set with 26 episodes, $39.95 from Sony ... "Jake and the Fatman: Season One, Volume One," a three-disc set with 11 episodes, $40.99 from Paramount ... ">Monk: Season Six," a four-disc set with 16 episodes, $59.98 from Universal ... "Psych: The Complete Second Season, a four-disc set with 16 episodes, $59.98 from Universal "Soul Food -- The Series: The Final Season," a four-disc set with 14 episodes, $49.99 from Paramount ... "Stargate: Atlantis Season Four," a five-disc set with 20 episodes, $49.98 from MGM ... "Journey to the Center of the Earth" (2008) stars Rick Schroder, Victoria Pratt, Peter Fonda, Steven Grayhm and Mike Dopud in a telefilm adaptation of Jules Verne's novel; release to DVD timed for the July 11 theatrical release of "Journey to the Center of the Earth 3D"; from Genius Entertainment. (Posted July 8)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
The lives of a nightclub owner, a crime boss, a stripper, a bartender, two hitmen, a prostitute and a psychic take a turn for the worse when they are trapped in an escaped mental patient's sinister path of madness and destruction in "Toxic" (2008), starring Susan Ward, Corey Large, Master P, Dominique Swain, Danny Trejo, Tom Sizemore, Bai Ling, Costas Mandylor, Lochlyn Munro and Steven Bauer, from The Weinstein Co./Genius Products ... "Jekyll" (2007) is a modern take on Robert Louis Stevenson's horror thriller: While researching a cure for cancer, Dr. Henry Jekyll creates a computer-generated alter-ego, Mr. Hyde, a creature of animal appetites and uncontrollable impulses who goes on a killing spree; stars Matt Keeslar, Jonathan Silverman, Desmond Askew and Alanna Ubach; from Warner ... A professional beach volleyball player must deal with a psychotic stalker in "Impact Point (aka Breaking Point)" (2008), starring Brian Austin Green, Melissa Keller, Kayla Ewell and Linden Ashby, from Sony ... "December Ends" (2006) is a drama that tracks three teenagers as their lives perilously intertwine in the high-stakes world of drug dealing; stars Josh Janowicz, Alex Thayer and Justin Matthews; from Echo Bridge Home Entertainment ... In "Death on Demand" (2008), a wealthy college student arranges a Webcast from a haunted house -- where an ice climber and adventurer murdered his family and hanged himself. Guess what happens; stars Josh Janowicz, Alex Thayer and Justin Matthews; from MTI Home Video ... "Sleepwalking" (2008) stars Charlize Theron, Dennis Hopper, Nick Stahl, AnnaSophia Robb and Woody Harrelson in a drama about a disillusioned single mother prone to bad men and reckless behavior who abandons her 12-year-old daughter with her brother; the two travel to the family farm where they must face dark secrets; from Anchor Bay. (Posted July 8)

On the Indie Front:
The denizens of a bohemian cereal restaurant in New Orleans fight a capitalist who rips off their idea and opens a competing venture in "Flakes" (2007), starring Zooey Deschanel, Aaron Stanford, Izabella Miko and Christopher Lloyd., from Genius Products ... "The Tracey Fragments" (2007) stars Ellen Page as a feisty, independent teenager who uses fantasy to help her deal with a secret crush, loneliness and frustration ... until her 7-year-old brother wanders away while under her care and she's propelled on a late-night journey through the reality of the city to find him; from Image Entertainment ... "Chop Shop" (2007) is a heartbreaking drama that reveals the underbelly of life in New York's Iron Triangle: Set in the sprawling junkyards on the outskirts of Queens, 12-year-old street orphan Alejandro struggles to make a better life for himself and his older sister by working in one of the hundreds of auto-body repair shops; from Koch Lorber. (Posted July 8)

For the Family:
"Batman: Gotham Knight" (2005) is the third DC Universe animated original PG-13 movie, timed for release with the much anticipated theatrical release of "The Dark Knight." The DVD Weaves six interlocking stories that reveal Bruce Wayne's journey to the Dark Knight, from Warner ... "The Batman: The Complete Fifth Season" is a two-disc set with 13 episodes, $19.98 from Warner ... "Shaggy and Scooby-Doo Get a Clue Volume 2" packages four episodes of the CW Kids series, $14.97 from Warner ... "Teen Titans: The Complete Fifth Season" is a two-disc set with 13 episodes, $19.98 from Warner. (Posted July 8)

Special Interest:
Music, Music, Music: photo "Punk's Not Dead" is a 2007 documentary that takes an era-by-era journey to put punk rock's non-conformist reputation under the knife. Officially sanctioned by the bands in the film who donated personal photos, fliers and home videos, "Punk's Not Dead" follows the evolution of punk music from its anarchic roots, to its use as a corporate marketing tool and acceptance into popular culture, to its reinvention in today's underground scene. Features such bands as The Adicts, Bad Religion, Black Flag, The Damned, The God Awfuls, Good Charlotte, Green Day, Minor Threat, NOFX, The Offspring, Pennywise, The Ramones, Rancid, Social Distortion, Stiff Little Fingers, The Subhumans, Sum 41, UK Subs, The Used, and many, many more; $16.95 from MVD ... "Sheryl Crow: Live" (2008) is a live concert originally broadcast over two nights on PBS' Soundstage seres; features 17 songs recorded in High Definition and 5.1 Surround; $19.99 from Koch Vision ... "Bill Monroe: Father of Bluegrass Music" (1993) is an intimate and detailed portrait of this unique musical innovator; features performances by Bill Monroe & the Blue Grass Boys, Lester Flatt, Emmylou Harris, Paul McCartney, the Osborne Brothers, Dolly Parton, Ricky Skaggs, Marty Stuart, John Hartford and a once-in-a-lifetime Blue Grass Boys reunion featuring Del McCoury, Chubby Wise and Bill Keith; $19.95 from MVD. (Posted July 8)

Also due this week: "Nature Boy Ric Flair: The Definitive Collection" (2008), a comprehensive career retrospective of the 16-time World Wrestling World Champion, highlighting all the rivalries, Flair's final match at WrestleMania XXIV, more; in a three-disc set for $34.95 from World Wrestling Entertainment/Genius Products. (Posted July 8)

Godfather Goes Blue:
photo Paramount Home Entertainment has announced a September 23 release for "The Godfather: The Coppola Restoration," a meticulous restoration of "The Godfather" and "The Godfather: Part II" by Paramount Pictures and Francis Ford Coppola. Both films have been fully restored and will arrive on DVD and Blu-ray, along with a newly remastered version of "The Godfather: Part III." All three films will be available individually ($19.99 each) or in a five-DVD collection ($72.99) or four-disc Blu-ray collection ($119.99); each set is loaded with a host of all-new special features.

"The Godfather" and "The Godfather: Part II" underwent extensive frame-by-frame examination and restoration using state-of-the-art digital technology in this historic preservation effort, which required more than a year to complete. Robert A. Harris of the Film Preserve supervised the restoration under the direction of Coppola and cinematographer Gordon Willis. Harris' restoration credits include "Lawrence of Arabia," "Spartacus," "Vertigo" and "Rear Window," among others.

New special features -- created by Kim Aubry, founder of Zoetrope Aubry Productions -- explore the complexities of the restoration process and provides new insights and perspectives about how the film almost didn't come to pass as we know it. "The Masterpiece That Almost Wasn't" relates the unlikely events, intrigue, allegiances and luck that put together the unknown director with the "unwanted" cast and contains interviews with most of the living players and many of the films' admirers. Other featurettes include "... When the Shooting Stopped" and "Godfather World," which take a look at "The Godfather's" influence on popular culture today. Each film includes a commentary by Coppola. See September's DVD release schedule for disc contents (Posted July 1)

DVD Collectibles:
"Mishima: A Life in Four Chapters" (1985) is Paul Schrader's visually stunning, structurally audacious collage-like portrait of acclaimed Japanese author and playwright Yuko Mishima (played by Ken Ogata). The film investigates the inner turmoil and contradictions of a man who attempted an impossible harmony between self, art, and society. Taking place on Mishima's last day, when he famously committed public seppuku (ritual suicide), the film is punctuated by extended flashbacks to the writer's life as well as gloriously stylized evocations of his fictional works. With its rich cinematography by John Bailey, exquisite sets and costumes by Eiko Ishioka, and unforgettable, highly influential score by Philip Glass, "Mishima: A Life in Four Chapters" is a sincere tribute to its subject and a bold, investigative work of art in its own right. In an exquisite two-disc set loaded with extras from The Criterion Collection. (Posted July 1)

"Aria" (1987) is an anthology of 10 short films directed by 10 acclaimed directors; each piece is a visual riff on a musical aria. The directors: Robert Altman, Bruce Beresford, Bill Bryden, Jean-Luc Godard, Derek Jarman, Franc Roddam, Nicolas Roeg, Ken Russell, Charles Sturridge, Julien Temple. The stars: Bridget Fonda, Theresa Russell, Tilda Swinton, Elizabeth Hurley, John Hurt, Buck Henry, Beverly D'Angelo, more. The vignettes: ranging from the pretentious to the sublime. From Warner Home Video. (Posted July 1)

"Heathers" gets the special treatment from Anchor Bay for a 20th High School Reunion Edition. The 1989 film, starring Winona Ryder, Christian Slater, Shannen Doherty, Lisanne Falk and Kim Walker, is a classic and subversive teen high school satire. The two-disc set features a newly remastered version of the film as well as a "Return to Westerburg High" documentary that revisits the high school where "Heathers" was filmed, with new interviews with director Michael Lehmann, writer Daniel Waters, and producer Denise Di Novi; a "Swatch Dogs and Diet Coke Heads" featurette; more. (Posted July 1)

From TV to Video:
"Anglo-Saxon Attitudes" (1992) is a two-disc set with three episodes of the U.K. miniseries that skewers British social and academic hypocrisy, $39.99 from Acorn Media ... "The Closer: Season Three" is a four-disc set with 14 episodes, $39.98 from Warner ... "Rebus, Set 3" is a four-disc set with four mysteries centering on maverick detective John Rebus, from Ian Rankin's best-selling detective novels, $49.99 from Acorn Media ... "The Streets of San Francisco: The Second Season, Volume One" (1973) is a three-disc set with 11 episodes, $42.99 from Paramount ... "30 days: Season Two" is a two-disc set with six episodes, $29.95 from Arts Alliance America ... "'Til Death Do Us Part" is a three-disc set with 13 episodes of the TV series that lets director John Waters run amok with a campy marriage of madcap melodrama and macabre humor; $29.98 from BCI ... "Walker Texas Ranger: The Fifth Season" (1997-98) is a seven-disc set with 25 episodes, $54.99 from Paramount. (Posted July 1)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
In "Get Smart's Bruce and Lloyd Out of Control" (2008), starring Masi Oka, Jayma Mays and Nate Torrence, Maxwell Smart's techie friends from the hit big-screen adaptation of the TV series run amok; the direct-to-video feature is also available on Blu-ray Disc; from Warner ... "Shotgun Stories" (2007) follows a blood feud between two sets of half brothers in the cotton fields and back roads of Arkansas; stars Michael Shannon, Douglas Ligon, Barlow Jacobs, Natalie Canerday, Glenda Pannell and Lynnsee Provence; from Liberation/Genius Products. (Posted July 1)

On the Indie Front:
In the wacky "Sex and Death 101" (2008), Simon Baker stars as a successful executive whose life is turned upside down by an e-mail that includes the names of everyone he's had sex with and ever will have sex with; Winona Ryder stars as "Death Nell," a mysterious femme fatale who becomes an urban folk hero when she targets men guilty of sex crimes against women. Also stars Patton Oswalt, Mindy Cohn, Leslie Bibb, Julie Bowen, Sophie Monk, Dash Mihok and Neil Flynn; from Anchor Bay. (Posted July 1)

Every year since 1969, music lovers have flocked to the opulent Gilded Age mansions of Newport, Rhode Island, for an international festival of chamber music. Filmed live at the 2007 festival, "The 2007 Newport Music Festival Connoisseur's Collection" includes the Newport debut of 20-year-old American pianist Adam Golka, music by Chopin, Lizst, and Mozart, and an all-Schumann program; approximately 15 hours on 10 DVDs, $124.99 from Acorn Media ... "The Royal Diaries" (2000) features three documentaries that view the world through the eyes of three very different teenage princesses: "Cleopatra VII: Daughter of the Nile, Egypt, 57 B.C.," "Isabel: Jewel of Castilla, Spain, 1466" and "Elizabeth I: Red Rose of the House of Tudor, England, 1544"; based on the Scholastic book series; $14.95 from Genius Products ... In "Dogtown: Second Chance," National Geographic teams up with the top-notch veterinarians and trainers at Best Friend's Sanctuary to learn what it takes to rehabilitate abandoned, abused and problem pets and find them loving homes; $19.98 from Warner ... "Stonehenge Decoded" is a National Geographic special that transports viewers back in time to decipher the most enduring archaeological mystery of all time -- who built Stonehenge and why; $19.98 from Warner ... "Wild China" (2005) is a BBC documentary on the most populous country in the world, just in time for the Beijing Summer Olympics; $29.98 from Warner ... "Yankee Stadium: Baseball's Cathedral" (2005) is an MLB official DVD documentary commemorating the most storied ballpark in America; $26.99 from Shout! Factory. (Posted July 1)

Back to top


More News: January -- June 2008

More News: July -- December 2007

More News: January -- June 2007

More News: July -- December 2006

More News: January -- June 2006

More News: July -- December 2005

More News: January -- June 2005

More News: July -- December 2004

More News: January -- June 2004

More News: July -- Dec. 2003

More News: Jan. -- June 2003

More News: 2002

More News: 2001

More News: 2000


| Contents/Site Map | Resources | Features | Calendar |
| Sell-Through | Reviews | Links | Widescreen | Privacy Statement |


E-mail: mail@cyberpod.com
January 1, 2009
OnVideo News (ISSN 1094-3676).