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More News: July -- December 2004

DVD Collectibles:
Celebrate the new year with Luis Bunuel's "Un Chien Andalou" (1929). A landmark in the history of cinema, this is the surrealistic masterpiece based on an exchange of dreams between the Spanish duo of Luis Bunuel and Salvador Dali. Extras: Interview with Bunuel's son, Juan-Luis; "Epilogue": Dali & Bunuel featurette; commentary by Surrealism expert Stephen Barber; booklet containing an abridged transcript of Luis Bunuel's 1953 address: "Mystery of Cinema." From Facets Video for $19.95. (Posted December 27)

From TV to Video:
Due this week: "Battlestar Galactica: The Miniseries," $27.98 from Universal ... "John Le Carre's A Murder of Quality," 1991 British TV adaptation of the Le Carre novel, starring Denholm Elliott, Glenda Jackson and Christian Bale, from A&E Home Video ... "King of the Hill Season Three," a three-disc set with 24 episodes, $39.98 from Fox ... "Rumpole of the Bailey, Set 1," a four-disc set with all 12 episodes from Seasons 1 and 2, $69.95 from A&E Home Video ... "Rumpole of the Bailey, Set 2," a four-disc set with all 12 episodes from Seasons 3 and 4, $69.95 from A&E Home Video ... "Sapphire and Steel: The Complete Series" (1979-1982), a six-disc set of the British precursor to "The X-Files," starring Joanna Lumley and David McCallum, $99.95 from A&E Home Video... "Sex and the City: Season Six, Part Two," a three-disc set with the final eight, uncut episodes, $49.99 from HBO Video ... "Tour of Duty: The Second Season," a four-disc set with 16 episodes, $49.95 from Columbia TriStar. (Posted December 27)

Coming Soon:
Due February 15 is the acclaimed "The Motorcycle Diaries," directed by Walter Salles and starring Gael Garcia Bernal, Rodrigo de la Serna and Mia Maestro in the inspiring real-life story of Ernesto "Che" Guevara and Alberto Granado's brave motorcycle trip across the complex human and social topography of Latin America, from Universal. (Posted December 20)

DVD Collectibles:
Home Vision Entertainment will release this week Joan Micklin Silver's "Hester Street" (1975), the touching tale of a young Jewish woman who comes to America in the 1890s only to discover that her husband has given up the ways of the old country, and taken up with a new girlfriend, and a new life. The film, in a new digital transfer enhanced for 16:9 televisions and in English and Yiddish with optional English subtitles, stars Carol Kane and Stephen Keats ... Also from Home Vision comes Elaine May's crime thriller "Mikey & Nicky" (1977), starring John Cassavetes, Peter Falk and Ned Beatty, restored with copious extras. (Posted December 20)

From TV to Video:
Due this week: "The 4400," a two-disc set, under $20 from Paramount ... "The Simpsons Complete Fifth Season," a four-disc set with 22 episodes, $49.98 from Fox ... "Star Trek: Voyager -- The Complete Seventh Season," a seven-disc set with 24 episodes, under $100 from Paramount. (Posted December 20)

Special Interest:
"Ruth Duckworth: A Life in Clay" is a 2002 documentary on the leading ceramist Ruth Duckworth (83-years-old and still working), who's recognized for her creative influence on the art of ceramics and whose work graces museums and private collections around the world. From Home Vision Entertainment, $14.95. (Posted December 20)

Coming Soon:
Due February 1 is the biopic "Ray," starring Jamie Fox, from Universal; Spike Lee's latest, "She Hate Me," starring Anthony Mackie, Kerry Washington, Ellen Barkin, Monica Bellucci, Jim Brown, Ossie Davis, Jamel Debbouze, Brian Dennehy, Woody Harrelson, Ling Bai, Lonette McKee, Paula Jai Parker, Dania Ramirez, Q-Tip and John Turturro, arrives February 1 from Columbia TriStar; On February 8 the smash animated hit "Shark Tale" will arrive from DreamWorks, loaded with extras; also on that day steamy love story "P.S.," starring Laura Linney, Topher Grace, Gabriel Byrne, Marcia Gay Harden, Paul Rudd and Lois Smith, will arrive from Columbia TriStar; on February 20 David O. Russell's black comedy "I Heart Huckabees," starring Jason Schwartzman, Isabelle Huppert, Dustin Hoffman, Lily Tomlin, Jude Law, Mark Wahlberg and Naomi Watts, will be released by Fox; and, on March 1, Warner will release the creepy "The Exorcist: The Beginning," directed by Renny Harlin and starring Stellan Skarsgard. (Posted December 13)

DVD Collectibles:
Due this week is the "Rocky Anthology," a six-disc set with all five "Rocky" films (with high-definition transfers and DTS sound) with a bonus disc featuring an A&E Biography, "Sylvester Stallone: The Rocky Road to the Top," $62.96 from MGM ... Famed "noir" director Kinji Fukasaku's "The Yakuza Papers (Battles Without Honor and Humanity)" is a six-disc boxed set ($99.95) from Home Vision Entertainment. In the wake of The Bomb, ex-soldier Shozo Hirono (Bunta Sugawara) joins a Hiroshima yakuza gang -- the Japanese equivalent of the Mafia -- and then the shootings, slashings, betrayals, and scheming begin. Premiering a year after "The Godfather," "The Yakuza Papers" also broke boxoffice records and spawned sequels (four), but, in contrast to "The Godfather," it took a ruthlessly de-romanticized view of the underworld. Based on an actual gang boss' memoirs, the series is available for the first time in the U.S., on the 30th anniversary of the original theatrical release ... And don't forget "The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King Special Extended DVD Edition," a four-disc set ($29.95) loaded with extras including 50 minutes of new and extended scenes, new interviews with cast and crew, and much, much more; and "The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King Collector's DVD Set," a five-disc set ($69.95) housed in a Minas Tirith polystone keepsake box with all the Extended Edition bonus material plus a fifth disc with "Creating The Lord of the Rings Symphony" by Howard Shore; from New Line. (Posted December 13)

From TV to Video:
"Everybody Loves Raymond: The Complete Second Season" is a five-disc set with 25 episodes, $44.98 from HBO Video ... "Family Guy: The Freakin' Sweet Collection" highlights five of the best episodes from Seasons 2 and 3, $19.98 from Fox ... "Fat Albert and the Cosby Kids" includes five episodes from the TV series, from Urbanworks Entertainment ... "Newlyweds; Nick & Jessica -- The Complete First Season" is at two-disc set with 10 episodes, under $20 from Paramount ... "Quantum Leap -- The Complete Second Season," a three-disc set, $59.98 from Universal ... "Reba: The Complete First Season" is a three-disc set, $39.98. from Fox ... "Star Trek the Original Series: The Complete Third Season" is a seven-disc set with 24 episodes, packed in a cool plastic pod, priced around $100 from Paramount. (Posted December 13)

Coming Soon:
Due December 28 on DVD for the first time is "Un Chien Andalou" (1929), the landmark film and surrealistic masterpiece based on an exchange of dreams between the Spanish duo of Luis Bunuel and Salvador Dali, from Facets Video for $19.95 ... On January 18 get ready to catch football drama "Friday Night Lights," starring Billy Bob Thornton, Lucas Black, Garrett Hedlund, Derek Luke, Jay Hernandez and Lee Jackson, from Warner ... Also on that day Columbia TriStar will release the Holocaust drama "Rosenstrasse," starring Katja Riemann, Maria Schrader, Martin Feifel, Jurgen Vogel and Jutta Lampe ... On January 25 Columbia TriStar will release "Head in the Clouds," a romantic melodrama starring Charlize Theron, Penelope Cruz, Stuart Townsend and Thomas Kretschmann ... On February 15 horrific thrills come home with "Saw," starring Leigh Whannell, Cary Elwes, Danny Glover, Ken Leung, Dina Meyer, Shawnee Smith and Monica Potter, from Lions Gate ... Comedy "Taxi," starring Queen Latifah and Jimmy Fallon, toots its way to home video, from Fox on February 15 ... and, from New Yorker on that day comes the intriguing documentary "My Architect: A Son's Journey," from New Yorker. (Posted December 6)

DVD Collectibles:
There's a host of goodies this week just ripe for the wrapping. First off there's the "George Stevens Centennial Classics" collection of seven discs celebrating the 100th anniversary of the birth of the great director. New to DVD are "Gunga Din," "I Remember Mama," "George Stevens: D-Day to Berlin" and "George Stevens: A Filmmaker's Journey," $19.97 each (see separate listings this week); Warner will also re-release "Alice Adams" and "Woman of the Year" at $19.97 each and the "Giant Special Edition" two-disc set for $26.99. (Warner); all with extras ... Another great cinema name also gets his due this week when Warner releases "The Buster Keaton Collection," a two-disc set with three Keaton films: Silents "The Cameraman" (1928) and "Spite Marriage" (1929) and Keaton's first talkie, "Free and Easy" (1930), $23.98, loaded with extras ... For more modern excitement there's Warner's remarkable 10-disc DVD set "The Ultimate Matrix Collection," featuring all three "Matrix" films together for the first time with a newly remastered picture and sound for "The Matrix." Also included is the companion piece "The Matrix Revisited" and the best-selling "The Animatrix," plus five entirely new DVDs packed solid with brand-new supplemental materials that encompass every aspect of the Matrix universe for a total of 35 Hours of extras overall. Suggested retail price is $79.92. Warner will also release "The Ultimate Matrix Collection Limited Edition" that throws in a limited-edition Neo mini-bust figurine and an 80-page Collector's Book, for $129.92 SRP.

From The Criterion Collection comes the classic Fritz Lang thriller "M" in a special-edition double-disc set. The 1931 film, starring Peter Lorre, features a restored high-definition digital transfer and tons of extras including commentary by German film scholar Eric Rentschler, author of "The Ministry of Illusion: Nazi Cinema and Its Afterlife," and Anton Kaes, author of the BFI Film Classics volume on "M"; Claude Chabrol's "M le Maudit," a short film inspired by "M"; a booklet featuring an essay by film critic Stanley Kauffmann, a 1963 interview with Lang, and the script for a missing scene; and much, much more. Also from Criterion is Cecil B. De Mille's 1931 "The King of Kings" in a special-edition double-disc set. "The King of Kings" is the Greatest Story Ever Told as only Cecil B. DeMille could tell it: Working with the biggest budget in the history of Hollywood at the time, DeMille spun the life and Passion of Christ into one of the highest-grossing films of all time. Criterion's set includes restored digital transfers of two versions of the film: DeMille's 155-minute roadshow version and his subsequent 112-minute general release, featuring new Dolby Digital 5.1 scores by composers Donald Sosin (1927 version) and Timothy J. Tikker (1931 version), plus the original score for the 1931 release by Hugo Riesenfeld; the set is also loaded with extras.

The folks at Disney have released Wave 4 of their "Walt Disney Treasures." Each of these amazing two-disc volumes comes in a collectible tin, priced at $32.99 each: "Walt Disney Treasures: The Mickey Mouse Club (Week One)" showcases one of the most famous television programs in the world: The first week's worth of hour-long shows that aired Monday to Friday on the ABC Television Network. Here are the famous Mouseketeers, the mouse-ear hats, the music, the skits, and more. The DVD programs are presented as the show was, with Monday's Fun With Music Day, Tuesday's Guest Star Day, Wednesday's Anything Can Happen Day, Thursday's Circus Day and Friday's Talent Round-Up Day. Bonus materials include a retrospective with film historian Leonard Maltin and the original Mouseketeers; merchandising and publicity materials, and much more. "Walt Disney Treasures: Mickey Mouse in Black and White (Volume Two)" features 21 of Mickey's incredibly entertaining black and white shorts from 1928 through 1935; loaded with extras. "Walt Disney Treasures: The Complete Pluto (Volume One)" collects 28 of the animated "Pluto" cartoon shorts into one collection; loaded with extras.

Two modern films that caused quite a stir when released theatrically come to DVD this week: "Wild at Heart Special Edition" (1990), directed by David Lynch and starring Nicolas Cage, Laura Dern, Willem Dafoe, Isabella Rossellini, Harry Dean Stanton, Crispin Glover and Diane Ladd, with the transfer supervised by Lynch ... and Brian De Palma's iconoclastic "Hi, Mom! (1970), starring Robert De Niro, Jennifer Salt and Allen Garfield; both from MGM. (Posted December 6)

Buzzin the 'B's:
"Heart of America" (2003) is a chilling look at today's high schools as it follows the last day of the school term when two seniors with a murder/suicide pact plan to take weapons to school to exact revenge on their abusers, starring Jurgen Prochnow, Michael Pare, Patrick Muldoon, Maria Conchita Alonso, Clint Howard, Elisabeth Moss and Kett Turton, from MTI Home Video on DVD and VHS. (Posted December 6)

From TV to Video:
Due this week are: "Carnivale: The Complete First Season," $99.98 from HBO Video ... "Crusade: The Complete Series," a four-disc set with 13 episodes of the "Babylon 5" spinoff, $59.98 from Warner ... "The Flintstones: The Complete Second Season," a four-disc set with 32 episodes, $44.98 from Warner ... "Gilmore Girls: The Complete Second Season," a six-disc set with 22 episodes, $59.98 from Warner ... "M*A*S*H Television Season Seven," a three-disc set with 26 episodes, $39.98 from Fox ... "Star Trek: Voyager -- The Complete Sixth Season," a seven-disc set with 26 episodes, under $100 from Paramount ... and "24 Season Three," a seven-disc set with 24 episodes, $69.98 from Fox. (Posted December 6)

For the Kids:
Due this week: "Kim Possible: The Villain Files," featuring four animated episodes from the Disney Channel series, $19.99 DVD and $14.99 VHS from Disney ... "That's So Raven: Supernaturally Stylish," featuring four episodes from the Disney Channel series starring Raven Simone, $19.99 DVD and $14.99 VHS from Disney ... "Top Cat: The Complete Series," a four-disc set, $44.98 from Warner ... "Garfield and Friends: Volume 2" is a compilation of 24 episodes from the first two years of the Saturday morning cartoon series, in a three-disc set for $39.98 from Fox ... "Gargoyles: The Complete First Season," a special 10th anniversary two-disc set that features the complete first season of the animated show, $29.99 from Disney ... and the final two volumes of the Power Rangers Dinothunder series, "Power Rangers Dinothunder Volume 4: Collision Course" and "Power Rangers Dinothunder Volume 5: Triassic Triumph," $19.99 DVD and $14.99 VHS each. (Posted December 6)

Special Interest:
Billed as "A sizzling biography of one of America's hottest dishes," "Julia Child! America's Favorite Chef" is an American Masters Special on the cook who revolutionized American cooking and eating habits, on $19.95 DVD and VHS from WGBH Boston Video. (Posted December 6)

Coming Soon:
Due December 28 from DreamWorks is "Ghost in the Shell 2: Innocence," acclaimed writer-director Mamoru Oshii's follow up to his cult anime hit "Ghost in the Shell" ... Due February 1 is the long-awaited "Degrassi Junior High -- Season 1," featuring 13 episodes for $39.95, from WGBH Boston Video. (Posted November 29)

From TV to Video:
Due this week: "Lost in Space Season Two: Volume Two," a four-disc set with 16 episodes, $39.98 from Fox ... "Northen Exposure -- The Complete Second Season," a two-disc set, $59.98 from Universal ... "The Protectors," a four-disc set with 26 episodes of the 70s cult classic featuring a trio of British crimefighters, $79.95 from A&E Home Video ... and "Tru Calling Season One," a six-disc set with 20 episodes, $59.98 from Fox. (Posted November 29)

Coming Soon:
The much-in-demand "Miami Vice" is finally coming to DVD with the release on February 8 of Season One, a three-disc set, remixed in 5.1 Surround, featuring an introduction by creator-director Michael Mann, "The Vibe of Vice" featurette, a "Back-Story: Miami Vice" featurette, and featurettes on the series' fashion and music, from Universal for $59.98 ... Theatrical releases just announced include flop comedy "Surviving Christmas," starring Ben Affleck, James Gandolfini, Christina Applegate and Catherine O'Hara, due December 21 from DreamWorks; "Superbabies: Baby Geniuses 2," a very silly kids film starring Jon Voight and Scott Baio, on $19.96 VHS and DVD, due January 4 from Columbia TriStar; On January 18 Lions gate will release comedy "The Cookout," starring Ja Rule, Tim Meadows and Jenifer Lewis; Paramount will release "Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow," starring Gwyneth Paltrow, Jude Law, Giovanni Ribisi, Michael Gambon, Ling Bai and Angelina Jolie, on January 25; On February 1 Miramax will release the recent boxoffice hit horror-shocker "The Grudge," starring Sarah Michelle Gellar; Romantic comedy "Shall We Dance?" starring Richard Gere, Jennifer Lopez, Susan Sarandon and Stanley Tucci will arrive February 1 from Miramax; On February 15 New Line will release Hilary Duff romantic drama "Raise Your Voice"; and, on March 8 Buena Vista will release "Ladder 49," starring Joaquin Phoenix and John Travolta. (Posted November 22)

DVD Collectibles:
Radley Metzger is a legend in the production and distribution of erotic films as well as a distinguished director whose trademarks include lavish set design, witty screenplays, unusual camera techniques and stories of sexual decadence and seduction. First Run Features has put together three of his art-house outings -- "Therese and Isabelle," "The Alley Cats" and "Camille 2000" -- together in a boxed set, "The Radley Metzger Collection: Volume 1," for $49.95, available now ... Also due this week is "Tanner on Tanner," the follow-up to "Tanner '88," from Robert Altman and satirist Garry Trudeau, directed by Robert Altman and starring Michael Murphy, Cynthia Nixon and Pamela Reed, on DVD from Showtime. (Posted November 22)

From TV to Video:
The long awaited Seinfeld makes its way to video this week with the release of "Seinfeld Volume 1," a four-disc set with all 18 episodes from Seasons One and Two, and "Seinfeld Volume 2," a four-disc set with all 22 episodes from Season Three, both sets loaded with extras and selling at $49.95 each, and the "Seinfeld Deluxe Holiday Gift Set," which contains "Seinfeld Volume 1" and "Seinfeld Volume 2" in a boxed set that includes a limited edition script with handwritten notes from Larry David, exclusive "Monk's Diner" salt & pepper shakers and collectible playing cards; $119.95; all from Columbia TriStar. Other releases this week: "Boy Meets World Season Two," a three-disc set with 23 episodes, $49.99 from Buena Vista ... "Dark Shadows DVD Collection 15," a four-disc set with 40 episodes, $59.98 from MPI Home Video ... "Golden Girls Season One," a three-disc set with 25 episodes, $49.99 from Buena Vista ... "Home Improvement Season One," a three-disc set with 24 episodes, $49.99 from Buena Vista ... "Lizzie McGuire Boxed Set: Vol. 1," a four-disc set with 22 episodes, $49.99 from Buena Vista ... "The Protectors," a four-disc set with 26 episodes of the 70s cult classic featuring a trio of British crimefighters, $79.95 from A&E Home Video ... "The Ranch," a 2004 telefilm starring Amy Madigan and Nicki Micheaux in a look at the steamy and gritty lives of women in a working brothel, on VHS and R-rated and unrated DVD, from MGM ... "A Touch of Frost Season 4,"> a three-disc set of the popular British detective series; $49.98 from MPI Home Video. (Posted November 22)

Buzzin the 'B's:
"Unstoppable" is a 2004 spy thriller about a former Special Ops soldier -- mistaken for a CIA agent -- who, after being kidnapped and injected with a mind-controlling drug, escapes and goes in search of the villains, starring Wesley Snipes, from Columbia TriStar ... "Doing Hard Time" is a 2004 revenge flick about a man who goes behind bars to deal out justice to the men who accidentally killed his 7-year-old son during a drug-deal-gone-bad, starring Boris Kodjoe, Giancarlo Esposito and Jaszmin Lexis, from Columbia TriStar. (Posted November 22)

For the Kids:
"As Told by Ginger: The Wedding Frame" contains three animated episodes from the popular Nick show, from Paramount ... "In Search of Santa" is a direct-to-video animated feature about two penguin princess sisters, Crystal and Lucinda, who set out on a journey to find the elusive Santa Claus, featuring the voices of Hilary Duff and her sister Haylie Duff, from Miramax on $19.99 DVD and $14.99 VHS. (Posted November 22)

Special Interest:
Manga Entertainment will release this week the 12-part video comic series "The Guyver," about a powerful mechanized warrior who must defend humankind against the Zoanoids, devastating bio-weapons created by an ancient alien race's gruesome genetic experiments, in a two-disc boxed set for $39.98 ... "Ray Charles Celebrates a Gospel Christmas With the Voices of Jubilation!" is a 90-minute performance by the legendary singer -- his last filmed live performance -- originally released in October 2003, on DVD from Urbanworks Entertainment. (Posted November 22)

Coming Soon:
Seven new releases from Columbia TriStar: November 23: "Zhou Yu's Train," a romantic drama starring Gong Li, Tony Leung Ka-Fai amd Sun Honglei; November 30: biodrama "Bobby Jones: Stroke of Genius" starring James Caviezel, Claire Forlani, Jeremy Northam and Malcolm McDowell; December 7: Chinese actioner "Warriors of Heaven and Earth," starring Jiang Wen, Nakai Kiichi, Zhao Wei and Wang Xueqi; December 21: South African actioner "Stander," starring Thomas Jane and Ashley Taylor; January 11: John Sayles' political thriller "Silver City," starring Richard Dreyfuss, Chris Cooper, Thora Birch, Maria Bello, Miguel Ferrer, Daryl Hannah, Kris Kristofferson, Mary Kay Place and Billy Zane; and gay comedy "A Touch of Pink," starring Jimi Mistry, Kyle MacLachlan, Suleka Mathew and Kristen Holden-Ried; January 18: exciting sci-fi thriller "The Forgotten," starring Julianne Moore, Dominic West, Gary Sinise, Alfre Woodard, Linus Roache and Anthony Edwards; the DVD includes two versions of the film: the original theatrical cut plus an extended cut with deleted scenes and an alternate ending. (Posted November 15)

DVD Collectibles:
The work of two great American artists merge in "Short Cuts," maverick director Robert Altman's kaleidoscopic adaptation of the stories of renowned author Raymond Carver. The critically-acclaimed 1993 film interweaves the stories of 22 characters as they struggle to find solace and meaning in contemporary Los Angeles. The extraordinary ensemble cast includes Tim Robbins, Julianne Moore, Robert Downey, Jr., Jack Lemmon, and Jennifer Jason Leigh-all giving fearless performances in what is one of Altman's most compassionate creations. The film makes its DVD premiere in a feature-filled two-disc set from The Criterion Collection ... Criterion will also release this week the definitive version(s) of Ingmar Bergman's "Fanny and Alexander," the legendary filmmaker's warmest and most autobiographical film. Criterion's five-disc set presents not only the U.S. theatrical version -- recipient of the 1984 Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film, as well as three other Oscars -- but also, for the first time on home video in the U.S. the original five-hour television version. Also included is Bergman's own feature-length documentary "The Making of Fanny and Alexander"; $59.95. A second, two-disc edition will include the Academy Award-winning U.S. theatrical version with commentary by Peter Cowie, along with a bonus disc of extras; $29.95 ... Warner will release this week the delightful "The Iron Giant" in a special edition loaded with extras. This grown-up fairy tale for kids and adults -- about a friendly metal giant from outer space that arrives on Earth -- was sorely overlooked at the boxoffice but should be in every movie fan's collection. (Posted November 15)

From TV to Video:
"The Andy Griffith Show: The Complete First Season," a four-disc set with 32 episodes, under $30 from Paramount ... "Buck Rogers in the 25th Century: The Complete Series," a five-disc set with 32 episodes of the 1979 series starring Gil Gerard and Erin Gray, $89.98 from Universal ... "Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Seven," a six-disc set, $59.98 from Fox ... "The Commish -- Season One," 22, $59.98 from Anchor Bay ... "Frasier: The Complete Final Season," a four-disc set with 23 episodes, under $40 from Paramount ... "The Kids in the Hall: The Complete Season Two," a four-disc set, $59.95 from A&E Home Video ... "Smallville: The Complete Third Season," a six-disc set with 22 episodes, $59.98 from Warner. Also on video this week: A&E Home Video will release the 1978 British Thames Television production of the Royal Shakespeare Company's version of "Macbeath," with Judi Dench starring as Lady Macbeth and Ian McKellen as Macbeth, on DVD for $24.95 ... "He Sees You When You're Sleeping" is a 2002 telefilm about a self-absorbed stock broker killed in a freak golf course accident who must perform an act of selflessness back on Earth in order to get into heaven, from Ardustry Home Entertainment on DVD. (Posted November 15)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
"Simple Revenge" (2003) is a thriller about an amoral woman who will do anything to get what she wants, including sleeping with her boss' husband, committing murder, and then framing the detectives who investigate the case, from MTI Home Video on VHS and DVD ... "Lethal Dose" (2003) is a sci-fi thriller about a group of political activists who get more than they bargained for when they raid a lab that experiments on animals and in turn become lab rats, from First Look Home Entertainment on VHS and DVD. (Posted November 15)

For the Kids:
Paramount will release videos of two Nick standbys this week: "All Grown Up: O' Brother," two animated episodes of the grown-up rugrats, $9.95 VHS and $16.99 DVD (with 2 bonus episodes); and "Jimmy Neutron: Attack of the Twonkies," a recemtly aired double-length episode, $9.95 VHS and $16.99 DVD (with three bonus episodes) ... "Kangaroo Jack: G'Day U.S.A.!" (2004) is a direct-to-video animated sequel to 2003's "Kangaroo Jack," from Warner... Two nifty releases from Walt Disney this week: "A Wrinkle in Time," a live-action adaptation of Madeleine L'Engle's best-selling and Newbery Award-winning novel about three kids who go on a cosmic quest to find a missing astrophysicist, on $24.99 DVD and $19.99 VHS; and "Eloise at Christmastime" a 2003 telefilm featuring Sofia Vassilieva as Eloise and Julie Andrews as the Nanny in an inimitable Christmas adventure, on $24.99 DVD and $19.99 VHS ... "First Snow of Winter" is a 1998 animated adventure that charts the heartwarming odyssey of a lively young duckling named Sean who becomes separated from his family during the annual Southern migration, featuring the voices of Tim Curry, Ashley Johnson, and Miriam Margoyles, from Columbia TriStar on $9.95 DVD ... Columbia TriStar will also release this week "The Wubbulous World of Dr. Seuss: The Cat's Fun House," the latest installment from the Nick TV series; the VHS edition contains two episodes while the DVD has three; both sell for $9.95. (Posted November 15)

Special Interest:
Paramount will release "Richard Pryor: I Ain't Dead Yet, #*%$#@!! Uncensored" (2004), an hour-long tribute to the entertainer featuring Dave Chappelle, Margaret Cho, Jamie Foxx, Whoopi Goldberg, Steve Harvey, Chris Rock, Denis Leary, Robin Williams and more ... World Wrestling Entertainment has released three harrowing wrestling videos: "The Rise and Fall of ECW (Extreme Championship Wrestling)" ($14.95 VHS and $29.95 DVD), "Unforgiven," featuring seven feet of terror and 326 pounds of pure evil embodied in Kane ($19.95 VHS and $24.95 DVD), and "Summer Slam: Let the Games Begin" ($19.95 VHS and $24.95 DVD) ... On a gentler note, Buena Vista will release "Tiger Woods: The Authorized DVD Collection," a three-disc set that traces the life and career of the champion golfer, $49.99. (Posted November 15)

Coming Soon:
Due December 7 from Miramax is "Infernal Affairs" (2002), a Hong Kong actioner that's already become a cult film, starring Tony Leung, Andy Lau, Anthony Wong and Eric Tsan, on DVD only ... The delightfully funny zombie romp "Shaun of the Dead" arrives on $23.98 VHS and DVD on December 21 from Universal ... Sour comedy "Little Black Book," starring Brittany Murphy, Holly Hunter, Kathy Bates and Ron Livingston, arrives on VHS and DVD on January 4 from Columbia TriStar ... Also on that day Columbia TriStar will release director Stacy Peralta's surfing documentary "Riding Giants" on DVD only ... On January 11 Paramount will release silly comedy "Without a Paddle," starring Dax Shepard, Matthew Lillard and Seth Green, on VHS rental and DVD ... New Line will release on January 18 thriller "Cellular," starring Kim Basinger, Chris Evans and William H. Macy, on VHS rental and DVD ... Another weak comedy, "First Daughter," starring Katie Holmes, will arrive on $19.98 VHS and DVD from Fox on January 25 ... Baseball spoof "Mr. 3000," starring Bernie Mac, Angela Bassett, Chris Noth and Paul Sorvino, swings to $24.99 VHS and DVD from Buena Vista on February 1 ... Also on that day Universal will release director Mira Nair's version of William Makepeace Thackeray's "Vanity Fair," starring Reese Witherspoon as Becky Sharp, on $23.98 VHS and DVD ... And, on February 8, New Line will release Stephen Fry's adaptation of Evelyn Waugh's "Vile Bodies," here titled "Bright Young Things." (Posted November 8)

DVD Collectibles:
Some great films are due on DVD this week. First up is "Gone With the Wind Collector's Edition" (1939), directed by Victor Fleming, George Cukor (uncredited) and Sam Wood (uncredited) and starring Clark Gable, Vivien Leigh, Leslie Howard, Olivia de Havilland, Thomas Mitchell, Barbara O'Neil, Evelyn Keyes, Ann Rutherford, George Reeves, Hattie McDaniel, Butterfly McQueen, Victor Jory and Alicia Rhett. The four-disc set features "GWTW" digitally restored in "Ultra Resolution" (which allows viewers to see parts of the images which were never visible before and contains much sharper detail than in conventional Technicolor release prints), a remastered soundtrack in Dolby Digital 5.1, more than five hours of extra features and a full-color reproduction of the original 22-page souvenir program; $39.92 from Warner. "The Marx Brothers Silver Screen Collection" is a beautifully boxed six-disc set that includes the Marx brothers first five films -- "The Cocoanuts," "Animal Crackers," "Monkey Business," "Horse Feathers," "Duck Soup" -- plus a bonus disc of extras and a 40-page collectible booklet; $59.98, from Universal. Also from Universal comes "The W.C. Fields Comedy Collection," a five-disc set with "The Bank Dick," "My Little Chickadee," "You Can't Cheat an Honest Man," "It's a Gift" and "International House"; $59.98. And, lastly, there's the wonderful guilty pleasure of the exploitation horror film "I Drink Your Blood" (1971), starring Bhaskar, John Damon, Lynn Lowry and Tyde Kierney, with digital sound and image restoration. This one has got to be seen to be believed; from MTI Home Video. (Posted November 8)

From TV to Video:
"Friends: The Complete Eighth Season" is a four-disc set with 23 episodes, $44.98 from Warner ... "The L Word: The Complete First Season" is a five-disc set, $69.99 from Showtime ... "More Tales of the City" is a two-disc set of the miniseries based on the stories of Armistead Maupin; $29.98 from Ardustry Home Entertainment ... "Star Trek Voyager: The Complete Fifth Season" is a seven-disc set with 25 episodes, under $100, from Paramount. (Posted November 8)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
Miramax has a special two-disc DVD release this week with "Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman" and "Sonatine," two Japanese thrillers, both starring Beat Takeshi Kitano. In "Zatoichi," the blind samurai helps villagers overcome a ruthless gang; in "Sonatine," a Tokyo hit man is sent to Okinawa to help settle a dispute between two other gangs and ends up being ambushed himself; on DVD only for $29.99 ... "Lost Junction" stars Neve Campbell as a sultry Southern bell on a murderous road trip after killing her older husband, from MGM on VHS rental and DVD ... "Witness to a Kill" is an actioner about a secret service agent who must infiltrate an international smuggling and poaching ring and rescue two captured civilians, from First Run Features on VHS rental and DVD ... Tartan Video has two dark releases this week: "The Hillside Strangler," a dramatization of the infamous Angelo Buono and Kenneth Bianchi reign of murderous terror in Los Angeles that saw the kidnapping, torture and rape of 15 women, starring C. Thomas Howell and Nicholas Turturro, on VHS rental and DVD in R-rated and unrated versions; and "Suspicious River," starring Molly Parker as a wanton woman who teams up with a dangerous drifter in a tale of longing, sex and violence, with music by the Cowboy Junkies, on VHS rental and DVD. (Posted November 8)

For the Kids:
Koch Vision has some interesting releases this week: Two new installments in the award-winning "Popular Mechanics for Kids" series (inspired by Popular Mechanics magazine), "Rip-roaring Rollercoasters and All Access to Fun!" with four episodes on rollercoasters, Universal Studios Island of Adventure and under the big top, and "Super Sea Creatures and Awesome Ocean Adventures," $12.98 VHS and $14.98 DVD; and "Brum: Snow Thieves and Other Stories," featuring seven episodes in which the little classic car helps the zany grownup residents of Big Town, fixes everyday mishaps and keeps the bad guys from snowballing out of control; $12.98 VHS and $14.98 DVD. (Posted November 8)

Coming Soon:
On December 14 Warner will release "We Don't Live Here Anymore," a drama about marriages gone wrong starring Mark Ruffalo, Laura Dern, Peter Krause and Naomi Watts, on VHS rental and DVD ... "Intimate Strangers," a delightful psychological mystery about mistaken identity directed by Patrice Leconte and starring Sandrine Bonnaire and Fabrice Luchini arrives December 28 from Paramount on VHS rental and DVD ... Also on that day Universal will release the Kirsten Dunst-Paul Bettany tennis romance "Wimbledon" on VHS rental and DVD ... On January 11 Fox will release revenge thriller "Paparazzi," starring Cole Hauser, Robin Tunney, Dennis Farina, Daniel Baldwin and Tom Sizemore, on VHS rental and DVD. (Posted November 1)

DVD Collectibles:
Warner Home Video will release this week the second installment in its "The Looney Toons Golden Collection." The four-disc Volume 2 set includes more than 60 digitally re-mastered and uncut animated shorts; each disc in the collection features 15 animated classics and is dedicated to a different Looney Tunes star and their celebrated pals. Disc 1: Bugs Bunny Masterpieces; Disc 2: Road Runner and Friends; Disc 3: Tweety & Sylvester and Friends; Disc 4: All Stars: On Stage & Screen: Assortment of popular cartoon favorites such as Back Alley Uproar, Book Revue, Corny Concerto and many others. $64.92. A less elaborate affair is The Looney Tunes Spotlight Collection Volume 2, a two-disc set with 30 remastered and restored cartoons culled from the Golden Collection Volume 2, $26.99 ... The "Ultimate Party Collection: Dazed and Confused Flashback Edition/Fast Times at Ridgemont High Special Edition" is a cool double-disc set ($27.98), from Universal, which includes "Fast Times at Ridgemont High Special Edition" (1982), directed by Amy Heckerling and starring Sean Penn, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Judge Reinhold, Phoebe Cates, Forest Whitaker, Eric Stoltz, Nicolas Cage, Anthony Edwards, Ray Walston, Brian Backer and Robert Romanus; and "Dazed and Confused Flashback Edition" (1993), directed by Richard Linklater and starring Matthew McConaughey, Ben Affleck, Parker Posey, Milla Jovovich, Cole Hauser, Jason London, Wiley Wiggins, Sasha Jenson and Adam Goldberg. Both films are loaded with extras ... At last: 1954's animated "Animal Farm" will be released in a restored version by Home Vision Entertainment. Based on the classic novel by George Orwell, "Animal Farm" tells the story of a group of farm animals who successfully revolt against their cruel human owner, only to be enslaved anew by the unscrupulous pig Napoleon, whose slogan is "all animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others." Presented in its 50th Anniversary edition, "Animal Farm" combines superb animation, brilliant Technicolor, and a host of memorable characters to create a timeless fable. A must buy. (Posted November 1)

From TV to Video:
Due this week: "Comfort and Joy," a 2003 Lifetime Original Movie with Nancy McKeon and Steven Eckholdt, from Warner ... "The Simple Life 2: Road Trip," with 10 episodes from the second season, from Fox ... "Star Trek: The Complete Second Season DVD Set," an eight-disc set with 29 episodes packed in a cool plastic pod, priced around $100, from Paramount ... "Three's Company Season Three," a four-disc set with 22 episodes, $39.98, from Anchor Bay ... "The West Wing: The Complete Third Season," a four-disc set with 22 episodes, $59.98, from Warner. (Posted November 1)

Buzzin the 'B's:
"Fate" is a psychological thriller about a pair of city detectives on the hunt for a serial killer who's using his victims as puppets in a psychotic story he is trying to sell. Will the cops unravel the plot and apprehend the killer before he finishes the last act? Stars Michael Pare, Philip Michael Thomas and Lee Majors. On VHS rental and DVD from MTI Home Video. (Posted November 1)

For the Kids:
"SpongeBob SquarePants: Sponge for Hire" is the latest SpongeBob compilation, featuring five animated episodes on $9.95 VHS and eight episodes on $16.99 DVD, from Paramount ... New to DVD this week is the animated "Babes in Toyland" (1997), featuring the voices of Christopher Plummer, Jim Belushi, Lacey Chabert and Charles Nelson Reilly, $14.95 from MGM ... For kids ages 2--8 the canine rock band RAGGS Kids Club Band spend the holidays in Telluride, Colorado for a rock 'n' roll Christmas in the live-action "RAGGS Kids Club Band Holiday Jam, Rockin' the Rockies," on $9.95 VHS and $12.95 DVD, from RAGGS Llc. (www.raggs.com). (Posted November 1)

Special Interest:
Columbia TriStar has two Cirque Du Soleil offerings this week: "Cirque Du Soleil: Fire Within," a three-disc set with 13-episodes from the behind-the-scenes TV program, $39.95; and "Cirque Du Soleil: La Nouba," a two-disc set of a live performance filmed at the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, $28.96 ... Eagle Rock Entertainment has three DVDs for car buffs this week: "America's Favorite Cars: Fabulous Fords of the 50s," an in-depth look at the history of Ford's automobile development until the end of the 1950s; "America's Favorite Cars: The Complete Mustang," with vintage commercials, rare footage and a showcase of beautifully restored classics; and "America's Favorite Cars: The Complete Corvette"; $6.97 each. (Posted November 1)

Coming Soon:
Columbia TriStar has set a December 28 release date for the wild sci fi thriller "Resident Evil: Apocalypse," starring Milla Jovovich, Sienna Guillory, Oded Fehr, Sandrine Holt, Mike Epps and Jared Harris, on VHS rental and in a two-disc DVD set with more than eight hours of extras. The company is also releasing a Collector's DVD box set with "RE 2" and "Resident Evil" for $39.95. (Posted October 26)

From TV to Video:
Due this week are: "Cedric the Entertainer Presents: The Complete Series," a three-disc set with 21 episodes (six which never aired), $39.98 from Fox ... "Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman: The Complete Season Four," an eight-disc set with 27 episodes, $119.95 from A&E Home Video ... "The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes," a three-disc set with six episodes from the acclaimed series, $39.98 from MPI Home Video ... "The O.C.: The Complete First Season," a seven-disc set with 27 episodes, $69.98 from Warner ... "Profiler: Season Four," a five-disc set with all 20 episodes from the final season, $79.95 from A&E Home Video ... "That '70s Show: The Complete First Season," a four-disc set, $49.98 from Fox ... "21 Jump Street Season One," a four-disc set with 13 episodes, $39.98 from Anchor Bay ... "Xena: Warrior Princess -- Season Five," a 10-disc set with 22 episodes, $79.98 from Anchor Bay.

Other TV shows coming to video include "Agatha Christie's Poirot: Death on the Nile," shot on location in Egypt and starring David Suchet (as the legendary Poirot), James Fox and David Soul, $19.95 VHS and DVD from A&E Home Video ... WGBH Boston Video will release two dramas from Masterpiece Theatre: "The Cazalets," a World War II family saga starring Hugh Bonneville, Stephen Dillane and Ursula Howells, on DVD for $39.95; and Tolstoy's "Anna Karenina," starring Helen McCrory, Kevin McKidd and Stephen Dillane, on DVD for $19.95. (Posted October 26)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
"Frankenfish" is a horror thriller from Mark A.Z. Dippe, the director of "Spawn," about a deadly fish, smuggled out of Asia, that gets free and finds its way to the Louisiana bayou, where it terrorizes a swamp community, on VHS rental and DVD from Columbia TriStar ... "Ritual" is a melodrama that digs deep into the lives of a seemingly perfect Malibu family that, beneath the visage of success, breeds alcoholism, lack of personal respect, deceit and illicit sex, from UrbanWorks Entertainment on VHS rental and DVD ... "Spooks & Creeps" is a collection of award-winning horror shorts, including Marcus Wagner's "Freakshow," a parable of freaks, gluttony and transformation, introduced by Alice Cooper; Jeff Stark's "Desserts," about an unsuspecting man who becomes the victim of a vengeful sea creature, starring Ewan McGregor; Michael Horowitz and Gareth Smith's "Doppelganger," about a man who finds himself doing bad things in his sleep, starring Rebecca Gayheart and Timothy Olphant; and three others; $19.95 on DVD from Vanguard Cinema. (Posted October 26)

For the Kids:
The latest release in the Baby Einstein series, "Baby Noah Animal Expedition" is an educational journey around the world to visit exotic sites and animals in an interactive adventure for toddlers and their parents, on $14.99 VHS and $19.99 DVD (www.babyeinstein.com) ... Paramount has several kids releases this week: "Boohbah: Showman," with three episodes from the TV series that features the educational adventures of five colorful atoms of energy, $16.99 DVD; "Cyberchase: Starlight Night," two episodes from the PBS Kids series, featuring the adventures of the CyberSquad gang, for ages 6-11, on $16.99 DVD; "Secret Central: Have You Heard?" featuring episodes from the series inspired by the popular line of Hasbro dolls and online animated characters, on $16.99 DVD; and two Nick Jr. standbys: "Blue's Clues: ABC's, 123's and More DVD Collection," a three-disc set, priced under $30 and "Dora the Explorer: Dora's Christmas." (Posted October 26)

Special Interest:
Acorn Media will release this week "Broadway's Lost Treasures II," a compilation of 18 rare Broadway performances, from the archives of the Tony Awards, seen only in their original telecasts, including Angela Lansbury and Bea Arthur in "Mame," Robert Morse in "How to Succeed in Business," Katharine Hepburn in "Coco," "Les Miserables," more; $24.99 on DVD ... "When I Fall in Love: The One and Only Nat King Cole" is a documentary on the singer, with performances from his short-lived TV series, assembled from original kinescopes of the live TV broadcasts, from Eagle Rock Entertainment ... Facets Video will release this week Michael Rubbo's "Waiting for Fidel," a 1974 documentary in which the filmmaker travels to Cuba to make a film about Fidel Castro but finds himself eternally waiting for the Cuban leader to make an appearance. The film veers from serious to hilarious as Rubbo travels throughout Cuba, discussing politics and life with the Cuban people, but never getting an audience with Castro (he's still waiting); $29.95 on DVD ... "Jackie Mason: A Night at the Opera" is a live performance by the outrageous comedian, recorded at London's Royal Opera House, from Kultur/SRO on DVD for $24.95 ... White Star Video will release "La Cosa Nosta: The New York Mafia," a documentary that looks at the history of organized crime from its roots in Southern Italy through Prohibition to the era of the Gotti family, $14.95 on DVD ... Indie video label Gyromart will release two DVDs based on the popular and wild Web series about muscle-car driving, pistol-packing "uber-babes" the Bikini Bandits: the flash-animated feature "Bikini Bandits Save Christmas" and "Bikini Bandits: Briefs, Shorts & Panties," a collection of original webisodes featuring the "bad" girls; both on DVD for $19.99 each. (Posted October 26)

Coming Soon:
The studios will release a slew of films in early and late December, possibly to garner last-minute Christmas shopping. Due December 7 from Columbia TriStar is jungle thriller "Anacondas: The Hunt for the Blood Orchid," on VHS rental and DVD ... On December 14 DreamWorks will release the Tom Cruise-Jamie Foxx starrer "Collateral" on $23.99 VHS and as a two-disc DVD set ... Also on December 14 MGM will release two indie films: theater documentary "This So Called Disaster" and Swedish comedy "Kitchen Stories," both on VHS rental and DVD ... Six titles will grace December 21: Jonathan Demme's "The Manchurian Candidate," starring Denzel Washington, Meryl Streep and Liev Schreiber will arrive from Paramount on VHS rental and DVD; MGM will release Cole Porter musical bio "De-Lovely," starring Kevin Kline and Ashley Judd, on VHS rental and DVD; Family film "Two Brothers," about a pair of tigers separated as cubs and reunited years later, will be released on $23.98 VHS and DVD by Universal; Universal will also release action flop "Thunderbirds" on $23.98 VHS and DVD; Fox will release comedy "Napoleon Dynamite" on VHS rental and DVD; and Lions Gate will release indie outing "Danny Deckchair," starring Rhys Ifans and Miranda Otto, on VHS rental and DVD.

And for post-Christmas sales, Fox will release delightful comedy-drama "Garden State" from first-time director Zach Braff, on VHS rental and DVD on December 28 ... MGM will release Michael Winterbottom's weird futuristic drama "Code 46," starring Tim Robbins and Samantha Morton, on VHS rental and DVD on December 28 ... also on that day Lions Gate will release the sleeper indie film "Open Water" on VHS rental and DVD ... And, meow, on January 18 Warner will release the disappointing Halle Berry outing "Catwoman," on VHS rental and DVD. (Posted October 19)

DVD Collectibles:
There's a host of fine films getting special DVD treatment this week. Leading the pack is the "Ed Wood Special Edition" (1994), directed by Tim Burton and starring Johnny Depp, Martin Landau, Sarah Jessica Parker, Bill Murray, Jeffrey Jones, Patricia Arquette and Vincent D'Onofrio. The DVD includes lots of extras, including a deleted "Que Sera Sera" scene with Bill Murray singing the classic song with a mariachi band in a meat locker ... The Criterion Collection will release three wonderful films this week: Georges Franju's "Eyes Without a Face" (1960 -- France), about a brilliant, obsessive doctor who attempts a radical surgery that could restore his beloved daughter's once-beautiful face, but at a horrifying price. Lauded as a true rarity of horror cinema, "Eyes Without a Face" has influenced countless films in its wake and stunned audiences around the world with its shocking, yet poetic imagery; "Fat Girl" (2001 -- France), a bold dissection of sibling rivalry and female adolescent sexuality that follows the summer vacation of 12-year-old Anais, who is fat, and her sister, Elena, a teenage beauty; and "Secret Honor" (1984), a wild screen adaptation of Donald Freed and Arnold M. Stone's play about President Nixon: Sequestered in his home, a disgraced Nixon arms himself with a bottle of scotch and a gun to record memoirs that no one will hear. Surrounded by the silent portraits of past presidents, Nixon resurrects his past in a passionate attempt to reconcile his failed political career. Directed by Robert Altman and starring Philip Baker Hall in a tour de force solo performance ... First Run features has put together a six-disc set of all six of Michael Apted's "Up" films ("Seven Up," "7 Plus Seven," "21 Up," "28 Up," "35 Up" and "42 Up"). Granada Television began the series in 1964 with the original concept to interview 14 children from diverse backgrounds from all over England, asking about their lives and their dreams for the future; every seven years Apted has been back to talk to the same subjects, ultimately creating an extraordinary look at the structure of life in the 20th century. "The Up Series Boxed Set" will sell for $99.95. (Posted October 19)

From TV to Video:
Series due this week: "Arrested Development Season One," a three-disc set with 21 episodes, $39.98 from Fox ... "Greg the Bunny: The Complete Series," a two-disc set with all 13 episodes, $26.98 from Fox ... "SpongeBob SquarePants: The Complete Second Season," a three-disc set with 40 episodes, priced under $40 from Paramount ... "Stargate SG-1 Season Seven," a five-disc set with 22 episodes, $69.96 from MGM ... and "Xena: Warrior Princess -- Season Five," a 10-disc set, $79.98 from Anchor Bay. (Posted October 19)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
"The Ghosts of Edendale" (2003) is a supernatural-thriller about a couple who buy a house in the Edendale district of Los Angeles -- next to Hollywood -- and discover the hill on which they live is haunted by old-time movie stars, from Warner on VHS and DVD ... In "Border Blues" a dangerous and unpredictable smuggler (Eric Roberts) on the Mexican-U.S. border attempts to help a Russian woman and her daughter sneak into the States, getting involved with a corrupt cop (Erik Estrada) and linking him to a mail-bomb killer in Los Angeles; also stars Gary Busey as an L.A. cop. From MTI Home Video on VHS and DVD ... "The Hole," from Miramax, stars Keira Knightley and Thora Birch as two co-eds who join some prep school friends in ditching their weekend field trip to hide and party in an abandoned bomb shelter. Unfortunately for them, they can't leave, and what started out as a spontaneous adventure turns into several days worth of a fight for survival; on VHS and DVD. (Posted October 19)

Special Interest:
4Kids Entertainment will release this week four unedited DVD collector's editions of two hot manga series, "Yu-Gi-Oh!" and "Shaman King." Unlike the American broadcast versions, these editions include many of the features "censored" by U.S. standards: Religious symbols, violence, and sexually provocative content have been restored. The releases will also feature newly recorded English language tracks with the original cast, as well as the original Japanese tracks and English subtitles. The four titles, at $19.98 each and containing three episodes, are "Yu-Gi-Oh! Volume 1: The Shadow Games," "Yu-Gi-Oh! Volume 2: The Insector Combo," "Shaman King Volume 1: A Boy Who Dances With Ghosts" and "Shaman King Volume 2: Perfect Possession." (Posted October 19)

Coming Soon:
Warner will release on November 16 "Yu-Gi-Oh! The Movie," an animated feature based on the popular Japanese comic book, animated TV series, video game and trading cards franchise, on $19.96 VHS and DVD ... On December 28 DreamWorks will release "Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy," starring Will Ferrell and Christina Applegate, in rated and unrated editions, on $22.99 VHS and DVD ... Also on that day, MGM will release "Wicker Park," starring Josh Hartnett, Rose Byrne, Matthew Lillard and Diane Kruger, on VHS rental and DVD ... New Line will release on January 4 "Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle," starring John Cho and Kal Penn, in rated and "Extreme" unrated editions, on VHS rental and DVD ... M. Night Shyamalan's "The Village," starring Joaquin Phoenix, Adrien Brody, William Hurt, Sigourney Weaver, Brendan Gleeson, Cherry Jones and Bryce Dallas Howard, on $24.99 VHS and DVD, from Buena Vista ... And, on February 8, New Line will release "The Notebook," starring Ryan Gosling, Rachel McAdams, James Garner, Gena Rowlands, Sam Shepherd and Joan Allen, on VHS rental and DVD. (Posted October 12)

DVD Collectibles:
The Criterion Collection will release this week "The Battle of Algiers" (1965), one of the most influential films in the history of political cinema. Gillo Pontecorvo's epic focuses on the harrowing events of 1957, a key year in Algeria's struggle for independence from France. Shot in the streets of Algiers in documentary style, the film vividly recreates the tumultuous Algerian uprising against the occupying French in the 1950s. The three-disc set features a new high-definition digital transfer of the feature film plus seven documentary features. In French with English subtitles ... Warner has too musical DVDs for release this week: "That's Entertainment: The Complete Collection," a four-disc giftset, with each film remastered and presented in 5.1 surround, plus a fourth disc of extras: "That's Entertainment" (1974), "That's Entertainment, Part 2" (1976) and "That's Entertainment! III" (1994), for $49.92 ... and Stanley Donen's 1954 "Seven Brides for Seven Brothers," starring Howard Keel, Jane Powell and Russ Tamblyn. The 50th anniversary two-disc set ($26.99) includes the theatrical CinemaScope (2.55:1) and alternate widescreen (1.75:1) versions of the film as well as extras. And, last but not least, Paramount will release nine Jerry Lewis films for the first time on DVD: "The Bellboy," "Cinderfella," "The Delicate Delinquent," "The Disorderly Orderly," "The Errand Boy," "The Family Jewels," "The Ladies' Man," "The Patsy," and "The Stooge" ($14.99 each), as well as a special edition of "The Nutty Professor." (Posted October 12)

From TV to Video:
Due this week are "CSI: The Complete Fourth Season," a six-disc set with 23 episodes, priced under $70 from Paramount ... "Dream On: The First & Second Seasons," a five-disc set with 29 unedited episodes, $59.98 from Universal ... "5 Days to Midnight," a two-disc set of the 2004 Sci Fi Channel miniseries, $24.98 from Lions Gate ... "The Jamie Kennedy Experiment: The Complete Second Season," a four-disc set with 23 episodes, priced under $30 from Paramount ... "Kingdom Hospital," a four-disc set with 13 episodes, $49.95 from Columbia TriStar ... "Punk'd: The Complete Second Season," a two-disc set, priced under $20 from Paramount ... "The Ren & Stimpy Show: The Complete First & Second Seasons -- Uncut," a three-disc set, priced under $30, from Paramount ... "Salem's Lot: The Miniseries," the 2004 TNT miniseries, $19.98 from Warner ... "Taxi: The Complete First Season, a three-disc set with 22 episodes, priced under $30 from Paramount ... and "The Wire: The Complete First Season," a five-disc set with 13 episodes, $79.99 from HBO Video. (Posted October 12)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
"White Rush" (2003) is a thriller about five friends on a camping trip who stumble on a drug deal gone bad and decide to reap the benefits, only to find themselves being tracked done by one of the dealers, starring Judd Nelson and Louis Mandylor, from Monarch Home Video on VHS and DVD ... "Terminal Error" (2002) is a sci-fi thriller about a computer virus that takes on a life of its own and worms its way through the city, causing widespread panic and destruction, staring Michael Nouri and Timothy Busfield, from MTI Home Video on VHS and DVD. (Posted October 12)

For the Kids:
Due this week are "Harold and the Purple Crayon: The Complete Series," a two-disc set of all 13 episodes of the HBO Family series, packed with a 16-page activity book, $24.95 from Columbia TriStar ... Columbia TriStar will also release two single discs from the series: "Harold and the Purple Crayon," with two episodes, and "Harold and the Purple Crayon: Harold in the Dark, also with two episodes, $12.95 each. (Posted October 12)

Special Interest:
For theater-lovers, Paramount will release "Broadway: The American Musical," a three-disc set of the six-part PBS series on the history of American musical theater, with five hours of bonus materials including additional performances, interviews, and a "Wicked: The Road to Broadway" featurette; $59.99. (Posted October 12)

Coming Soon:
Due from Universal on November 2 is the wacky British "Ali G Indahouse," a 2002 feature surfacing here on $22.98 VHS and DVD ... Timed to coincide with the U.S. remake "The Grudge" starring Sarah Michelle Gellar comes the very scary original "Ju-On: The Grudge," on VHS rental and DVD from Lions Gate ... On December 7 Universal will release "The Bourne Supremacy," starring Matt Damon, Franka Potente, Brian Cox, Julia Stiles and Joan Allen, on $22.98 VHS and DVD ... Also on December 7 Fox will release "DodgeBall: A True Underdog Story," starring Vince Vaughn, Christine Taylor, Ben Stiller and Rip Torn on VHS and DVD ... "I, Robot," starring Will Smith, Bridget Moynahan, Alan Tudyk, James Cromwell and Bruce Greenwood, will lumber to VHS and DVD on December 14 from Fox ... Anne Hathaway and Julie Andrews return to "The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement," due December 14 from Buena Vista on $24.99 VHS and DVD ... Also on that day Universal will release the melodrama "The Door in the Floor," starring Jeff Bridges, Kim Basinger, Elle Fanning and Jon Foster, on $23.98 VHS and DVD ... And, to kick off the New Year on January 4, Fox will release "Alien vs. Predator," directed by Paul W.S. Anderson and starring Sanaa Lathan, Raoul Bova and Lance Henriksen, on VHS and DVD; and Warner will release on that day "Troy," directed by Wolfgang Petersen and starring Eric Bana, Orlando Bloom, Brad Pitt, Diane Kruger and Brendan Gleeson, on VHS and as a two-disc DVD set. (Posted October 5)

DVD Collectibles:
"The Decline of the American Empire" (1986), director Denys Arcands' provocative look at sex, life and love among a group of Canadian intellectuals (the prequel to his most recent film, "The Barbarian Invasions"), starring Dominique Michel, Dorothee Berryman, Louise Portal, Pierre Curzi and Remy Girard, from Koch Lorber ... "Friday the 13th -- From Crystal Lake to Manhattan, Ultimate Edition" is a five-disc set that features the entire collection of Paramount's eight "Friday the 13th" films, two-per-disc, plus a fifth disc dedicated to extras, priced around $60 ... "The Five Obstructions" (2003), directed by Lars von Trier and Jorgen Leth is a fascinating cinematic experiment in which the Danish director challenged his mentor, director Jorgen Leth, to remake his classic 12-minute 1967 short, "The Perfect Human" (a film that von Trier admires greatly and claims to have seen more than 20 times) five different times, but each time von Trier put forward obstacles, constraining Leth to rethink the story and the characters of the original film; from Koch Lorber ... "Tanner '88" (1988), directed and written by Robert Altman, an HBO minseries in which the pair created a presidential candidate, ran him alongside the other hopefuls during the primary season, and presented their media campaign as a cross between soap opera and TV news. Mirroring and magnifying the age of made-for-television presidents, and featuring appearances by real-life political figures such as Bob Dole, Kitty Dukakis, Pat Robertson, Gloria Steinem and others, "Tanner '88" engages contemporary politics with wit and insight. Stars Michael Murphy, E.G. Marshall, Harry Anderson, Cynthia Nixon, Sandra Bowie; from The Criterion Collection in a two-disc set. (Posted October 5)

From TV to Video:
"The Adventures of the Galaxy Rangers," two volumes from the 1986 anime TV series -- restored and remastered with 5.1 surround: "Tortuna" and "Supertroopers," $14.98 each from Koch Vision ... "The Best of Unsolved Mysteries: Ghosts," a four-disc set from First Look Home Entertainment ... "Dawson's Creek: The Complete Fourth Season," a four-disc set with 23 episodes, $49.95 from Columbia TriStar ... "Midsomer Murders, Set Four," five episodes from the top-rated U.K. mystery series, $59.99 DVD and $79.99 VHS from Acorn Media ... "North and South: The Complete Collection" (1985), a five-disc set of the 1985 miniseries, $69.98 from Warner ... "Poirot 10," featuring three episodes of Agatha Christie's fastidious sleuth, starring David Suchet, $29.99 from Acorn Media ... "Roswell Season Two," a six-disc set with 21 episodes, $59.98 from Fox ... "What's Happening!! The Second Season," a three-disc set with 22 episodes, $29.95 from Columbia TriStar ... "What's New Scooby-Doo? Volume 4: Merry Scary Holiday," a 2004 Scooby-Doo Christmas Special plus three episodes, from Warner. (Posted October 5)

On the Indie Front:
Ardustry Home Entertainment will release "In the Shadows" (1998), starring Joely Richardson, Molly Parker and Aden Young, about a pair of slackers, Cynthia and Buck, who are seduced by the world of wealth when Cynthia takes a job as a caretaker in charge of the beautiful, wealthy, but terminally ill Eleanor (Joely Richardson) and the pair scheme to romance Eleanor into marrying Buck and bequeathing her fortune to him. A percentage of profits will be donated to charities funding breast cancer research; $14.98 on DVD. (Posted October 5)

Special Interest:
Two political outings this week: "Horns and Halos" is a 2002 documentary on the travails of "Fortunate Son" bio of George W. Bush and the unlikely connection between Bush, a discredited author and an underground publisher, from Go Kart Films (a new independent home entertainment company). The film won Best Documentary at the 2002 New York Underground Film Festival; $24.98 ... "The War Room" is the acclaimed 1993 documentary on the 1992 Clinton-for-President campaign, featuring George Stephanopoulos and James Carville and directed by D.A. Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus, from Universal. (Posted October 5)

From TV to Video:
Series due this week include "The Casebook of Sherlock Holmes," a three-disc set with six episodes from the acclaimed series, $39.98 from MPI Home Video ... "Crank Yankers Season 1: Uncensored," a two-disc set with 10 uncensored episodes from the debut season of Comedy Central's top-rated series, from Paramount ... "Dark Shadows DVD Collection 14," a four-disc set with 40 episodes from MPI Home Video ... "Ellen: The Complete Season One," a two-disc set with 11 episodes, $39.95 from A&E Home Video ... "Homicide: Life on the Street: The Complete Season Five," a six-disc set, $99.95 from A&E Home Video ... "In Living Color Season 2," a four-disc set with 26 episodes, $39.98 from Fox ... "Mr. Bean: The Animated Series, Set 3," a two-disc set, $29.95; also available as two separate single discs ("Grin and Bean It" and "The Ends Justify the Beans"), $19.95 each, from A&E Home Video ... "Star Trek: Voyager: The Complete Fourth Season," a seven-disc set with 26 episodes, priced under $100, from Paramount ... "Strangers With Candy: Season 3," a two-disc set with all 10 episodes from the third and final season, from Paramount ... "Tales of the Unexpected, Set 1," a four-disc set with 25 episodes from Season 1 and 2 with darkly humorous tales of the weird, inspired by the work of Roald Dahl, $59.99 from Acorn Media ... "Touching Evil 2," featuring three episodes from the hit series, $39.99 from WGBH Boston Video ... and "Silk Stalkings," a six-disc set with 22 episodes, $59.98 from Anchor Bay. (Posted September 28)

For the Kids:
"Tonka: Tough Truck Adventures -- The Biggest Show on Wheels" is a new direct-to-video feature-length CGI animated adventure based on the toy line, from Paramount ... "Static Shock: The New Kid" and "Teen Titans: Divide and Conquer," are both compilations featuring six episodes from Season One of the kids TV series from the Warner DC Comics Kids Collection, $8.93 VHS and $19.97 DVD ... "Snowed Under: The Bobblesberg Winter Games" is an animated adventure featuring Bob the Builder and his heavy equipment friends as they save the day for the Winter Games, $9.99 VHS and $14.99 DVD from HIT Entertainment. (Posted September 28)

Special Interest:
Paramount will release this week three additions to their "Ken Burns' America Collection" on DVD: "Empire of the Air: The Men Who Made Radio, a 1991 PBS documentary on the history of radio from 1906 to 1955; "Huey Long," a 1985 PBS documentary on the Louisiana governor; and "Thomas Hart Benton," a 1988 PBS documentary on the pioneering American artist; Paramount will also release "Ken Burns' America Collection Gift Set," a seven-disc set with seven Ken Burns' PBS programs: "Empire of the Air," "Huey Long," "Thomas Hart Benton," "Brooklyn Bridge," "The Congress," "The Shakers," and "The Statue of Liberty," $129.99 ... Laugh out live: MPI Home Video will release "George Carlin: Complaints & Grievances," a DVD of Carlin's 12th HBO special; Docurama will release ""Eric Bogosian's Wake Up and Smell the Coffee," a 2001 featured based on Bogosian's critically acclaimed stage show ... For Manga lovers there's "Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex Volume 2," the second set of four half-hour episodes of the new anime series based on the anime feature and manga, in two versions: A one-disc standard edition with the four episodes in Dolby 5.1 surround ($24.98) and a three-disc special edition with one disc containing the four episodes in Dolby 5.1 surround, plus extras; one disc containing the four episodes in DTS 5.1 surround, plus extras; and a third disc containing the original series soundtrack CD ($49.98), from Manga/Bandai/Anchor Bay ... and, for more high-brow culture there's Leonard Bernstein's Young People's Concerts With the New York Philharmonic," a fabulous nine-disc set containing 25 of Bernstein's greatest concerts -- broadcast on CBS -- throughout his 14 years of leading the series, which began in 1958; $149.95 from Kultur ... "Baryshnikov's Nutcracker" from 1977, featuring Baryshnikov with the American Ballet Theater at the Kennedy Center Opera House in Washington, also from Kultur; and "Rivers and Tides: Andy Goldsworthy Working With Time," a 2001 documentary on the artist who uses the natural world as his canvas and palette with unique installations, from Docurama. (Posted September 28)

Coming Soon
Triangular love story "A Home at the End of the World," starring Colin Farrell, Robin Wright Penn and Sissy Spacek, comes home on DVD and VHS rental on November 2 from Warner ... The Frank Oz comic remake of "The Stepford Wives," with a stellar cost including Nicole Kidman, Matthew Broderick, Bette Midler, Glenn Close, Christopher Walken and Jon Lovitz, arrives November 9 on DVD and VHS rental from Paramount ... Warner will release Richard Linklater's follow-up to "Before Sunrise," "Before Sunset," starring Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy, on DVD and VHS rental on November 9 ... Fox will release on November 9 the lackluster thriller "The Clearing," starring Robert Redford, Helen Mirren and Willem Dafoe, on DVD and VHS rental ... And also on that day, Xenon Films will release "A Day Without a Mexican," a satire about what happens to California when all the Hispanics leave the state, on DVD and $14.99 VHS ... On November 23 two comedies will debut on video: "Sleepover," starring "Spy Kids'" Alexa Vega, from MGM on DVD and $19.98 VHS; and Steven Spielberg's "The Terminal," starring Tom Hanks and Catherine Zeta-Jones, from DreamWorks on DVD and $15.95 VHS ... Sumptuous martial arts drama "Hero," starring Jet Li, Tony Leung Chiu-Wai, Maggie Cheung Man-Yuk, Zhang Ziyi, Chen Dao Ming and Donnie Yen, will arrive from Miramax on November 30 on VHS and DVD ... and lastly, on December 21 Buena Vista will release the tale of "King Arthur," starring Clive Owen and Keira Knightley, on DVD and $24.99 VHS. (Posted September 21)

DVD Collectibles:
The highlight of the week, of course, is the release by Fox of the much-anticipated "Star Wars Trilogy" in a four-disc set featuring the first three "Star Wars" epics with a fourth disc of goodies, $69.98 ... The folks at The Criterion Collection have put together a beautiful package of John Cassavetes' films: "John Cassavetes: Five Films," with stunning new transfers of "Shadows," "Faces," A Woman Under the Influence," The Killing of a Chinese Bookie," and "Opening Night," by the director called a genius, a visionary, and the father of independent film. The eight-disc boxed sells for $124.95 ... Federico Fellini's "La Dolce Vita" (1961), starring Marcello Mastroianni, Anita Ekberg and Anouk Aimee, finally arrives on DVD, restored and remastered, from Koch Lorber Films for $34.98, with commentary by film critic Richard Schickel and other goodies ... "Epidemic" (1968), from controversial director Lars von Trier ("Breaking the Waves," "Dogville," "Dancer in the Dark"), is the bizarre story of a director and a writer who create a script about a mysterious plague that engulfs Europe, only to find their horrific scenario coming true in real life ... or does it? From Home Vision Entertainment. Home Vision will also release this week "The Demon" (1977), by famed director Nomura Yoshitaro ("Castle of Sand," "The Incident") and best-selling Japanese mystery author Seicho Matsumoto, a chilling and complex tale of betrayal and murder as a strange relationship develops between a man, his wife, and his mistress, with a shocking climax; and "Zero Focus" (1961), a brooding tale of intrigue and suspense -- also from Yoshitaro -- in which a young woman hides a dark secret from those around her with devastating consequences, photographed in moody black and white in near documentary style. (Posted September 21)

From TV to Video:
Series due this week: "Felicity Season 3: Junior Year DVD Collection," a five-disc set with 17 episodes, $59.99 from Buena Vista ... "MADtv: The Complete First Season," a three-disc set with 19 episodes, $39.98 from Columbia TriStar ... "Mr. Show: The Complete Fourth Season," a two-disc set with 10 episodes, $34.98 from HBO Video ... "Popular: Season One," a six-disc set, $59.99 from Buena Vista.

Other TV shows-to-video: "The First Churchills," a four-disc set of the drama series chosen to launch Masterpiece Theatre in 1971, $79.99 VHS and DVD from Acorn Media ... "The Pallisters: The Complete Collection," a 12-disc set of the entire 26-part PBS miniseries, $124.99, also from Acorn Media ... and Ardustry Home Entertainment will release "We'll Meet Again," a 2002 telefilm adaptation of Mary Higgins Clark's suspenser starring Laura Leighton and Brandy Ledford, on one disc for $24.98. (Posted September 21)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
"Asylum of the Damned" (Hellborn) (2003) is a horror thriller about a young student at a mental hospital who uncovers a satanic creature feeding on the minds and bodies of the institute's patients, starring Tracy Scoggins, Matt Stasi, Julia Lee and Bruce Payne, from Columbia TriStar on VHS rental and DVD ... "Dog Gone Love" (2003) is a romantic comedy about a male writer who is mistaken for being gay by a female veterinarian's assistant and who goes along with the "lie" in order to do research for an upcoming novel -- until the pair fall for each other, from MTI Home Video on VHS rental and DVD. (Posted September 21)

For the Kids:
Two interesting animated films for kids arrive from First Run Features this week: War Game," based on a true event from World War I when German and British troops stopped the war to play a game of football on Christmas Day, 1914, directed by Michael Foreman, who tackles this huge theme of war with illustrations and narrative that is gentle and reassuring for children, featuring the voice of Kate Winslet; and "Prince Cinders," based on Babette Cole's best-selling book that is a funny take on "Cinderella" with the three ugly sisters incarnated as three muscle-bound, mean brothers; both are on DVD at $14.95 each ... for the very young there's three releases from the Brainy Baby series (for ages 1-5) that creates videos to inspire learning and develop cognitive skills in youngsters: "Brainy Baby English," "Brainy Baby Spanish" and "Brainy Baby French," $15.95 VHS and $19.95 DVD ... the latest direct-to-video adventure of Thomas the Tank Engine has been released by HIT Entertainment: "It's Great to Be an Engine," featuring seven new stories of Thomas and his friends on the Island of Sodor, available on $16.99 DVD, $19.99 DVD with an on-pack wooden railway engine, $11.50 VHS and $13.75 VHS with an on-pack wooden railway engine ... and, lastly, there's "Blue's Clues: Bluestock," featuring four animated episodes from the popular preschool show, from Paramount. (Posted September 21)

Special Interest:
"500 Nations" (1995) is a compelling eight-part documentary that explores America's Indian heritage, hosted by Kevin Costner. Timed to coincide with the opening of the National Museum of the American Indian by the Smithsonian Institution on September 21, this powerful miniseries takes a historical look at the indigenous people of North and Central America from pre-Columbian times through European contact in the late 19th century. The show takes up four-discs -- with a personal introduction by Costner -- and includes a bonus CD-ROM fifth disc that looks further into Native American history; $59.98 from Warner ... "Buried in the Sand: The Deception of America" is a shocking documentary -- by political commentator Mark Taylor -- that offers uncensored footage that shows the incomprehensible brutality of the Saddam Hussein regime in Iraq as a reason that the United States had a "moral obligation" to invade the country; the film is postulated to directly counter some of the messages of Michael Moore in "Fahrenheit 9/11"; $24.98 on DVD from CYHL Pictures/Westlake Entertainment Group ... More atrocities: First Run Features will release this week a new three-disc boxed set, "Hitler and the Nazi," spotlighting three documentaries on the Holocaust: "The Architecture of Doom," "The Eye of Vichy" and "Nazi Medicine and The Cross and the Star," $59.95; the company will also release "Homo Sapiens 1900," a documentary that explores the history of eugenics, race hygiene and the quest to improve the human race, on DVD for $29.95 ... There's a lighter note this week from Eagle Rock Entertainment: "Norman Granz, Jazz in Montreux," featuring performances from the prestigious jazz festival, including the Oscar Peterson Trio, Milt Jackson & Ray Brown, Ray Bryant, Ella Fitzgerald, more, on DVD for $11.98; and "Fly Jefferson Airplane,"containing vintage performances by the seminal psychedelic rock group, featuring new interviews with the group's Grace Slick, Marty Balin, Jorma Kaukonen, Jack Casaday, Paul Kantner and Spencer Dryden, $19.98 on DVD ... From Kultur/SRO Entertainment comes The Official 2004 Wimbledon DVD," a chronicle of the 118th Wimbledon tennis tournament from opening day ceremonies through the championship finals, $24.95; the company is also releasing to DVD four Wimbledon titles never-before on DVD: "Legends of Wimbledon: John McEnroe," "Legends of Wimbledon: Bjorn Borg," "Wimbledon 1980 Final: Borg vs. McEnroe" and "Wimbledon 1981 Final: Borg vs. McEnroe," $14.95 each ... and, lastly, Palm Pictures will release "How to Draw a Bunny," a 90-minute documentary on the fascinating life of artist Ray Johnson that looks deep into the comical, eye-catching and mysterious world of underground idol Johnson, centering around his puzzling suicide on Friday, January 13, 1995 -- To many enthusiasts of his works, as well as the general public, his suicide was thought to be Johnson's "last performance"' on $29.98 VHS and DVD. (Posted September 21)

DVD Collectibles:
Due this week is "THX 1138: The George Lucas Director's Cut" of the 1971 film that started the "Star Wars" director on his career. The sci-fi film about a dystopic future, starring Robert Duvall, Donald Pleasence and Maggie McOmie, has been digitally restored with Dolby 5.1 surround sound, and is available as a two-disc Collector's Edition for $26.99, loaded with features, and as a single-disc version for $19.97 SRP; from Warner ... The 2003 Emmy-winning "Angels in America," starring Al Pacino, Meryl Streep, Emma Thompson, Justin Kirk, Ben Shenkman, Mary-Louise Parker, Jeffrey Wright, Patrick Wilson, James Cromwell, Michael Gambon and Simon Callow, will arrive this week as a two-disc set, from HBO. (Posted September 14)

From TV to Video:
Lots of series making their way to DVD this week: "Diff'rent Strokes: The First Season," a three-disc set, $29.95, from Columbia TriStar . .. "Everybody Loves Raymond: The Complete First Season," in a five-disc set with 22 episodes, $44.98, from New Line ... "Law & Order: The Fourteenth Year," a three-disc set, $59.98, from Universal ... "Law & Order: Criminal Intent: The Third Year," a three-disc set, $59.98, from Universal ... "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit: The Fifth Year," a three-disc set, $59.98, from Universal ... "Lost in Space Season Two: Volume One," a four-disc set with 16 episodes, $39.98, from Fox ... "Sanford & Son: The Fifth Season," a three-disc set with 25 episodes, $29.95, from Columbia TriStar ... "7th Heaven: The Complete First Season," a six-disc set, priced at around $50, from Paramount ... "The Simpsons Gone Wild," a single disc with "Homer's Night Out," "Sunday, Cruddy Sunday," "The Mansion Family" and "Homer the Moe," $14.98 from Fox ... "Survivor: All-Stars," a seven-disc set with 10 episodes, priced under $40, from Paramount. (Posted September 14)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
"The Hazing" is a horror thriller about a group of college students who plan to initiate new frat members in a possessed house -- a house that has other plans, starring Brad Dourif, Brooke Burke, Tiffany Shepis and Nectar Rose, from MTI Home Video. (Posted September 14)

For the Kids:
For the preschool set, HIT Entertainment will release Barney's Colorful World! LIVE!" a concert video that captures the preschool dino-star's third stage show extravaganza, which launched in New York's Radio City Music Hall in January 2003, on $12.99 VHS and $16.99 DVD. (Posted September 14)

Special Interest:
"Heir to an Execution," an incisive documentary that looks at the case against and execution of Julius and Ethel Rosenberg as spies (on June 19, 1953), directed by their granddaughter, Ivy Meeropol, arrives this week exclusively on DVD from HBO Video. (Posted September 14)

DVD Collectibles:
Highlight of the week is the "Alfred Hitchcock Signature Collection," a nine film deluxe boxed set with eight never-before-released Hitchcock classics along with the previously released "North by Northwest Special Edition," $99.92: "Dial M For Murder," "Foreign Correspondent," "Suspicion," "The Wrong Man," "Stage Fright," "I Confess," "Mr. And Mrs. Smith," "Strangers on a Train," each available separately at $19.97 (except "Strangers on a Train,") which sells for $26.99; from Warner ... MGM will release this week "Judgment at Nuremberg Special Edition" (1961), directed by Stanley Kramer and starring Spencer Tracy, Judy Garland, Burt Lancaster, Marlene Dietrich, Montgomery Clift, Richard Widmark and Maximilian Schell ... Just in time for the start of the school year, Criterion presents "Great Adaptations," four classic literary adaptations together in a single set at a special price ($99.95). Featuring the previously released DVD editions of David Lean's "Great Expectations" and "Oliver Twist," Peter Brook's "Lord of the Flies," Ernest B. Schedsack and Merian C. Cooper's "The Most Dangerous Game" ... Home Vision Entertainment will release two hard-boiled yakuza films: "Graveyard of Honor" (1976) and "Street Mobster" (1972), both by action director Kinji Fukasaku (co-director of "Tora! Tora! Tora!") ... And file this under "How Many Times Can One Film Be Re-released": Anchor Bay will release a spectacular four-disc set of George A. Romero's 1979 classic "Dawn of the Dead," dubbed the Ultimate Edition. Included is the theatrical version of the film, the extended version and the sought-after European version, plus more than 13 hours of extras. The boxed set also includes a special mini-reproduction of the IDW Publishing "Dawn of the Dead" Comic Book Issue #1, as well as a special multi-page foldout with special feature details, version descriptions, and original mall directory layouts from the Monroeville Mall; $49.98 ... And, last but not least, Miramax is releasing a slick three-disc "Clerks 10th Anniversary Edition," featuring the theatrical and director's cuts of the film as well as a plethoria of extras, $34.99. (Posted September 7)

From TV to Video:
TV series due this week: "Alias: The Complete Third Season," a six-disc set with 22 episodes, $69.99 (Buena Vista) ... "American Dreams: Season 1 Extended Music Edition," a seven-disc set, $89.98 (Universal) ... "Angel Season Four," a four-disc set with 22 episodes, $59.98 (Fox) ... "Columbo: The Complete First Season," a five-disc set, $59.98 (Universal) ... "Everwood: The Complete First Season," a six-disc set with 23 episodes, $59.98 (Warner) ... "Keen Eddie: The Complete Series," a four-disc set with 13 episodes, priced around $40 (Paramount) ... "Magnum P.I.: The Complete First Season," a four-disc set, $59.98 (Universal) ... "Mork & Mindy: The Complete First Season," a four-disc set with 24 episodes, priced around $30 (Paramount) ... "The Twilight Zone," a six-disc set with all 43 episodes of the UPN series, $59.98 (New Line) ... and "Without a Trace: The Complete First Season," a four-disc set with 22 episodes, $59.98 (Warner).

Other TV shows coming to DVD this week: "The Martian Chronicles," the 1980 miniseries based on Ray Bradbury's book, starring Rock Hudson, Bernadette Peters and Robert Beatty, in a two-disc set with 20 minutes of extra footage, from MGM ... Four episodes of the 1995 TV series "Goosebumps," based on R.L. Stine's books: "Haunted Mask II," "Night of the Living Dummy III," "The Werewolf of Fever Swamp," and "Welcome to Dead House," $9.98 each from Fox ... "The Burning Bed," the 1984 TV movie that gave Farrah Fawcett a chance to stretch out into more serious roles, debuts this week on DVD from MGM ... Two Lifetime Original Movies come to DVD this week: "Homeless to Harvard," starring Thora Birch, and "Obsessed," directed by John Badham and starring Jenna Elfman, both from New Line. (Posted September 7)

For the Kids:
Koch Vision revs things up this week with two releases from the "Brum" TV series -- about a little classic car who regularly helps the zany grownup residents of the Big Town get out of misadventures -- that airs on the Ready, Set, Learn! preschool block on Discovery Kids and TLC: "Brum: Crazy Chair Chase and Other Stories" and "Brum: Soccer Hero and Other Stories," on $12.98 VHS and $14.98 DVD ... Columbia TriStar will release the latest adventures of the animated TV series "Maggie and the Ferocious Beast": Maggie and the Ferocious Beast: Puzzles and Picnics," in six adventures on $14.94 DVD and five adventures on $9.95 VHS ... Buena Vista will release this week a gigantic collection of "Bear in the Big Blue House" Muppet titles on $9.99 VHS and $14.99 DVD (each including four sing-along songs): "A Bear for All Seasons," "Sense-Sational," "Shapes, Sounds & Colors," "Dance Party," "Potty Time With Bear," "Everybody's Special," "Sleepytime With Bear & Friends," "Heroes of Woodland Valley" and "Tiddy Time With Bear" ... The folks at Disney will release three new titles bringing together the princesses from Disney's classic animated films in "The Disney Princess Collection." Featuring Ariel, Belle, Jasmine, Cinderella, Mulan, Pocahontas and Snow White, the titles are "Disney Princess Sing Along Songs: Once Upon a Dream" ($14.99 VHS and $19.99 DVD), "Disney Princess Stories Volume One: A Gift From the Heart" ($14.99 VHS and $19.99 DVD) and "Disney Princess Party: Volume One" ($19.99 DVD only) ... Master Communications (www.master-comm.com) will release this week the latest title in the award-winning "Families of the World" video series that offers a documentary "day-in-the-life" glimpse into how people live in different countries, "Families of Vietnam," a 30-minute video that follows the daily activities of one urban and one rural kid in Vietnam; $19.95 VHS only ... For older kids Buena Vista will release Volumes 2 and 3 in the Power Rangers Dinothunder series: "Legacy of Power" and "White Thunder," $14.99 VHS and $19.99 DVD each ... "The Best of Beakman's World" features 15 of the wackiest, most spectacular experiments from the hip and edgy educational science TV series that aired on both CBS and The Learning Channel, $9.95 DVD only from Columbia TriStar ... Jim Henson's puppets go Greek in Columbia TriStar's "The Storyteller: Greek Myths," a four-part series on one DVD that combines fantasy characters from Henson's Creature Shop with classical actors like Derek Jacobi -- under the supervision of Anthony Minghella -- to re-enact ancient Greek stories: "Daedalus and Icarus," "Orpheus and Eurydice," "Perseus and the Gorgon" and "Theseus and the Minotaur; $19.95. (Posted September 7)

Special Interest:
At the height of controversy over presidential candidate John Kerry's service in Vietnam, First Run Features this week will release "Brothers in Arms: The Story of the Crew of Patrol Craft Fast 94," a 2004 documentary that looks at the facts -- not smears and innuendo -- behind the role of Kerry and his crew in Vietnam, on DVD only ... Paramount and PBS will release "The Creation of the Universe," an enthralling documentary that features Nobel Prize winner Carlo Rubbia, Murray Gell-Man and world-famous physicist Stephen Hawking explaining their complex theories about the origins and evolution of the universe, on DVD only. (Posted September 7)

DVD Collectibles:
The Criterion Collection releases this week definitive versions of two memorable films. David Cronenberg's 1983 "Videodrome," starring James Woods and Deborah Harry, will be presented in a double-disc set with the full-length unrated edition of the mindbending, influential film that fused social commentary with shocking elements of sex and violence, featuring groundbreaking special effects makeup by Academy Award-winner Rick Baker; and a two-disc set of "Slackers" (1991), Richard Linklater's remarkable film that presents a day in the life of a subculture of marginal, eccentric, and overeducated citizens in and around the University of Texas at Austin. Shot on 16mm for a mere $23,000, Linklater eschewed a traditional plot and choose instead to employ long takes and fluid transitions to create a tapestry of more than a hundred characters. Both sets are loaded with extra features. (Posted August 30)

From TV to Video:
"I Love Lucy: The Complete Second Season," is a five-disc set with 31 episodes, priced under $50 from Paramount ... "Russell Simmons Presents Def Poetry: Season One," four half-hour episodes on one disc, hosted by Mos Def, from New Line ... "South Park's The Passion of the Jew," featuring three episodes ("The Passion of the Jew," "Christian Rock Hard" and "Red Hot Catholic Love"), from Paramount ... "Star Trek: The Complete First Season DVD Set," an eight-disc set with 29 episodes packed in a cool plastic pod, priced around $100, from Paramount ... and "Touched by an Angel: The Complete First Season," a four-disc set with 13 episodes, priced under $40 from Paramount.

Other TV shows on video: Columbia TriStar will bring to video this week the 1995 family friendly "Annie: A Royal Adventure!" which follows the exploits of Little Orphan Annie (Ashley Johnson) in England when Daddy Warbucks travels to the British Isles to accept knighthood from the Queen, on DVD ... Also from Columbia TriStar comes "Ike: Countdown to D-Day," the 2004 telefilm starring Tom Selleck as President Eishenhower in the gripping drama that depicts the incredible events that shaped the culmination of D-Day in 1944, on VHS rental and DVD ... Ardustry Home Entertainment will present "Mary Higgins Clark's Before I Say Goodbye," a 2003 telefilm about a politician's daughter who uncovers a conspiracy surrounding the mysterious deaths of her husband and his business associates, on DVD ... And, from MPI Home Video, comes "Vendetta for the Saint," in which Roger Moore returns as Simon Templar and goes up against the Mafia in Italy, aided by a bevy of beautiful women; the 1969 NBC TV movie is available on VHS and DVD at $14.98. (Posted August 30)

On the Indie Front:
Vanguard Cinema will release three indie films this week: "Enemies of Laughter" (2000) a romantic comedy about a playwright/sitcom writer who can't get a break with women until a friend produces a documentary on the hapless scribe, starring David Paymer, Judge Reinhold, Rosalind Chao, Marilu Henner, Bea Arthur and Peter Falk; "The Magic of Marciano" (2000) is a coming of age story of a young boy who must cope with his emotionally disturbed mother and her antagonistic boyfriend, starring Natassja Kinski, Robert Forster, Jason Cairns and Cody Morgan; and "The Singing Forest" (2003), a modern-day drama/fairy tale about two gay lovers killed by the Nazi during the Holocaust who are reincarnated and brought back together in the present; all on VHS and DVD. (Posted August 30)

For the Kids:
Paramount will bring home this week "All Grown Up: Lucky 13," featuring the "grown-up" Rugrats in four adventures on $16.99 DVD and two on $9.95 VHS; "Rugrats Holiday Celebration" on DVD and VHS; "Dora's Halloween" on $9.95 VHS and $16.99 DVD (with two bonus episodes); and three releases in the company's new Nick Jr. Baby franchise, "Curious Buddies," featuring five colorful puppets and their human friends aimed at engaging babies 3 to 36-months-old: "Curious Buddies Look and Listen at the Park," "Curious Buddies Exploring at the Beach" and "Curious Buddies Helping at Home," on $12.95 VHS and $16.99 DVD ... Two more Strawberry Shortcake adventures arrive this week, in their usual strawberry-scented pink packaging: "Adventures on Ice Cream Island" and "Best Pals Yet," each containing two animated adventures on $12.98 VHS and $14.98 DVD, from Fox ... Columbia TriStar will release the fourth original Cabbage Patch Kids home video, "Cabbage Patch Kids: The New Kids," in which Norma Jean helps save the school's talent show, on $9.95 VHS and $14.95 DVD ... UAV Entertainment will release this week the first two volumes in "Sabrina, the Animated Series," the "prequel" to the hugely successful "Sabrina, the Teenage Witch" series: "Witch in Training" and "Bat Attack!" on $9.99 VHS and DVD ... Lastly, for older kids, there's the family action-adventure "Splat!" that follows a troubled teen who overcomes his problems by learning to cooperate with friends and family in a paintball tournament, on VHS rental and DVD from MTI Home Video. (Posted August 30)

Special Interest:
"Chris Rick: Never Scared" is an HBO standup concert featuring material from the comedian's "Black Ambition Tour" sold-out tour as well as 13 minutes of never-before-seen footage from the concert and Rock's first solo HBO half-hour comedy special "Chris Rock: Big Ass Jokes"; on DVD from HBO Home Video ... "Apollo 13: To the Edge and Back" gives viewers a first-hand account of the heroic struggle to bring home the astronauts from their aborted mission to the moon, new to DVD from WGBH Boston Video ... Also from WGBH Boston comes "Medieval Siege," a docu that takes a close look at the state of warfare in the Middle Ages, a time when -- 200 years before the invention of the cannon -- the feared "Warwolf" catapult was capable of hurling boulders, bee hives and plague-infected corpses long distances to put castles under dire siege, new to DVD ... for lovers of hot Latin music, Paramount will release "Celia Cruz & Friends: A Night of Salsa," on DVD only ... MPI Home Video has three interesting documentaries new to DVD this week: "First Steps on Mars," a fascinating docu featuring a 3-D simulation of a manned Mars landing, based on NASA research; "History of the 80s," a 10-disc set of the best and worst in people, world events, sports, science and technology culled from ABC News vaults, $89.98 for the set; and "The Hajj: One American's Pilgrimage to Mecca," an ABC News Nightline program in which reporter Michael Wolfe takes viewers on his second Hajj (or pilgrimage) to Mecca ... And, last but not least, Paramount will release the direct-to-DVD sequel "Trekkies 2," a docu that follows "Star Trek" fans where "no man has gone before." (Posted August 30)

Coming Soon:
Due Nov. 16 is the sequel-of-sorts to "Pitch Black," "The Chronicles of Riddick" (2004), directed by David Twohy and starring Vin Diesel, Colm Feore, Thandie Newton and Judi Dench, theatrical and unrated director's cut editions, on VHS rental and DVD from Universal ... Due Dec. 7 is "Maria Full of Grace" (2004), a hit film from Columbia about a young woman who becomes a drug mule to realize her dream of a new life, from Warner on VHS rental and DVD.

Warner Home Video will release on December 7 a remarkable 10-disc DVD set: "The Ultimate Matrix Collection," featuring all three "Matrix" films together for the first time with a newly remastered picture and sound for "The Matrix." Also included is the companion piece "The Matrix Revisited" and the best-selling "The Animatrix," plus five entirely new DVDs packed solid with brand-new supplemental materials that encompass every aspect of the Matrix universe, including two new audio commentaries on each film, "Enter the Matrix" video game footage, more than 100 deep-delving featurettes/documentaries and much more: 35 Hours of extras overall. Suggested retail price is $79.92. Warner will also release "The Ultimate Matrix Collection Limited Edition" that throws in a limited-edition Neo mini-bust figurine and an 80-page CollectorÕs Book, for $129.92 SRP. (Posted August 23)

DVD Collectibles:
The Criterion Collection will release this week the classic "I Vitelloni" (1953) Federico Fellini's semi-autobiographical masterpiece of sharply drawn character sketches about five young men who linger in post-adolescent limbo dreaming of adventure and escape from their small seacoast town ... First Run Features will release two important Iranian films this week: "Harmoun" (1990), a psychological comedy/drama that follows 24 hours in the life of a bumbling Iranian intellectual as he tries and fails to write his dissertation about love and faith while trying to cope with his wife, a successful artist, who wants a divorce; and "The Cow" (1969), by Iranian cinematic master Dariush Mehrjui, about a man in a small village in Iran who cherishes his cow more than anything in the world, for both emotional and economic reasons; both on DVD ... Also from First Run is the exceptional documentary, "Merton: A Film Biography" (1984), about the Trappist monk hailed as a prophet and censured for his outspoken social criticism, on DVD. (Posted August 23)

From TV to Video:
Series due this week: "The Apprentice: The Complete First Season," a five-disc set for $59.98 from Universal ... "Benny Hill: Complete and Unadulterated: The Naughty Early Years: Volume 1," a three-disc set with 11 episodes from 1969-1971, never-before broadcast or available in the U.S., in full-length, remastered hour-long installments, $49.95. from A&E Home Video ... "Boys Meets World Season 1" is a six disc set for $49.99 from Buena Vista ... "Dallas: The Complete First and Second Seasons" is a five-disc set with 29 episodes, $49.98 from Warner ... "Futurama: Volume 4," a four-disc set with 18 episodes from the fourth production season, $49.98 from Fox ... "Harsh Realm: The Complete Series" is a three-disc set with all nine episodes (six never seen on network TV) of the Chris Carter sci-fi series, $39.98 from Fox ... "The Munsters: The Complete First Season," a three-disc set with the original pilot and 38 episodes, $59.98 from Universal ... "Night Gallery: The Complete First Season" is a three-disc set with 13 episodes plus the original pilot movie, $59.98 from Universal. (Posted August 23)

Other TV shows coming to home video: "At Home With the Braithwaites: Complete First Series," the cutting edge U.K. series seen on BBC America that shows what happens when an already dysfunctional family strikes it rich, in a two-disc set for $39.99 from Acorn Media ... Acorn will also release "Wodehouse Playhouse: The Complete Collection," a six-disc set of all 20 episodes of the PBS series, featuring all the characters from all corners of the funny and eccentric Wodehouse universe, $79.99. (Posted August 23)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
Miramax will release the cult Hong Kong cult martial arts action comedy "Shaolin Soccer" (2001), starring Stephen Chow and Vickie Zhao, on DVD this week, in both the U.S. and unrated Hong Kong editions on one disc. The film follows the adventures of a grpup of misfits who form a soccer team and use their extraordinary King Fu skills to beat their arch rivals. (Posted August 23)

On the Indie Front:
From MTI Home Video comes "Bloom" (2004), an enthralling stroy of love, loss and lust through the minds and desires of Stephen Dedalus, Molly Bloom and Leopold Bloom, adapted from James Joyce's "Ulysses," starring Stephen Rea, Angeline Ball, Hugh O'Conor and Patrick Bergin, on VHS rental and DVD. (Posted August 23)

For the Kids:
Comedians Tim Conway and Caroline Rhea lend their voices to a series of interactive Mommy & Me DVDs from Madacy Kids (www.madacy.com). The three new releases: "Mommy & Me Fun & Friends," "Monny & Me Splish Splash" and "Mommy & Me Lullaby & Goodnight" feature real moms and their children inviting viewers to participate with parent-child interactions that build learning skills and encourage bonding with humor, songs, games and fingerplays, $14.98 each ... Two new releases from The Brainy Baby Co. inspire babies (6 months to 36 months) to learn trhough fun, colorful, interactive experiences with eye-catching visuals of real babies and familiar objects; "Peek-a-Boo" and "Laugh & Learn," $15.95 VHS and $19.95 DVD ... HIT Entertainment this week will release the latest entry in the Angelina Ballerina franchise, "The Magic of Dance," featuring four animated and two live-action segments; the animated episodes are voiced by Judi Dench and her daughter, Finty Williams, while the live-action episodes feature young students from the Royal Academy of Dance in London; $12.99 VHS and $16.99 DVD ... and, finally, for older kids there's "Godzilla the Series: The Monster Wars Trilogy," a three-part animated tale featuring the voices of Ian Ziering, Joe Pantoliano and Paget Brewster, on DVD for $14.95 from Columbia TriStar. (Posted August 23)

Special Interest:
It's comedy week from The Shout! Factory with three releases from the company's Breakout Comedy Series of standups on DVD: "Doug Stanhope," who makes the ugly truths of modern life downright hilarious; "Pablo Francisco," host of Si TV's "Latino Laugh Festival: The Show"; and "Corey Holcomb," also know as the "Ghetto Dr. Phil"; each DVD sells for $19.98 ... Docurama has two interesting releases this week: The 20th anniversary digitally remastered edition (featuring music by Ruben Blades and an introduction by Susan Sarandon) of "When the Mountains Tremble," a documentary that chronicles the astonishing true story of Nobel Prize winner Rigoberta Menchu, a Quiche Indian woman who stood up for her people and helped wage a rebellion against the opressive Guatemalan military, $26.95; and "Ladysmith Black Mambazo: On Tip Toe," a documentary on South African musician Joseph Shabalala and his World Music super group (best known to most Americans for their participation on Paul Simon's "Graceland" album), $26.95 ... "Jim Brown: All American" is a 2002 HBO Sports documentary directed by Spike Lee, from New Line ... and, lastly, A&E Home Video will release the complete 26-episode groundbreaking documentary series, "The World at War," packaged in an 11-disc set for $149.95, featuring more than 12 hours of bonus programming nort seen on TV. (Posted August 23)

More Flash:

Columbia TriStar Home Entertainment has confirmed that it will release its smash sequel "Spider-Man 2" on VHS and a two-disc DVD set on Nov. 30. Included on the DVD will be such extras as a new feature called "Enter the Web" that allows viewers to experience in a virtual sense what it's like to be on the set of the film, a "making of" documentary, bloopers, and much, much more -- 10 hours of extras, in fact. The two-disc DVD carries a suggested list price of $29.96 and the VHS will sell for $24.97. A DVD gift set will also be available for a retail price of $49.95, and will include such goodies as a portfolio of artwork "inspired by" the film and a reprint of a classic "Spider-Man" comic. (Posted August 20)

Coming Soon:
Columbia TriStar will release on October 5 Michael Moore's controversial "Fahrenheit 9/11," just one month shy of the November elections. The documentary will be available on DVD (with such extras as deleted scenes and Condoleezza Rice's 9/11 Commission testimony) and VHS rental ... On October 26, Columbia TriStar will release the gender-bending comedy "White Chicks," starring Shawn and Marlon Wayans, on DVD and VHS rental. (Posted August 16)

DVD Collectibles:
On the top of the list this week is Warner Home Video's "The Martin Scorsese Collection," a six-disc set with "After Hours" (1985) starring Griffin Dunne, Rosanna Arquette, Verna Bloom, Tommy Chong, Linda Fiorentino and Teri Garr; "Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore" (1974) starring Ellen Burstyn, Kris Kristofferson, Billy Green Bush, Diane Ladd, Harvey Keitel, Jodie Foster and Vic Tayback; "Goodfellas Two-Disc Special Edition" (1990) starring Robert De Niro, Ray Liotta, Joe Pesci, Lorraine Bracco, Paul Sorvino, Frank Sivero, Frank Vincent and Tony Darrow; "Mean Streets" (1973) starring Robert De Niro, Harvey Keitel, David Proval, Amy Robinson, Richard Romanus and Cesare Danova; and "Who's That Knocking at My Door" (1969), starring Zina Bethune, Harvey Keitel and Ann Collette. Each DVD has plenty of extras to please Scorsese and general film buffs. The set goes for $59.92; each film is available separately for 19.97 except the "Goodfellas" double-disc set, which sells for $26.99. (Posted August 16)

From TV to Video:
Series due this week include "Babylon 5: The Movies," a five-disc set with five feature-length "Babylon 5" movies: "The Gathering," "In the Beginning," "Thirdspace," "River of Souls" and "A Call to Arms," $59.98 from Warner ... "Da Ali G Show: The Complete First Season," six uncut, half-hour episodes, $29.95 from HBO Video ... "Happy Days: The Complete First Season" (1974), a three-disc set with 16 episodes, priced under $30 from Paramount ... "Here's Lucy," a four-disc set with 24 episodes from Lucile Ball's third TV series, $34.98 from Shout! Factory ... "Lateline: The Complete Series" (1998-1999), a three-disc set with 19 episodes, including four never aired, priced under $30 from Paramount ... and "Laverne & Shirley: The Complete First Season" (1975-1976), a three-disc set with 15 episodes, priced under $30 from Paramount. Fox will release this week "Redemption: The Stan Tookie Williams Story." a 2004 telefilm starring Jamie Foxx and Lynn Whitfield, about the founder of the Crips gang. (Posted August 16)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
Razor Digital Entertainment will release "Slammed!" a 2001 comedy about wrestling and girls, starring Justin Whalin and Zachery Bryan, on DVD only ... "Nate and the Colonel" is a post-Civil War adventure about a former slave and his boyhood friend, a Confederate Colonel, who leave the ruined South and head out West, where they encounter Indians, a renegade band of Union Soldiers, and millions in stolen gold, from MTI Home Video on VHS and DVD. (Posted August 16)

For the Kids:
RAGGS LLC, a new home video company, will release this week "RAGGS Kids Club Band Pawsuuup! Tour," the first in a news series of rock videos for kids ages 2-8. The RAGGS Kids Club Band is an actual touring group of four musicians and their manager, dressed up as dogs to give kids positive music messages and a "tail-wagging" good time. The one-hour video will be available on $9.98 VHS and $12.98 DVD. For more info: www.raggs.com ... For elementary school children, Thinkeroo (www.thinkeroo.com) will release "Space Trekkers," which brings down to Earth the intricate wonders of the Milky Way, making learning about the Solar System fun; the newest installment in the "Way Cool Science for Curious Kids!" series is available on DVD and VHS for $14.95 ... For older kids, 4Kids Entertainment will release "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Volume 11," a saga about The Ultimate Ninja battling Ninja Turtle Leonardo, on $9.98 VHS and $14.98 DVD ... Fox will release "Moto X Kids" (2004), about a motorcycle gang (led by Gary Busey) that threatens to take over the local motorcross track and the band of underage underdogs -- coached by a top-notch motorcrosser (Lorenzo Lamas) -- who fight back; on $12.98 VHS and $19.98 DVD ... and, finally, for kids of all ages, Disney will release the first-ever feature-length film starring Mickey, Donald and Goofy, the direct-to-video "The Three Musketeers," a Disney-esque version of Alexandre Dumas' classic swashbuckler. The animated adventure will be available on $22.99 VHS and $29.99 DVD (which is loaded with extras). (Posted August 16)

Special Interest:
Wolfe Video will release this week "Showboy," a fascinating mockumentary that looks at a Hollywood writer (real-life "Six Feet Under" writer Christian Taylor) who gives it all up and heads to Las Vegas to fulfill his lifelong dream of becoming a Vegas showboy, on VHS and DVD (www.wolfevideo.com). (Posted August 16)

Coming Soon:
Snoozer "Garfield the Movie," starring Breckin Meyer, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Stephen Tobolowsky, Bill Murray (Voice of Garfield), will purr its way to home video on October 19 on $19.98 VHS and DVD from Fox ... Another snoozer, "Around the World in 80 Days," starring Jackie Chan, Steve Coogan, Robert Fyfe, Jim Broadbent, Cecile De France, will fly to $24.99 VHS and DVD on November 2 from Disney. (Posted August 9)

DVD Collectibles:
Warner Home Video has a delightful array of wonderfully creepy releases this week under the collective title of banned, forbidden and condemned horror classics: "The Lost Boys Special Edition" (1987), directed by Joel Schumacher and starring Jason Patric, Corey Haim, Kiefer Sutherland, Edward Herrmann, Jamie Gertz and Corey Feldman; the two-disc set of the tongue-in-cheek vampire thriller includes a host of extras including commentary by Schumacher and "The Lost Boys: A Retrospective" featurette ... The 1956 shocker "The Bad Seed," directed by Mervyn LeRoy and starring Patty McCormack, Nancy Kelly, Henry Jones and Eileen Heckart, with extras ... The Bette Davis post-"What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?" thriller "Dead Ringer" (1964), directed by Paul Henreid and also starring Karl Malden and Peter Lawford, in which Davis plays two sisters, one good, one evil, with extras ... "Village of the Damned/Children of the Damned" double-disc set with 1960's "Village of the Damned" starring George Sanders, Barbara Shelley, Michael Gwynne and Laurence Naismith, about the human spawn of extraterrestrials, and its sequel, "Children of the Damned" (1963), starring Ian Hendry, Alan Badel and Barbara Ferris, with extras ... and Tod ("Dracula") Browning's classic "Freaks" (1932), a weird drama that unfolds among the sideshow freaks in a traveling circus, remastered from rare nitrate film elements, with such extras as three alternate endings, a documentary and the special message prologue that was added for the theatrical release.

From Home Vision Entertainment comes the controversial "Sada," (1998 - Japan), directed by Nobuhiko Obayashi and starring Hitomi Kuroki, Tsurutaro Kataoka, Norihei Miki and Kippei Shiina. "Sada" is a compelling erotic thriller, based on the true story of Sada Abe, a Japanese Geisha, who murdered and castrated her lover on May 19, 1936. Director Obayashi explores Sada's past: her rape at age 14, her descent into prostitution, and the crime of passion that ultimately turned her into an overnight media celebrity. In Japanese with English subtitles.

Columbia TriStar Home Entertainment will release an interesting experiment this week: Two volumes of Three Stooges shorts in colorized and b&w versions using a new production process called ChromaChoice" that allows viewers to toggle between the original b&w version and its colorized version in a seamless manner using the DVD remote. The two volumes are "Goofs on the Loose" featuring "Men in Black" (1934), "The Sitter Downers" (1937), "Punch Drunks" (1934) and "Playing the Ponies" (1937); and "Stooged and Confoosed," featuring "Violent Is the Word for Curly" (1938), "You Nazty Spy!" (1940), "No Census, No Feeling" (1940) and "An Ache in Every Stake" (1941); $24.95 each. (Posted August 9)

From TV to Video:
Series due on video this week include "Good Times: The Third Season," a three-disc set with 24 episodes, $29.95 from Columbia TriStar ... "Manchild: The Complete First Season," a two-disc set with seven episodes, $29.98, from Koch Vision ... "Star Trek: The Next Generation -- Jean-Luc Picard Collection," a two-disc set containing seven favorite Picard episodes; priced under $20, from Paramount. And, last but not least, Acorn Media will release the 1982 miniseries "Smiley's People," the follow-up to John Le Carre's "Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy," starring Alec Guinness as aging British spy George Smiley and Patrick Stewart as his nemesis, Soviet agent "Karla"; digitally remastered in a three-volume set, $59.99 DVD and $69.99 VHS. (Posted August 9)

On the Indie Front:
Ardustry Home Entertainment has a wild slate of Halloween titles due on DVD this week: "America's Most Haunted Inns" and "America's Most Haunted Town" (New Hope, Pa.), both TV documentaries from 2001, present astonishing images of ghosts, paranormal sightings, and haunting experiences ... "Breeders" (1998) is a gothic horror feature about a meteorite that crash-lands onto a Boston College campus releasing an alien beast ... A Halloween party in the country turns into a horrifying blood-fest when the teenage guests are murdered one by one in "The Fear" (1998), which stars Ann Turkel and Vince Edwards ... Louis Gosset Jr. and Amy Locane unleash a supernatural power that can only be quashed by an ancient ritual ceremony in "The Mummy" (aka "Legend of the Mummy" and "Bram Stoker's Mummy") (1997) ... Asia Argento and Julian Sands star in a blood curdling and erotic take on "Phantom of the Opera" (1998), directed by horror legend Dario Argento ... "Killer Tongue" (1996) is a supernatural tale in which the mysterious New Mexico desert and a meteor provide the backdrop for an unearthly abduction of a woman's body ... In "Jack Frost" (1997) a freak accident with a truckload of genetic material turns a serial killer into a murderous snowman; in "Jack Frost 2" (1997) the body of the thawed murderer is refrozen and brought back to life in -- of all places -- the Caribbean ... In "The Surgeon" (aka "Exquisite Tenderness") (1995) a doctor hatches a twisted plan of revenge that turns a local hospital into a laboratory of human guinea pigs; the film stars Peter Boyle and Malcom McDowell. Each film has a price tag of $9.98, except the "Haunted" titles, which sell for $14.98 each. (Posted August 9)

For the Kids:
There's plenty of kids product due this week. For the wee ones, Classical Fun Music (www.cmkids.org) will release "The A to Z Symphony," a kind of Music Appreciation 101 for children featuring 26 one-minute videos set to the melodies from such great composers as Beethoven, Vivaldi, Bach and Strauss; each vignette is preceded by a letter of the alphabet and a sample of vocabulary words; $14.95 VHS and $19.95 DVD ... HIT Entertainment will release the latest title in the award-winning preschool "Kipper" video series: "Kipper Helps Out," featuring six animated adventures of the adventuresome pup and his friends that encourage imaginative play while highlighting cooperation, courtesy and kindness; $6.99 VHS and $9.99 DVD ... Paramount will release this week two perennial favorites: "Blue's Clues: Blue's Room - Snack Time Playdate," four animated episodes on VHS and DVD; and "Fairly OddParents: Channel Chasers." a feature- length animated film based on the Nick TV series ... For older kids there's "What's New Scooby-Doo? Volume 3: Halloween Boos and Clues," featuring Scooby and the gang in six monster-themed episodes, $9.95 VHS and $14.95 DVD, from Warner Home Video ... Warner also will release "Cartoon Network Halloween: 9 Creepy Cartoon Capers," a DVD compilation of nine viewer-favorite episodes from "The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy," "Johnny Bravo," "Ed, Edd n Eddy" and "Dexter's Laboratory," $14,97. (Posted August 9)

Special Interest:
Eagle Rock Entertainment will release this week "The Who: Live at the Isle of Wight," The Who's legendary concert of August 30, 1970, available for the first time on DVD in DTS surround, featuring a 40-minute interview with Pete Townshend, $19.98 ... AnimEigo will release four DVD releases in its new line of "Metal Munching Maniacs" that highlights the sport of Robotic Combat: "Gourmet Damage" ($14.98), "Robot Club & Grille MAYhem" ($19.98), "Robot Assault"($19.98) and "2003 Nationals" ($19.98). (Posted August 9)

Much ado about nothing:
"Seinfeld" is coming to home video, according to a report in The Hollywood Reporter. Columbia TriStar will release the pilot and first three seasons of the show as two four-DVD sets as well as combined in a boxed gift set on Nov. 23, just before the holiday shopping season. Each individual release will include about 12 hours of new content and have a suggested list price of $49.95. The gift set will have a list price of $119.95 and will include such extras as a limited-edition script from co-creator Larry David, "Monk's Diner" salt-and-pepper shakers and collectible playing cards. Extra features on the releases include audio commentaries by cast members, deleted scenes and never-aired stand-up comedy footage of Jerry Seinfeld. (Posted August 5)

Green Friday:
The wait is "Ogre": DreamWorks Home Entertainment will release "Shrek 2," the #1 comedy of all time and biggest animated picture ever on DVD and VHS on Friday, Nov. 5. Earning more than $430 million at the boxoffice, "Shrek 2" is the top movie of the year, the most successful animated film of all time and the fourth largest grossing motion picture ever. The VHS version will be priced at $15.95 and the DVD will be available for $19.95. No info yet on DVD extras. (Posted August 5)

DVD Collectibles:
"Zorba the Greek," (1964), starring Alan Bates, Anthony Quinn and Lila Kedrova, restored, with such extras as commentary by director Michael Cacoyannis, Anthony Quinn "A Lust for Life" biography, MovieTone News footage from the premiere, and a behind-the-scenes still gallery, from Fox Studio Classics ... "Stage and Spectacle: 3 Films by Jean Renoir" is a three-disc set with "The Golden Coach" (1953), "French Cancan" (1955) and "Elena and Her Men" (1956). Near the end of his long and celebrated career, master filmmaker Jean Renoir indulged his lifelong obsession with life-as-theater and directed three delirious films, infatuated with the past, love, and artifice. Awash in jubilant Technicolor, each film features the talents of three immortal film icons: Anna Magnani, Jean Gabin, and Ingrid Bergman. The Criterion Collection presents these three majestic films for the first time on DVD in a special three-disc box set. The set also includes introductions to two of the films by Renoir; video introductions by filmmakers Martin Scorsese and Peter Bogdanovich; "Jean Renoir -- Hollywood and Beyond," part of a BBC documentary on the filmmaker; a three-part interview with Renoir conducted by director Jacques Rivette; an exclusive interview with set designer Max Douy; and more. $79.95. (Posted August 2)

From TV to Video:
TV series due this week are: "The Best of Bud Abbott and Lou Costello Vol. 3," a two-disc set from Universal ... "Knight Rider: Season One," a four-disc set with 22 episodes, $59.98 from Universal ... "Significant Others: The Series," a two-disc set, $24.96 from Columbia TriStar ... "Sliders: Complete Season One & Two," a six-disc set with 23 episodes from the 1995 and 1996 seasons, $89.98 from Universal. Other TV shows making their way to home video this week include "Comedy Central's Roast of Denis Leary -- Uncensored," on DVD from Paramount ... and "The Real Olympics," a PBS documentary that compares the ancient Greek Olympics to the modern games of today, on DVD from Paramount. (Posted August 2)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
Ardustry Home Entertainment will release this week on DVD "Blind," a thriller about a homicide detective tormented by mysterious visions of the victims of a serial killer he's tracking -- before the bodies are discovered ... "Expecting Mercy" (2000) is a thriller about a couple on the run who hide out in a small Wisconsin town's inn, thinking they're safe until they discover that their every move is being captured on camera by the inn's strange owner; on VHS and DVD. (Posted August 2)

For the Kids:
Paramount has scheduled a slew of PBS Kids releases this week: two episodes each from the new preschool series "Boohbah" and "Cyberchase," and two features, "Caillou at Play" and "Teletubbies: Again-Again!" each priced at $16.99 on DVD ... HBO Video will release the latest two installments of Scholastic Entertainment's interactive, animated children's program inspired by the award-winning "I Spy" books: I Spy: Volume 3: A Thing That Flings and Other Stories" and "I Spy Volume 4: A Rockin' Bronco and Other Stories," on $9.95 VHS and $14.97 DVD ... The Learning Channel and Discovery Kids' "Hi-5" variety show series, which uses pop-song and dance routines, stories, jokes and skits to help make learning fun, debuts on home video with three releases this week: Hi-5: Color Craze," Hi-5: Music Magic" and Hi-5: Game Time," on $9.94 VHS and $14.95 DVD from MGM ... Columbia TriStar will release "The Wubbulous World of Dr. Seuss: The Cat's Musical Tales," which uses 3-D animation and the puppetry of the Jim Henson Co. to bring alive three Seussian adventures: "The Sounds All Around," "Horton Has a Hit" and "The Grinch Meets His Max/Halfway Home to Malamaroo," on $9.95 VHS and $14.95 DVD ... For older kids there's "Soccer Dog: European Cup," a direct-to-video sequel to 1999's "Soccer Dog: The Movie"; the $12.95 VHS and $19.94 DVD stars TV's Jake Thomas and Nick Moran, from Columbia TriStar ... From StudioWorks Entertainment comes "A Time for Dancing," a touching tale of two teenage girls who are bound by friendship and their mutual love for dancing; the Showtime feature follows the girls as they endure the best and worst of relationships, boyfriends, dance trials and family matters; on DVD for $14.99 ... and, lastly, Fox is cashing in on the tween Bratz doll phenomenon with the release of the animated direct-to-video feature Bratz: The Video -- Starrin' and Stylin'," on $19.98 VHS and $24.98 DVD. (Posted August 2)

This Just In:
Warner Home Video has just announced a November 23 release date for "Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban." The third in the magical series will be available on $22.99 VHS and in a two-disc DVD set for $29.95. The DVD version includes such extras as: A selection of mystifying exclusive never-before-seen footage; "Creating the Vision," an interview with J.K. Rowling and the filmmakers; three interactive memory challenge games: "Magic You May Have Missed," "Catch Scabbers,""Quest with Sir Cadogan"; self-guided iPIX tours into Honeydukes and Professor LupinÕs Defense Against the Dark Arts classroom; interviews with the cast lead by Johnny Vaughan and the Shrunken Head; "Care of Magical Creatures" animal trainers featurette; "Choir Practice" sing-along with the Hogwarts choir; "Hogwarts Portrait Gallery" featurette with a closer look at the various portraits lining the walls of Hogwarts castle; "Conjuring a Scene" featurette with an in-depth look at the making of key scenes from the film; theatrical trailers of all three Harry Potter films; Electronic Arts game preview; DVD-ROM PC capable features include Wizard Trading Cards and a Hogwarts Timeline. (Posted July 28)

Coming Soon:
Due September 21 is "Mean Girls," a very nasty teen girl comedy starring Lindsay Lohan, Tina Fey, Rachel McAdams and Tim Meadows, from Paramount on DVD and VHS rental ... Due September 28 "Super Size Me," a tongue in-cheek -- and burger in hand -- documentary look at the legal, financial and physical costs of America's hunger for fast food, from Columbia TriStar on DVD and VHS rental ... Also on that day, Fox will release "The Hunting of the President," a 2004 documentary, narrated by Morgan Freeman, on the 10-year campaign to destroy Bill Clinton, based on the New York Times best seller, on DVD and VHS rental ... Viewers will be "Saved!" October 5 when Mandy Moore, Macaulay Culkin, Patrick Fugit, Heather Matarazzo, Eva Amurri, Martin Donovan and Mary-Louise Parker make fun of "higher" education, from MGM on DVD and VHS rental ... And, finally, on October 19 Universal will release Stephen ("The Mummy") Sommers' "Van Helsing," starring Hugh Jackman and Kate Beckinsale, on DVD and $22.98 VHS. (Posted July 27)

DVD Collectibles:
Home Vision will release four fine foreign outings this week: Three of the films are by Claude Chabrol: "Masques" (1987) stars Philippe Noiret in a brilliant performance as a TV game show host turned killer; "La Ceremonie" (1995) is a shocking and unforgettable thriller in which three women (Jacqueline Bisset, Sondrine Bonnaire and Isabelle Huppert) set the stage for murder, violence and betrayal; and "Story of Women" (1988), the true story of a working-class housewife Marie (Isabelle Huppert), who performs illegal abortions in France during World War II, evading the Nazis, and betraying those she loves; the fourth film is Bob Swaim's "La Balance," (1982), a French thriller that takes place in the sordid Paris underground; the film is considered the French "Dirty Harry."

"Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex" contains the first four half-hour episodes of the new anime series based on the classic feature film and manga of the same name. In two versions: A one-disc standard edition with the four episodes in Dolby 5.1 surround ($24.95) and a three-disc special edition with one disc containing the four episodes in Dolby 5.1 surround, one disc containing the four episodes in DTS 5.1 surround, and a third disc containing the original series soundtrack CD ($59.95). The complete series (26 episodes) will be released bimonthly on seven sets over the next year. From Manga/Bandai/Anchor Bay.

And in case you missed it the first time it made its way to home video, don't pass up Guillermo Del Toro's "The Devil's Backbone Special Edition" (2001), starring Marisa Paredes, Eduardo Noriega, Federico Luppi and Fernando Tielve. The ghostly tale of revenge and lust set in Spain during the Spanish Civil War is a tour-de-force. Columbia TriStar is releasing the film -- with more extras than the original releaSE -- in conjunction with the release to video this week of Del Toro's "Hellboy." (Posted July 27)

From TV to Video:
"The Cisco Kid Collection Three" is a four-disc or five-VHS set with 20 episodes from this Golden Age of Television series, $49.98, from MPI Home Video ... "Dark Shadows DVD Collection 13" is a four-disc set with 40 episodes, $59.98, from MPI Home Video ... "The Jeff Foxworthy Show: The Complete First Season" is a two-disc set with 18 episodes, $29.95 from Columbia TriStar ... "Nero Wolfe: The Complete First Season" is a three-volume set with eight episodes, $59.95 from A&E Home Video ... "The New Avengers '77: Season II" is a four-disc set with all 13 episodes from the second season, $79.95 from A&E Home Video ... "Pennies From Heaven" is the classic BBC miniseries of Dennis Potter's wonderful tale, starring Bob Hoskins, Cheryl Campbell and Gemma Craven, in a three-disc set from Warner ... "The Persuaders! Set 2" is a three-disc with 11 episodes of the spy spoof starring Roger Moore and Tony Curtis, $59.95 from A&E Home Video ... "Rocked With Gina Gershon" is a two-disc set with six episodes of the IFC Original series about Gershon and her band, Girls Against Boys, as they tour in support of her film, "Prey for Rock and Roll," $29.95 from Docurama ... "Sledge Hammer! -- Season One" contains all 22 episodes of the spoof of 1980s cop movies and TV shows, starring David Rasche, $39.98 from Anchor Bay ... "A Touch of Frost Season 3" is a three-disc or four-VHS set with four episodes from the popular U.K. police series, $49.98 from MPI Home Video ... "V: The Complete Series" is a three-disc set with all 19 episodes from the sci-fi series, $39.98 from Warner. (Posted July 27)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
MTI Home Video will release this week "Tropix" (2002), a thriller about an American woman kidnapped and isolated in the wilds of Costa Rica during a tropical vacation with her husband; on DVD and VHS rental. (Posted July 27)

On the Indie Front:
Vanguard Cinema will release "Malibu Eyes" (2004), a stylish suspenser about a young woman on vacation in Malibu who takes to spying on her neighbors sensual activities, taping their adventures. She eventually discovers that she's not the only one doing the watching; on VHS rental and DVD. (Posted July 27)

Foreign:
"Petty Crimes" (2002), about a reformed petty criminal from France who tries to make his way as an American citizen in New York City, directed by Manuel Cuotemoc Malle (son of Louis Malle), in French with English subtitles, from Vanguard Cinema on VHS rental and DVD. (Posted July 27)

For the Kids:
For pre-schoolers, HIT Entertainment will release this week the latest direct-to-video adventures of The Wiggles: "Whoo Hoo! Wiggly Gremlins!" in which some mischievous gremlins play tricks on the Aussie musical stars and their friends at their TV station, on $14.95 VHS and $16,99 DVD ... also for the young ones, Columbia TriStar will release "Dragon Tales: Believe in Yourself," featuring three episodes on VHS ($9.95) and five episodes on DVD ($14.95) from the popular PBS kids series ... For older kids there's "Garfield and Friends," a three-disc set with 24 episodes from the first two years of the animated kids series, $39.98 from Fox ... and "Rocket Power: Island of the Menehune," a feature length animated adventure based on the Nick TV series, $9.95 VHS and $16.99 DVD, from Paramount ... and for young teens there's "The Kids Who Saved Summer," about three kids who spend their summer trying to save their park from a construction company that wants to erect a factory right where the youngsters play, on VHS rental and DVD from MTI Video. (Posted July 27)

Coming Soon:
The big announcement for the week is the October 5 release of the smash sci-fi hit The Day After Tomorrow," starring Dennis Quaid and Jake Gyllenhaal, on DVD and VHS rental from Fox ... Coming direct-to-video on August 17 is Disney's latest animated version of "The Three Musketeers," on $14.95 VHS and DVD ... Warner will release on August 17 the Angeline Jolie-Ethan Hawke thriller "Taking Lives," in R-rated and unrated director's cut DVD editions and R-rated VHS rental ... the Olsen Twins tried their hand at big-screen adventures with "New York Minute," arriving on DVD and $13.95 VHS from Warner on August 17 ... On August 24 Warner will release the animated "Clifford's Really Big Movie" on DVD and $19.96 VHS ... Marvel Comic's "The Punisher" will thrill its way to home video on September 7, on DVD and VHS rental, from Lions Gate ... premiering direct-to-DVD on September 7 is the spectacular French CG-animated "Kaena: The Prophecy," featuring the voices of Kirsten Dunst, Richard Harris and Anjelica Huston, from Columbia TriStar ... Also on September 7 Columbia TriStar will release the acclaimed Korean drama "Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter ... And Spring," on DVD and VHS rental ... "Soul Plane" flies to home video on September 7 in R-rated and unrated DVD and VHS editions, from MGM ... Mario Van Peebles' tribute to his father, Melvin, Baadasssss! will kick its way to DVD and VHS rental from Columbia TriStar on September 14 ... Crime Thriller "Young Adam," starring Ewan McGregor and Tilda Swinton, will arrive September 14 from Columbia TriStar on DVD and VHS rental ... On September 14 Fox will release the thriller "Man on Fire," starring Denzel Washington and Dakota Fanning, on DVD and VHS rental ... "Coffee and Cigarettes," an anthology of 11 short comic vignettes by Jim Jarmusch, will arrive September 21 on DVD and VHS rental from MGM ... On September 28 Universal will release the Jim Carrey-Kate Winslet comedy "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind" on DVD and $22.98 VHS ... On October 5, Universal will release the post-modern take on George A. Romero's "Dawn of the Dead," starring Sarah Polley and Ving Rhames, on DVD and $22.98 VHS ... And, lastly, Buena Vista will release on October 12 the comedy Raising Helen," starring Kate Hudson, John Corbett, Joan Cusack, Hayden Panettiere, Spencer Breslin, Abigail Breslin and Helen Mirren, on DVD and $24.99 VHS. (Posted July 20)

DVD Collectibles:
The folks at The Criterion Collection will release two fine foreign films this week: Early Summer (1951), directed by Yasujiro Ozu and starring Setsuko Hara, Chishu Ryu, Chikage Awashima and Kuniko Miyake; and Port of Shadows (Le Quai des Brumes) (1938), directed by Marcel Carne and starring Jean Gabin, Michel Simon, Michele Morgan and Pierre Brasseur. "Early Summer" is a reprise of Ozu's favorite theme, telling the story of the Memiya family and their efforts to marry off their headstrong daughter, Noriko. A seemingly simple story, it is among the director's most emotionally complex -- a nuanced examination of a family falling apart. "Port of Shadows" follows the travels of Jean (Jean Gabin) -- an army deserter looking for another chance to make good on life -- to the port city of Le Havre. From the moment he arrives, Jean is caught up in a series of acts of kindness and revenge that churn him into front page news. Marcel Carne's film is one of the classics of the golden age of French cinema, starkly portraying an underworld of lonely souls wrestling with their own destinies. Both discs are loaded with extras.

Another fine foreign film is being released by First Run Features: Seaside (Bord de Mer) (2003). Winner of the Cannes Camera d'Or (Best First Feature) and starring Bulle Ogier, "Seaside" explores a year in the lives of the inhabitants of Cayeux, a small beach town in France. As the seasons change and tourists come and go, the town's residents stay -- falling in and out of love, working at unfulfilling jobs, gambling away savings, and dreaming of escape.

"A Tickle in the Heart" (1997) captures the past and present of the remarkable Epstein brothers -- Max, Julie and Willie -- Klezmer music legends on a joyous international comeback tour. It is a cinematic party with three of the funniest and liveliest men in music. The Epsteins are natural performers, and their sense of life, music and family is as life affirming and intoxicating as the joyous music they play. The documentary follows the "retired" Kings of Klezmer as they tour from Poland to Brooklyn to Florida, bringing a new life to their music; extras include a brief history of Klezmer, photo gallery, more. From First Run Features.

The controversial documentary "Outfoxed: Rupert Murdoch's War on Journalism," is an examination of how media empires, led by Rupert Murdoch's Fox News, have been running a "race to the bottom" in television news. The film (available on DVD and VHS via the Internet) provides an in-depth look at Fox News and the dangers of ever-enlarging corporations taking control of the public's right to know. The film explores Murdoch's burgeoning kingdom and the impact on society when a broad swath of media is controlled by one person. Director-producer Robert Greenwald has produced and/or directed 53 television movies, miniseries and features. The 77 minute program -- $9.95 VHS or DVD, plus $3.50 shipping -- can be ordered from www.outfoxed.org.

For more escapist fare, Fox will release Predator: Collector's Edition (1987), directed by John McTiernan and starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jesse Ventura, Carl Weathers, Elpidia Carrillo, Bill Duke and R.G. Armstrong. The two-disc set includes commentary by McTiernan, seven featurettes, outtakes, Easter eggs, deleted scene, a documentary, more. The DVD comes just in time for the August 13 theatrical release of "Alien vs. Predator," and includes a "Movie Cash" coupon good for one free admission to see "AVP." (Posted July 20)

From TV to Video:
Due this week are "All in the Family: The Complete Third Season", a three-disc set with 24 episodes, $29.95, from Columbia TriStar ... "Aqua Teen Hunger Force: Volume Two," a two-disc set with 13 episodes from Cartoon Network's Adult Swim late-night block series, $29.98 from Warner ... "K Street," 10 episodes of the HBO series that mingled fictional political consultants (Mary McCormack, John Slattery) with real Washington figures (James Carville, Mary Matalin, Gov. Howard Dean, Sen. Tom Daschel), $24.95 from HBO ... "Millennium First Season," a six-disc set with 22 episodes, $59.98, from Fox ... "Sealab 2021: Season One," a two-disc set with 13 episodes from Cartoon Network's Adult Swim late-night block series, $29.98 from Warner ... "Soap: The Complete Second Season," a three-disc set with 23 episodes, $29.95 from Columbia TriStar ... and "Starsky & Hutch: The Complete Second Season," a five-disc set with 25 episodes, $49.95, from Columbia TriStar.

Other TV to video releases this week include "Caught on a Train," a 1980 BBC television play starring Michael Kitchen as an English businessman whose overnight train trip through Europe becomes an unsettling odyssey when he shares a compartment with a beautiful young American (Wendy Raebeck) and an imperious Viennese Dowager (Dame Peggy Ashcroft); from Acorn Media on DVD ... and "Foyle's War, Set 2," a four-volume set containing the second series of the PBS Masterpiece Theatre show about a veteran police detective who is persuaded to remain at his job rather than enlist when World War II begins; also from Acorn media on VHS ($79.99) and DVD ($59.99).

For the Kids:
MGM has a slate of four kids titles due this week: "Miss Spider's Sunny Patch Kids," a CGI-animated 49-minute adventure based on the best-selling children's book series about Miss Spider, her husband Holley and their eight-legged bundles of joy, with the voices of Brooke Shields and Rick Moranis; on VHS ($9.94) and DVD ($14.95) for kids aged 2 to 5 ... "Stellaluna," a 41-minute animated adventure -- based on the award-winning book by Janell Cannon -- about a fruit bat unexpectedly raised by a family of birds, on VHS ($9.94) and DVD ($14.95) for kids aged 2 to 5 ... and the "Thunderbirds International Rescue Edition," a two-disc set with feature length movies "Thunderbirds Are Go" and "Thunderbird 6," released to coincide with the theatrical release of the Ben Kingsley/Bill Paxton remake and the 40th anniversary of the TV show; $14.95 each or $29.98 the set, DVD only. (Posted July 20)

DVD Collectibles:
MGM will release this week "The Manchurian Candidate Special Edition" timed to coincide with the summer release of Jonathan Demme's remake starring Denzel Washington, Meryl Streep and Jon Voight. The 1962 original -- a chilling vision of psychological warfare and betrayal at the highest levels of U.S. government -- was directed by John Frankenheimer and starred Frank Sinatra, Laurence Harvey, Janet Leigh and Angela Lansbury. Extras include commentary by Frankenheimer; interviews with Sinatra, Frankenheimer and screenwriter George Axelrod; "Queen of Diamonds" new interview with Lansbury; "A Little Solitaire" interview with William Friedkin; Easter eggs and a photo gallery ... Home Vision will release this week "Un deux trois soleil" (1993 -- French), a dreamlike tale of a young girl growing up in the slums of Marseilles with her alcoholic father (Marcello Mastroianni) and her crazy mother. Bizarre and surreal at the same time, reminiscent of Bunuel and Fellini, director Bertrand Blier's film is innovative, outrageous, and a triumph for Mastroianni, in one of his most unusual roles. (Posted July 13)

From TV to Video:
"Hercules: The Legendary Journeys -- Season Four" is a nine-disc set with 22 episodes, $69.98, from Anchor Bay ... "Project Greenlight: The Complete 2nd Season" is a three-disc set with 13 episodes of the TV series that follows the production of a film from "greenlighting" to finished product; the Project was created by Ben Affleck and Matt Damon; $39.99 from Miramax. (Posted July 13)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
A deep-sea drilling operation goes horribly wrong, releasing the deadliest ocean predator that has ever roamed the seas since prehistoric times, the Carcharodon "Megalodon" -- the giant ancestor of the Great White Shark -- 60 feet and 11 tons of killing machine that destroys and devours everything in its path; from Monarch Home Video on DVD and VHS rental. (Posted July 13)

For the Kids:
For the preschool set, the folks at HIT Entertainment has released the latest Barney video: "Now I Know My ABCs," containing 14 sing-along songs, such as "Alphabet Soup" and "I Am Learning to Spell My Name," that help little ones learn about colors, shapes and letters; the VHS version ($12.99) includes "Three Lines, Three Corners" and "The Barney Boogie" music video, while the DVD ($16.99) includes all of the above plus two interactive games, a jukebox, and more ... Seguing into the bathroom are two new preschool releases: "Potty Power," a 30-minute video that teaches children potty training in an engaging musical format, on $14.95 VHS and DVD, from Thinkeroo (800-477-7811 or www.bigkidsvideo.com) and "High Noon in the Bathroom," five animated adventures based on Nick Jr.'s Rubbadubbers series with an ensemble cast of fun-loving bath toys, from HIT Entertainment on $9.99 VHS and $14.99 DVD ... for older kids there's "Justice League: Starcrossed -- The Movie," a 66-minute animated feature (compiled from three of the series' episodes) featuring Superman, Batman, Green Lantern, The Flash, Hawkgirl, Wonder Woman and Martian Manhunter joining forces to destroy aliens and super-villains; $14.94 VHS and $19.97 DVD from Warner Home Video ... Finally, from Koch Vision comes the first releases from an interesting new series inspired by Popular Mechanics magazine, "Popular Mechanics for Kids," which features engaging, behind-the-scenes explorations of things kids love to explore and know more about. The first two 90-minute releases each contain four episodes: "Radical Rockets and Other Cool Cruising Machines" looks at "Submarines," "Cool Cars," "Boats" and "Spaceships," while "Slither & Slime and Other Yucky Things" basks in "Garbage," "Creepy Crawlers," "Slimy and Slithery" and "Underground"; $12.98 VHS and $14.98 DVD. (Posted July 13)

Special Interest:
Eagle Rock Entertainment will release this week "Joe Cocker: Live Across From Midnight," a concert video filmed at Waldbuhnem in Berlin during the European leg of Cocker's 1997 world tour, featuring 90 minutes of his greatest hits, on DVD only ... Director John ("Animal House," "The Blues Brothers") Landis' first documentary, "Slasher," takes an incisive look at a new breed of car salesman: the slasher, called in to help dealerships dump their stale inventory as quickly as possible. If you have an image of the car salesman as a fast-talking huckster, you ain't seen nothin' yet until you meet Michael Bennett, a chain-smoking auctioneer who is flown all over the country to slash prices and clear entire lots within a few short days. From Docurama on DVD for $24.95 ... With the popularity of Poker tournaments on TV, Anchor Bay will release "Poker for Dummies," a 60-minute DVD -- hosted by poker champion Chris Moneymaker -- that shows you all you need to know about betting, bluffing and poker strategy, $16.98. (Posted July 13)

DVD Collectibles:
Film noir buffs will go crazy this week with the release of nine classic noir outings. Warner Home Video will release "The Film Noir Collection," a terrific five-disc set with

  • "The Asphalt Jungle" (1950), directed by John Huston and starring Sterling Hayden, Louis Calhern, James Whitmore, Jean Hagen, Sam Jaffe, John McIntire and Marilyn Monroe. Extras include commentary by film noir specialist Drew Casper and an introduction by Huston.
  • "Gun Crazy" (1949), a longtime cult classic directed by Joseph H. Lewis and starring Peggy Cummins and John Dall. Includes commentary by film noir expert Glenn Erickson.
  • "Murder, My Sweet" (1944), the classic Phillip Marlow yarn directed by Edward Dmytryk and starring Dick Powell, Claire Trevor, Mike Mazurki and Otto Kruger. Includes commentary by film noir expert Alain Silver.
  • "Out of the Past" (1947), directed by Jacques Tourneur and starring Robert Mitchum, Jane Greer, Kirk Douglas and Rhonda Fleming. Includes commentary by film noir expert Jim Ursini.
  • "The Set-Up" (1949), directed by Robert Wise and starring Robert Ryan, Audrey Totter and George Tobias. Includes commentary by Wise and Martin Scorsese.
    The set has a retail price of $49.92; each film is available separately for $14.95.
Universal Studios Home Entertainment will also release a set of noir films under the Universal Noir Collection label, but as separate DVDs for $14.98 each:
  • "The Big Clock" (1948), starring Ray Milland, Maureen O'Sullivan, Charles Laughton and George Macready.
    "Black Angel" (1946), starring Dan Duryea, June Vincent, Peter Lorre and John Phillips.
  • "Criss Cross" (1949), directed by Robert Siodmak and starring Burt Lancaster, Yvonne De Carlo and Dan Duryea.
  • "This Gun for Hire" (1942), starring Veronica Lake, Robert Preston and Alan Ladd.
This summer, America will celebrate 50 years of rock 'n' roll, and Warner Home Video has the ultimate DVD set to mark the momentous anniversary. Warner's "The History of Rock 'n' Roll" will be released for the first time ever on DVD as a five-disc set this week for $99.98 SRP. (The set originally was released in 1995 on VHS with 10 episodes.) Rock historians worldwide have declared the official beginning of rock 'n' roll to be July 5, 1954, the day Elvis Presley recorded "That's All Right" at Sun Studio in Memphis. This pivotal moment in rock history is considered "the big bang" in the dawn of the rock 'n' roll era, launching a movement that would change the spirit and culture of America forever. With nearly 10 hours of exclusive interviews, classic footage and unforgettable concert performances from rock 'n' roll's biggest stars, fans can experience their favorite rock moments all over again and get an inside look at all the moments they didn't see. Features interviews and performances by Elvis, The Beatles, The Who, U2, Eric Clapton, Elton John, Pink Floyd, Jimi Hendrix, The Jackson Five, Mick Jagger, Bono, Bruce Springsteen, David Bowie, Pete Townshend, Ozzy Osbourne, Jimmy Page, Jerry Garcia, Jerry Lee Lewis, Peter, Paul & Mary, B.B. King, and many, many more era-defining artists whose personalities and music styles have dominated the airways and the culture of America. The 10 episodes in the set are: Episode 1: Rock 'n' Roll Explodes, Episode 2: Good Rockin' Tonight (the 50's), Episode 3: Britain Invades, America Fights back, Episode 4: The Sounds of Soul, Episode 5: Plugging In (electric folk-rock and the 1967 Monterey Pop Festival), Episode 6: My Generation (late 60's), Episode 7: Guitar Heroes, Episode 8: The 70's: Have a Nice Decade, Episode 9: Punk, Episode 10: Up From the Underground (rap and MTV). (Posted July 6)

From TV to Video:
Series due this week: "Six Feet Under: The Complete Second Season," a five-disc set with 13 episodes, $79.99 from HBO ... "Star Trek: Voyager -- The Complete Third Season" (1996-1997), a seven-disc set with 26 episodes, under $100, from Paramount. Also due this week are "The Politician's Wife," a psychological drama of political lust, sexual obsession, and revenge with a ripped-from-the-headlines feel. The PBS Masterpiece Theatre drama follows the story of a political sex scandal involving the U.K.'s Minister of the Family from the point of view of the politician's devoted wife, who initially supports him but then secretly orchestrates a power play against him. The acclaimed telefilm stars Juliet Stevenson, Trevor Eve and Minnie Driver. From Acorn Media on DVD only ... Also from Acorn comes "A Fine Romance, Set 3," the final eight episodes of the BBC sitcom about the quirky romance between a brainy translator (Judi Dench) and a shy landscaper (Michael Williams); the two-disc set sells for $39.98. "A Fine Romance, The Complete Collection," containing all 26 episodes on six discs, is available for $79.99. (Posted July 6)

Buzzin' the 'B's:
MTI Home Video will release this week "The Eliminator," an actioner about a former cop who is kidnapped with six others and transported to a jungle locale to participate in a twisted game of survival where the winner walks away with $10 million -- but in this game, there are no winners. The thriller -- on VHS rental and DVD -- stars Michael Rooker and Bas Rutten. (Posted July 6)

For the Kids:
Warner Home Video will release two compilations of animated super heroes: "Batman: The Animated Series, Volume 1," a four-disc set with 28 adventures for $49.98, and "Challenge of the Super Friends: The Complete First Season," featuring 16 episodes of the Hall of Justice super heroes Superman, Wonder Woman, Aquaman, Batman and Robin, The Flash, Hawkman, Green Lantern and Black Vulcan, on two discs for $29.98 ... For preschoolers, HIT Entertainment will release a video version of the "Bob the Builder: The LIVE Show!" stage show that thrilled more than 350,000 young fans in 175 performances around the country. Staged on a colossal arena-sized replica of Bob's building yard, the show features performances by Bob, Wendy, Spud and their favorite construction machines and includes Bob's version of "Mambo No. 5." Available on $9.99 VHS and $14.99 DVD. (Posted July 6)

Special Interest:
Wolfe Video, the largest exclusive distributor of gay and lesbian home videos, has released "Laughing Matters," a new documentary about the careers of four leading lesbian comedians: Marga Gomeza, Suzannne Westenhoefer, Karen Williams and Kate Clinton. The 60-minute DVD sells for $19.95. For more info: www.wolfevideo.com or 1-800-GET-WOLFE. (Posted July 6)

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December 30, 2004
OnVideo News (ISSN 1094-3676).