DVD of the Week
The more things change, the more they stay the same--which is why a 1980s graphic novel about an anarchist's war against the fascist state still has resonance today. Ignore the complaints by creator Alan Moore (and Natalie Portman's wandering accent). With its discursive plot, deft action sequences, and thought-bubble philosophy, this is one of the best comic-to-movie transitions ever. With featurettes on the production, the sets and costumes, and V's place in comic book history.
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This curious sleeper hit combines talking heads theorizing about mental agility and the nature of the universe with a weird story featuring a cranky Marlee Matlin. The science is fascinating; the fiction idiotic. But you'll take away something from it. Technology lets the viewer make their own "cut".
You've got to admire Tim Allen's dedication to making family-friendly entertainment, although this movie was better in 1959 when it was gawky teenager Tommy Kirk who entered the canine world. Robert Downey Jr. trowels on the camp as Allen's nemesis. With the music video "Woof, There It Is." You have been warned.
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Monty Python's John Cleese starred in and wrote this classic 1988 screwball. He's the uptight attorney caught in a tug-of-war between jewel thieves Jamie Lee Curtis (sexy) and Kevin Kline (crazy). When Michael Palin snorts a goldfish, you see the shape of comedy to come. Cleese offers DVD commentary, and there are 30 minutes of deleted scenes.
When a boardroom coup puts an African American exec in charge of an ad agency, he renames it Truth and Soul Inc., and starts telling it like it is. Before long, though, his comrades are wondering, "Who's The Man?" It's easy to imagine Chris Rock in this outrageous 1969 satire - made by Robert Downey Jr.'s dad!
Dead comics are a bit like yesterday's newspaper -- good only for wrapping fish. That's not the case with Pryor, whose first concert movie from 1979 still feels like a hand grenade tossed at American hypocrisy. Even his incisive animal impersonations make him seem like a man on fire--before he took that phrase literally. Essential.
Strike up the carnival music. The rough edges of Larry David are starting to get a little too smooth, but there's still plenty to cringe at as the obnoxious genius reluctantly gives up his kidney to Richard Lewis, celebrates a Seder with the neighborhood sex offender, and tolerates Shelley Berman as his dad. No extras.
Judge dips back into the moronic dustbin, and serves up 42 B&B cartoons that helped keep the grunge years in check. Among the bands subject to the "cool"/"suck" decision are Soundgarden, Sonic Youth and Jesus Lizard. The collection also rounds up promos and the duo's other MTV appearances.
Remember him this way. After years of crappy movies like Clambake, the King reached for the crown with this Christmas broadcast. Some of the sequences seem corny now, but Presley tears up songs like "Guitar Man" and reunites with old band-members to make some of the most exciting (and soulful) music of his life.