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DVDs May 22-28, 2001  Print E-mail
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Written by AVRev.com   
Tuesday, 22 May 2001

BEFORE NIGHT FALLS (New Line Home Entertainment), released theatrically last year, earned a Best Actor nomination for Javier Bardem’s portrayal of real-life exiled gay Cuban writer Reinaldo Arenas. Johnny Depp and Olivier Martinez costar under Julian Schnabel’s direction. Aspect ratio is widescreen; sound formats are English Dolby Digital 5.1, English 2.0 Stereo Surround and Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1, with English, Spanish and French subtitles. Extras include a feature-length audio commentary with director Schnabel, actor Bardem, co-screenwriter Lazaro Gomez-Carriles, composer Carter Burwell and co-director of photography Xavier Perez Grobet, a making-of short, a 1983 interview with the real Arenas, a short on Schnabel’s artwork, cast and crew filmographies, the theatrical trailer and DVD-ROM content. MPAA rating is R (strong sexual content, some language and brief violence).

THE BRIDGES AT TOKO-RI (Paramount Home Entertainment) is the 1954 action drama, based on James Michener’s novel, about a U.S. Navy fighter pilot in the Korean War. William Holden, Grace Kelly, Mickey Rooney, Robert Strauss, Frederic March and Charles McGraw star. Aspect ratio is 1.33:1 full-screen; sound formats are English Dolby Digital and French Mono, with English subtitles. Extras include the theatrical trailer. Not rated by the MPAA (rated G in Canada).

CATCH-22 (Paramount Home Entertainment) is director Mike Nichols’ 1970 film version of the late Joseph Heller’s satirical novel about a WWII bomber base that introduced a whole new phrase to the American vocabulary. Alan Arkin, Orson Welles, Art Garfunkel, Martin Sheen and John Voight star. Aspect ratio is widescreen, enhanced for 16x9 TVs; sound formats are English Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround and French Mono, with English subtitles. Extras include an audio commentary with director Nichols and filmmaker Steven Soderbergh, a photo gallery and the theatrical trailer. MPAA rating is R.

DUNGEONS & DRAGONS (New Line Home Entertainment), released theatrically last year, is a hoot of a fantasy quest tale based on the "Dungeons & Dragons" role-playing game, with great CGI and some astoundingly over-the-top performances (Jeremy Irons has to be seen to be believed), written and directed by Courtney Solomon. Justin Whalin, Bruce Payne, Zoe McLellan, Marlon Wayans and Thora Birch also star. Aspect ratio is widescreen; sound formats are English 5.1 Surround and English 2.0 Stereo Surround, with English subtitles. Extras include two audio commentaries, one with filmmaker Solomon, cinematographer Doug Milsome and D&D game co-creator Dave Arneson and the other with Solomon, Arneson and star/associate producer Whalin, a making-of documentary, a documentary on the D&D game, 11 deleted scenes with optional director commentary, a special effects "deconstruction" with four multi-angle scenes and DVD-ROM content. MPAA rating is PG-13.

HAIRSPRAY (New Line Home Entertainment) is director John Waters’ comedy about an overweight, supremely confident teenager (Ricki Lake) who wants to become a dancer on a TV party show in 1962. Colleen Fitzpatrick (now known as Vitamin C), Debbie Harry, Divine and Jerry Stiller also star. Aspect ratio is widescreen; sound formats are English 5.1 Surround and English 2.0 Surround, with English subtitles. Extras include an audio commentary from Waters, the theatrical trailer, cast and crew filmographies and DVD-ROM features. HAIRSPRAY is packaged as a double-disc set with Waters’ PECKER (see below). MPAA rating is PG.

HELL IS FOR HEROES (Paramount Home Entertainment) is director Don Siegel’s 1962 WWII action drama about an American infantry squad on the front lines fighting the Nazis. Steve McQueen, James Coburn and Bobby Darrin star. Aspect ratio is widescreen, enhanced for 16x9 TVs; sound formats are English and French Dolby Digital Mono, with English subtitles. Extras include the theatrical trailer. Not rated by the MPAA (rated PG in Canada).

IN HARM’S WAY (Paramount Home Entertainment) is another WWII drama, this one set in the Pacific, with John Wayne and Kirk Douglas as Navy officers trying to balance military duty with their personal lives. Otto Preminger directs a cast that includes Patricia Neal, Carroll O’Connor and Brandon de Wilde. Aspect ratio is widescreen, enhanced for 16x9 TVs; sound format is English Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround, with English subtitles. Extras include the theatrical trailer. Not rated by the MPAA (rated PG in Canada).

PECKER (New Line Home Entertainment) is director John Waters’ comedy about a teenaged boy in Baltimore who becomes a star in the New York art world through his photography. Edward Furlong, Christina Ricci, Lili Taylor and Martha Plimpton star. Aspect ratio is widescreen; sound formats are English 5.1 Surround and English 2.0 Stereo Surround, with English subtitles. Extras include a making-of featurette, an audio commentary track from Waters, the theatrical trailer, cast and crew filmographies and DVD-ROM features. PECKER is packaged as a double-disc set with Waters’ HAIRSPRAY (see above). MPAA rating is R (sexuality, nudity, language, brief drug use).

REQUIEM FOR A DREAM (Artisan Entertainment), released theatrically last year, is a film about a young man and his mother, spiraling downward with separate drug addictions, based on Hubert Selby, Jr’s. novel. Ellen Burstyn was nominated for a Best Actress Oscar for her performance. Jared Leto, Jennifer Connelly and Marlon Wayans also star under Darren Aronofsky’s direction. Aspect ratio is widescreen; sound format is English Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo, with English subtitles. Extras include an audio commentary from director Aronofsky, a making-of featurette, deleted scenes, interviews with actress Burstyn and author Selby, production notes and the theatrical trailer. Not rated by the MPAA.

THE SAND PEBBLES (20th Century Fox Home Entertainment) is director Robert Wise’s 1966 action drama about a U.S. gunboat stationed off China in the 1920s. Steve McQueen, Richard Attenborough, Candice Bergen, Mako and Richard Crenna star in the film, which was nominated for nine Oscars. Aspect ratios are 2.35:1 widescreen and 1.33:1 full-screen; sound formats are English Dolby Digital 4.0, English Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo and French Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono, with English and Spanish subtitles. Extras include an audio commentary track with director Wise and actors Bergen and Mako, two radio documentaries, a stills gallery, the theatrical trailer and three radio commercials. MPAA rating is PG-13.

SUSPECT (Columbia/TriStar Home Entertainment), directed by Peter Yates, is a 1987 courtroom thriller about an unconventional lawyer (Cher) who believes her mute client (Liam Neeson) is innocent of murder and sets out to find the guilty party. Dennis Quaid also stars. Aspect ratios are widescreen and 1.33:1 full-screen; sound formats are English, French, Spanish and Portuguese Dolby Digital 2.0, with English, Spanish, French, Chinese, Korean, Portuguese and Thai subtitles. Extras include an audio commentary from director Yates and the theatrical trailer. MPAA rating is R.

UNCOMMON VALOR (Paramount Home Entertainment) is a 1983 action drama starring Gene Hackman as a U.S. army colonel who assembles a squad to try to find and rescue his soldier son who has languished for 10 years in a North Vietnamese POW camp. Robert Stack, Patrick Swayze, Fred Ward and Tim Thomerson also star. Aspect ratio is widescreen, enhanced for 16x9 TVs; sound formats are English Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround and French Mono, with English subtitles. Extras include the theatrical trailer. MPAA rating is R.







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