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DVDs Oct. 2-8, 2001  Print E-mail
Home Theater News DVD Hardware-Software News
Written by Abbie Bernstein   
Tuesday, 02 October 2001

AGATHA CHRISTIE’S MISS MARPLE COLLECTION 1 (A&E Entertainment) is a two-disc set of episodes of the BBC/A&E-produced television series about an elderly but sharp-minded sleuth played by Joan Hickson. Aspect ratio is full-screen 1.33:1; soundformat is English Dolby Digital Mono, with English subtitles. Extras include a biography of author Christie and an index of all her Miss Marple stories. There is no MPAA rating.

AMORES PERROS (Studio Home Entertainment) is a film by Mexican director Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, released theatrically last year, juxtaposing the lives of human characters with dogs, some of them involved in dog-fighting. Emilio Echevarria and Gael Garcia Bernal star. Aspect ratio is 1.85:1; sound formats are Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1 (original language track), English Dolby Digital 2.0 and French Dolby Digital 2.0, with English, Spanish and French subtitles. Extras include an audio commentary, making-of footage and music videos. MPAA rating is R.

BEAUTIFUL CREATURES (Universal Studios Home Video), released theatrically earlier this year, is an uneasy mixture of comedy and brutality about two English women who bond in an attempt to scam some scummy criminals. Bill Eagles directs; Susan Lynch and Rachel Weisz star. Aspect ratio is widescreen; sound formats are English DTS and English Dolby Digital, with English closed-captioning. MPAA rating is R.

BOOGEYMEN VOL. 1 (Universal Studios Home Video) sounds like a THAT’S ENTERTAINMENT for horror buffs, with clips from CLIVE BARKER’S HELLRAISER, A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET, THE TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE, SCREAM, CHILD’S PLAY 2, CANDYMAN, LEPRECHAUN, THE UGLY, WISHMASTER, THE GUARDIAN, I KNOW WHAT YOU DID LAST SUMMER, THE DENTIST, PHANTASM, THE PUPPETMASTER, PSYCHO, JASON GOES TO HELL: THE FINAL FRIDAY and (of course) HALLOWEEN. No aspect ratio is specified (it may vary from clip to clip); sound formats are English 5.1 Processed Surround and English Dolby Surround, with Spanish and French subtitles and English closed-captioning. Extras include audio commentary by Robert Englund (best known for playing Freddy in the NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET series), Boogeymen character biographies and histories, a quiz with 100 movies stills, theatrical trailers and DVD-ROM features. There is no MPAA rating.

CITIZEN KANE (Warner Home Video) is a two-disc set of director Orson Welles’ 1941 masterpiece – considered by many to be one of the best films ever made – about a magnate called Charles Foster Kane, who bears a not-so-coincidental resemblance to real-life tycoon William Randolph Hearst (at least, Hearst thought so – he tried to get the movie squelched). Welles stars with Joseph Cotten. Aspect ratio is black-and-white full-screen 1.33:1; sound format is English Dolby Digital Mono, with English, Spanish, French and Portuguese subtitles and English closed-captioning. Extras include audio commentary by Welles associate and filmmaker Peter Bogdanovich, commentary by critic Roger Ebert, the two-hour documentary THE BATTLE OVER ‘CITIZEN KANE: WELLES AND HEARST, a gallery of storyboards, photos, studio and personal correspondence, an alternative ad campaign, the 1941 Movie Newsreel premiere and trailers. MPAA rating is G.

THE FRENCH CONNECTION (20th Century Fox Home Entertainment) is a two-disc set of the 1971 Best Picture Oscar winner, directed by William Friedkin, about a ferocious New York police detective (Gene Hackman, also an Oscar winner for his performance here) tracking an international heroin dealer. Roy Scheider also stars. Aspect ratio is 1.85:1; sound formats are English Dolby Digital 5.1, English Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround and French Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono, THX certified, with English and Spanish subtitles and English closed-captioning. Extras include audio commentary from director Friedkin, scene-specific commentary from actors Hackman and Scheider, a making-of featurette, a BBC documentary on the film, seven deleted scenes, Friedkin discussing the deleted scenes, a stills gallery and trailers. MPAA rating is R.

GOLD (Diamond Entertainment) is a 1974 action/thriller starring Roger Moore and Susannah York, about a plot to destroy a South African mine (over money, not the politics of apartheid). Peter R. Hunt directs. There is no format information available. MPAA rating is PG.

HEARTBREAKERS (MGM/UA Home Entertainment), released earlier this year, stars Sigourney Weaver and Jennifer Love Hewitt as mother-and-daughter con artists. Gene Hackman and Jason Lee also star under David Mirkin’s direction. Aspect ratio is 2.35:1; sound formats are English Dolby Digital 5.1, French Dolby Digital 5.1 and Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1, with English, Spanish and French subtitles and English closed-captioning. Extras include an audio commentary track from director Mirkin, an audio commentary track with Weaver and Hewitt, deleted scenes with optional director commentary and two making-of featurettes. MPAA rating is PG-13.

HERCULE POIROT’S CHRISTMAS (Acorn Media), broadcast earlier this year, stars David Suchet as Agatha Christie’s fastidious Belgian detective. Edward Bennett directs. There is no aspect ratio information available; sound format is English Dolby Digital 2.0. Extras include biographies of Christie and Suchet and a trivia quiz. There is no MPAA rating.

I NEVER PROMISED YOU A ROSE GARDEN (New Concorde Home Video) is a 1977 film about a young woman (Kathleen Quinlan) struggling with mental illness. Bibi Andersson also stars. Anthony Page directs. Aspect ratio is full-screen 1.33:1; sound format is English Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono. Extras include an audio commentary from actress Quinlan and a video interview with Quinlan. MPAA rating is R.

THE MUMMY RETURNS (Universal Studios Home Video), released earlier this year, is director/writer Stephen Sommers’ action-and-effects-packed sequel to the 1999 hit, with Brendan Fraser once again heroically trying to save the world from the reanimated ancient Egyptian Imhotep (Arnold Vosloo). Rachel Weisz, John Hannah and Oded Fehr also star. Aspect ratio is 2.35:1; sound formats are English Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround and French Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround, with English closed-captioning. Extras include audio commentary by filmmaker Sommers and executive producer Bob Ducsay, a making-of featurette, step-by-step examinations of four special effects sequences, outtakes, Live’s music video "Forever May Not Be Enough," interview with the Rock, a trailer for "Scorpion King," Egyptology 101 notes, a message from actor Fehr, the theatrical trailer and DVD-ROM features. MPAA rating is PG-13.

NEW YORK (PBS Home Video) is a seven-episode boxed set of the PBS documentary miniseries on the history of the Big Apple, from 1609 to the near-present. Aspect ratio is full-screen 1.33:1; sound format is English Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono, with English closed-captioning. Extras include interviews with Charlie Rose, Martin Scorsese and Donald Trump, among others, and deleted scenes. There is no MPAA rating.

PRIDE AND PREJUDICE: SPECIAL EDITION (A&E Home Entertainment) is a two-disc set of the 1996 BBC/A&E miniseries based on Jane Austen’s novel about 19th-century romance and manners of the English gentry. Colin Firth and Jennifer Ehle star. Apect ratio is 2.35:1; sound format is English Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo. Extras include a making-of featurette and a biography and bibliography on Austen. There is no MPAA rating.

THE PRISONER SET 5 (A&E Home Entertainment) is a two-disc set of episodes "The Girl Who Was Death," "Once Upon a Time" and "Fall Out" from the 1968 season of the British TV series starring Patrick McGoohan as a former secret agent being held captive in a mysterious village. Aspect ratio is full-screen 1.33:1; sound format is English Dolby Digital 2.0 with English subtitles and closed-captioning. Extras include footage from 1966 location shoots, commentary by Bernie Williams, "The Prisoner Video Companion," production stills, trivia, a gallery of original production and promotional materials, original broadcast trailers and original promotional trailers. There is no MPAA rating.

QUADROPHENIA: SPECIAL EDITION (Rhino Video) is a new release of the 1979 drama, produced and scored by the Who, about young Mods and Rockers clashing in ‘60s England. Phil Daniels, Philip Davies and Ray Winstone star under Franc Roddam’s direction; the film also contains an early appearance by Sting. Aspect ratio is 1.85:1; sound formats are English Dolby Digital 5.1 and English Dolby Digital 2.0. Extras include an audio commentary by director Roddam, an interview with Sting, a photo gallery, a Who discography, a trivia subtitle track, an animated location map with present-day footage of the sites, a Mod vs. Rocker quiz, a film restoration feature, a Vespa trailer, a British Mod film compendium and Easter Eggs. MPAA rating is R.

THE SIMPSONS: THE COMPLETE FIRST SEASON (20th Century Fox Home Entertainment) is a three-disc set of the first year of Matt Groening’s seminal animated series. Aspect ratio is full-screen 1.33:1; sound formats are English Dolby Digital 5.1 and French Dolby Digital 2.0, with Spanish subtitles. Extras include commentaries on each episode, four scripts, an unaired episode with optional commentary, "Animatic: Bart the General" with commentary by Albert Brooks, outtrakes, the BBC special "America’s First Family," Tracy Ullman’s "Goodnight Simpsons," seven foreign-language clips, early sketches and 12 stills and magazine covers. There is no MPAA rating.

THE SONGMAKERS COLLECTION (A&E Home Entertainment) is a collection of five episodes from the series THE SONGMAKERS, with Bobby Darin, Burt Bacharach, Dionne Warwick, Carole King, Neil Sedaka and Leiber and Stoller. Aspect ratio is full-screen 1.33:1; sound format is English Dolby Digital 2.0. Extras include biographies and discographies of the performers. There is no MPAA rating.

TREMORS 3: BACK TO PERFECTION (Universal Studios Home Video) is the third in the deliberately amusing monster movie series about giant wormlike creatures terrorizing a small town. This installment introduces a new variation on the predators. Michael Gross, Shawn Christian and Susan Chuang star for director Brent Maddock. Aspect ratio is 1.85:1; sound format is English Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround, with French subtitles and English closed-captioning. Extras include a making-of featurette, the theatrical trailer, production notes and cast and filmmaker biographies. MPAA rating is PG.

UPSTAIRS, DOWNSTAIRS (A&E Home Entertainment) is a four-disc set of the BBC drama series chronicling the lives of aristrocrats and their servants. Aspect ratio is 1.33:1; soundformat is English Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono, with English subtitles. Extras include the 25th anniversary special. There is no MPAA rating.

WELCOME TO DEATH ROW (Xenon Studios) is director S. Leigh Savidge’s documentary on Death Row Records. Aspect ratio is 1.78:1; sound format is English Dolby Digital. Extras include an audio commentary from the director, interview outtakes, the entire MGM Grand security tape, trailers and biographies. There is no MPAA rating.

A YEAR IN PROVENCE (A&E Home Entertainment) is a two-disc set of the 1989 British series based on Peter Mayle’s book about being an Englishman in Provence, France. Aspect ratio is 1.33:1; sound format is English Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono, with English subtitles. Extras include a biography and bibliography on author Mayle. There is no MPAA rating.







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