Babies Documentary look at one year in the life of four babies from around the world -- from birth to first steps. The children are, respectively, in order of on-screen introduction: Ponijao, who lives with her family near Opuwo, Namibia; Bayarjargal, who resides with his family in Mongolia, near Bayanchandmani; Mari, who lives with her family in Tokyo, Japan; and Hattie, who resides with her family in the United States, in San Francisco. Captures the earliest stages of the journey of humanity that are at once unique and universal to us all. Vitals: Director: Thomas Balmes. 2010, CC, MPAA rating: PG, 79 min., Documentary, Box office gross: $7.291 million, Universal.
THIS WEEK'S DVD RELEASES:
American Streetballers (2009) Jimmy McKinney, Matt Krentz. Urban drama about streetball. Constantly searching for sanity in the midst of alcoholism, racism, and drugs, two junior college basketball players find release and therapy while competing at one of the most competitive and poetic street courts in the U.S. (Monarch Home Video).
Astonishing X-Men -- Giftset (2010) The first arc in the three-part "Astonishing X-Men" home entertainment series of Marvel Motion Comics by Joss Whedon and John Cassaday. Deluxe DVD is featured with a graphic rich cover and a unique replica of comic book-style plastic sleeve packaging that bridges the comic book to DVD concept. $14.97. Extras: Visual history of the characters, behind-the-scenes: Marvel Knights Animation, "Marvel Super Heroes: What the ?, artists gallery. (Shout! Factory).
Babies (2010) Documentary look at one year in the life of four babies from around the world, from Mongolia to Namibia to San Francisco to Tokyo. Extras: "The Babies: Three Years Later," "Everybody Loves ... Your Babies" sweepstakes winners. Also available on Blu-ray Disc. (Universal).
The Brothel (2008) Serena Scott Thomas, Brett Cullen, Grace Zabriskie, Christian Martin. Psychological ghost story about a woman who flees her life in the city after the tragic loss of a lover; she buys a brothel in an old mining town to turn it into a hotel, but as she begins its restoration, her shattered psyche takes on the personas of the four prostitutes and their Madam who once inhabited it. (Vanguard Cinema).
Bruriah (2008 -- Israel) More than 1,000 years ago a famous rabbi tested the marriage vows of his wife Bruriah with a game of cruel temptation that caused her to commit suicide. Modern-day Bruriah provokes her traditional husband by trying to find the only remaining copy of a banned book written by her father about that ancient incident. (SISU Home Entertainment).
By the Will of Genghis Khan (2009 -- Mongolia, Russia, USA) Eduard Ondar, Gernot Grimm, Oleg Taktarov, Cary Hiroyuki-Tagawa. Epic feature about Genghis Khan, the 12/13th century warrior who united nomadic tribes, founded the Mongol Empire, then went on to conquer most of Eurasia. Shot on location in both Russia and Mongolia, with colossal battlefield action. (MTI Home Video).
Carc (2009 -- French Canadian) Jean-Paul Colmor, Etienne Grutman, Anne Carrier, Celia Leveillee-Marois. An introverted 74-year-old man runs a "car cemetery," where people come to find parts for old vehicles. One day four intruders visit him in search of a corner of twisted paradise, but the old man proves to be a lot more than they expected. (Vanguard Cinema).
The Cleveland Show: The Complete Season One (2009-10) Four-disc set with 24 episodes, $39.98. Extras: Uncensored audio commentaries on select episodes featuring Seth MacFarlane, Rich Appel, Mike Henry, Kevin Michael Richardson and others; deleted scenes; Christmas music video: "Get Your Hump On" by Earth, Wind and Fire; "Meet Cleveland" featurette; table read with Kanye West; Digital extras: Clips to Go" that can be saved to mobile devices or PCs. (Fox).
Coco Chanel & Igor Stravinksy (2019) Mads Mikkelsen, Anna Mouglalis. Powerful, true story of the forbidden romance between two of the twentieth century's most fascinating creative geniuses, French fashion designer Coco Chanel and Russian composer Igor Stravinsky. Extras: "The Making of Coco Chanel & Igor Stravinsky." Also available on Blu-ray Disc. (Sony).
C.S.I.: Crime Scene Investigation, The Tenth Season (2009-10) Seven-disc set with 23 episodes, $79.99. (Paramount).
Dark Woods (2009) James Russo, Tracy Coogan, John Muscarnero, Mary Kate Wilesa. Critically acclaimed psychological thriller; tells the story of a young couple who move to a secluded cabin to cope with the wife's terminal illness. After the husband rescues a young girl from the abusive hands of her psychotic uncle, he is coerced by local law enforcement to allow her to stay with them. As the illness consumes the wife and the husband struggles with his own human connections, the young girl attempts to claim her place in this strange new family dynamic. (Vanguard Cinema).
Don't Let The Pigeon Drive The Bus! ... and More Stories By Mo Willems (2010) Includes the title story from the acclaimed picture book author as well as "Knuffle Bunny: A Cautionary Tale" and "Leonardo, the Terrible Monster." $14.95. (Scholastic Storybook Treasures).
Ellery Queen Mysteries: The Complete Series (1975-76) Six-disc set with 22 episodes, 59.98. (E1 Entertainment).
Family Guy: Partial Terms of Endearment (2010) The most infamous "Family Guy" episode, here uncensored: a freakin' poignant tale of what happens when Lois agrees to become a surrogate mother for an infertile couple against Peter's wishes. Extras: Live table read with the cast of "Partial Terms of Endearment," nine original songs including three never-before-released songs, "The Seth and Alex Almost Live Comedy Show," digital copy. (Fox).
Forbidden Lies (2009) Norma Khouri is a thief, a saint, a seductress and a sociopath -- depending on who is talking. Khouri won fame and fortune with her "true story," "Forbidden Love," about a shocking honor killing in Jordan, and the book was a runaway bestseller, translated into multiple languages. Khouri became the toast of the literary world, at least until July 2004, when esteemed Sydney Morning Herald journalist Malcolm Knox exposed her book as a work of fiction, and her protagonist, Dalia, a figment of her imagination. Following her shocking "outing," Khouri fights for her credibility and offers to go to Jordan to prove that "Dalia" indeed existed and that the incident in question really took place. Is her story fact or fiction? You decide. Extras: Commentary by director Anna Broinowski and Norma Khouri, director's diary, interviews with the filmmakers, deleted scenes, trailer, featurettes. (IndiePix).
Frozen (2010) Kevin Zegers, Shawn Ashmore, Emma Bell. Three skiers are stranded on a chair lift and forced to make life-or-death choices that prove more perilous than staying put and freezing to death. Extras: Commentary with the stars and filmmakers, four behind-the-scenes featurettes, deleted scenes.< B>Also available on Blu-ray Disc, which adds extra commentary with commentary with writer-director Adam Green, cinematographer Will Barratt and editor Ed Marx. (Anchor Bay).
Gangster's Paradise: Jerusalema (2009 -- South Africa) Rapaulana Seiphemo, Robert Hobbs, Kenneth Nkosi, Eugene Khumbanyiwa, Louise Saint-Claire. Unflinching look into the crime and corruption of those struggling to survive in the most crime-infested district of Johannesburg; follows Lucky Kunene, a bright and aspiring teenager who is forced into a life of crime and corruption by those around him, until, by the time he reaches adulthood, he has made a name for himself as a notorious criminal, feared by his enemies, and praised by the locals who see him as a modern-day Robin Hood. Extras: Commentary by producer-writer-director Ralph Ziman, composer Alan Lazar and actor Jafta Mamabolo; deleted scenes. (Anchor Bay).
Get Him to the Greek (2010) Jonah Hill, Russell Brand, Rose Byrne, Sean Combs, Elisabeth Moss, Colm Meany, Nick Kroll, Aziz Ansari, T. J. Miller. Includes both rated and unrated versions. Available as a single DVD and two-disc Blu-ray and two-disc DVD sets. DVD Extras: Gag reel; Line-O-Rama; "Blind Medicine" promo for Sarah Marshall's new TV series; commentary by director Nicholas Stoller, cast members Jonah Hill, Russell Brand, Rose Byrne, Elisabeth Moss, and producer Rodney Rothman; "Getting to Get Him to the Greek" documentary; "Getting In Tune With the Greek" documentary; "The Making of 'African Child'" documentary; five complete music videos featuring Aldous Snow, Infant Sorrow and Jackie Q; musical performances from Infant Sorrow's 1999 Greek Theater Concert and 2009 Comeback Concert, plus a peek at their infamous World Tour and the 2002 London Concert; deleted, extended and alternate scenes, including an alternate intro and ending; digital copy. Blu-ray adds: Additional and extended scenes; musical performances from "The Today Show" and VH-1 "Storytellers"; Karaoke: Sing-along to 15 outrageous songs; The actual auditions that landed Rose Byrne, Elisabeth Moss, Nick Kroll, Aziz Ansari and T.J. Miller their roles; instant access to stream a bonus movie by choosing one of three comedies: "Uncle Buck," "Dazed and Confused" or "Life" via BD-Live or a smartphone; BD-Live; My Scenes bookmarks; Pocket BLU app; socialBLU. (Universal).
Good (2009) Viggo Mortensen, Jason Isaacs, Mark Strong. Mortensen plays John Halder, a 'good' and decent individual with family problems: a neurotic wife, two demanding children and a mother suffering from senile dementia. A German literary professor during the 1930s, Halder explores his personal circumstances in a novel advocating compassionate euthanasia. When Halder's novel is enlisted by the Nazi party to push its agenda, his career and social standing instantly advance. But after learning of the Reich's horrific plans for the future, Halder must decide whether to do nothing and keep his fame or risk losing everything. Extras: Interviews with cast and crew. Also available on Blu-ray Disc. (National Entertainment Media).
Harriet The Spy: Blog Wars (2010) Jennifer Stone. Disney Channel Original. (9 Story Entertainment/Vivendi Entertainment).
Helen (2008) Annie Townsend, Sandie Malia, Dennis Jobling, Sonia Savill. When an 18-year-old girl, Joy, goes missing, the police ask another girl, Helen -- a few weeks away from leaving her care home -- to "play" Joy in a police reconstruction that will retrace Joy's last known movements. Whereas Joy had everything, parent-less Helen has lived in institutions all her life and gradually begins to immerse herself into the role, visiting the people and places that Joy knew; quietly and carefully insinuating her way into the lost girl's life. (Vanguard Cinema).
I'm Gonna Explode (2008 -- Mexico) Maria Deschamps, Juan Pablo de Santiago. Maru and Roman, a pair of defiant 15-year-old outcasts, connect at school, then hatch a quirky plan to fake Maru's kidnapping and run off together to Mexico City. (IFC/MPI).
Iron Man 2 (2010) Director: Jon Favreau. Stars: Robert Downey Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow, Don Cheadle, Scarlett Johansson, Mickey Rourke, Samuel L. Jackson, Sam Rockwell, Kate Mara, Clark Gregg, Garry Shandling, Jon Favreau, John Slattery. Available as a single-disc DVD, a two-disc DVD Special Edition, and a three-disc Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack. Extras: The single-disc DVD includes commentary by Jon Favreau. The two-disc DVD adds deleted scenes, "Creating Stark Expo" and "Practical Meets Digital" featurettes, AC/DC "Shoot to Thrill" music video, and a digital copy. The Blu-ray Combo pack adds interactive "S.H.I.E.L.D. Data Vault" that offers select scenes from the movie with new layers of graphics and insider information, previsualization and animatics featurette, "Ultimate Iron Man: The Making of Iron Man 2" four-part featurette, "Illustrated Origin: Nick Fury," "Illustrated Origin: Black Widow," "Illustrated Origin: War Machine," more deleted scenes, and a concept art gallery. (Paramount).
The Killer Inside Me (2010) Dir.: Michael Winterbottem; Kate Hudson, Jessica Alba, Casey Affleck, Simon Baker, Bill Pullman. Modern-day film noir shows a small town sheriff up to his neck in murders: his own. When Affleck's sheriff is asked to railroad a talkative prostitute out of town before she makes trouble, he realizes it's easier to just get rid of her for good. Unfortunately, covering up that murder means eliminating more and more people as his problems and complications spiral out of control. Even worse, he's starting to enjoy committing the crimes a lot more than he ever enjoyed dishing out the punishment. Based on the pulp fiction classic by Jim Thompson. Also available on Blu-ray Disc. (IFC/MPI).
Legend of the Seeker: The Complete Second and Final Season (2009) Five-disc set with 22 episodes, $45.99. Extras: Two featurettes: "Redemption of a Mord'sith: Meet Cara" and "Under the Underworld," deleted scenes and extended scenes. (Disney).
The Lord Peter Wimsey Mysteries, Set 2. Based on the novels by beloved crime writer Dorothy L. Sayers, the late Ian Carmichael stars as the debonair sleuth Lord Peter Wimsey in these wittily scripted and lavishly produced BBC adaptations. The mysteries ranked with "Upstairs, Downstairs" as the most successful series on Masterpiece Theatre in the 1970s, and the mysteries were so popular they inspired PBS's spin-off series Mystery!. Set 2 includes the final three feature-length mysteries: "Murder Must Advertise," "Five Red Herrings" and "The Nine Tailors" in a three-disc set for $49.99. Extras: Interviews with Ian Carmichael, production notes, and biographies of Dorothy L. Sayers and Ian Carmichael. (Acorn Media).
Max & Morris (1994 -- Israel) Comedy about a pair of losers, Max and Morris, who spend most of their time in Mordoch`s Restaurant, dreaming of hitting the big-time. They need cash quickly to repay a loan borrowed from "The Sleaze", so they decide to clean out "The Sleaze's" safe.
Mercy (2009) Scott Caan, Dylan McDermott, Erika Christensen, James Caan. A best-selling novelist (Scott Caan) one-night stands his way through L.A. until he finally meets his match with Mercy, a book critic who calls his romantic bluff. (IFC/MPI).
Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence (1983) In this captivating, exhilaratingly skewed World War II drama from Nagisa Oshima, David Bowie regally embodies the character Celliers, a high-ranking British officer interned by the Japanese as a POW. Music star Ryuichi Sakamoto (who also composed this film's hypnotic score) plays the camp commander, who becomes obsessed with the mysterious blond major, while Tom Conti is British lieutenant colonel Mr. Lawrence, who tries to bridge the emotional and language divides between his captors and fellow prisoners. "Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence" is a multilayered, brutal, at times erotic tale of culture clash that was one of Oshima's greatest successes. New, restored high-definition master. Extras: "The Oshima Gang," an original making-of featurette; video interviews with producer Jeremy Thomas, screenwriter Paul Mayersberg, actor Tom Conti, and actor-composer Ryuichi Sakamoto; "Hasten Slowly," an hour-long documentary about author and adventurer Laurens van der Post, whose autobiographical novel is the basis for the film; original theatrical trailer; booklet featuring an essay by film writer Chuck Stephens and a 1983 interview with director Nagisa Oshima by Japanese film writer Tadao Sato. Also available on Blu-ray Disc. (The Criterion Collection).
Midsomer Murders, Set 16 (2009) Four contemporary, stand-alone mysteries from the top-selling British mystery franchise. Inspired by the novels of Caroline Graham, modern master of the English village mystery, "Midsomer Murders" combines quirky characters and surprising mysteries with postcard-perfect English village settings and the ever-charming John Nettles as the unflappable Detective Chief Inspector Tom Barnaby. Four-disc set with "Midsomer Life," "The Magician's Nephew," "Days of Misrule" and "Talking to the Dead"; $49.99. (Acorn Media).
Paintball (2009) Brendan Mackey, Jennifer Matter, Neil Maskell. A group of strangers are brought together to compete in the ultimate paintball competition. Only the other side isn't firing balls of paint: they're firing real ammo. (IFC/MPI).
Paranormal State: The Complete Season Four (2010) Two-disc set with 12 episodes, $24.95. (A&E Home Entertainment).
Party Down: Season Two (2010) Two-disc set with 10 episodes, $29.97. Extras: Gag reel. (Anchor Bay).
Perrier's Bounty (2009) Cillian Murphy, Brendan Gleeson, Jim Broadbent. Comedy about a lazy would-be thief Michael (Cillian Murphy) who owes local gangster Perrier (Brendan Gleeson) more money than he can pay. When a burglary to raise funds goes awry, Michael's lovesick suicidal neighbor kills one of the goons who comes to collect and he's forced to go on the run. (IFC/MPI).
The Prankster (2010) Madison Riley, Maiara Walsh, Robert Adamson, Kurt Fuller, Ken Davitian. Teen comedy about a secret society that rights the wrongs of high school by pulling sophisticated pranks on deserving oppressors. Extras: Commentary, bloopers, deleted scenes, "The Making of The Prankster." (Strand Releasing).
The Ralph Mouse Collection (2010) Features the award-winning literary adaptations of "The Mouse and the Motorcycle," "Ralph S. Mouse" and "Runanway Ralph" in a three-disc set, $24.95. (Scholastic Storybook Treasures).
Rich Man, Poor Man: The Complete Collection (1976) Nine-disc set with all 34 episodes, $79.95. (A&E Home Entertainment).
Scrubs: The Complete Ninth and Final Season (2009-10) Two-disc set with 13 episodes, $29.99. Extras: Deleted scenes, bloopers, "Scrubbing In" featurette with the newcomers to Season Nine, "Live From the Golf Cart." (Disney).
Scrubs: The Complete Series. Twenty-six disc set, $149.99. Extras: Bonus Disc featuring "The Todd's High Five Scrubs Trivia Challenge," an offbeat contest in which series regular Dr. Todd Quinlan challenges viewers to test their knowledge of all nine seasons; winners can unlock special never-seen bonus features as a prize; collectible packaging includes X-ray/Lenticular cover of the cast, official Sacred Heart Hospital ID badge, photo booth strip of the cast. (Disney).
Secret Agent Aka Danger Man The Complete Collection (1964-67) Eighteen-disc set with all 86 episodes, $99.95. (A&E Home Entertainment).
7 Days (2010) Claude Legault, Martin Dubreil. A doctor kidnaps, ties up and then methodically extracts every drop of justice from the vile criminal he is convinced raped and killed his little girl. (IFC/MPI).
Soundtrack for a Revolution (2010) Documentary tells the story of the American civil rights movement through its powerful music-- the freedom songs protesters sang on picket lines, in mass meetings, in paddy wagons, and in jail cells as they fought for justice and equality. The film features new performances of the freedom songs by top artists, including John Legend, Joss Stone, Wyclef Jean, and The Roots; riveting archival footage; and interviews with civil rights foot soldiers and leaders, including Congressman John Lewis, Harry Belafonte, Julian Bond and Ambassador Andrew Young. The freedom songs evolved from slave chants, from the labor movement, and especially from the black church. The music enabled blacks to sing words they could not say, and it was crucial in helping the protesters as they faced down brutal aggression with dignity and non-violence. The infectious energy of the songs swept people up and empowered them to fight for their rights. (New Video).
Suck (2009) Malcolm McDowell, Jessica Pare, Dave Foley, Nicole de Boer, Henry Rollins, Iggy Pop, Alice Cooper, Moby, Rob Stefaniuk. Rock-'n'-roll vampire spoof about a bottom-shelf bar band that'll do anything for a record deal. After a life-changing encounter with a vampire, they rocket to stardom with a new sexually-charged charisma that drives the audiences wild, only to discover that fame and fortune is not all it's cracked up to be. Soundtrack includes Iggy Pop's "TVeye" and "Success"; Alice Cooper's "I am a Spider"; the Velvet Underground's "Sweet Nuthin"; David Bowie's "Here Comes the Night" and The Rolling Stones "Sympathy for the Devil." Extras: Making-of featurette "Down to the Crossroads or: How to Make a Movie SUCK," commentary track, Burning Bride's music video for "Flesh and Bone." Also available on Blu-ray Disc. (Entertainment One).
Superman/Batman: Apocalypse (2010) Ninth entry in the popular, ongoing series of DC Universe animated original PG-13 Movies. The Man of Steel and the Dark Knight unite once again, this time to battle the powerful forces of Darkseid. Two-disc set. Extras: "DC Showcase: Green Arrow" short, featurette: "Supergirl: The Last Daughter of Krypton," two bonus episodes from the animated television series. Also available on Blu-ray Disc. (Warner).
Super Size Me: Special Edition (2002) Six and one-half anniversary edition of the documentary following Morgan Spurlock's quest to expose the obesity problem facing America and to show how fast food restaurants -- the McDonald's chain, in particular -- have played their part in this epidemic. Extras: The 10 most asked questions about the film, Morgan Spurlock speaking engagement and Q&A with students of New Jersey's Rider College. (Virgil Films & Entertainment)
The Thin Red Line (1998) After directing two of the most extraordinary movies of the 1970s, "Badlands" and "Days of Heaven," American artist Terrence Malick disappeared from the film world for 20 years, only to resurface in 1998 with this visionary adaptation of James Jones's 1962 novel about the World War II battle for Guadalcanal. A big-budget, spectacularly mounted epic, "The Thin Red Line" is a deeply philosophical films, a thought-provoking meditation on man, nature, and violence. Featuring a cast of contemporary cinema's finest actors, the film is a kaleidoscopic evocation of the experience of combat. New, restored high-definition digital transfer, approved by director Terrence Malick and cinematographer John Toll. Extras: Commentary featuring Toll, production designer Jack Fisk, and producer Grant Hill; outtakes; video interviews with several of the film's actors, (including Jim Caviezel, Elias Koteas, and Sean Penn), composer Hans Zimmer, the film's editors (Billy Weber, Leslie Jones and Saar Klein), and writer James Jones's daughter Kaylie Jones; video interview with casting director Dianne Crittenden, featuring original audition footage; World War II newsreels featuring footage from Guadalcanal; original theatrical trailer; booklet featuring an essay by film critic David Sterritt and a 1963 essay by James Jones on war films. Also available on Blu-ray Disc. (The Criterion Collection).
Top Gear Season 13 (1985) Four-disc set with 18 episodes, $39.98. (BBC/Warner).