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DVD Releases for March 16, 2004

March 15th, 2004

Every week films get a second chance at success from the home market; or, in some cases, a first chance at success. Here is a list of wide releases, limited releases and a few from the growing TV on DVD section. It was another slow week as not one new release made it on Amazon's Top Ten Sales Chart. There are a couple of good DVDs, but they are special editions of older DVDs. That kept my 'To buy list' to just two: The Commitments and Married... with Children - Second Season - (Buy from Amazon.)

Here's the highlights, (and some lowlights) of the DVDs released today, March 16, 2004.

21 Grams - (Buy from Amazon)
This DVD is light on features with just a single featurette. And while the revews and awards suggest the movie should stand on its own, the lack of any real special features is a disappointment.

The Cat in the Hat - (Buy from Amazon: Widescreen or Pan and Scan)
This DVD is packed with special features, which is the only way they could sell them 'cause the movie was so bad.

Cheaper by the Dozen - (Buy from Amazon)
This is the 1950 original and not last year's remake. The remake isn't coming out on DVD till next month.

The Commitments - Collector's Edition - (Buy from Amazon)
The R&B and Soul scene in Dublin, Ireland may seem like an improbable setup for a movie. But the collection of strange characters and incredible musical talent makes this movie work. And unlike the other, 'Special Edition' on today's list, this one has the special features worthy of the title.

Dangerous Liaisons - (Buy from Amazon: English, French or French Extended Edition)
This DVD set is of the recent French mini-series. The story it's based on has been turned into a movie a few times, most recently as the 1999 Cruel Intentions but is probably best known as the 1988 version, Dangerous Liaisons. This version has an impressive cast, but never really comes together.

The Flintstones - The Complete 1st Season - (Buy from Amazon)
At one time this was the longest running Prime Time Cartoon of all time. That record as since been broken by The Simpsons. Like the other cartoon collection on today's list, this one has a few special features, but not the ones I was looking forward to the most. When it comes to early cartoon sets there are three main target audiences: 1.) Kids, although the parents will probably like the cartoons just as much as their children do. 2.) Collectors, who want to own the complete collection. 3.) 'Historians,' who want to learn more about the history, the behind the scene, etc. So far only Looney Tunes - The Golden Collection has done it right and given all three audiences a reason to buy the set.

Joe Dirt - (Buy from Amazon)
They're re-releasing Joe Dirt? Dang!

Kim Possible: A Sitch in Time - (Buy from Amazon)
First of all, this TV movie is not called, "A Stitch in Time" like some other sites are calling it. It's "Sitch," which is short for, "Situation." As in, "What's the sitch?" which is what Kim Possible says whenever Wade calls her on the communicator. … What? So I watch Kim Possible, is there anything wrong with that?

Lizzie McGuire - (Buy from Amazon: Volume 3: Star Struck or Volume 4: Totally Crushed)
Another 2 volumes containing 10 episodes of the series are released on DVD. Like the volumes one and two these have a mix of episodes following a loose theme. Eventually they might put out complete season sets, but there are no official plans to do so thus far.

Married… with Children - Second Season - (Buy from Amazon)
For anyone who has strong feelings about the current batch of sadistic game shows, you have to get this DVD box set, or at least rent it. One of the last episodes from season two, 'Just Married… with Children,' deals with a game show where newlyweds torture each other for valuable prizes. It's fun to compare what was considered farce just 16 years ago to the Fear Factor, Average Joe, My Big Fat Obnoxious Fiancée and other similar shows of today. As for the show itself, the writing and acting started to hit its stride during the second season with some of the best episodes from its ten-year run aired during this season. And the DVDs are not bare either, more than a dozen Easter Eggs with cast interviews are hidden across the 3 discs. I would have liked some audio commentaries by the cast and creators, but maybe we can get those for season 3.

Ned Kelly - (Buy from Amazon)
This is the 1970 version, not the upcoming remake.

Running Man - Special Edition - (Buy from Amazon)
This is another DVD you need to get to compare to current batch of game shows. Case in point, one of the special features talks about current game shows and their move to a more vile nature. Scariest part of this movie is the fact that at the current pace we might get to death sports before 2017, the date the movie takes place. The special features are a little light for a special edition, but if you don't have any of the previous editions it is still worth it.

Scooby Doo, Where Are You! - The Complete First and Second Seasons - (Buy from Amazon)
With so many incarnations of Scooby Doo, it might be difficult to keep track of them all. But this is the original. This set contains all 25 episodes from this version of Scooby Doo, and there are enough special features. However, it would have been nice for more features focused on the mature collector; historical information and the like.

Veronica Guerin - (Buy from Amazon)
A big hit in its native Ireland, this biopic failed to find an audience Stateside. Reviews were just average, and so are the extra features. In all, Cate Blanchett's performance is the only reason to get this DVD, and while it is very good, it can't elevate the DVD past rental.

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Filed under: Video Releases, Cheaper by the Dozen, Veronica Guerin, Ned Kelly, 21 Grams