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DVD Releases for February 10, 2004

February 10th, 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. The selection is not as strong this week, which is good since my wallet took a beating last week. There are still several DVDs of interest including the pick of the week Angel Season 3 - (Buy from Amazon.)

Here's the highlights, (and some lowlights) of the DVDs released today, January 20, 2004.

Angel Season 3 - (Buy from Amazon)
I admit, I was a fan of Angel before I was a fan of Buffy, and I still think Angel is the superior show. And this season was, in my mind, the best season. Adding to its desirability, this box set also has the best special features, including outtakes and deleted scenes, a first for the Angel box sets.

In the Cut - (Buy from Amazon: R Rated or Unrated)
When this movie was first released it was a disappointment both at the box office and critically. In fact, the only thing it had going for it was Meg Ryan's controversial sex scenes. So it is no surprise that the Unrated version is selling so much better than the R Rated version. Although neither version is really lighting up the charts.

Intolerable Cruelty - (Buy from Amazon: Widescreen or Pan & Scan.)
The latest from the Coen Brothers under-performed considering its pedigree and star power. And while its reviews are good, they are not quite up to the Coen Brothers usual level.

Lexx - Season 4 - (Buy from Amazon: Part 1, Part 2, Volume 5, or Volume 6)
For those of you not in the know, Lexx is a Canadian / German co-produced Sci-fi / Fantasy / Comedy TV Series with a cult following. Because it's Canadian / German there's a more adult edge to the show then you'd normally see on American network TV, but it's inline with Cable TV series. It is important to note season four can be bought in either two parts, or 6 volumes. I'm not sure why they did that, but I wouldn't be surprised if a complete fourth season box set came out soon.

Lion King 1 1/2 - (Buy from Amazon)
Described as an interquel, The Lion King 1 1/2 is a retelling of the original movie from the point of view of two minor characters Timon and Pumbaa. It could be a brilliant piece of story writing like a certain retelling of Hamlet, or it could be a quick cash grab like Return to Neverland or Jungle Book 2. A direct to video release suggests the latter but the 2 Disc set loaded with extras suggests the former.

Mr. Bill's Disasterpiece Theater - (Buy from Amazon)
A collection of shorts from Saturday Night Live starring a hapless Play-Doh man created who is tormented by Mr. Hands, Dr. Sluggo, his cousin Pizza Head. One of the most popular character ever to appear on Saturday Night Live, this set contains 4 hours over 3 DVDs including features created just for this collection.

Party Monster - (Buy from Amazon)
This is the fictional adaptation of the true-life events that were already explored in the documentary of the same name. If you didn't know it was based on real-life events you might consider this film to be too unbelievable. It may develop a cult following but it will never enter the mainstream. The lives the 'characters' lead are just too out there for most people to connect with.

The Returner - (Buy from Amazon)
Homage or outright theft? The Returner borrows heavily from many, many sources but does it with enough style that the viewer shouldn't care. Barely noticed when it was released in a handful of theatres last year, it should gain cult status on DVD.

Sylvia - (Buy from Amazon)
One of two films that opened well in limited release but couldn't maintain its per theatre average as it expanded. A strong cast couldn't overcome poor reviews as the film limped to only $1.3 million at the box office. It will probably only do marginally better at the home market.

Wonderland - (Buy from Amazon)
Wonderland had a strong limited opening, but it couldn't maintain its momentum and barely made it past $1 million at the box office. And while there were some good performances, the reviews were very weak.

Xena Warrior Princess - Season 3 - (Buy from Amazon)
During its run, Xena was arguably the most popular syndicated TV series. The series ended a couple of years ago, but that doesn't mean the show will be forgotten. With another season coming out every six months or so fans another season will be released, each packed with extras.

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Filed under: Video Releases, Intolerable Cruelty, In the Cut, Sylvia, Wonderland, Party Monster, Returner