DVDstruction - April 22, 2008

We implore you not to chuck your regular ol’ DVD players now that we’re in the midst of contract buffoonery by Paramount and Warner Bros. Said companies have rightly cancelled all new HD-DVD titles, leaving Blu-ray without some of its biggest releases. Like Sweeney Todd and There Will Be Blood before it, this week’s handheld monster mash, Cloverfield has no hi-def release scheduled just yet.

No matter! Some of this week’s titles don’t even warrant a high-def transfer. Quirky indie dramedies, Awesome Shows and a chatty war drama adorn your DVD players this week. Behold.


“I had a good day.”

Ah, remember the beginning of the year and the excitement surrounding horror/thriller, Cloverfield? All that hype that couldn’t possibly have been lived up to because of our active imaginations and one crazy-extensive marketing campaign? Divided opinions be damned, this movie had heart, explosions, genuine scares, believable effects work and way too many rich twentysomethings. The DVD is loaded with alternate endings, commentary and a ton of behind-the-scenes features. No vomit bag though. That might come with the eventual Blu-ray release.

Charlie Wilson’s War

“You know you’ve reached rock bottom when you’re told you have character flaws by a man who hanged his predecessor in a military coup.”

Written by Aaron Sorkin (The West Wing, A Few Good Men), this wordy drama depicts how Congressman Charlie Wilson (Tom Hanks with an adorable Southern accent) got the US government to fund and train Afghani rebels to expel Soviets from their country. Don’t glaze your eyes! That was a major blow in ending the Cold War. Also, there are two thinly veiled references to 9/11 and today’s Iraq war. History is totally relevant, no matter how boring it seems. There are hardly any features and no Blu-ray release yet.

The Orphanage

“A tale of love. A story of horror.”

Winning a bunch of Goyas (Spanish Academy Awards) and produced by Guillermo del Toro (Hellboy, Pan’s Labryinth), this modern day ghost story will slowly but surely scare the crap out of you. Paced like other ghost dramas (The Sixth Sense, The Others), a woman returns to her childhood home and plans on opening an orphanage for disabled children. Things start getting freaky when her son starts seeing imaginary friends (we think they’re ghosts). This movie is available on Blu-ray, unlike any other major release this week, so we implore you bring down the house with the Dolby Digital 5.1 track. Boo!

The Savages

“Dad has been writing on the walls with his shit!”

It’s a good thing “quirky” and “dramedy” are used to describe every major indie flick worth a damn, because the thought of watching dysfunctional siblings care for their dying father sounds horrendously boring. Starring Philip Seymour Hoffman (Mission: Impossible III, Capote) and Laura Linney (Love Actually, Congo), these two make quite the pathetic pair, yet in a hysterical way. Whimsy and depression ensues! Seriously though, this is a great film, yet gimped in the feature department.

Tim and Eric Awesome Show, Great Job! - Season 1

“Do you know what you’re supposed to do when you catch on fire? Stop, drop, roll! For your health.”

Like the other 11-minute Adult Swim shows, no matter how nonsensical, asinine or frikkin batshit insane Tim and Eric Awesome Show is, it’s still hilarious. Produced by Bob Odenkirk (Mr. Show) and starring the two guys who made Tom goes to the Mayor, Awesome Show has its own rhyme and reason for its sketch comedy show... if you could call it that. Really, it’s just bizarre and for some reason, Weird Al, John C. Reilly and Jeff Goldblum have appeared on it. Extra features include deleted scenes, making of and commentary for every absurd episode.

Apr 22, 2008