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March 24, 2006

Video TapeWorm: Releases through Dec. 27

THIS WEEK’S TWIN PEEKS:DARK WATER2005; VHS Rental/DVD $29.95, PG-13/URJennifer Connelly, newly separated with new job and new apartment, is starting a new life with her daughter. But dark, mysterious and persistent leaks of noisesome water around her dilapidated building seem to symbolize her decaying life as the relationship with her husband degrades into a bitter custody battle. The latest in the “chick-flick horror-shocker” genre directed by Walter Salles; a remake of a Japanese film from the same people who did “Ringu.”INTO THE BLUE2005; VHS Rental/DVD $28.95, PG-13It’s as if God, himself, bent down to kiss the blue surf and bless the heavens with cinematic rapture ... We’re talking, of course, about Jessica Alba in a string bikini! Yow. Yeah, there’s some sort of movie going on here, but we couldn’t stop drooling long enough to take notes. She and Paul Walker, Scott Caan and Ashley Scott star in this nubile cousin of “The Deep” filmed in the Bahamas where we’d each give a testicle to be right now. Some sort of action, drugs, sunken airplanes ... man, who the hell CARES?! This place SUCKS in the winter! AB-NORMAL BEAUTY2004; DVD $24.95, RA savage and twisted little chick-horror flick from Korea about a pretty photography student who becomes increasingly obsessed with recording images of dead people. Eventually she becomes the obsession of a mysterious killer who sends her tapes of his exploits ... and a meeting can’t be far behind.FIRE ON THE AMAZON1993; DVD $14.95, ROK, here’s the re-release you’ve been waiting for, you buncha pervs — the one with Sandra Bullock’s butt! The Schlock-Meister General, Roger Corman, produced this environmental yarn about an activist (Bullock) who teams with photojournalist Craig Sheffer to shut down a lumber company in the South American rain forests and show a little skin. In reality, she wore duct tape over her nipples during the one love scene — a titty-double was spliced in later — but that’s Sandy’s wonderful keister, all right! We gotta finda nudda job.GRIZZLY MAN2005; VHS Rental/DVD $27.95, RFamed director Werner Herzog’s documentary on Timothy Treadwell, the amateur animal-activist who called himself “The Grizzly Man” because he was so comfortable with the bears of the Alaskan wilderness that he could approach them without fear. They ate him. No, we are not making that up: They killed and ate him and his partner, Amie Huguenard, for being too stupid to live. Told through Treadwell’s own film and Herzog’s inimitable observations on human behavior. Priceless.PORNOGRAFIA2003; DVD $24.95, URA sly commentary on the nature of humans, war and corruption, as espoused by a pair of middle-aged Polish intellectuals (there’s a joke there, somewhere) who hide out during WWII on a remote farm, ruminating on the fate of a farmer’s innocent young daughter. Outside their gates, German and Polish soldiers fight and die, while inside a different sort of obscenity takes place. Great subtitled philosophizing. The final score? Man fights war because his only joy is to fuck the young. Ya hear that, Dubya?!PTERODACTYL2005; DVD $26.95, URThis week’s stupid SciFi Channel CGI debacle about a paleontologist who hopes to resurrect his career by finding a live pterodactyl. How bad is it? Seems some million-year-old eggs have been preserved inside of a volcano ... ugh. With Coolio as Captain Bergin, who tells Cameron Daddo, “Now, keep your mouth shut, or your teeth won’t make the rest of the trip!”THE PATH OF EVIL2005; DVD $24.95, RAn unrepentant no-budget indie with no stars or special effects to speak of. Sounds good to us. After 20 years, a serial killer has resurfaced in a small coastal town — called Devil’s Lake! — and the only survivor of the original attacks, now a sheriff’s deputy, becomes obsessed with finding the killer before others are murdered.THE SUPERFIGHT: MARCIANO VS. ALI2005; DVD $19.95, URA watermark in American popular history, unseen in any form for nearly 25 years! In the late ’60s a Miami boxing promoter created a successful series of radio fantasy boxing bouts between former champs of different generations using a computer to predict the winner. He then took it one step further, convincing retired great Rocky Marciano and (suspended) Muhammad Ali to meet in the ring for the cameras. He then cut the film to match his computer predictions and showed it one time only in 1,500 theaters around the world on Jan. 20, 1970, and then once on ABC’s “Wide World of Sports.” All prints were then destroyed, except for the one given to the U.S. Copyright office. This is that film, along with the complete original fight footage, a documentary, rare footage of Marciano and Ali’s careers, and — best of all — all 15 one-hour radio Fantasy Fights! A must-own bit of Americana.THE WILD PARROTS OF TELEGRAPH HILL2004; VHS Rental/DVD $26.95, GIf you liked that penguin documentary that packed houses all summer during 2005, you’ll like this curious study of a true bohemian and his pals. Mark Bittner is an amateur ornithologist in San Francisco, the adopted sibling of a flock of colorful and affectionate wild parrots who accompany him wherever he goes. Not a generic mass of feathers by any means, each of the birds has a particular personality setting it apart from the rest. In the end, you can’t help but see the parallels between their world and our own. Amazing, beautiful and life-affirming.OTHER DVDS OF INTEREST15 THINGS YOU’RE NOT SUPPOSED TO SEE, VOL. 12005; DVD $9.95, UR20462004; VHS Rental/DVD $29.95, RATTACK OF THE 60 FOOT CENTERFOLD1995; DVD $9.95, RCAGED HEAT1974; DVD $14.95, RWORLD’S WILDEST BAR FIGHTS2005; DVD $19.95, URWORLD’S WILDEST CHICK FIGHTS2005; DVD $19.95, URA more complete listing and free vids at www.videotapeworm.com!