September 5, 2006

Video Tapeworm Releases through Tuesday, Sept. 12

THIS WEEK’S TWIN PEEKSGALAXINA1980; DVD $24.95, RMuch of the humor got lost amid the rush to promote this sci-fi spoof as Playboy Playmate Dorothy Stratten’s last movie before being murdered by her husband. A pity, because her portrayal as the gorgeous, caring android aboard a silly starship is a lot of fun. (You may also remember her as Miss Cosmos in an episode of “Buck Rogers.”) She falls in love with a crewmember; captain Avery Schreiber is attacked a la “Alien” and gives birth to a confused creature who thinks he’s its mother! Not a “good” movie, but fondly remembered.STAR WARS ENHANCED VERSIONS2006; DVD $29.95 each, URGeorge Lucas is at it again. The gimmick this time is that he’s brought together the original theatrical releases of the first three films, plus their enhanced “director’s cuts” and more of his patented featurettes and commentary in short-production-run limited-edition packaging. “Limited,” of course, until the next release. We’re not really complaining, these are excellent combos and well worth the price, we’re just tired of buying new versions every couple of years. Now available: “Episode IV — A New Hope,” “Episode V — The Empire Strikes Back” and “Episode Vi — Return of the Jedi.”BOTTOM’S UP2006; DVD $24.95, RThis nice little romantic comedy got blindsided by some studio-suit’s rush to put Paris Hilton on the screen (the title is a sly wink to her sex video). Luckily, her role is not so all-encompassing that you lose the real plot about Jason Mewes as a young Midwestern beertender in the big city. With David Keith as “Uncle Earl” and the always aromatic Tim Thomerson. And, yeah, Paris is hot.BOXED2002; DVD $19.95, URA terrific, atmospheric conspiracy/crime thriller based on the true Vatican-endorsed policy of providing priests to ride along with IRA assassins when they go to murder informants — not to stop them, but just to administer Last Rites! When one priest refuses to take part, the shite hits the fan.HELLBENT2004; DVD $24.95, RJoe Wolf, co-creator of “A Nightmare on Elm Street,” brings to the screen this wonderfully wicked horror tale about a musician selling his soul to the devil (as if THAT wasn’t redundant) — and the fact that the main characters are gay has almost nothing to do with the plot! LINDA LOVELACE FOR PRESIDENT1975; DVD $24.95, URThis goofy attempt to recreate the magic that made “Deep Throat” a national phenomenon failed miserably — but you have give it to the cast: They gave it their all! Linda Lovelace is drafted by a political party as “the candidate who can please everyone” with comic help from Micky “The Monkees” Dolenz and cameos by Scatman Crothers, Marty Ingels and Joe E. Ross. The original had hard-core sex and anatomically-invasive nudity, but this appears to be an edited release.LUCKY NUMBER SLEVIN2006; DVD $29.95, RWith a cast like Josh Hartnett, Ben Kingsley, Morgan Freeman, Stanley Tucci and Bruce Willis, how could this be anything but great? Well, it’s at least very good at times as Josh schemes to extricate himself from a lethal case of mistaken identity by two crime lords with the help of hitman Willis. (We screwed up and announced this back in August. Sorry.)THE DEATH OF MR. LAZARESCU2006; DVD $24.95, RWe consider this Romanian tale to be a completely new film genre: the all-too-true horror film! A lonely old man calls an ambulance because he feels sick. The doctor takes one look at him and sends him to a hospital. The hospital decides they aren’t equipped to handle whatever is wrong with him and ship him off to ANOTHER hospital, which rejects him and sends him to a different hospital, and so on and so on ... and all the while he’s getting sicker and sicker.THE GREAT YOKAI WAR2005; DVD $29.95, PG-13Not to be confused with anime, this is a terrific Japanese live-action tale (actually a remake of 1968’s “Yokai Daisenso”) about a troubled young boy who is chosen by a race of good spirits to lead them in their epic battle against the bad spirits who wish to flood the world with demons and misery. Equal parts adventure, comedy, fantasy and horror — particularly the cruel hobgoblins — this is terrific family film that entertains on every level. Highly recommended.THE WILD2006; DVD $29.95, GNot so much a movie as a financial strategy. Follow us on this: Disney decides that hand-drawn animation isn’t profitable “enough,” so they ditch the entire department and start over with computers. Somewhere along the way they need to release something — anything, as long as it wiggles on a screen — to pay for the hardware. Another studio makes a mint on “Madagascar,” and before you can say “rip off,” Der Mouse has their Gateway bill paid. Can’t wait for their next release, can you?VIVA SANTANA! AN INTIMATE CONVERSATION WITH CARLOS2006; DVD $14.95, URMaster musician Carlos Santana reminisces about Life, The Universe and Everything in this music-filled sit-down that traces his long career and plans for the future.YOUNG BLOOD: REBELLION, RIOTS, AND ROCK ’N’ ROLL IN THE SIXTIES1999; DVD $19.95, URFrom WGBH Boston, a People’s Century TV documentary on America’s greatest decade: The 1960s. (Soapbox Warning!) The current crop of young adults don’t understand the power they have to right the world. Within the span of a few years, their counterparts a generation-or-so ago went to the moon, pulled America out of an unjust war, made all men and women equal under the law, and introduced granola to the masses. And they did it all without a single cell phone!OTHER DVDS OF INTERESTGREY’S ANATOMY: SEASON TWO2005; DVD $59.95, URJAMES TAYLOR: SQUIBNOCKET2006; DVD $14.95, URLAS VEGAS: SEASON 32003; DVD $59.95, URMOONLIGHTING: SEASON 4    1985; DVD $39.95, URTAPS: 25TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION1981; DVD $19.95, PGTHE BATMAN: THE COMPLETE SECOND SEASON2004; DVD $19.95, URA more complete listing and free vids at!