New on DVD

New on DVD

Waltz with Bashir
Rated R for some disturbing images of atrocities, strong violence, brief nudity, and a scene of graphic sexual content
Available on DVD and Blu-ray

Filmmaker and Israeli war veteran Ari Folman encounters a friend that is having nightmares brought on by the events of the First Lebanon War where they fought together.  When he realizes that he has many gaps in his own memory, he attempts to reconnect with many of the soldiers he fought with in an attempt to face the horrors of war he has shut away out of his mind.  Innovative in every way, this animated film that plays like a documentary was nominated for an Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film.  That being said, this is not a film for everyone.  It is a tough, challenging film filled with disturbing content that you will wish to forget just as Folman is trying to remember.  It does give an account of this war that most, including myself, are largely unfamiliar with.  The disc contains both the English and Hebrew language versions of the films, as well as tons of special features to give deeper insight.  B+

Confessions of a Shopahollic
Rated PG for some mild language and thematic elements
Available on DVD and Blu-ray

Based on the popular book series, Confessions follows a college grad that lands a job at a major financial magazine.  The only problem is that she is horrible with money, in deep debt and addicted to shopping.  Not knowing what to write about, she uses clothes as a metaphor for business and somehow becomes popular throughout the world.  Poorly written, lazily directed, and badly acted, this Bridget Jones wannabe is just miserable to watch.  Some might say that it’s good for teens and young girls due to it’s lack of mature content and wholesome feel, but I feel that the movie is so demeaning and insulting to women that I would have to disagree.  While there are women out there like this, I am thankful that it is the exception and not the norm this film portrays.  D

The Diary of Anne Frank: 50th Anniversary Edition
Available on DVD and Blu-ray

This beautiful but sad tale of a young Jewish girl and her family hiding from the Nazis in Amsterdam during WWII is hitting 50 this year.  While there is no sign of restoration of the original print, the film still holds up in looks and with Blu-ray manages to pop pretty well.  What this film doesn’t lack in is special features.  Both the DVD and blu-ray contain many new featurettes.  The blu-ray also contains loads of extras not found on the DVD edition such as a making-of commentary, archival footage and previously produced specials.  A

Blu-ray TV
This week also sees the introduction of some great shows finally released on blu-ray.  Lost Seasons 1 and 2 not only give you more than 20 episodes each to take in again, but contain some really interesting commentaries with interludes showing examples of production discussions.  And Hawaii in HD?  All I can say is wow.  Also on blu-ray this week is HBO’s John Adams.  What makes this set so interesting is the blu-ray only special feature of historical facts that pop up on the screen during the course of the series.  Not only are you entertained, but thoroughly educated as well.  Lost: Season 1 A; Lost: Season 2 B+; John Adams A-

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