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Weekend Recommendations: DVDs

Here’s yer DVD goodness…

TV DVD of the Week: The Daily Show With Jon Stewart: Indecision 2004. For anybody who thinks that this show provides some of the best news on television, which it does, this Paramount/Comedy Central release is going to be a must-watch. Three discs take you through the best of their 2004 election coverage, including coverage of the conventions, the debates, commentaries and an intro by Stewart himself. Nicely done. (Buy it)

DVD of the Week: Downfall. We’ve been a fan of Bruno Ganz since Wings of Desire. And here he’s taking on the role of Adolf Hitler (in his final days in the bunker in Berlin) and just turning in an amazing performance. The problem with films about Hitler is that there’s a tendency to lessen his humanity. But that just lessens the overall horror: the bastard was human. This Columbia-Tristar release was nominated for a foreign language Oscar and besides Ganz’ incredible job, you’ve got a director’s commentary and a making-of featurette. (Buy it)

Docu DVD of the Week: Battlefield Britain. This three disc set says up front it’s going to go from Boudicca to the Battle of Britain and it delivers on its promise. They take crucial battles in British history, and take you through the whole thing, aided by historical reenactments and recreations of battlefields, and take you through the Spanish Armada, The Battle of Hastings, The Battle of the Boyne and more. Comes with a bonus docu as well. (Buy it)

Anime DVD of the Week: Human Crossing, Vol. 3: Message in White. Okay, so maybe you don’t want any magical girls for once. Or mecha. We don’t know what’s wrong with you, but okay, we’ll go with that for a second. And in that second, we’ll offer up this Geneon release. Three standalone stories, dealing with romance, loss, success and its consequences, and happiness. For something different, it’s worth checking out. Comes with clean closing animation. (Buy it)

Adverse Video of the Week: Crow: Wicked Prayer. Probably the best part of this is Edward Furlong on the cover. Remember when the Crow was supposed to instill fear in his enemies? This guy looks like he’s upset because a rave got cancelled. Man, that’s sad. Even sadder is Tara Reid’s involvement, but considering her reality TV bent in recent days, we’re truly brought low by Boreanaz, who you would think could do better than this. There are two feature commentaries, deleted scenes and storyboards, if you can manage them. (Buy it)

Animation DVD of the Week: The Simpsons: The Complete Sixth Season. Well, this image is misleading. It implies that this latest Fox release will stand up on its own. Maybe the image was taken with a camera pointing down at the thing lying on a table top. That would explain it. Anyway, after the case falls apart and you throw it away, you’re treated to four discs and all twenty-five episodes. Every episode, par for the course, comes with commentary. Plus you get a slew of animatics, deleted scenes, commericals, featurettes and more. At least the discs haven’t gone downhill. (Buy it)

Adult DVD of the Week: Strip Poker Invitational. Well, for the four guys out there who still haven’t gotten bitten by the Watching Poker Bug, BCI wants to rope you in too. How to do this? Chicks taking off their clothes, of course! This uncut video hosted by Carmen Electra is…well, exactly what it purports to be. Texas hold em and naked flesh. Also comes with a behind the scenes featurette with the co-executive producers (probably counting their dough), inteviews, and more behind the scenes stuff with Electra. (Buy it)

Foreign DVD of the Week: Friday’s Soldiers. In this film from Iran, four soldiers get leave and come to Tehran with their commanding officer in tow. While visiting with their families, things go so wonky the boys no doubt wish they were back on base. It involves one of the soldiers’ sisters, her dead lover, and a ton of opium. All the makings of Bad Business. This Facets Video release comes with a bio of director Masud Kimiai, a photo gallery and the trailer. (Buy it)

Horror DVD of the Week: Bangkok Haunted. When three young women get together in a cafe to swap some ghost stories, you’re getting a nifty little anthology of creepiness from Thailand and newcomer Panik House. In addition to these tales of ghosts and murder, you get a half-hour’s worth of behind the scenes feaurette, an essay on Thai cinema, a bio on the Pang Brothers (one of whom directed a segment of the film), production notes, still gallery, and more. (Buy it)

UMD of the Week: Evil Dead. While we await the upcoming Anchor Bay Evil Dead 2 nasty Book of the Dead edition, we’ll wander around checking out their UMD version of the original film on our PSPs, thanks. Ever been on the bus and offered to show a total stranger, “Want to see a demon zombie gnaw off one of its own extremities?” Oh man, it’s priceless. (Buy it)