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Weekend Recommendations: DVDs

Here’s yer DVD goodness…

TV DVD of the Week: Earth 2: The Complete Series. This Universal release contains all twenty-two episodes of the series across three discs. Earth has been ruined and can no longer support humans, probably due to a string of Deuce Bigalow sequels, and now a new planet must be found, since living in spacestations is making everyone sick. Me too, since I can’t read in a moving car I’d probably have been screwed. Only bonus features are deleted scenes, outtakes, bloopers, and episodes of Cleopatra 2525 and Sliders. (Buy it)

DVD of the Week: The Truman Show. An improvement over the last version of this on DVD, this Paramount release features the most excellent Jim Carrey starrer and the moment I’ve been waiting for my entire life: to sail a ship straight up to the wall at the edge of the sky and poke a hole in it. So I’m a bit partial. Anyway, it sports a two-part making-of docu, four deleted/extended scenes, a photo gallery, and trailers and TV spots. (Buy it)

Docu DVD of the Week: Expo: Magic of the White City. For those who have been reading up on the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair via the book by Erik Larson, this Inecom release is what you’ve been seeking. Narrated by Gene Wilder, who we’re happy to see in anything, this docu takes you through the spectacle, and comes with great bonus bits: an audio commentary by the fair’s historian, deleted scenes, storyboards, pictures, a making-of, and commentary on the bonus bits by the director and writer. (Buy it)

Anime DVD of the Week: Tenjho Tenge, Round 2. The volumes in this series from Geneon are referred to as “rounds” for a reason. The three episodes included are basically one big asskicking fight split up into pieces. So there’s plenty of beatdowns being handed around for the entirety of the collection. There’s no features but clean closing animation. (Buy it)

Adverse Video of the Week: After Image. I’ve got nothing against John Mellencamp, mind you. In fact, I actually think Mr. Happy Go Lucky is probably his best album. But why he signed on to act in this snoozer, I have no idea. He’s a crime scene photographer who returns to his hometown only to find himself being trailed by a serial killer. It comes with production notes and two featurettes. Maybe they’ll be enough stimulation to bring you back to consciousness. I can’t vouch for it. (Buy it)

Animation DVD of the Week: Futurama Monster Robot Maniac Fun Collection. Four episodes of Groening-led animated future mayhem are what you get on this single disc release from Fox. There’s a disc introduction, plus intros for each of the episodes. You also get the full animatic treatment for the episode “Hell is Other Robots,” which comes with an optional audio commentary by cast and crew. Buy this, folks, and it will help get more Futurama made. Billy West has spoken. (Buy it)

Bard DVD of the Week: Twelfth Night. Well, you have to give Branagh this–among other things: he likes to do Shakespeare unabridged. And we appreciate this, since you’re getting a performance of the full text on this TV production of the play from 1988. Clocking in at over two hours, it also comes with an interview with Branagh, and a Shakespeare timeline. (Buy it)

Brit DVD of the Week: All Creatures Great & Small: The Complete Series 5 Collection. BBC Home Video brings you all twelve of the fifth series episodes across four discs. The characters of James Herriot continue with Christopher Timothy, Robert Hardy and Peter Davison (who is not a thing, incidentally, and shouldn’t be treated as such). No features, but fans of the show are going to want to snag it regardless. (Buy it)

Horror DVD of the Week: Omen. I was wondering about this too, but just to let you know–from the cover, D2B, is a boy band from Thailand. But don’t let that stop you if you’re looking for a different angle on Asian horror. This Panik House release is a supernatural story of a group of three friends who get involved with an old woman who can predict the future, which of course can cause all kinds of complications. Comes with a lot of features that support D2B, so if you like their acting I guess you can check out their singing as well. (Buy it)

Foreign DVD of the Week: And Give My Love to the Swallows. Facets Video releases this Czech film, based on the true story of Maruska Kuderikova. She worked for the Czech resistance and wound up imprisoned by the Nazis. The tale is taken from her diaries. A powerful portrait of life in the bleakest of circumstances is a nice cinematic portrait steeped in its own brand of irony. Worth checking out if you need your Eurofilm fix. (Buy it)

Music DVD of the Week: The Committee. This Music Video Distributors release is extremely bizarre. Not only do you have a narrative going on about a whacked out murder and a secret organization that runs the world, but the whole thing is set to the musical score by Pink Floyd. And if that wasn’t enough, you also get “Fire” performed by The Crazy World of Arthur Brown, which was one of the seminal vinyl singles of my childhood. And yes, that explains a lot. (Buy it)

UMD of the Week: Halloween. I keep getting little reminders of what time of year it’s getting to be. And this is another one of them. For your mobile movie-watching pleasure, it’s the original John Carpenter slashfest, which apart from a strange uptick around episode five or something, has been all downhill from here. Anchor Bay provides this for when you just need to rest after blowing some shit up on your PSP. (Buy it)