Welcome to another light week of DVD releases! It may appear lacking in quantity, but it does feature the film that might be winning the Academy Award for Best Film in a couple months. No, not Piranha. David Fincher’s The Social Network reaches shelves just three and a half months after hitting theaters, and in addition to being an incredibly good movie it’s also the closest I’ve ever been to Facebook.
Other titles out this week include a fantastic French romantic comedy (Heartbreaker), an animated flick nobody saw (Alpha and Omega), three TV shows you’ve probably never heard of before, and more.
Click on any of the titles below to magically head over to Amazon.com and pick up the DVD. And don’t forget to check out Neil Miller’s seemingly legitimately titled This Week In Blu-ray for reviews on the latest high definition Blu-ray releases!
Pitch: Maybe the French do know something about romance after all…
Why Buy? An incredibly thin French man who seduces women to stop them from marrying the wrong guy falls for one of them instead. Sacre bleu! Romain Duris is a charismatic waif and he shows great chemistry with Vanessa Paradis. The plot seems to go in traditional and expected ways, but it does so with immense charm and some truly humorous antics. There’s even a little bit of action to boot. It may be French, but it’s easily one of the best romantic comedies in recent years.
Read my full review of Heartbreaker.
Extra Features? Outtakes, deleted scenes, making of, trailer, featurettes
The Social Network
Pitch: A socially awkward young man borrows an idea, creates the world’s largest social networking site, and lives in a world where people talk like characters from The West Wing…
Why Buy? David Fincher and Aaron Sorkin present their interpretation of the creation of Facebook. Several of the facts may be in dispute regarding who did or said what, but does it really matter? This is a movie not a documentary. The script is smart, engaging, and filled with deliriously entertaining dialogue spoken by some fantastic actors. True story or not, it’s entertaining film-making at its best.
Read Luke Mullen’s full review of The Social Network.
Extra Features? Commentaries, making of, featurettes
Pitch: See Dax Shepard as you’ve never seen him before. Acting…
Why Rent? A young couple tries to deal with bedroom issues by granting each other a sexual hall pass for one night. Regular readers of this column know I’m no friend of the mumblecore movement, and while this movie is only guilty by association there are more than a few scenes that veer dangerously close to rambling indie bullshit. But give it thirty minutes and you may be surprised how engaged you’ll be with this couple’s self-inflicted predicament. And if nothing else, the movie is worth watching for the insanely cute Frankie Shaw who plays the unnamed coffee shop girl. She’s enough of a reason to watch Spike’s Blue Mountain State. Seriously.
Read Neil Miller’s full review of The Freebie.
Extra Features? Commentary, featurette, photo gallery, trailer
Pitch: Who knew carnivorous fish liked the taste of silicone? And penis…
Why Rent? Prehistoric piranhas are released near a recreational resort and begin munching down on the guests. Joe Dante’s B-movie classic gets the big budget remake treatment from Alexandre Aja who manages to fill it with gore, nudity, and a sorely missed Elizabeth Shue. The ending is anything but, but a movie like this really isn’t about the narrative anyway. It’s about the nude underwater swim scene.
Read Robert Fure’s full review of Piranha.
Extra Features? Commentary, featurettes
Pitch: But suffering through this movie hurts more…
Why Avoid? Richard Grant plays a recently divorced and currently depressed man whose son decides to make over into the hottest bachelor in town. Grant is almost channeling his baxter role from LA Story, but the real problem here is the severe lack of originality, laughs, and believability. All of the supposed romance here is terribly artificial and the laughs are utterly absent. So, you know, that kind of works against the concept of ‘romantic comedy.’
Extra Features? Interviews, behind the scenes, trailer
In the interest of full disclosure, I received review copies of the following DVDs for this week’s column:
Also out this week, but I haven’t seen the movie/TV show and review material was unavailable:
Alpha and Omega
Funny Or Die Presents: The Complete First Season
Hot In Cleveland: Season One
My One And Only
Skins: Volume Four
Read More: This Week in DVD
What are you buying on DVD this week?