[New Line] $28.99
Wedding Crashers, starring party boys Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn as otherwise presentable young professionals who crash weddings and receptions in search of turned-on bridesmaids and guests, was one of the few summer hits. It made more than $209 million stateside alone, making it the year's fourth most popular film (after Star Wars: Episode III, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire and War of the Worlds).
And few in the movie business doubt that its raunchiness - mostly verbal - played a major role in its success.
50th Anniversary Edition Volumes 1 & 2
Gunsmoke, the groundbreaking Western series, finally gets an official DVD release, in remastered form, as Gunsmoke - 50th Anniversary Edition Volumes 1 & 2, even though the anniversary was last September. "Vol. 1," containing 17 half-hour and hour episodes, and "Vol. 2," with 12 hour-long episodes, are also available for $36.99 each.
"Vol. 1" begins with the first-episode endorsement of no less than a fellow who introduces himself with "My name's Wayne - some of you may have seen me before - I hope some." The Duke then goes on to explain that the show we're about to see is not like most TV shoot-'em-ups that have been aired in the still young days of network TV. It's more in line with the films on his storied resume, he promises, and he is telling the truth.
The first show, "Matt Gets It" introduces us to Marshal Matt Dillon, played by James Arness, who also contributes a fine commentary, and primary players Dennis Weaver (sidekick Chester Goode), saucy, smart barkeep Miss Kitty (Amanda Blake) and ever-in-demand sawbones Doc Adams (Milburn Stone).
Fans will be thrilled by the presentation, but perhaps not by the format. Instead of attacking the series, which had a record-breaking 633-episode run, in season-by-season boxes, Paramount has chosen a "best-of" format, with "Vol. 1" covering 1955-64, and "Vol. 2" cherry-picking seasons 10 through 19, covering 1964-1974, when the show finally concluded - to be followed by a number of made-for-TV movie reunions.
Also, Have Gun Will Travel - The Complete Third Season (Paramount, $50.99) collects 39 episodes, broadcast in 1959-60, on seven discs. The series starred Richard Boone as the gunfighter whose classy business card featured an engraving of a chess piece with the words "Wire Paladin - San Francisco." A booklet contains program notes for each show.