Dvd Check


September 21, 2006|By LOS ANGELES TIMES

The Wild

[Disney] $30

Disney's computer-animated family film The Wild can perhaps best be described as Finding Nemo with fur and claws with a touch of Madagascar thrown in for good measure. Samson (voice of Kiefer Sutherland) the lion, a popular attraction at the New York Zoo, and his animal buddies must find a way to get to Africa, where his young cub son Ryan has been shipped accidentally. Extras are pretty skimpy -- a music video, a glimpse of Eddie Izzard ad-libbing during his recording sessions as his character Nigel the koala, and a few deleted scenes.

Lucky Number Slevin

[Weinstein Co.] $30

After attempting to channel Jimmy Stewart in Pearl Harbor, lanky actor Josh Hartnett has been going the film noir route in Sin City, the new Black Dahlia and in the stylish but convoluted thriller Lucky Number Slevin.

He plays a young man who, due to a case of mistaken identity, finds himself in the middle of a crime war between rival bosses played by Ben Kingsley and Morgan Freeman. Bruce Willis is on hand as a famous assassin, and Lucy Liu is Hartnett's love interest. Extras include a production featurette, technical commentary from director Paul McGuigan and a track from Hartnett, Liu and writer Jason Smilovic.

The Office: Season 2

[Universal] $50

NBC's offbeat mockumentary series The Office, based on the acclaimed BBC series, finally came into its own in its second season, winning this year's Emmy Award for outstanding comedy series.

Steve Carell stars as Michael Scott, a clueless, insensitive boss at a paper supply company in Scranton, Pa. The supporting cast of crazies includes Rainn Wilson, John Krasinksi, Jenna Fischer and B.J. Novak.

Extras on the four-disc set feature a witty gag reel, a clever interview of Carell by Carell, and selected audio commentary featuring members of the cast and creative team, including executive producer-writer-director Greg Daniels.

The Great New Wonderful

[First Independent] $27

A talented ensemble, including Maggie Gyllenhaal, Edie Falco, Thomas McCarthy, Tony Shalhoub and Olympia Dukakis, headlines The Great New Wonderful, a comedy-drama that interweaves five stories set in New York City one year after Sept. 11.

The extras feature an option whereby one can view each story separately, as well as entertaining commentary from director Danny Leiner and writer Sam Catlin.


[Fox] $20

A 25th anniversary edition is released of the drama about the cadets of a military academy who decide to take matters in their own hands when their school is threatened with demolition to make way for a condo development.

George C. Scott and Timothy Hutton star, but the scene-stealers are a very young Sean Penn and Tom Cruise.

Extras include a better-than-average retrospective documentary, a fascinating featurette on the history of taps and an informative commentary track from director Howard Becker, who discusses how Cruise went from being a background player to landing a major role.

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