New DVD releases include `Away From Her,' `The Graduate' and `Face/Off'

Thursday, September 13, 2007

By DAVID GERMAIN AP Movie Writer

Selected home-video releases:

"Away From Her"

A remarkably assured directing debut from actress Sarah Polley, this beautifully understated drama presents Julie Christie in an Academy Award-worthy performance 40 years after her best-actress Oscar win for "Darling" and casts Canadian star Gordon Pinsent in a heartbreaking role alongside her. Adapted by writer-director Polley from a short story by Alice Munro, the film stars Christie as a woman whose memory is fading from Alzheimer's, with Pinsent her steadfast husband watching helplessly as he descends from lover and companion to stranger in his wife's eyes. The DVD has deleted scenes with commentary from Polley, plus commentary by Christie for the full film. DVD, $27.98. (Lionsgate)


"The Graduate"

One of the great films of the 1960s gets a DVD makeover for its 40th anniversary. Still as fresh, funny and relevant as ever, the film stars Dustin Hoffman as indecisive college grad Benjamin, who's getting plenty of advice from parents and family friends about what he should do with the rest of his life. Seduced into an affair by the wife (Anne Bancroft) of his dad's business associate, Benjamin further complicates matters by falling for his lover's daughter (Katharine Ross). Hoffman and Ross offer one commentary track, while director Mike Nichols joins filmmaker Steven Soderbergh for separate commentary. The movie also is accompanied by a handful of featurettes and a CD sampler with four Simon and Garfunkel songs featured on the soundtrack. DVD set, $24.98. (MGM)


"Face/Off"

John Travolta and Nicolas Cage swap faces in director John Woo's 1997 action hit, which gets a DVD upgrade in a two-disc set. Travolta plays an FBI man who takes undercover work to an extreme as he tries to bring down ruthless terrorist Cage. Travolta's good guy submits to high-tech surgery to replace his face with that of his prey, while bad guy Cage then makes off with his pursuer's face. The set comes with seven deleted scenes, including an alternate ending, a making-of featurette and a profile of Woo. The director and screenwriters also provide commentary. DVD set, $19.99. (Paramount)


"The Lost World"

Decades before Steven Spielberg revived dinosaurs with "Jurassic Park" and its sequel, "The Lost World: Jurassic Park," the giant reptiles roamed the big-screen in two adaptations of Arthur Conan Doyle's adventure novel "The Lost World." This two-disc set includes both Irwin Allen's 1960 tale, starring Claude Rains, Michael Rennie and Jill St. John as members of an expedition that discovers dinosaurs living in the Amazon, and the 1925 silent adaptation featuring Wallace Beery. The set includes a featurette on the 1960 version, a vintage studio newsreel and a "Lost World" comic book. DVD set, $19.98. (20th Century Fox)


TV on DVD:

"Two and a Half Men: The Complete First Season" -- The comedy hit stars Charlie Sheen as a swinging bachelor whose free and easy life turns sour after his divorced brother (Jon Cryer) moves in with his young son. The first 24 episodes come in a four-disc set, which also has a making-of segment and outtakes. DVD set, $44.98. (Warner Bros.)

"Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee" -- The acclaimed TV movie adapted from Dee Brown's best-seller features Adam Beach, Aidan Quinn and Anna Paquin in a saga chronicling harsh U.S. policies against American Indians that followed the Sioux victory over Gen. George Custer at Little Big Horn. The two-disc set has three featurettes and commentary by Beach, Quinn and director Yves Simoneau. DVD set, $26.98. (HBO)

"Grey's Anatomy: Season Three" -- The hit medical drama returns with a cast led by Ellen Pompeo, Patrick Dempsey, Sandra Oh and Katherine Heigl. The third season's 25 episodes -- four of them presented in extended versions -- come in a seven-disc set, which also has commentary and a segment with Dempsey relaxing at the race track. DVD set, $59.99. (Disney)

"Supernatural: The Complete Second Season" -- Two brothers continue their fight against creatures of the night as they pursue the supernatural ghoul responsible for their mother's death. A six-disc set has year two's 22 episodes, with commentary on three and deleted scenes. DVD set, $59.98. (Warner Bros.)

"Bones: Season Two" -- Forensic anthropologist Emily Deschanel and FBI guy David Boreanaz hit the field again to sort through human remains and crack bizarre cases. The second season's 21 episodes are packed in a six-disc set, along with deleted scenes and commentary. DVD set, $59.98. (20th Century Fox)

"Prime Suspect 7: The Final Act" -- Helen Mirren reprises her long-running role as British detective Jane Tennison, taking on one last case before retirement as she tries to find a missing 14-year-old girl. The two-disc set comes with a behind-the-scenes segment. DVD set, $29.99. (Acorn)

"Charmed: The Final Season" -- Sisters Alyssa Milano, Holly Marie Combs and Rose McGowan wrap up their witchy ways with a six-disc set that includes the last 22 episodes of the supernatural series. The set also has commentary and a handful of featurettes. DVD set, $54.99. (Paramount)

"I Dream of Jeannie: The Complete Fourth Season" -- Barbara Eden and Larry Hagman return for more hijinks in the 1960s sit-com about an astronaut and a genie he finds in a bottle. Year four's 26 episodes come in a four-disc set. DVD set, $39.95. (Sony)

"McHale's Navy: Season Two" -- Ernest Borgnine and Tim Conway sail again in the 1960s sitcom following the wacky adventures of a Navy crew during World War II. The second season's 36 episodes are included in a five-disc set, with a retrospective segment featuring Borgnine and Conway. DVD set, $44.99. (Shout)

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