‘Birdman’ takes flight; don’t enroll in ‘Art School’
An animated attorney, evil children, Linda Blair and an all-powerful remote control, what do these things have in common? They are all part of the DVD releases for this week.
What’s this? Adam Sandler in a crude comedy with a heartfelt message? This has never been done before! How inventive! How amazing! A one-of-a-kind adventure! Oh, wait a minute, every single Sandler movie is this exact formula. "Click" is no different, with Sandler this time finding the real meaning of family through a remote that allows him to fast-forward his life. Really, if you had Kate Beckinsale (who co-stars) as your wife, would you really want to fast-forward it?
If you can make it past the fat jokes, fart jokes, frightening cast minus Beckinsale (David "The Hoff" Hasselhoff is Sandler’s boss) and low-grade special effects, the story is fine just as it was in "The Waterboy," "The Wedding Singer" and eight other Sandler films: it just isn’t original.
Extras: Six production featurettes, including two on the nature of working in a fat suit, an alternate audio commentary from Sandler and director Frank Coraci and a handful of deleted scenes. Price: $28.95. Rent or buy: Rent.
HARVEYBIRDMAN: ATTORNEY AT LAW — VOLUME 2
The long-awaited second volume of the wacky, insane "Harvey Birdman" has finally been released featuring all 13 episodes from the second season. This is the animated series that puts the classic Hanna-Barbera cartoon characters (or versions of them) into various criminal situations that Harvey must get them out of. It is clever, laugh-out-loud funny and a must-own for any fan of the Cartoon Network’s Adult Swim. Price: $29.98. Rent or buy: Buy.
THE EXORCIST — THE COMPLETE ANTHOLOGY
If you are kicking yourself because you just read this title and realized you bought any of "The Exorcist" films separately, you are not alone. This collection is one in a continuing effort by studios to cash in on franchises by offering them up as a single box set. Of course, this won’t include the next film that Hollywood will produce once the well runs dry again but, hey, at least you can pick this up until then. The set includes the original film, "The Version You Never Saw," "Exorcist II: The Heretic," "Exorcist III," "Exorcist: The Beginning" and "Exorcist: Dominion." Price: $42.98. Rent or buy: Buy (if you haven’t already got them in your library).
ART SCHOOL CONFIDENTIAL
Don’t expect a top-notch thriller when viewing "Art School Confidential." Instead, it is a contrived attempt to depict teachers (including John Malkovich) and students (Max Minghella and Ethan Suplee) who attend art schools as shallow individuals who are more obsessed with their forgotten pasts than teaching students, who themselves are more concerned with each other than the terrible art they are crafting. The irony here is that director Terry Zwigoff’s opinion of the artsy-fartsy types is amusing but his attempt to make the film something its not reveals who indeed is the narcissist here, with an abundance of veiled art references from a man who obviously was shunned by his high school pottery teacher and never got over it. Price: $26.96. Rent or buy: Rent.
WONDER SHOZEN — SEASON TWO
One part cynical, two parts pure evil, "Wonder Shozen" is the weirdest cartoon to come about since "Sealab2021." The show parodies classic educational programs from the late 1970s and early 1980s and is told through the eyes of puppets, classic cartoons and demented children. It’s just plain lunacy and it’s hilarious. Who would have thought something so unique and funny could come from MTV2? Price: $26.99. Rent or buy: Buy.
SAVE THE LAST DANCE 2/THE BUTTERFLY EFFECT 2
Direct-to-DVD has become a haven for terrible sequels. For all the good things we get with DVD, the format also spawns evil sequels such as "Save the Last Dance 2" and "The Butterfly Effect 2." Really, wasn’t one of each of these films enough? We don’t need another, let alone another one of each. Packed with no-name actors just looking for a break, each film follows a similar pattern and story line as the original and pretty much ends the same way as well, unfortunately for us all. Price: $29.98 and $19.98, respectively. Rent or buy: Rent, rent.