In the haze of a New Year and the Christmas rush a recent memory, you can't expect many really great DVDs to hit the stands. So, I'm going to cheat a little and give you one great spoof, and the lesser of a few evils.

Family Guy -- Blue Harvest Special Edition

One of the best spoofs of recent years came by way of television screens rather than movie screens. Last September, Family Guy started off their sixth season with Blue Harvest -- a spoof of Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope, using the fake working title for Return of the Jedi. The power goes out at the Griffin's home, so Peter begins to tell a story, which just so happens to be one uber-famous space flick. You really can't ask for much more in spoof -- Lois as Leia, Quagmire as C-3PO, and the best -- Stewie as Darth Vader. It's also got lots of pop culture references, as the show is apt to do, from the fourth Doctor Who, to a cameo by the famous Griswolds, played by Chevy Chase and Beverly D'Angelo.

As far as DVD features go, you can get the wimpy, plain edition, or the super-jam-packed Special Edition. Believe it or not, this edition has features that include a commentary by Seth MacFarlane, a conversation with George Lucas, a "Making of" featurette, animatics, a Something, Something, Something Dark Side teaser, Star Wars clips, and Blue Harvest's fight scene in 3D, PLUS -- a t-shirt, 3D glasses, trading cards, and a booklet.

Buy the Special Edition DVD


Mr. Woodcock

On the plus side, this flick stars the likes of Billy Bob Thornton, Seann William Scott, and Susan Sarandon. On the negative side, the flick was ravaged by critics, getting a paltry 14% rating. (Which is still much better than another film out this week -- Good Luck Chuck -- which got an abysmal 3%.) As the story goes, John (Scott) was a chubby kid tormented by his junior high gym teacher, Mr. Woodcock (Thornton). Much to his horror, years later he discovers that his single mom is going to marry the ball-wielding bastard. The strangest thing about this comedy -- it was directed by the same guy who helmed Lars and the Real Girl -- Craig Gillespie. How he can have such polar opposite examples of success at the very same time is beyond me.

As for the DVD, it isn't bare-bones. You've got a couple of specials to feast on -- deleted scenes, a "Making of" featurette, and "P.E. Trauma Tales."

Check out Scott Weinberg's Review | Buy the DVD

Other New DVD Releases (January 15)

Persuasion
Good Luck Chuck
The Naked Prey -- Criterion Collection
Saving Sarah Cain
An Affair to Remember (50th Anniversary Edition)
Alex Haley's Queen
Post-War Kurosawa Box - Eclipse from Criterion
Suburban Girl

Check out Peter Martin's Indies on DVD and for even more new releases.