Kit Kittredge -- An American Girl
It's the feature film for all the little girls out there who have American Girl dolls, and those who have long since grown up. Abigail Breslin stars as a young, budding reporter who tries to help her family during the Great Depression. She's surrounded by the financial woes of the time, plus prejudice and a situation that asks for a little Nancy Drewing. It's a must-see for the kids, and anyone who can enjoy a youthful dip into the past. Buy It.
Billy the Kid
Jennifer Venditti had come to the small Maine town to do some casting for Bugcrush, but she found something better -- Billy. Spending a week with the 15-year-old, Venditti captured a young man's highs and lows, his triumphs and vulnerabilities. The film is wildly funny, but also a telling account of the danger of assumption, the troublesome labels that get put on us during our youth, and the tribulations of the unique. Check out my review for more information. Buy It.
Presented by Quentin Tarantino, this Larry Bishop film was pretty much ravaged by critics (11% fresh on Rotten Tomatoes). But if you like the rumble of a bike barreling down the road, Hell Ride follows some badass bikers trying to avenge the death of one of their own by a rival gang. There's lots of talent in this puppy -- Madsen, Balfour, Hopper, Carradine -- but unless you really like to just lose yourself in footage of bikers on bikes, Skip It.
Also on DVD: Journey to the Center of the Earth (see: Blu-ray), Tinker Bell (see: Blu-ray), Zombie Strippers.
Body of War
This is the Iraq-centric documentary that joined the forces of documentarian Ellen Spiro and ol' television talk show icon Phil Donahue. The film relays the story of Tomas Young -- a young man from Kansas who felt compelled to root out evil in Afghanistan and joined the Armed Forces, only to get sent to Iraq, was instantly struck by a bullet, and sent back home a paraplegic. Now, he's one of the big opposers of the war in Iraq. If you can stomach more word on the war, it's a story worth hearing -- Rent It.
The Corporal's Diary -- For a soldier-shot taste of Iraq, there's this film -- 37 days of Jonathan Santos' tour in Iraq before being killed.
Woman on the Beach -- A highly regarded film by Korean filmmaker Hong Sang-soo, Beach follows a writer/director writing a screenplay at an oceanside resort. But rather than a fluffy romance in the sun, he meets two women at the resort who "unwittingly exposes undercurrents of hostility and self-destructiveness inside of him."
Tuya's Marriage -- Winner of the Golden Berlin Bear, this film taps into the lengths a woman will go to for her disabled husband -- like divorce and marrying someone else to provide for both of them when she can no longer do so. That's commitment.
Elite Squad -- Drugs, slums, friendship, violence, and Rio de Janiero.
Bikini Bloodbath -- I feel compelled to throw this tale of a murderous chef and high school grads getting hacked and slashed in the ring. Why? I once lived in the same dorm as the cinematographer.
Journey to the Center of the Earth
This is the kind of film that needs to be on Blu-Ray. We've got Brendan Fraser heading the Jules Verne fantasy as an ambitious science professor who heads to Iceland to make his big discovery miles below the surface of the Earth. The disc also offers a bunch of Hi-Def extras to drool over. Buy It.
This is the Blu-Ray pick for the kids. Tinkerbell's early life is shown in this flick, before the death and being clapped back into life and all that. There's lots of pretty visuals and a bunch of extras for the tykes. Buy It.
Other releases include: Elf, Kit Kittredge, Hell Ride, Saving God, Zombie Strippers ... And a few others mentioned below.
Baraka -- 2 Disc Special Edition
A film that's eternally on my must-see list, coming very highly praised, Baraka is a non-verbal documentary that takes Koyaanisqatsi to new grounds. This new release offers a feature-length documentary on the film's production, as well as how it was restored. This is also available on Blu-Ray.
The Polar Express -- 3-D
While I'm not a fan of this motion-capture film, this is definitely a great purchase for fans -- it's not only 3-D but in Blu-Ray. So we're talking super-crisp and the added dimension.
Other releases include: Paradise Lost Collector's Edition, Animal House Special Edition, Patrick Special Edition