CATEGORIES DVDs
There's dysfunction at the forefront of this week's DVD releases, beginning with Steven Soderbergh's 'The Informant,' starring Matt Damon as an FBI informant who spills the beans about price-fixing in agri-business but whose grip on reality calls his veracity into question. Next up is 'Everybody's Fine,' a family reunion comedy-drama that has Robert De Niro hitting the road to reunite with his far-flung -- and secretive -- children. Thankfully, 'The September Issue,' a documentary on Vogue magazine, brings order out of chaos. 'The Informant!'
What It's About: Matt Damon stars as Mark Whiteacre, a real-life over-eager agri-business corporate executive who decides to turn whistle-blower on industry price-fixing in the 1990s. He becomes an FBI informant so he can be hailed as a hero and get a promotion. What was he thinking? As the investigation progresses and he starts to think of himself as a "spy," Whiteacre begins building lie upon lie until it all comes down on him like a house of cards.

It's Kinda Like:
'The Talented Mr. Ripley' meets 'Michael Clayton'

What We Say: Damon puts in yet another wonderful role, here adding pounds and paunch to portray a middle-American executive hitting middle-age. This satire hits the mark with its understated and ironic story line about corruption and fallibility in corporate America. Director Steven Soderbergh keeps the complicated scenario moving along at a reasonable clip, hitting the right note between laughter and outrage.


'Everybody's Fine'
What It's About: When his four grown kids decline to join him for the holidays, widower Frank Goode (Robert De Niro) -- who realizes his only connection to his children was through his wife -- sets off on an impromptu cross-country road trip to surprise and hopefully reunite with each of them. What he finds surprises him instead: each of his kids -- who he thought were leading perfect lives -- have family problems they prefer not to share with him. A remake of Giuseppe Tornatore's 1990 "Stanno Tutti Bene."

It's Kinda Like:
'About Schmidt' meets 'Family Reunion'

What We Say: This underrated family comedy-drama got a bum rap from the reviewers, with many criticizing the film for being stereotypical and sentimental. We found it to be uplifting and full of warmth and love for it's characters, a rarity in some of today's films that take an all-too ironic punch at its protagonists. And De Niro is wonderfully understated as a man trying to put his family back together. And what's so bad about being sentimental?


'The September Issue'

What It's About: The September 2007 issue of Vogue magazine weighed nearly five pounds and was the single largest issue of a magazine ever published. This documentary tells the story of legendary Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour and her larger-than-life team of editors as they create the issue and rule the world of fashion.

It's Kinda Like:
'Valentino: The Last Emperor' meets 'Just Shoot Me!'

What the Critics Say: Most reviewers reveled in the film's eye candy and irresistible fun with The Dallas Morning News summing it up by saying, "It's got everything one could hope for in a movie experience: drama, wit, stifled rage, unbridled glee, pouty adolescents wearing far too much makeup, massive egos and a heroine who is absolutely irresistible." The Denver Post called it a "wise, engaging frock-umentary" while the Los Angeles Times said it was "a slight, if often riveting, behind-the-scenes documentary."


Other New February 23 DVD Releases:
'The Box'
'Cirque du Freak: The Vampire's Assistant'
'Motherhood'
'Sorority Row'
'Double Identity'


Check out other new February 23 DVD releases at OnVideo.