It's Complicated
The latest from Nancy Meyers stars a mother torn between two Oscar presenters. Okay, they only were presenters in real life, but in the realms of fiction, Alec Baldwin is the ex-husband who begins to have an affair with her while married to someone else, and Steve Martin is the new guy. Eric D. Snider wasn't a big fan of the film, stating: "If a film isn't going to show approximations of real people in approximations of real situations, it should at least give us entertaining fantasies. The stuff in It's Complicated isn't just simple -- it's simple-minded." General consensus is that it's a simple comedy with nothing new to offer. Rent it on DVD or Blu-ray only if you're a fan of Meyers romances.

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The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus
It was plagued by the death of Heath Ledger, but director Terry Gilliam soldiered on (finding much more immediate success than his turmoil with Don Quixote). With Johnny Depp, Colin Farrell, and Jude Law adeptly filling in the vacant shoes, Gilliam gorgeously details the story of a man who can control the imagination, and his long-standing flirtation making bets with the devil. In his review, Scott Weinberg wrote: "The film bears all of his distinctly contorted trademarks: it's sweet yet sardonic, warm and bittersweet, wide-eyed, intelligent and playfully cynical. Plus it's so gorgeous to look at it almost damaged my eyes." Buy it on DVD or Blu-ray.

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District 13: Ultimatum

When the wonderfully parkour-laden District 13 (I refuse to use the redundant "B") ended, things seemed on the up and up in Paris. But 3 years later, the Patrick Alessandrin-directed sequel sees the wall still standing, the war still raging, and higher-ups still itching to blow the area to kingdom come. When he caught the film at Fantastic Fest, William Goss wrote: "If only in its action scenes, D13:U is more of the same in all the right ways; the preachy bits and silly humor, though, belong on the floor beside the bad guys." Rent it to check out the second installment, unless you're itching for the first on Blu-ray. In that case, buy the Ultimatum 2-pack. David Belle Doing His Parkour + High Def = Can't go wrong.

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Also out: The Descent: Part 2



Five Minutes of Heaven
Liam Neeson has been busy with a lot more than Kraken-releasing and A-Team action. There are some heavy, indie goodies in the mix as well. In Five Minutes of Heaven, he plays a man who is faced with the younger brother of someone he killed in Belfast in the seventies. Scott wrote in his review: "Bolstered by a smart, insightful screenplay, directed with low-key style and restraint, and supported by two fantastic performances (Liam Neeson as the killer, James Nesbitt as the survivor), Five Minutes of Heaven shuffles some very difficult themes and emotions -- and it succeeds on sheer force of honesty, intelligence, and wisdom."

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Also out: The End of Poverty, Perfect Victims



Dune
Back in 2006, Dune made its way to high definition on the wrong, soon-dead format. Four years later, the David Lynch film has finally found Blu-ray. This is the theatrical cut, not the non-Lynchian Extended Edition, and the extra scenes aren't even included as extras. Highdefdigest notes that the "image is very sharp and has an outstanding sense of detail and depth. In fact, during some scenes, the high-def picture here is as good as anything I've ever seen on Blu-ray."

The very thorough review (we're talking comparisons to foreign Blu-ray releases, HD, and other discs) notes minor image damage at times, good sound, a bunch of carry-over features, and a few annoying and superfluous new ones. That is, unless you want your seats to shake while you watch the flick, or to get a news feed scrolling while you watch the film. (And if you want the latter, might I suggest electroshock therapy?)

Also out: Armageddon, Dark Nature, Disgrace, Dogora, Elizabeth, Elizabeth: Golden Age, The Jackal, Out of Africa, Ride with the Devil (Criterion), Tombstone, Traffic



Orson Welles: The Paris Interview
In 1960, the epic filmmaker was interviewed in his Paris hotel room by Bernard Braden. During the chat, Welles dug into his career (including reflections on Citizen Kane), his work in lesser production to raise money, and a number of other aspects of life from politics to home life. The clip below sees Welles discussing Citizen Kane, working with Greg Tolland, and other experiences in the movie business.



Criterion releases: Ride with the Devil, The Fugitive Kind