In life there is no black and white, only...

Gray Areas Magazine


GRAY AREAS MAGAZINE DVD REVIEWS APRIL 1999


REVIEWS BY NETTA GILBOA & CHRISTOPHER SCHANOT

 

DVD titles are reviewed using either a Panasonic A110 or a Creative Labs Encore PC-DVD (using the latest drivers) which is installed in a Pentium II 300 MHz with 64mb RAM running Windows98. All titles are recent releases, even though some are of the films are years old. Because DVD is a new medium, older titles are being released as new product. This will be true for some time to come.

ACTION SPORTS SEX 2 (Raw Interactive/Vivid Interactive) This gonzo adult film was shot on location in San Francisco and stars Bobby Vitale, Zoe May, Vanity and Suzi Suzuki. Combining sex with motor sport, this will delight those who love motorcycles and fantasize combining sex with riding. The DVD also includes a dark room of still photography, no regional coding, previews of other films, interactive rooms, interactive menus and chapter search. This is unique, full of sex scenes and will not disappoint those interested in sex and bikes.

AMERICAN HISTORY X (New Line Home Video, 119 minutes) One of those rare films that leaves you thinking long after it's over, this drama explores racism within one family and its ugly consequences. Starring Edward Norton and Edward Furlong, with supporting cast members Fairuza Balk, Eliott Gould, Stacy Keach and Beverly D'Angelo, this combines a great script with great actors and great wardrobe and set design. The DVD includes a widescreen print of the film (1.85:1), 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround sound, three lengthy deleted scenes, theatrical trailer, chapter search, interactive menus and cast and crew biographies and filmographies. Highly recommended for those interested in skinheads, gangs and racism, as well as those who enjoy any of these actors or great drama in general.

APT PUPIL (Columbia TriStar Home Video, 112 minutes) Ian McKellen and Brad Renfro star in this dark and disturbing thriller based on a Stephen King story. It's about a teenager who recognizes a man in his town as a former Nazi official. He blackmails the man into telling him about the torture he was involved in at concentration camps, but, in return, the man psychologically manipulates the teenager, who doesn't see it coming. The DVD contains choice of widescreen (2.35:1) and standard formats of the film, Dolby Digital Surround sound, featurette, theatrical trailer, and chapter search. While clearly not for everyone, this film will appeal to King's many fans, and those interested in the Holocaust. Well done.

AROUSAL (Atomic Video) One of the only gay male adult DVDs released so far, this film won an award for Best Gay Alternative Release from Gay Adult News Awards. Shot on location in the Hawaiian Islands and in the Great Mohave Desert, this stars Brad Michaels, Trenton Comeaux, Adriano Marquez, Will Clark and York Powers. Digitally remastered for DVD, this includes 5.1 Digital Surround sound, a slide show, production notes, no regional coding, parental lock and chapter search. Well done.

BEAUTIFUL GIRLS (Miramax Home Entertainment, 113 minutes) This terrific comedy about friends who reunite for their high school reunion stars Timothy Hutton, Matt Dillon, Uma Thurman, Rosie O'Donnell and Mira Sorvino. Clearly well cast, this is a delight to watch and includes a great soundtrack as well. The DVD includes a digitally mastered widescreen print of the film (1.85:1), Dolby Surround sound and chapter search. Recommended to those who like ensemble films, any of these actors and/or the comedy genre in general.

BELLY (Artisan Entertainment, Inc., 95 minutes) Hype Williams directed this urban drama which stars Nas, DMX, Taral Hicks, Tionne "T-Boz" Watkins, and Method Man. The plot involves crime in the hood and life on the streets. The cinematography is excellent and the soundtrack is superb. The DVD includes a digitally mastered widescreen print of the film (1.85:1), 5.1 Dolby Digital sound, director's commentary, interactive menus, production notes, theatrical trailer, cast and crew information and chapter search. Well done.

BLACK HOLE, THE (Anchor Bay Entertainment, Inc., 98 minutes) Anthony Perkins, Maximilian Schell, Robert Forster and Ernest Borgnine star in this sci-fi film originally made by Disney. It's about a group of people who, while out exploring space, discover a lost spaceship that contains a scientist from Earth, his robot slaves and his terrible secret. This superb film and transfer got marred by a sound problem with the 5.1 audio track, which has been corrected. The new pressing is just fine and includes choice of a widescreen (2.35:1) or standard print of the film, 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround sound audio, still gallery, theatrical trailer and chapter search. This is highly recommended for sci-fi fans, fans of computer animation, and those who love special effects. Well done.

BOYS ON THE SIDE (Warner Home Video, 117 minutes) Whoopi Goldberg, Mary-Louise Parker and Drew Barrymore star in this women's film about three women who share a car, and friendship, while driving west. The DVD contains Dolby Digital Surround sound, interactive menus, French subtitles, and chapter search. Full of happy and sad moments, this is a female bonding film that will be enjoyed by anyone who likes these actresses, or road films, or films that celebrate friendship. Well done.

BUG'S LIFE, A (Walt Disney Home Video, 95 minutes) Disney and Pixar teamed up to make this awesome animated film about a colony of ants who are terrorized by a smaller group of grasshoppers which demands that the colony gather food for the grasshoppers. One of the ants leaves the colony in search of help, and finds a circus act comprised of various insects. He recruits them to be warriors for his colony, although initially they think they are being hired merely to perform and entertain. This humorous film will appeal to all ages and disappoint no one. The DVD includes a direct digital transfer of the film for maximum video quality, choice of widescreen (2.35:1) or standard presentation, 5.1 Dolby Digital audio, two sets of end credit outtakes, an Academy award-winning short from Pixar called Geri's Game and chapter search. Highly recommended.

BULLETS OVER BROADWAY (Miramax Home Entertainment, 99 minutes) Woody Allen wrote and directed this wacky comedy which stars John Cusack, Jennifer Tilly, Harvey Fierstein, Mary-Louise Parker, Rob Reiner, Tracey Ullman and Chazz Palminteri. It's about a writer who will do anything to get his play produced, even though it means teaming up with the mob and changing the script to suit the actresses. The DVD includes a digitally mastered widescreen print of the film (1.85:1), digital sound and chapter search. This will appeal to anyone interested in the theatre, or who likes any of the actors in it, as well as those who enjoy comedy in general and/or collect Woody Allen films.

CLOUD 9 (Vivid Interactive, 240 minutes) Raquel Darrian returns to adult films in her first feature since 1994. Also starring are Felecia, Barbara Doll, Steven St. Croix and Derrick Lane. The plot involves Raquel playing a spirit who cannot move on because the man she had been involved with on Earth is still stuck on her. She helps him to find a new lover in order to free both of them. The DVD includes digital stereo sound, multiple angle technology which lets you choose the angle to view it from, interactive phone sex, no regional coding, previews of other Vivid titles, footage from the AVN awards show and much more. Inside the box is a paper poster of the Vivid girls and a paper catalog of other titles available. This is highly recommended both for Raquel's many fans and for those couples who seek films with a good plot.

DIRTY DANCERS XI (Digital Playground) The eleventh title in this adult series directed by Luc Wylder stars Candy Roxx, Dee, Cassidy, Phyllisha, Amber and Ian Daniels. Included are girls who not only have sex, but also strip and dance for you. The DVD includes a digitally remastered print of the film, 5.1 Digital Surround sound, a slide show, behind-the-scenes photos, no regional coding, parental lock, and chapter search. Those with DVD players inside their computers can also play a Strip Blackjack game. This is an interesting variation to the standard adult fare and should delight those interested in striptease.

ETERNAL, THE (Trimark Home Video, 95 minutes) Alison Elliott, Jared Harris and Christopher Walken star in this horror film about a woman who is addicted to alcohol who travels to Ireland with her husband and son. They go to her ancestral home and find her grandmother in ill health and her uncle mentally unstable. They also encounter an evil spirit in the form of a druid witch. Unfortunately, the heroine finds her soul deeply connected to the witch. The DVD contains a digitally mastered anamorphic widescreen print of the film, 5.1 Dolby Digital audio, interactive menus, foreign subtitles, trailer, chapter search and cast and crew information. The film includes lots of good special effects involving fire and blood, so it's a good bet horror fans will be satisfied.

EVIL DEAD, THE: SPECIAL COLLECTOR'S EDITION (Elite Entertainment, 85 minutes) A favorite film of mine, this is already out on DVD but if you have a copy from another studio, you will need to pick up this version as well. Offering a newly digitally remastered transfer supervised by the director in the original aspect ratio of 1.33:1, this cult horror film stars Bruce Campbell and is about a group of friends who go to a cabin in the woods where they stumble upon a book and a taped translation of it. When they play the tape, evil is released and one by one the teens become zombies. Campbell's character has to survive the night and destroy the evil dead. The DVD contains both 5.1 and 2.0 Dolby Digital soundtracks, two audio commentaries (one by the director and producer and a second by Bruce Campbell), a still photo gallery with 150 photos, 20 minutes of alternate takes and behind-the-scenes footage, theatrical trailer, interactive menus, chapter search and a paper booklet with liner notes by Bruce Campbell. As with all of Elite's releases, this is a high quality release done by people who love the movies they release as much as the fans do. Highly recommended for horror fans, aspiring actors and those who are interested in how films are made.

FACES (Pioneer Entertainment (USA) L.P., 129 minutes) One of the best films ever made about infidelity, this classic black and white film was directed by John Cassavetes and stars Gena Rowlands and Seymour Cassel. It's about a husband and wife who both sleep with someone else after their marriage has collapsed. He seeks a prostitute and she chooses an aging hippie, but neither finds the encounter as they expected. The DVD contains a four-page booklet about the film, and chapter search. Well done.

FATHER OF THE BRIDE (Touchstone Home Video, 105 minutes) Steve Martin, Diane Keaton and Martin Short star in this hilarious comedy about a father who has a hard time letting go when his daughter decides to get married. The DVD includes a digitally mastered widescreen print of the film (1.85:1), Dolby Digital Surround sound, French language track, theatrical trailer and chapter search. One of Steve Martin's best films, this has a great script with many poignant moments and great casting as well. Highly recommended to those who love comedies.

FEMME (Vivid Interactive) Part of the Raw line of adult films, this all-girl title stars Katie Gold, Montana Gunn, Shelbee Myme and Yvonne. Focusing more on action than plot development, and raunchy vs. politically correct sex, the Raw line offers what many adult fans crave most. The DVD also includes no regional coding, a dark room of still photos, interactive rooms, previews of other titles, and chapter search. Inside the box is a paper catalog of other Vivid titles. Well done.

FIRST TIME EVER! (NuTech Digital, Inc.) This superb adult film contains all new footage of 14 female stars who get paired up with another female star for sex scenes they and their fans have been clamoring for. Included are Nina Hartley and Kylie Ireland, Summer Knight and Tiffany Mynx, Felicia and Shelby Stevens, Crystal Wilder and Bionca, Debi Diamond and Angela Summers, Keisha and Melanie Moore, and Rachel Love and Caressa Savage. The DVD also contains an interview with Angela Summers, chapter search and a behind-the-scenes visit with Jim Holliday, who also hosted and directed this title. If you like adult films, and especially female scenes, this is one of the best such titles we have seen.

FOREVER NIGHT (VCA Pictures, 87 minutes) Michael Ninn directed this adult film which stars Jamie Gillis, Stacy Valentine, Jill Kelly, Raylene and Brooke Lane. Jumping back and forth through time, the plot concerns an angry man who has lost his wife and child. Paying tribute to gothic style and fashion, this film includes footage shot in Victorian mansions and fog-shrouded graveyards. The DVD includes a digitally remastered copy of the film with Dolby Stereo audio track, interactive menus, a photo gallery, cast and crew information, previews of other VCA titles, a link to VCA's web site and chapter search. Inside the box is a paper catalog of other VCA DVD titles. This is a high quality film with a large budget, definite plot and story line, and features Jamie Gillis in a role reminiscent of many of his 70s adult films made at a time when every release had a plot, a budget and was being shot on film for adult theatres. Highly recommended to those open to adult films with plots.

FOUR ROOMS (Miramax Home Entertainment, 98 minutes) Our favorite Quentin Tarantino film to date, this is from the makers of Pulp Fiction and stars Tim Roth, Antonio Banderas, Jennifer Beals, Madonna, Lili Taylor, Marisa Tomei and Paul Calderon. The plot involves four vignettes peeking into four different hotel rooms which are loosely connected by the bellhop who is sent to service each of them on his first night on the job. The DVD includes a digitally mastered widescreen print of the film (1.85:1), Dolby Surround sound, and chapter search. This very amusing and funny film will entertain you and then leave you wondering what sorts of other scenarios real bellhops get sent to deal with. Highly recommended to anyone who loves comedy, any of these actors, other Tarantino films, and to those who have worked in hotels.

HEATHERS (Anchor Bay Entertainment, Inc., 119 minutes) Shannen Doherty, Winona Ryder, Christian Slater and Kim Walker star in this dark comedy which has become a cult film. It's about a high school clique called Heathers who will resort to anything in order to maintain their popularity. The DVD contains a widescreen presentation of the film (1.85:1), a featurette with cast interviews, Dolby Digital Stereo sound, theatrical trailer and chapter search. This is a must-see film if you enjoy seeing women play bitches, or enjoy films about high school and high school cliques. Well done.

INSEMINOID (Elite Entertainment, Inc., 93 minutes) Also known as Horror Planet, this sci-fi horror film is about a space crew who lands on a planet that seems dead. They open an underground chamber and quickly discover otherwise. The DVD contains a digitally mastered widescreen print of the film (2.35:1), theatrical trailer, interactive menu and chapter search. Although this is a common theme in both horror and sci-fi films, this is far better than most films in the genre. Well done.

INTERVIEW WITH A MILKMAN (Vivid Interactive, 240 minutes) Madelyn Knight, Laura Palmer, Kim Kummings, Sindee Coxx, Steve Drake, Jon Dough and Bobby Vitale star in this adult film about a milkman who can't help but have sex with the beautiful women to whom he delivers milk. The DVD includes a wealth of extras including multiple angle technology, interactive phone sex, outtakes from Vivid films, information about the Vivid contract girls, previews of Vivid films, no regional coding, interactive menus, footage from the AVN awards show, chapter search, and more. Inside the box is a paper poster of the Vivid girls and a paper catalog of other Vivid titles.

I STILL KNOW WHAT YOU DID LAST SUMMER (Columbia TriStar Home Video) Jennifer Love Hewitt, Brandy, Freddie Prinze, Jr. and Mekhi Phifer star in this sequel to the popular horror film. The plot concerns a group of teenagers who got in a car accident while intoxicated. They cover it up, but it was seen by a deranged fisherman who wants them dead. In this sequel Hewett's character tries to rebuild her life, but he comes after her again. The DVD includes choice of widescreen (2.35:1) or standard formats, 5.1 Dolby Digital sound, a featurette, theatrical trailers, a music video by Jennifer Love Hewitt, interactive menus and chapter search. While not as good as the original film, this will still delight horror fans as well as those who enjoy Hewitt on her TV series, Party Of Five.

JAZZ SINGER, THE (Artisan Entertainment Inc./Republic Entertainment, Inc., 111 minutes) Neil Diamond stars in this uplifting film about a Jewish cantor who leaves the synagogue choir in order to follow his dream and try to become a rock star. This remake of the 1925 stage version stars Lucie Arnaz as his manager and Laurence Olivier as his father. Ten new songs were written and recorded by Neil Diamond for this film which should delight Diamond's many fans and music lovers of all ages. The DVD includes a digitally mastered widescreen print of the film (1.85:1), Dolby Digital Surround sound, chapter search and the ability to jump straight to a particular song. Inside the box is a paper catalog of other Artisan titles as well as a superb coupon offering one DVD free with purchase of four Artisan titles. Well done.

LEGENDS OF PORN II (NuTech Digital, Inc.) Equally as good as Legends of Porn I, and also hosted and narrated by Jim Holliday this offers a look at 50 top adult film stars. Each of the sex scenes has multi-angle technology so you can choose the view to watch it from, and the stars featured include everyone from Hyapatia Lee, Ginger Allen, Amber Lynn, Shauna Grant, and Nina Hartley to Marilyn Chambers, John Leslie, Jamie Gillis, Harry Reems, Seka and Desiree Cousteau. Highly recommended to anyone interested in adult film history, or just seeing some great sex scenes one after another.

LIVING ON THE EDGE (NuTech Digital, Inc., 105 minutes) Gregory Dark directed this adult film which stars Jill Kelly, Ron Jeremy, Michael J.Cox, Vanessa and Dru Berrymore. The plot involves seven wild women who live on the edge and, as usual, the film features Dark's abundant use of costumes, mood, great photography and an eye for making porn into art. The disc includes interactive menus, chapter search and multi-angel sex scenes. Highly recommended for those interested in plots, and adult cult films.

MILLENIUM (Artisan Entertainment, Inc., 108 minutes) Kris Kristofferson, Cheryl Ladd and Daniel J. Travanti star in this sci-fi thriller about an investigator who finds a strange alien device amidst the rubble left after two jumbo jets collided. He meets an alien woman who has been sent to look for the device and there is lots of suspense about the present and the future. The DVD offers a digitally mastered anamorphic widescreen presentation of the film, 2.0 Dolby Surround sound, interactive menus, an alternate ending to the film, theatrical trailer, production notes, cast and crew information and chapter search. It's a pleasure to see these actors in any film and this sleeper will delight sci-fi lovers of all ages.

ONLY THE A HOLE (Digital Playground, Inc., 120 minutes) This adult film contains five anal scenes done by Blair, Liza Harper, Stormi, Elle Devine and Candy Hill. Digitally remastered for DVD, this also contains 5.1 Digital Surround sound, a slide show, behind-the-scenes photos, no regional coding, parental lock, and chapter search. Those with DVD players inside their computers also get a bonus Strip Blackjack game. This is of high quality and well done for those viewers interested in such action, and it gets right to the point without time wasted on story line.

PAULIE (DreamWorks Home Entertainment, 92 minutes) Ideal for children and bird lovers of all ages, this family film involves a funny parrot who speaks. Separated from the girl he was raised by, against both of their wishes, he sets off in search of her, and in the process meets many other humans. His gift of gab gets him in lots of trouble along the way, but ultimately he gets where he is going. The DVD contains choice of widescreen (1.85:1) or standard formats, 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround sound, Spanish subtitles, production notes, film highlights, theatrical trailer, chapter search and cast and filmmakers bios.

PHOTOPLAY (VCA Interactive, 150 minutes) Bud Lee directed this adult film which stars Rayveness, Vicca, Nikita, Stephanie Swift and Angelica Sin. The plot involves a photographer who, although he specializes in shooting insects, gets hired to shoot for a porn magazine. His wife is not impressed, and he learns that the models he photographs offer lots of potential for extramarital affairs. The DVD contains a digitally remastered print of the film, Dolby Stereo sound, interactive menus, a photo gallery, cast information, previews of other films and more. This title includes interviews with the actresses as well as five bonus scenes from other Bud Lee titles. This is a well-rounded disc which will appeal to those who like adult films with a plot, interviews with adult stars and/or good sex.

POKEMON: THE SISTERS OF CERULEAN CITY (Pioneer Entertainment (USA) L.P.) Containing three episodes of the anime cartoon TV series, this disc continues the story of a Pokeman trainer who is trying to capture and charm all 150 of the creatures. Included are: "The Water Flowers of Cerulean City," "The Path To The Pokemon League," and "The School of Hard Knocks." The DVD includes Pokerap music, chapter search and a paper comic book inside the box. This will delight small children as well as those who love anime cartoons.

PSYCHO SEXUALS, THE (NuTech Digital, Inc.) Gregory Dark produced and directed this adult film which stars Nikita, Taren Steele, Missy, Chloe, Sid Deuce, Leanna Hart and Vince Voyeur. The sci-fi plot involves a man who seeks a deeper level Of Paradise, which offers nymphomaniacs to serve him. However, due to a short circuit he gets trapped and doesn't quite reach his destination. Gregory Dark's films are among the most unusual in adult films and are highly recommended as being different from the norm. The DVD offers multi-angle camera technology, and chapter search. Well done.

PUNISHER, THE (Artisan Entertainment, Inc., 92 minutes) Louis Gossett, Jr. and Dolph Lundgren star in this action-adventure thriller based on the Marvel comics superhero who fights against evil. Lundgren plays a cop who loses his entire family to a car bomb set off by the Mafia. After surviving the blast, he becomes The Punisher and leads a raid into the world of crime to punish the guilty. The DVD includes a digitally mastered anamorphic widescreen presentation of the film, Dolby Digital Surround sound, interactive menus, production notes, theatrical trailer, chapter search and cast and crew information. Highly recommended to those who like action, superheroes and/or these actors.

PUSSYMAN 2: THE PRIZE (Digital Playground) The second title in this adult film series is as captivating as the first, and stars Tom Byron, as well as Tyffany Minx, Summer Knights, Brandy Alexandre, Madison, Randy West, Steve Drake and Marc Wallice. Full of well photographed sex scenes, and shot in a million dollar mansion, this is an excellent combination of sex, talented performances and superb photography. For those who missed the first film, there are even highlights shown at the beginning. The DVD contains a digitally remastered print of the film, 5.1 Digital Surround sound, slide show, behind-the-scenes photos, no regional coding, parental lock, chapter search, and for those with DVD players inside their computers there is a Strip Blackjack game as well. Highly recommended for those who enjoy adult films with that rare combination of story line and sex.

RETURN TO PARADISE (Polygram Video, 112 minutes) Vince Vaughn, Anne Heche and Joaquin Phoenix star in this drama about three visitors to Malaysia who share good times and drug use. One of them gets caught with the drugs and is sentenced to hang unless the other two come back and accept their share of the responsibility. Although you think you know how the movie will end, and what will happen next, the film's many plot twists will consistently surprise you. Extremely well-written, this is one of those wonderful films that will allow you to debate others you see it with about whether or not they would go back under similar circumstances. The DVD contains choice of widescreen (2.35:1) or standard formats, 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround sound, Spanish subtitles, interactive menus, theatrical trailer, chapter search and cast and crew bios and filmographies. This is a must-see film especially if you have ever used drugs for pleasure or are curious about those who have.

ROCKY ROADS' WET DREAMS (Digital Playground, Inc.) Rocky Roads stars in this adult film along with Asia Carrera, Raylene, Leanna Heart, Taylor St. Claire, Vince Voyeur, Billy Glide and John West. The plot involves a series of vignettes which are tied together as erotic dreams Rocky Roads has. The DVD contains a digitally remastered print of the film, 5.1 Digital Surround sound, behind-the-scenes photos, multi-angle sex scenes, no regional coding, parental lock and chapter search. For those with DVD players inside their computers a Strip Blackjack game is also included. This title has very popular actresses in it, and is well photographed. It should appeal to anyone interested in classy adult films.

SAFARI JANE (NuTech Digital, Inc.) Sarah Jane Hamilton, Vince Voyeur, Rick Masters and Autumn Day star in this adult film about a girl who travels to Africa to search for an ancient diamond deposit. She finds it, but encounters cannibals and a wild gorilla too. After finding her way back to civilization, however, the girl and her travelling companions find they miss the jungle where they felt truly free. The DVD contains no extras, but is quite self-explanatory and is ideal for those interested in adult films with plots.

SEX COMMANDOS (VCA Interactive, 110 minutes) Stacy Valentine, Christi Lake and Ian Daniels star in this adult film directed by Michael Danze. The plot involves a group of female commandos who carry love gas and attempt to stop a government crew from distributing hate gas. The script is quite humorous and this will surely appeal to those who like adult films with a plot, as well as to Stacy's many fans. The DVD includes a digitally remastered print of the film, Dolby Stereo sound, interactive menus, photo gallery, cast information and previews of other VCA titles. Inside the box is a paper poster of the VCA girls with a brochure displaying other DVD titles available printed on the other side of the poster. Well done.

SHOOT OUT (GoodTimes Home Video, 94 minutes) Gregory Peck stars in this Western film about an aging gunfighter who is also an ex-con. He gets involved with a six-year-old orphan girl and takes her along as he goes on a shooting spree to get revenge. The DVD includes Dolby Digital sound, foreign subtitles, and chapter search. This will appeal to those who like Westerns, Gregory Peck and/or revenge films.

SIN-A-MATIC 2 (Raw Interactive) Jon Dough directs this adult film sequel which was filmed in Hawaii and stars Alexandra Silk, TT Boy, Holly, Suzy and Tereza. The film offers "noir and nasty and real and raw" sex, including five anal scenes and a double penetration. The DVD includes interactive rooms, a dark room of erotic stills, digital stereo sound, previews of other titles, no regional coding, parental lock, interactive menus, chapter search and more. If you are more interested in action than in plot, this title is for you.

STEPMOM (Columbia TriStar Home Video, 125 minutes) Julia Roberts, Susan Sarandon and Ed Harris star in this superb look at the gray areas of being a stepmother. A very well-written plot approaches the issue from the point of view of not only the stepmom, but also the husband, the ex-wife, and the children. A definite tear-jerker, this is also quite uplifting and really makes you understand what being a stepmother is all about even if you have no children of your own. The DVD includes choice of widescreen and standard formats, 5.0 Dolby Digital Surround sound, featurette, production notes, theatrical trailers, chapter search and biographies and filmographies of cast and crew. Highly recommended to anyone who likes the actors, has a stepmother, craves good plots, and/or loves dramas.

STARDUST 2 (Vivid Interactive, 240 minutes) Jenteal stars in this adult film sequel along with Jill Kelly, Ariana, Jeanna Fine, Steven St. Croix, Alex Sanders and Mike Horner. Directed by Michael Zen, the plot involves Jenteal still dancing at the Knockers Club and still dreaming of being in Hollywood. The DVD contains multiple angle technology, information on the Vivid girls, interactive phone sex, previews of other Vivid films, outtakes from Vivid films, interactive menus, no regional coding, footage of the AVN awards show, and more. Inside the box is a paper poster of the Vivid girls. Very few adult films get sequels made, and even then they rarely feature the same star as in the original. This is easy enough to follow even if you didn't see the original, and it will surely delight Jenteal's growing fanbase. Well done.

STORM OF THE CENTURY (Trimark Home Video, 256 minutes) Stephen King wrote this for television, and it's no wonder he is so proud of it since it's by far one of his best film translations. The plot involves an evil man who comes to a small town during a brutal storm and proceeds to wreck havoc there as he looks for a replacement before he dies. The town opposes him, and he ultimately selects the child of the person who fought his being there the most. The DVD contains the complete miniseries digitally mastered, 2.0 Dolby Surround sound, commentary track by Stephen King, interactive menus, cast information, Spanish subtitles, and chapter search. This is an obvious must for King fans since you can watch the film uncut and without commercials as well as hear the commentary and gain insight into both King and the film. Highly recommended.

TENDER LOVING CARE (Digital Leisure Inc.) This intriguing DVD-ROM game is a must for those who have DVD players for their computers and enjoy thrillers, and/or psychology. John Hurt narrates the interactive motion picture, which has alternate scenes and multiple endings depending on how you answer different questions posed to you. The plot involves a couple who move a nurse into their home to help them overcome a tragedy. How they interact with each other and what happens to them is directly affected by you, and there are several shocking conclusions possible depending on your answers. Created by the people who made award-winning games The 7th Guest and The 11th Hour, this interactive motion-picture offers Dolby Surround sound, psychological testing, personality analysis, navigable 3D environment and superb photography and video quality. The only complaint I had was that the program must be run full-screen rather than in a window while also doing other things. However, since one should be paying full attention to who is sane and who is crazy here, and monitoring email, phone messages, radio and TV programs that affect the characters, playing the game without other distractions makes sense anyway. This is well done and unique and highly recommended to those who want more from the DVD format than just films.

TIMELESS (VCA Interactive, 112 minutes) Kylie Ireland, Nakita Ka$h, Shayla LaVeaux, Julie Rage, and Tom Byron star in this adult film directed by Jim Holliday, which also includes rare appearances by Ron Jeremy, Veronica Hart, Sharon Kane and Sharon Mitchell. The plot involves Kylie playing a primadonna adult film star who refuses to do an anal scene. Three ghosts arrive to convince Kylie that anal sex is cool, and the film has a happy ending. The DVD includes a digitally remastered print of the film, Dolby Stereo sound, interactive menus cast and crew information, previews of other VCA titles, a photo gallery, link to VCA's web site and chapter search. This is well done, of high quality, and has a story that will hold your interest for the length of the film.

TOP 25 ADULT STARS OF ALL TIME, THE (VCA Interactive, 240 minutes) Jim Holliday and Jill Kelly host this compilation tribute to adult film talent. Offered with both a running commentary or as individual scenes one clicks on by scrolling down by star name, this includes segments on everyone from Ginger Lynn, Marilyn Chambers, Nina Hartley and Christy Canyon to John Holmes, Seka, Amber Lynn and Georgina Spelvin. This is worth having if you want to quickly show someone what a particular star was like, since many of these actors and/or the clips used of them have yet to make it to DVD. It's also a must for adult film historians, fans of the classic era, and those who like compilation tapes full of action rather than plot. The DVD also includes Digital Stereo sound, no regional coding, previews of other VCA titles, and chapter search. The only thing this disc is lacking is a sequel, since there are so many other people not included here worth highlighting in the future. Highly recommended.

TWIN ANGELS: VOLUMES 1 AND 2 (NuTech Digital, Inc., 120 minutes) This superb adult anime film begins with a brief but enlightening explanation of the anime genre and tells why characters have radically different colored hair, no pubic hair, and very wide eyes. Two rated X episodes follow and the plot involves two 19-year-olds who are the last in a line of warrior-guardians and they alone must keep evil forces at bay. Very well done, and quite a contrast from the anime aimed at children, this title will absolutely hold your interest. The DVD also contains interactive menus and chapter search, as well as the brief documentary on the anime genre. Highly recommended for fans of anime, animation in general and/or adult films.

VORTEX (VCA Interactive, 110 minutes) Juli Ashton, Nici Sterling, Johnni Black, Shayla LaVeaux, Nikita and Vicca star in this adult film about a scientist who invents a time machine and gets thrown into it accidentally. She goes back and forth through time, and into the bodies of some famous lovers. The DVD contains a digitally remastered print of the film, Dolby Stereo sound, interactive menus, no regional coding, chapter search and a paper catalog of other VCA titles available. Highly recommended for those who like adult films with a plot.

XTREME JANINE (Vivid Interactive, 240 minutes) Adult film star Janine stars in this all-girl adult film with Tia Bella, Alexandra Silk, Caressa Savage, Liza Harper, Roxanne Hall and Stephanie Swift. The DVD contains multiple angle technology, no regional coding, interactive menus, information on the Vivid girls, outtakes from Vivid films, previews of other Vivid films, interactive phone sex, footage from the AVN awards show and much more. Inside the box is a paper poster of the Vivid girls and a paper catalog of other titles you may also enjoy. Well done and sure to delight Janine's countless fans.

YOU'VE GOT MAIL (Warner Home Video, 120 minutes) Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan star in this comedy about two competing bookstore managers who fall in love via email. The script has some weaknesses, but it will still suck you in, and these two actors shine in anything they appear in regardless of what they are saying. The DVD is loaded with extras including an audio commentary track, an alternate music-only audio track, a behind-the-scenes documentary, an interactive map tour of New York's Upper West Side neighborhood, interactive menus, production notes, French subtitles, 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround sound, twelve theatrical trailers, and chapter search. Those with DVD players inside their computers get even more and can access call sheets, view the email sent between the characters in the film, and have the ability to compare key scenes or jump directly to a song. They can also view cast interviews, a biography gallery, use web links to access web greeting cards, and use a screensaver included here. Well done.

NEXT HOME