Who would have thought that after the documentary “March of the Penguins,” these little birds would be fashionable enough to get their own full length-animated film? This one, though, isn’t about a life-and-death struggle in the horrible cold, but about how much they just love dancing and singing.
“Happy Feet” is far-fetched when it comes to its story line, but it is an animated joint, and a decent one, with voice talent including Elijah Wood, Robin Williams and Brittany Murphy.
Mumble (Wood) is a misfit who loves to dance, but the other penguins in his clan only sing. So he finds a group of other like-minded penguins to begin a series of misadventures.
The DVD is loaded with special features such as two new animated short films with Mumble, private dancing lessons, two music videos and classic cartoons from the Warner Home Video vault. Price: $28.98. Rent or buy: Buy.
AFTER DARK HORRORFEST — EIGHT FILMS TO DIE FOR
In November, eight films were shown in select theaters across the United States under a promotion calledthe “After Dark Horrorfest.” Seven are being released onto DVD.
Really good are “The Gravedancers,” “Penny Dreadful” and “Dark Ride.” “Recincarnation” and “The Hamiltons” are decent. Avoid “Wicked Little Things.”
The eighth, “The Abandoned,” got an extended theatrical release, so look for it on DVD later this year. Price: $19.98 each. Rent or buy: Buy the good, rent the rest.
CHILDREN OF MEN
Just the opposite of “Happy Feet,” the fascinating, underappreciated “Children of Men” is set in the near, bleak future, a time when there are no children; a baby hasn’t been born in 18 years.
Despite the fact that humanity faces a future even more intense than in “The Worst Case Scenario Handbook” doesn’t mean it’s not worth seeing. It’s not a cheery film, and because this new DVD lacks extras, it’s best to wait for a special edition before purchasing it. Price: $29.98. Rent or buy: Rent.
THE SHIELD — SEASON 5
The adventures of Vic Mackey (Michael Chiklis) and his legion of nasty cops continues with season five of “The Shield,” featuring Academy Award-winner Forest Whitaker as an internal affairs cop obsessed with taking down Mackey.
Brutal, shattering and terrific, this series can do no wrong. The DVD is packed with 10 audio commentaries, more than 30 deleted scenes, multiple features and a preview of season six. Price: $59.98. Rent or Buy: Buy!
“Turistas” isn’t going to be for everyone. If you aren’t a fan of “Hostel” or the “Saw” franchise, steer clear. But if you like those movies, you may like this. It’s about youthful tourists in Brazil who stumble into the wrong part of the country, where they encounter a wealthy sadist harvesting the body parts of tourists to give to the needy.
This unrated DVD edition, with even more gore and violence, may make fans of the genre, but the added material doesn’t help the story, which is hardly believable. There aren’t really any extras on the DVD, either. Price: $29.99. Rent or buy: Rent.