October 29, 2004 The dark film, released in 1983, is a meditation on violence, technology and a mass media that seems — like so much of director David Cronenberg's work — unhappily prescient.
October 22, 2004 The three-DVD box set of the PBS extravaganza Broadway: The American Musical is both an intriguing social history and delectable smorgasbord of performance snippets, anecdotes and scholarly wisdom for lovers of musical theater. Read a review by NPR's Bob Mondello.
October 15, 2004 NPR's Bob Mondello reviews the DVD version of Michael Moore's incediary documentary Fahrenheit 9/11. Regardless of your politics, Mondello says, the DVD is compelling viewing, freshly updated with new material from events that happened after the film's initial theatrical release.
September 17, 2004 You Bet Your Life was a quiz show that was more about the host than the quiz. First on radio and then on TV, Groucho Marx was the ringleader and chief quipster for an on-air circus of celebrity guests and ordinary folks. See clips from the best episodes, plus a "stag reel" of material left in the editing room.
September 10, 2004 The Rules of the Game, released in France in 1939, stands virtually alone as a remarkable intersection of cinematic vision, effective writing and dense meaning. It is routinely cited in international critic polls as one of the greatest films ever made, in the company of Citizen Kane and Vertigo. NPR's Bill Wyman reviews the new Criterion Collection DVD.
September 3, 2004 NPR's Neda Ulaby compares the two very different versions of Swept Away — a politcally charged tale of a rich, haughty socialite and a working-class fisherman stranded together alone on a deserted island. The 1974 version had sass and a message — the Madonna re-make just falls flat.
August 27, 2004 The Man Who Wasn’t There is the Coen brothers movie that actress Frances McDormand — who’s married to Joel Coen — called one of the pair's most personal. And this is the Coen brothers DVD that features what’s missing from the DVDs of their other movies: a commentary track by Joel and Ethan, with Billy Bob Thorton along for the ride.
August 20, 2004 Larry David, the co-creator of the hit series Seinfeld, scores another hit with a show about nothing — Curb Your Enthusiasm. Watch scenes from the show's second season, now available on DVD.
August 13, 2004 Kind Hearts and Coronets, one of the most beloved Ealing Studios comedies, is a dazzling dish of revenge, served ice cold. NPR's Neda Ulaby reviews the DVD re-release of this classic film.
August 6, 2004 Late-night veterans Jay Leno, David Letterman and even Johnny Carson all owe a debt of gratitude to Jack Paar, who first made late-night television safe for insomniacs. NPR's Bob Mondello reviews a new three-DVD "best of" collection of Paar's finest moments.