Kidnap and Ransom: Complete Series 1 & 2. 2 discs. color. 276+ min. Andy Wilson & David Drury, Projector Pictures Ltd. & Fremantle Media, dist. by Acorn Media, 888-870-8047; www.acornonline.com. 2012. DVD ISBN 9781598288001. $49.99. SDH subtitles. F/TV
This set includes the complete 2010 and 2011 seasons of the British TV miniseries starring Trevor Eve as hostage negotiator Dominic King, Helen Baxendale as his business partner Angela Beddoes, and Natasha Little as King’s wife, Sophie. These outstanding dramas explore the psychology of hostage negotiations from the point of view of the kidnappers, the negotiators, and the families, governments, and businesses impacted by hostage situations. The tensions exhibited in the scenarios ring true to what one imagines as life-or-death circumstances: ruthless kidnappers demanding exorbitant ransoms, the physical and emotional brutalities of hostage care, and the frustrations of working outside police and government channels to safeguard people’s lives. This is what TV and feature film drama should be! VERDICT This suspenseful series is very highly recommended for adult video collections.—Cliff Glaviano, formerly with Bowling Green State Univ. Libs., OH
On the Waterfront. 3 discs. b/w. 108+ min. Elia Kazan, dist. by Criterion Collection, www.criterion.com. 2013. DVD ISBN 9781604656602. $39.95; 2-disc Blu-ray ISBN 9781604656596. $49.95. F
Marlon Brando delivers a knockout as longshoreman Terry Malloy, a once-promising boxer who “coulda been a contender” if he hadn’t taken a dive at the urging of his older brother (Rod Steiger). After falling for the sister (Eva Marie Saint) of a murdered informant he had fingered for talking with authorities about union corruption, Malloy redeems himself with the help of a socially conscious priest (Karl Malden), testifying against the mob-connected labor boss (Lee J. Cobb). With a bracingly potent script by Budd Schulberg (A Face in the Crowd), this restored 1954 Academy Award winner has never looked so good. VERDICT Interviews with two of the film’s actors, movie critics, filmmakers, and others, plus an hour-long documentary on director Kazan, make this classic worth the upgrade and an odds-on contender for top-discs-of-the-year honors.—Jeff T. Dick, Davenport, IA
After Kony: Staging Hope. color. 99 min. In English & Acholi w/English subtitles. Bil Yoelin, Voices in Harmony, dist. by First Run Features, 800-229-8575; www.firstrunfeatures.com. 2012. DVD UPC 720229915311. $24.95. INT AFFAIRS
This eloquent documentary follows Ugandan teens who have escaped Joseph Kony’s guerrilla group the Lord’s Resistance Army as they rebuild their lives in an internally displaced persons (IDP) camp in northern Uganda. The teens work with a group of American performers and activists who help them tell their stories. Hearing these tales will be difficult for viewers, but it is important that the suffering of these young people does not go unnoticed. One cannot help but to be affected when 17-year-old Frances states, “Please inform America the Northern Ugandan insurgency is the world’s worst forgotten emergency.” Viewers see the reality of war but also the strength and pride displayed by these individuals. VERDICT A powerful collaboration of art and theater giving voice to these African teens. This thought-provoking, gut-wrenching documentary is an essential purchase.—Krissy Cwengros, Scottsdale P.L., AZ
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The following titles are reviewed in the July print issue. Visit Book Verdict for the full reviews.
The Epic Drama Collection. 5 vols. 9 discs. color. 18+ hrs. Longitude, Granada Film, dist. by A&E Television Networks c/o New Video, 800-314-8822; www.newvideo.com. 2012. DVD 9781422921876. $99.94. Includes:Shackleton; Napoleon; Longitude; The Crossing; Benedict Arnold: A Question of Honor; The Lost Battalion. F/TV
Trial & Retribution: Set 6. 2 discs. color. 361+ min. Tristram Powell & others, La Plante Prods., dist. by Acorn Media, 888-870-8047; www.acornonline.com. 2012. DVD ISBN 9781598288247. $49.99. SDH subtitles. F
ARTS & HUMANITIES
Lang Lang: Portrait of an Exceptional Artist. color. 52 min. In English, French, & Mandarin w/English subtitles. Tangaro, dist. by Film Ideas, www.filmideas.com. 2013. DVD ISBN 9781605727158. $39.95; acad. libs. $225. Public performance. music
Dragonslayer. 73+ min. Tristan Patterson, Drag City & Killer Films. 2012. DVD UPC 720229915069.
Waiting for Lightning. 2 discs. 96+ min. Jacob Rosenberg, DC Shoes & Bandito Brothers. 2013. DVD UPC 720229915403.
ea. vol: color. First Run Features, 800-229-8575; www.firstrunfeatures.com. Blu-ray/DVD combo $29.95. Closed-captioned. RECREATION
Judeophobia in France: Then and Now. color & b/w. 90 min. Jacques Tarnero, Alden Films, www.aldenfilms.com. 2013. DVD ISBN 9781877684104. $24.95. REL/SOC SCI
The World Series: History of the Fall Classic. 4 discs. color & b/w. 4+ hrs. Major League Baseball Prods. for A&E Television Networks, dist. by New Video, 800-314-8822; www.newvideo.com. 2012. DVD ISBN 9781422922316. $39.95. SPORTS
Decasia. b/w. 67+ min. Bill Morrison, Hypnotic Pictures, Icarus Films Home Video, www.icarusfilms.com. 2012. DVD UPC 854565001534. $34.98.
The Miners’ Hymns. color & b/w. 52 min. Bill Morrison, Hypnotic Pictures, dist. by Icarus Films, www.icarusfilms.com. 2012. DVD UPC 854565001480. $298. Public performance; home version $29.98.HIST/FILM
Wavumba: They Who Smell of Fish. color. 80 min. Jeroen van Velzen, dist. by Cinema Guild, www.cinemaguild.com. 2012. DVD ISBN 9780781514231. $99.95; acad. libs. $295. Public performance. INT AFFAIRS
Griefwalker. color. 70 min. In German w/English subtitles. Tim Wilson, Natl. Film Bd. of Canada, dist. by Alive Mind c/o Kino Lorber, 800-562-3330; www.kinolorber.com. 2012. DVD UPC 705105268910. $24.95. PSYCH
Mutantes: Punk, Porn, Feminism. color. 92 min. In English & French w/English subtitles. Virginie Despentes, Morgane & Pink TV, dist. by Alive Mind c/o by Kino Lorber, 800-562-3330; www.kinolorber.com. 2012. DVD UPC 738329077921. $24.95; public performance $189; DVD & digital site license $499; DVD w/public performance rights & digital site license $599. soc sci
Poor Kids: An Intimate Portrait of America’s Economic Crisis. color. 60 min. Jezza Neumann, Frontline with True Vision, dist. by PBS, shoppbs.org. 2013. DVD ISBN 9781608838325. $24.99. SDH subtitles. SOC SCI
Somewhere Between. color. 88+ min. In English, Mandarin, & Spanish w/English subtitles. Linda Goldstein Knowlton, Long Shot Factory & Ladylake Films, dist. by Docurama c/o New Video, 800-314-8822; www.newvideo.com. 2013. DVD UPC 767685283981. $29.95. SOC SCI/INT AFFAIRS
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
The Atomic States of America. color. 70/90 min. Don Argott & Sheena Joyce, 9.14 Pictures, dist. by Video Project, www.videoproject.com. 2012. DVD $39.95; acad. libs. $295. Public performance; closed-captioned.ENVIRONMENT
May I Be Frank. color. 97+ min. Cary Mosher & others, Be Love Prods., dist. by Cinema Libre Studio, www.cinemalibrestudio.com. 2013 DVD UPC 881394117228. $19.95. HEALTH
54321+8: Countdown to Your Health. DVD UPC 846742002991. $79.95.
Food Allergies. DVD 846742002182. $49.95.
ea. vol: color. 25 min. Happy Fun Time, dist. by Learning ZoneXpress, 888-455-7003; www.learningzonexpress.com. 2012. Closed-captioned. HEALTH