This week, we begin in a small apartment:
This winner of the best foreign-language Oscar, and nominated for five Oscars (including best picture), from Austrian director Michael Haneke is an uncompromising, often devastating examination of old age, ruined relationships and lost dreams.
Jean-Louis Trintignant and Oscar-nominated Emmanuelle Riva play a married couple, Georges and Anne, who have been together for more years than either can remember. The two enjoy their senior status, indulging themselves in their lifelong love of music.
But once Anne suffers a stroke, their lives deteriorate. Eva (Isabelle Huppert), their frazzled daughter, can see that the two cannot take care of themselves, despite her objections.
Haneke does not flinch in revealing the sad state into which the couple falls. Georges fights the inevitable while tending to his wife, revealing that love may be able to conquer everything but old age.
The DVD includes a 25-minute “making of” featurette and a 39-minute question-and-answer session with Haneke and moderator Elvis Mitchell.
Scary MoVie () These horror movie spoofs always work best when the viewer knows and recognizes the films being spoofed. For the initiated, this fifth installment in the worn-out series offers a few laughs. For others, however, laughs might prove elusive.
The eclectic cast pokes fun at Black Swan, 127 Hours and many other films, both in and out of the horror genre.
Charlie Sheen and Lindsay Lohan appear in the first five minutes or so before wisely leaving the scene. Eventually, the couple’s offspring are left to be raised by relatives (Ashley Tisdale and Simon Rex), to horrific results. With Snoop Dogg, Katt Williams, Katrina Bowden, Kate Walsh, Mike Tyson, Heather Locklear and other luminaries.
Rated PG-13, 86 minutes. The DVD includes an unrated version of 88 minutes, and eight deleted scenes.
Superstorm -- Syfy’s movies have gained notoriety lately for various reasons, and this latest release proves representative of the over-the-top science-fiction premises behind much of the channel’s output.
Here, Earth again finds itself in peril (as an electric field on Jupiter, or something like that, causes havoc on our planet) in the forms of tornadoes and some gnarly-looking electrical storms.
Overall, it’s just plain bad weather. Thankfully, it looks like civilization can be saved, even if it comes from a teen’s science project.
With Erica Cerra, Leah Cairns, David Sutcliffe and Luisa D’Oliveira. Rated PG-13, 89 minutes.
Chihuahua Too A family takes possession of a vacation home that has long been in the family. When they and their golden retriever Homer move in, they think it might be haunted by Sophie, a movie star chihuahua who once lived there. The kids, and Homer, discover that Sophie is actually alive, leading up to the obvious decisions for mom and dad. Not rated, 80 minutes.
The Wheels on the Bus: Animal Adventure In the four episodes of this children’s series, Papaya, a monkey, and Mango, a toucan, have new adventures, exploring exciting topics and making animal friends. Roger Daltrey supplies the voice of Argon the Dragon. Not rated, 45 minutes.
And, finally, from this week’s TV releases:
The Captains: Close Up With William Shatner This five-episode miniseries elaborates on the earlier documentary The Captains, in which William Shatner interviewed actors who have played Star Trek’s Starfleet captains.
Here, in each episode, Shatner goes deeper with captains Patrick Stewart, Avery Brooks, Kate Mulgrew and Scott Bakula. The results are surprisingly entertaining, proving, once again, that William Shatner loves being William Shatner.
Not rated, 150 minutes. The DVD includes extra interviews with Shatner.
Revenge: The Complete Second Season With a beautiful cast dressed in consistently stunning outfits, and with a Long Island ocean setting, this ABC nighttime soap opera always looks great and boasts plenty of high drama.
The second season is something of a labyrinth. With old and new plots and new characters, unlikely alliances form and surprising romances arise.
Emily Thorne (Emily VanCamp) continues to seek revenge on the dastardly Graysons, vampish Victoria (Madeleine Stowe) and sniveling Conrad (Henry Czerny), who declares his candidacy for New York governor. And Jack (Nick Wechsler) and Declan Porter (Connor Paolo) discover they could possibly lose their father’s bar.
The weekly intrigue becomes even more convoluted in this sophomore season. With Gabriel Mann, Joshua Bowman, Christa B. Allen and Barry Sloane.
Rated TV-PG-DLSV, 15 hours and 46 minutes. The set also includes commentaries and deleted scenes on each of the five discs; bloopers and outtakes; a 15-minute featurette on the series’ sound elements; an eight-minute featurette on Ashley Davenport’s (Ashley Madekwe) wardrobe, and a brief featurette on the upcoming book Revenge School.
Mike & Molly: The Complete Third Season This breakout hit (which should be titled Molly & Mike) featuring a pair of deft comedians, Melissa McCarthy and Billy Gardell, is about a plus-sized couple who find love with each other. This season, after the romance and eventual wedding, they honeymoon in Paris and then return home to their new status.
Molly’s sister Victoria (Katy Mixon), mother Joyce (Swoosie Kurtz) and others help the couple adjust to married life. With Cleo King, Rondi Reed and Reno Wilson.
Not rated, 7 hours and 44 minutes. The three-disc set includes a gag reel.
Also available Tuesday on DVD: Epic, Evidence, Killing Season and Shadow Dancer.