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Nick's Pics
Nick Nicholson
Film & Home Entertainment Critic
 

This column expresses the personal opinions/views of the writer. If you would like to express your opinions/views regarding the column, write a SIGNED letter to the editor. Name can be withheld by request with a valid day time phone number.
 
CHEAPER BY THE DOZEN 2  

Cheaper by the Dozen 2

Starring: Steve Martin & Bonnie Hunt

Director: Adam Shankman

Company: Fox

Now Showing: In area theatres

MPAA Rating ? PG

Grade: C+


DVD Picks

GONE IN 60 SECONDS
Brentwood

It is not about the plot and not about the acting as Gone in 60 Seconds is about fast cars and lots of excitement. Released in 1974, this film was H.B. Halickiís automobile masterpiece. OK, how about a drama about a car theft gang that is really just a bunch of guys having fun in their cars. The feature car is of course Halickiís own 1973 Ford Mustang named Eleanor.

Many people have not heard of H.B. Halicki. He was a world-class stunt driver who wrote, produced, directed and starred in this film. He even distributed it himself-a real maverick independent film producer. If you like car chases and crashes, you will love this movie. The 40 minute chase finale is incredible, probably one of the best chase sequences ever filmed. For you true fans of this film out there, you might be disappointed. The new sound mix on this collectorís edition is way different from the original. It is a love/hate thing-Old people hate it and the kids love it. The picture on this new edition is no better than the 2000 release and the picture is letterboxed, not anamorphic. The Dolby Digital and DTS tracks sound great. There are several extras included with this disc and a coupon for official Gone in 60 Seconds license plates and frames.

THE ROCKFORD FILES:
Season One
- MCA

One of my favorite detective shows from the 1970ís is now on DVD. All 23 first season episodes of The Rockford Files are available for your viewing pleasure. Jim Rockford (Emmy winner James Garner) is an ex-con-who is now a very laid back private investigator. He solves murder and mystery while enjoying his life in Malibu-but not a mansion in Malibu, a worn out old trailer on the beach. Rockford was a TV character that was a likeable ďreal guyĒ kind of person. The show had many interesting guest stars such as Abe Vigoda, Lindsay Wagner, James Woods, Ned Beatty, and Suzanne Somers. This is a series the whole family can watch and enjoy. There is an extra feature with James Garner that will tell you everything you want to know about being Jim Rockford. The picture on these 3 DVDís looks great-better than it looked in 1974.

THREES COMPANY:
Season Five
- Anchor Bay

Imagine a time when a man must say he is gay so he can live with two female roommates. Threeís Company was a hit comedy in the 1970ís and is still popular today. This DVD set is season five, the last season to feature Suzanne Somers (Chrissy). The laughs in this season were not as prevalent as in the earlier season and you can sense the tension between the actors. The arrival of Chrissyís cousin, Cindy Snow (Jenilee Harrison) kept the storyline going, but it was never the same again. John Ritterís physical comedy kept this show funny and along with Joyce De Witt the show stayed successful. There is an interesting interview with Somerís replacement, Jenilee Harrison, included with this set.

THE BROTHERS GRIMM
MGM

Folklore collectors and con artists, Jake and Will Grimm, travel from village to village pretending to protect townsfolk from enchanted creatures and performing exorcisms. They are put to the test, however, when they encounter a real magical curse in a haunted forest with real magical beings, requiring genuine courage.

What a piece of trash! I thought Van Helsing was the worst that it could get. I was wrong. Matt Damon and Heath Ledger portrayed their parts well amongst a ridiculous and hideous plot. Peter Stormareís performances provided much-needed comic relief and kept me interested up to the final scenes. As stories go, this one did nothing for me. Special effects were mediocre and the soundtrack was all but inspiring. Even Van Helsing had more to offer as a film. The DVD is presented in Widescreen format with 5.1 Digital sound. Extras include commentary, deleted scenes, making-of feature and a feature on the visual effects.

SEVEN MEN FROM NOW
Paramount

A former sheriff, haunted by the loss of his wife in a Wells Fargo robbery, hunts for the seven men responsible for her death. Along the way, he assists a couple traveling west from Kansas City to California, and is forced to deal with another former outlaw he had once sent to prison. I found nothing really special about this Western. The story was very mediocre and if not for the great cast, I would have fallen asleep during the film. The script was pretty weak and after five minutes into the film, I guessed the entire outcome. Lee Marvin in a green scarf just didnít do anything for me not to mention the white hats worn by the good guys. Save your money and get a good John Wayne western or the Magnificent Seven. The DVD is presented in Widescreen Format with Dolby surround. Extras include commentary with James Kitses, features on Budd Boetticher and the John Wayne Stock Company, Theatrical Trailer and Photo Galleries

Nick be reached at Nick@filmlords.com

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   Last Update:  September 07, 2006