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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.
 
DVD Picks  

THE ANDY GRIFFITH SHOW: Season Seven - Paramount

Widower Sheriff Andy and his son Opie live with Andy’s Aunt Bee in Mayberry NC. With virtually no crimes to solve, most of Andy’s time is spent philosophizing and calming down his cousin Deputy Barney.

Season seven continues the tradition of producing a quality family TV show that will be remembered over and over again. Andy Griffith is still going strong as the sheriff of Mayberry with his trusty deputy Warren Ferguson as they solve all of the towns’ dilemmas. Aunt Bee is as charming as ever and Opie is getting older by the episode. This season puts an emphasis on some of the other characters like Otis, Goober and Howard Sprague. The stories are imaginative and full of laughter. Some of these seasons’ highlights include “Big Fish in a Small Town”, “A New Doctor in Town”, “Barney Comes to Mayberry” and “The Statue”. Each episode is a gem that can be enjoyed for generations to come. The DVD contains all 30 episodes on 5 discs.

All the episodes have restored picture and sound and an episode synopsis on the back of each volume for reference. This is a classic set and a must for your collection.

SURVIVAL ISLAND - Showtime

Three people out on a pleasure cruise become victims of a boating accident and end up the only survivors on an island. This is one of those typical “trapped on an island” plots that is taken to the extreme. Billy Zane and Juan Pablo Di Pace are fighting over the “eye candy” Kelly Brook as they struggle to survive on an unknown island.

The story is so predictable that you can fast forward to the end and not miss anything. Brook is amazingly beautiful and of course the two male characters are “eye candy” for the females. I found the movie to be overall dull partly because of its predictability and weak script.

Most people will watch this for all of the Kelly Brook footage. One other plus of the film in addition to Brook was the breath takingcinematography of the island. Other than those two factors, this movie was a sleeper for me. The DVD presents the film in Widescreen format with Dolby Digital sound. Extras include Cast Filmographies and a Photo Gallery.

THRESHOLD - Paramount

A team of experts are assembled when the U.S. Navy discovers an extra-terrestrial craft has landed in the Atlantic Ocean. Here is another shining example of a great sci-fi with a short-lived life on TV. The ratings killed this one just as it was getting interesting.

One bonus with this show is that the creators knew they were getting cancelled and wrote the last episode with closure to the series. Many others such as “Odyssey 5” or “Surface” didn’t get the chance to finish their stories. This show is basically a combination of “X-files” and “Close Encounters of the Third Kind” with a touch of “Dark Skies”. The cast is led by Carla Gugino with great supporting actors including Brian Van Holt, Brent Spiner and Robert Patrick Benedict. The storyline is your basic “UFO” plot with a few twists making for a good story arc. The special effects are excellent and the chemistry among the cast is well-established from the first episode. The DVD contains the entire series on 4 discs presented in Widescreen format with Dolby Digital sound. Extras include audio commentary on selected episodes, deleted scenes and featurettes on the making of the show and effects. The packaging is attractive with lots of color and pics from the show. There is an episode synopsis on the back of each volume. I highly recommend this series even though it got an early cancellation.

LOVE FOR RENT - Warner

Tells the story of Sofia, a Colombian college student struggling with immigration issues in LA, who accepts a $50,000 offer to rent her body and soul and become a surrogate mother to a wealthy couple. Not knowing any of the cast, I continued through this movie without much hope. After the first 20-30 minutes filled with useless swearing, which seemed only available to receive an ‘R’ rating, the movie turned into a enjoyable romantic film. Although very predictable from the beginning, the humor and emotion within the movie make watching this decent enough. Recommened for those who enjoy romantic comedies, if you can get passed the swearing at the beginning. No special features were available on the DVD. Article by Chris Hensley

FAMILY: Seasons

1 & 2 - Sony

Amily was kind of a Leave it to Beaver in the 70’s with the realism that the Beave did not have. An Emmy winning show, Family debuted 1976 on ABC, and quickly gained in popularity because it hit close to home.

The Lawrence’s were a typical upper-middle-class family that had problems that we all deal with in real life. This show dealt with issues like infidelity, homosexuality, divorce, and alcoholism. Family also dealt with the funnier side of life—such as when Doug (James Broderick) buys a Corvette in mid life crisis. I still remember that episode thirty years later (the same thing happened to me). And I will never forget Kristy McNichol; every guy in Junior High School was in love with her. This show was superb in the 70’s and is still very watchable today. Highly recommended. This boxed set includes all 28 episodes of the first two seasons and no extras.

PRETTY IN PINK - Paramount

Actress Molly Ringwald and Writer/Producer John Hughes were well known Hollywood names in the 1980’s. Pretty in Pink is one of the well-known titles they worked on back in 1986. Directed by Howard Deutch, (but still a very Hughes styled film) Pink is the teen coming of age story of poor girl Andie (Ringwald) meets rich boy Blane (Andrew McCarthy) while stiffing the geek boy Duckie (Jon Cryer) who really loves her.

Poor girl gets rich boy and... now you can see it with the original ending were Andie and Duckie live happily ever after! Chick movie fans rejoice! This is the long awaited DVD that has the “Lost Dance” scene—the original ending that most women think is the proper ending.

There are some nice Featurette and interviews included on this disc along with the cast’s favorite scenes. This Everything’s Duckie Edition will keep you entertained for hours.

Nick be reached at Nick@filmlords.com

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   Last Update:  October 04, 2006