DVD Debut: Tickets To Ride

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Don’t search for new DVDs each week – stop by and we’ll tell you about all the recent titles.

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Help!

Led Zeppelin may be getting all the classic rock press these days, but there are still plenty of Beatles fans around, and it’s likely a few million of them will be lapping up the re-release of Help! The Fab Four’s second flick found them romping through the Bahamas and other far flung locales (some crits thought it was a lampoon of the then-new, intrigue-drenched James Bond movies), evading bad guys while trying to regain a rare piece of jewelry from Ringo‘s finger. It?s a quip fest (the guys’ banter always enhanced their charisma), a giddy backdrop for great tunes (“Ticket To Ride,” “You’re Going To Lose That Girl”) and a template for the entire Monkees empire. Watch a clip from the film after the jump. Check the “I Need You” video here.

Sicko
It’s a sad fact that the booming doc scene is booming precisely because CNN, Fox and the rest can barely deliver incisive reporting about a cat stuck in a tree, let alone our decrepit health service. So it’s Michael Moore to the rescue, sorta. He flings selective facts on HMOs designed to make liberals wring hands and conservatives switch DVDs. The indignation is real, but it’s wrapped in Moore’s patented smarm and unlikely to change anybody’s mind.

Best of the Colbert Report
Stephen Colbert‘s Bill O’Reilly impression isn’t quite as funny as he and the blogosphere thinks it is. (We’re still cringing from that Meet the Press interview.) The comedian’s finest moments come when he departs from the preening ditto-head script and does crazy-ass sh*t like duetting with Barry Manilow or Jedi jousting with George Lucas. There’s nothing in this comp that hasn’t already been You Tubed to death.

Amazing Journey: The Story of the Who
It’s a story that has been told before, but there’s no denying the power of the footage from the mod’s “My Generation” early days, or the Smothers Brothers’ Comedy Hour appearance when Keith Moon blew up his drumkit in Bette Davis’ face. Surviving members Pete Townshend and Roger Daltrey contribute new interviews. Sting and Eddie Vedder are also on hand to pontificate.

I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry
Adam Sandler and Kevin James are the last two people to get the joke that any buddy movie is a de facto gay love story. They play a pair of firemen who pretend to be sons of Gomorrah so they can get domestic partner benefits. The macho Sandler ruins things by falling for Jessica Biel. This makes James and us cry, but for different reasons. With the stars’ commentary, deleted scenes and five featurettes.

Ratatouille
A rat with the voice of comedian Patton Oswalt aspires to become a chef in a Parisian restaurant, facing discrimination, incompetent help, and a formidable critic. Pixar’s latest summer smash may not refresh the parts Happy Feet didn’t reach, but it’s their meatiest offering since Monsters Inc., boasting sumptuous visuals, robust gags and — in its dining room chase — a four-course set-piece. With deleted scenes, a pointless featurette with chef Thomas Keller and an additional short called Your Friend the Rat.

See this week’s entire DVD Debut column here.