New this week on video
Brain power: Alicia Silverstone gives a career-making performance in “Clueless,” making its Blu-ray debut. The film, directed by Amy Heckerling (“Fast Times at Ridgemont High”), also stars Paul Rudd and the late Brittany Murphy.
Updated: May 7, 2012 7:17PM
NEW THIS WEEK
★ ★ ★ 1/2
Rated: PG-13 for sex-related dialogue and some teen use of alcohol and drugs.
Stars: Alicia Silverstone, Paul Rudd, Brittany Murphy
After taking time out for the mega-successful synchro-baby “Look Who’s Talking” comedies, writer/director Amy Heckerling (“Fast Times at Ridgemont High”) returned to high school for this charming, good-spirited 1995 romantic comedy based on Jane Austen’s “Emma.” The film, making its Blu-ray debut, features a star-making performance by Alicia Silverstone as a rich, kind-hearted, not-so-dumb blonde Beverly Hills girl dedicated to improving the world through romance. Extras include a “Clue or False” trivia game.
★ ★ ★
Rated: R for some violence
Stars: Gina Carano, Channing Tatum, Ewan McGregor, Michael Fassbender
Director Steven Soderbergh (“Contagion”) can’t help getting flashily cinematic from time to time, but “Haywire” still delivers the adrenaline-pumping goods. That’s mostly thanks to mixed-martial-arts fighter Carano playing a betrayed black-ops mercenary looking for payback. Her acting is so-so, but she clearly could kick the boo-tay of anyone in the cast.
★ ★ 1/2
Rated: R for violence, pervasive language and brief drug use.
Stars: Mark Wahlberg, Giovanni Ribisi, Kate Beckinsale
No surprises here, but no disappointments, either, for not-too-choosy fans of hardcore action and/or Wahlberg in likable-tough-guy mode. This reasonably satisfying remake of a 2008 Icelandic hit features Wahlberg, looking surprisingly weary at times, as a gone-straight super-smuggler forced to do One Last Big Job to protect his family from tattoo-crazy drug lord Ribisi, who oozes sleaze entertainingly.
★ ★ ★
Stars: Alec Guinness, Ian Richardson, Ian Bannen
Right after “Star Wars,” Guinness scored another major success with this 1979 British mini-series dramatizing John le Carre’s mega-smash spy novel, with a portrayal of aging, world-weary MI-6 spy George Smiley that seemed definitive — though Gary Oldman gave him significant competition last year. Guinness is basically the whole show in this otherwise fairly drab and confusing adaptation, but it’s a show well worth seeing. Extras in this Blu-ray debut include a 2002 interview with le Carre, a le Carre biography and production notes.
AMERICAN EXPERIENCE: JESSE OWENS
This PBS documentary explores the life of black track star Owens, who struck a blow for freedom by winning four gold medals in the Nazi-controlled 1936 Olympic Games, and then couldn’t ride in the front seats of buses after returning home.
THE DICK VAN DYKE SHOW: CARL REINER’S FAVORITES
Twenty episodes from the classic 1960s sitcom, chosen by series creator and co-star Reiner, including “The Attempted Marriage,” “Hustling the Hustler,” “Laura’s Little Lie” and “A Day in the Life of Alan Brady: Obnoxious, Offensive Egomaniac.”
THE FRONT LINE
This war drama focusing on the final battle to establish the boundary between North and South Korea was South Korea ’s submission for Best Foreign Language film in the 2012 Academy Awards. No MPAA rating.
MASTERPIECE CLASSIC: THE MYSTERY OF EDWIN DROOD
This British TV mini-series uses clues from Charles Dickens and inspired guesswork to complete the story the novelist was working on at his death. Matthew Rhys and Tamzyn Merchant star in the murder mystery.
NEW YEAR’S EVE
The lives of several couples intertwine over the course of a few hours on New Year’s Eve. Garry Marshall (“Valentine’s Day”) directed the romance featuring Sarah Jessica Parker, Jessica Biel and Ashton Kutcher. Rated PG-13 for language including some sexual references.
A man and a woman in 1959 New York (Rock Hudson and Doris Day) share a telephone line and despise each other — until he decides to romance her using a disguised voice. Michael Gordon (“Cyrano de Bergerac”) directed the romantic comedy, released in conjunction with Universal Pictures’ 100th anniversary. No MPAA rating.
STRIP, STRIP HOORAY
This naughty collection from Image Entertainment features six films from the 1950s heyday of burlesque movies: “Midnight Frolics,” “Everybody’s Girl,” “French Follies,” “B Girl Rhapsody,” “The A-B-C’s of Love” and “A Night in Hollywood .”
Fear is at the forefront with the horror films “Shock Labyrinth 3D” and “Underworld: Awakening.”