On DVD/Blu-ray this week: Once of the most beloved classics of cinema, on Blu-ray for the first time; Jennifer Westfeldt's hilarious and insightful directorial debut; Abel Ferrara's most acclaimed film in years; the latest from feel-good auteur Lasse Hallstrom; and a heady trip back to the Beat generation.
#1. "Singin' in the Rain" (60th Anniversary Collector's Edition)
When "The Artist" came out late last year, critics were quick to point out the film's undeniable references to the 1952 classic "Singin' in the Rain." Now with the Blu-ray debut of Gene Kelly and Stanley Donen's masterpiece (timed in honor of the film's 60th anniversary), you can compare and contrast the two in high definition glory. Talk about a perfect date night.
Set in the days of Hollywood's transition from silent films to 'talkies' (just like "The Artist"), "Singin' in the Rain" chronicles the lives of three actors (Kelly, Debbie Reynolds and Donald O'Connor) as they navigate that journey.
Go HERE for our interview with Kelly's widow, film historian Patrica Ward Kelly, who is keeping Kelly's legacy alive.
Extras: Die-hard fans rejoice -- included is over four (!) hours of bonus content, along with a 48-page hardcover production book with exclusive memos and photos and a custom 40" diameter umbrella (of course). The extras include audio commentary featuring Debbie Reynolds, Donald O’Connor, Cyd Charisse, Kathleen Freeman, Stanley Donen, Betty Comden, Adolph Green, Baz Luhrmann and Rudy Behlmer; the new documentary on “Singin’ in the Rain: Musicals Great Musicals: The Arthur Freed Unit at MGM”; outtakes; a stills gallery; the film's trailer and much more.
#2. "Friends With Kids"
"Kissing Jessica Stein" co-scribe and star Jennifer Westfeldt is back with another New York-centric romantic comedy, "Friends With Kids." This time she directed the film in addition to writing and acting in it. Westfeldt and Adam Scott play a pair of single Manhattanites who decide to have a kid together, despite not being romantically attached. Maya Rudolph, Kristen Wiig, Chris O'Dowd and Westfedt's longtime partner Jon Hamm are the friends who don't know what to make of the idea. And complications ensue when Westfeldt's character falls for the soon-to-be father to her child.
Go HERE for our interview with Westfeldt.
Extras: An audio commentary featuring Westfeldt; deleted scenes; a hilarious gag reel; and a featurette on the making of the movie.