New DVDs: TV Series, Nonfiction and Feature Length Films – August 2009


A very downbeat drama about a successful-but-unhappy London lawyer who goes on a road trip with her alcoholic father to visit her dying mother in a hospital in Norway.Cast: Stellan Skarsgård, Lena Headey, Ian Hart, Charlotte Rampling. (2000) Rated R

American Dreamer

A housewife wins a trip to Paris as a prize from a mystery writing contest. Silly from a blow on the head, she begins living the fictional life of her favorite literary adventure. Cast: JoBeth Williams, Tom Conti, Giancarlo Giannini. (1984) Rated PG

Blue Murder: Set 4

This set sees Janine tackle some of her most baffling cases yet: the murders of an illegal Belarusian émigré, a suburban cheerleading coach, a rock star about to break into the big time, and more. In Blue Murder s signature style, heart-tugging domestic drama and good-natured workplace ribbing leaven each suspenseful, grimly realistic mystery. Cast: Caroline Quentin, Ian Kelsey, Paul Loughran, Nicholas Murchie, Belinda Everett. Not Rated

Buffalo Bill

This episode of the PBS series, The American Experience, explore how William “Buffalo Bill” Cody’s legendary exploits helped create a myth that endures even today. Features the life of the master showman who became part of American history. (2008) Not Rated

Cover Her Face

Scotland Yard’s Adam Dalgliesh investigates the murder of a drug dealer found dead in the basement of a book club.  Mysterious deaths occur, and the detective must deal with a multitude of suspects, evasive answers, and his growing attraction to Deborah Riscoe.  Cast: Roy Marsden, Phyllis Calvert, Bill Fraser, Julian Glover, Mel Martin, Rupert Frazer. Based on the book by P.D. James. (1987) Not Rated


Based on the true story of the first Canadians to ever make it to the top of the world’s tallest and most historic peak. Cast: Eric Johnson, John Pyper-Ferguson, Jason Priestley, William Shatner. (2007) Rated PG-13

400 Years of the Telescope

This PBS documentary features interviews with leading astrophysicists and cosmologists from the world’s renowned universities and observatories, who explain concepts ranging from Galileo’s act of revealing the cosmos with a simple telescope, to the latest discoveries in space, including startling new ideas about life on other planets and dark energy – a mysterious vacuum energy that is accelerating the expansion of the universe. Originally broadcast on PBS on 2008.  Not Rated

Garrison Keillor: The Man on the Radio in the Red Shoes

This episode of the PBS series American Masters, is a freeform and intimate look at the private man in the public spotlight goes behind the scenes of America’s most popular radio show, A Prairie Home Companion, and inside the imagination of the man who created it. (2009)  Not Rated

Grey Gardens

Based on the life stories of the eccentric aunt and first cousin of Jackie Kennedy, this HBO drama tells the tender, intimate story of an eccentric mother and daughter.Cast: Drew Barrymore, Jessica Lange, Daniel Baldwin, Jeanne Tripplehorn, Ken Howard. Not Rated

High Hopes

Low-budget, cerebral British black comedy/drama about conflicts between yuppies and socialists in 1980s England. Fans of non-mainstream, slice-of-life, thought-provoking films enjoy its sharp dissection of the British class system. Cast: Philip Davis, David Bamber, Ruth Sheen, Edna Dore, Lesley Manville, Philip Jackson, Hether Tobias (1989) Rated PG

Influenza 1918

This episode of the PBS series, The American Experience, examines the influenza pandemic that broke out in 1918 and that within two years killed 30 million people. Epidemiologists discuss the odds of such a plague occurring again. (1998) Not Rated

Into Thin Air

This made for TV movie attempts to re-create the disastrous events that took place during the Mount Everest climb on May 10, 1996. Cast: Peter Horton, Nat Parker, Richard Jenkins, Christopher McDonald. Based on Jon Krakauer’s best selling book. (1997) Not Rated

Jazz & Swing Greats: Live from Lincoln Center

One amazing night in 1972, the greats of swing – Ella Fitzgerald, Duke Ellington, Count Basie, and Bennie Goodman – came together at New York’s Philharmonic Hall for a jazz blowout. Joined by Dizzy Gillespie, hosted by Doc Severinson, these jazz pioneers reveled in the numbers with which they had changed the face of popular music more than thirty years before. (1972) Not Rated

King Lear

Proposing to divide his vast kingdom amongst his three daughters, Goneril, Regan and Cornelia, Lear devises a test for his offspring to convince him of their suitability and compassion for rule. Goneril and Regan’s true colors emerge, they uncover a vast conspiracy of greed and cruelty within the once loyal dynasty. Cast: Ian McKellen, Frances Barber, Monica Dolan, Romola Garai, Jonathan Hyde, Seymour Matthews, William Gaunt, Sylvester McCoy, Philip Winchester. Originally broadcast on PBS’s Great Performances in 2008. Not Rated

The Longest Day

The complete story of the D-Day landings at Normandy through the eyes of all its participants. Cast: John Wayne, Robert Mitchum, Henry Fonda, Robert Ryan, Rod Steiger, Richard Todd, Richard Burton, Robert Wagner, Eddie Albert, Red Buttons, Sean Connery, Peter Lawford, Mel Ferrer, Paul Anka, Stuart Whitman, Edmond O’Brien, Curt Jürgens. Based on the book by Cornelius Ryan. (1962) Rated G

Mad Men: Season Two

A continuing look at the Sterling Cooper advertising agency and the lives of the people who work there. Cast: Jon Hamm, Elisabeth Moss, Vincent Kartheiser, January Jones, John Slattery. Originally broadcast on AMC in 2008.  Not Rated

Marcus Garvey: Look for Me in The Whirlwind

Originally broadcast as an episode of PBS series, The American Experience, this documentary uses a wealth of archival film, photographs and documents to uncover the story of this Jamaican immigrant who between 1916 and 1921 built the largest black mass movement in world history. Also features interviews with people who witnessed the Garvey movement first hand. (2001) Not Rated

A Midsummer Night’s Dream

A modern adaptation of Shakespeare’s comedy about the king and queen of the fairies and the two couples brought together by their celestial matchmaking. Cast: Rupert Everett, Calista Flockhart, Kevin Kline, Michelle Pfeiffer, Stanley Tucci, Christian Bale, Sophie Marceau, David Strathairn. (1999) Rated PG-13

My Life

A high-powered executive, diagnosed with terminal cancer, begins filming a home movie in which he teaches his unborn son all the things a man must know: how to shave, how to slam dunk, and most of all, how to love. Cast: Michael Keaton, Nicole Kidman. (1993) Rated PG-13


In this dramatization of William Shakespeare’s tragedy a great man’s vanity is manipulated by a jealous aide to bring about his downfall. Betrayal, deception and murder end the friendship between Othello and Iago and culminate in the tragic death of Desdemona. Cast: Laurence Fishburne, Irene Jacob, Kenneth Branagh. (1995) Rated R


The Academy Award-winning dramatization of the experiences of General George S. Patton during World War II. Based on “Patton: Ordeal and Triumph” by Ladislas Farago and “A Soldier’s Story” by Omar N. Bradley. Cast: George C. Scott, Karl Malden. (1970) Rated PG

Power Yoga

Kristin McGee presents her special blend of power yoga with this intense fitness program. Building on the yoga lessons she taught on MTV, McGee combines aerobics with soul-centering moves all accompanied by an energizing workout.


In this Alfred Hitchcock horror film, a secretary steals money from her boss and leaves town. On the road, she checks into the Bates Motel, run by a nice young man and his mother. Cast: Anthony Perkins, Vera Miles, John Gavin, Martin Balsam, John McIntire, Janet Leigh. (1960) Rated R


Professor Henry Higgins works to make a pretty flower girl into a young lady of society. Cast: Wendy Hiller, Leslie Howard, Wilfred Lawson, Marie Lohr, Scott Sunderland. Based on the play by George Bernard Shaw. (1938) Not Rated


In this Alfred Hitchcock film, a psychologist falls for a suspect in a murder, which she tries to solve by unlocking the clues hidden in his mind. Cast: Ingrid Bergman, Gregory Peck, Michael Chekhov, Leo G. Carroll, Rhonda Fleming, John Emery. (1945) Not Rated

Summer of Love

David Ogden Stiers narrates this episode of the PBS series, The American Experience.  It offers a look into the hippie revolution in San Francisco’s Haight-Ashbury district during the summer of 1967, and how the free love and music turned into a life of drug use, violence, and broken dreams. (2007) Not Rated

Swann in Love

Set in Paris in the 1890s, Swann falls in love with a young courtesan, and soon finds himself tormented by his unrelenting sexual desire. Cast: Jeremy Irons, Alain Delon, Ornella Muti, Fanny Ardant, Marie-Christine Barrault, Anne Bennent, Nathalie Juvet. Based on the novel by Marcel Proust. (1984) In French, English subtitles. Not Rated

The Taming of the Shrew

A lavish screen production of the classic Shakespearean play, with Taylor starring as the wealthy Katharina and Burton as the Petruchio who tries to subdue her. Cast: Richard Burton, Elizabeth Taylor, Michael York, Cyril Cusack, Michael Hordern, Alfred Lynch, Alan Webb, Victor Spinetti, Natasha Pyne. (1967) Not Rated

Twelve O’clock High

A heroic American bomber group, based in England during WWII, is overworked and overstressed. Their empathetic leader is replaced by a severe general who begins to identify with the young fliers.  Cast: Gregory Peck, Hugh Marlowe, Gary Merrill.  (1949)  Not Rated

Twice upon a Yesterday

When a man tries to stop his ex-girlfriend from marrying someone else, he is magically given an opportunity to turn back the clock and correct a past mistake. Cast: Lena Headey, Douglas Henshall, Penelope Cruz, Gustavo Salmeron, Eusebio Lazaro, Mark Strong, Charlotte Coleman, Neil Stuke, Elizabeth McGovern. (1999) Rated R


A history teacher, Tom Crick, inspires his students to embrace the past and discover the marvels and mysteries of life. Through many extraordinary stories, he takes them on an unforgettable journey into the past that changes their lives forever. Cast: Jeremy Irons, Ethan Hawke, Sinead Cusack, Cara Buono, Grant Warnock, Lena Headey, Peter Postlethwaite, David Morrissey, John Heard. (1992) Rated R

Wildfire: Season Two

Change comes to Kris Furillo and everyone at the Raintree Ranch. A near win at the Sandpiper Race puts Kris and Wildfire in the limelight, but how will she adjust to fame and how will it affect those closest to her? Cast: Genevieve Cortese, Nicole Tubiola, Nana Visitor, Greg Serano, Micah Alberti, Andrew Hoeft, Ryan Sypek. Originally broadcast on television in 2006. Not Rated

Yoga: Total Body Makeover

Alanna Zabel presents traditional, flowing yoga routines moving through sequences that target specific body parts and muscle groups. Begins with a simple warm-up and moves to lower body to lift and tighten buns, thighs and hips. Next is the sculpting arm and upper body sequence, followed by a middle-whittling core segment, finishing with a total body stretch.