DVDs, CDs and Books, June 22, 2011


A look at some of the DVDs, CDs and books hitting stores this week:

DVDS

"The Adjustment Bureau" (PG-13): A New York politician (Matt Damon) tries to make a love connection with his dancer soulmate (Emily Blunt) -- much to the consternation of the mysterious title enforcers (including Terence Stamp, "Hurt Locker's" Anthony Mackie and "Mad Men's" John Slattery) trying to keep them apart in this mind-bender inspired by visionary "Blade Runner" writer Philip K. Dick.

The thrills continue in "Unknown" (PG-13), where a botanist (Liam Neeson), in Berlin for a biotech conference, awakens from a four-day coma to discover that someone else has assumed his identity. Comedy's the destination in "Cedar Rapids" (R), as an achingly earnest insurance agent ("The Hangover's" Ed Helms) experiences boozing, bed-hopping and back-stabbing at an industry convention with fellow conventioneers John C. Reilly, Anne Heche and "The Wire's" Isiah Whitlock Jr. "Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Rodrick Rules" (PG) continues the adventures of hapless seventh-grader Greg Heffley (Zachary Gordon). And "The Eagle" (PG-13) takes us to Roman-era Britain, where a young centurion (Channing Tatum), accompanied by a defiant slave (Jamie Bell), embarks on a quest to find a lost legion.

Oldies (not rated) from the Hollywood vault this week include Ralph Meeker as tough guy Mike Hammer in a Criterion Collection edition of "Kiss Me Deadly," Robert Taylor in "Flight Command" and William Holden in "Toward the Unknown," while Michael Caine and Glenda Jackson square off in playwright Tom Stoppard's 1975 "The Romantic Englishwoman" (R). On the documentary front, "Spine Tingler! The William Castle Story" (not rated) profiles the gimmick-crazy filmmaker behind such vintage horror hits as "The House on Haunted Hill" and "Homicidal." Topping today's TV-to-DVD transfers: "William & Kate" (PG), "The Closer: The Complete Sixth Season" (not rated) and "Medium: The Seventh and Final Season" (not rated).

CDS

"Weird" Al Yankovic, "Alpocalypse": Lady Gaga has finally made it.

After selling millions of albums and concert tickets, her legacy has been solidified at long last by a certain curly-haired dorkball who holds the gleaming keys to the pearly gates of pop culture.

That's right, we're talking about everyone's favorite song parodist/accordion badass, "Weird" Al Yankovic, whose latest disc and 13th overall, "Alpocalypse," features "Perform This Way," a satirical skewering of Gaga's "Born This Way."

"Weird" Al has officially been "Born" again.

Also in stores: Dave Alvin, "Eleven Eleven"; Attack! Attack!, "The Latest Fashion"; Michael Bolton, "Gems: The Duets Collection"; Bon Iver, "Bon Iver"; Gomez, "Whatever's On Your Mind"; Guano Apes, "Bel Air"; Jim Lauderdale, "Reason and Rhyme"; Night Ranger, "Somewhere in California"; OK Go, "180/365"; Pitbull, "Planet Pit"; and Jill Scott, "The Light of the Sun."

BOOKS

"Smokin' Seventeen" by Janet Evanovich: In the latest Stephenie Plum novel, the New Jersey bounty hunter has her hands full, becoming the target of a serial killer while at the same time trying to sort out her complicated love life.

In another series installment, Alexander McCall Smith continues his Corduroy Mansions series with "The Dog Who Came in from the Cold," which furthers the adventures of canine hero Freddie de la Hay.

Also hitting shelves: "Abyss" by David Hagberg; "The American Heiress" by Daisy Goodwin; "A Bad Day for Scandal" by Sophie Littlefield; "The Devil Colony" by James Rollins; "Fallen" by Karin Slaughter; "The House in France" by Gully Wells; "The Hypnotist" by Lars Kepler; "Not Afraid of Life: My Journey So Far" by Bristol Palin; "Nothing Daunted: The Unexpected Education of Two Society Girls in the West" by Dorothy Wickenden; "Starting Over" by La Toya Jackson; "The Storm at the Door" by Stefan Merrill Block; "Trespasser" by Paul Doiron; and "Witches of East End" by Melissa de la Cruz.

 

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