“Inception” (PG-13): “Dark Knight” writer-director Christopher Nolan’s intriguingly twisty sci-fi thriller focuses on a team of dream raiders (led by Leonardo DiCaprio, Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Ellen Page), who must test their expertise when they’re hired to plant an idea in the mind of a dying industrialist’s heir.
Elsewhere on the recent-release front, “Shrek Forever After” (PG), the fourth (and presumably final) chapter of the fractured fairy-tale cartoon saga, strands the restless title ogre (voiced by Mike Myers) in a twisted version of Far Far Away ruled by the unruly Rumpelstiltskin. The award-winning documentary “Restrepo” (R) follows an Army platoon’s yearlong tour of duty in Afghanistan. And in France’s award-winning “Mademoiselle Chambon” (not rated), a married construction worker (Vincent Lindon) falls for his young son’s beguiling teacher (Sandrine Kiberlain).
Leading the list of movies that never played local theaters: “Annie’s Point” (not rated), with Betty White as a widow who hits the road, granddaughter in tow, to grant her late husband’s last wish. Richard Thomas co-stars. In “Across the Line” (not rated), filmed as “The Exodus of Charlie Wright,” an L.A. financial whiz (Aidan Quinn) goes into self-imposed exile in Tijuana when his billion-dollar empire is exposed as a Ponzi scheme; Andy Garcia, Gina Gershon and Mario Van Peebles round out the starring cast. And in the comedy “Barry Munday” (R), a wannabe ladies’ man (“Morning Glory’s” Patrick Wilson) tries to adjust to life without a vital piece of male equipment.
With gift-buying season in full gear, a host of holiday packages arrive, from the “Shrek: The Whole Story” boxed set (PG) to ESPN’s “30 for 30 Gift Set Collection, Vol. One” (not rated), featuring such sports-themed titles as “The Legend of Jimmy the Greek” and “Small Potatoes: Who Killed the USFL?” For sheer volume, however, nothing tops the “Fox 75th Anniversary Collection” (unrated unless otherwise noted), a three-volume, 75-title extravaganza that marks the DVD debut of the Oscar-winning 1933 “Cavalcade,” which recounts the lives of a well-to-do British couple from New Year’s Eve 1899 to New Year’s Day 1933. Also part of the package: such Academy favorites as 1940’s “The Grapes of Wrath,” 1941’s “How Green Was My Valley,” 1944’s “Laura,” 1950’s “All About Eve,” 1961’s “The Hustler,” 1965’s “The Sound of Music” (G), 1969’s “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid” (PG), 1970’s “M*A*S*H” (PG), 1970’s “Patton” (PG), 1971’s “The French Connection” (R), 1977’s “Star Wars” (PG), 1979’s "Norma Rae” (PG), 1987’s “Wall Street” (R), 1999’s “Boys Don’t Cry” (R), 2001’s “Moulin Rouge!” (PG-13), 2006’s “Little Miss Sunshine” (R), 2008’s “Slumdog Millionaire” (R) and 2009’s “Avatar” (PG-13). Oldies arriving on Blu-ray Disc today include “Lost in Translation” (R), “St. Elmo’s Fire” (R), “Rush Hour” (PG-13), “About Last Night …” (R), “The Deep” (PG) and “Videodrome” (R).
Tuning in to TV transfers (all unrated unless otherwise noted), Jeff Bridges headlines HBO’s “A Dog Year” (G), playing a 50-something writer in midexistential crisis who impulsively agrees to adopt a high-strung border collie. The fact-based “Prayers for Bobby” features Sigourney Weaver as a deeply religious wife and mother struggling to accept her son’s homosexuality. The PBS documentary “Lennon NYC” chronicles John Lennon’s post-Beatles days in the States, while the three-part “God in America” traces three centuries of religious liberty — and its impact on U.S. history. Series arriving on DVD include Las Vegas’ own Dan Tanna (alias the late Robert Urich) in “Vega$: Season Two, Volume One,” plus “Hoarders: Season Two, Part One” (PG), “Bonanza: The Official Second Season, Volume One,” “Dragnet 1969: Season Three,” “Boy Meets World: The Complete Fourth Season” and “Law & Order: Season Eight.”
Daft Punk, “TRON: Legacy (film soundtrack)”: With their glowing LED robot helmets, the dudes in Daft Punk look like they could be extras from the remake of sci-fi favorite “TRON.”
So it’s only fitting that they handle the film’s soundtrack, right?
With beats as overwhelming as the movie’s retina blasting visuals, the Parisian electronica duo have sought to make the movie something that you feel as well as see.
Also in stores: Natasha Bedingfield, “Strip Me”; deadmau5, “4×4=12”; Duffy, “Endlessly”; Flyleaf, “Remember to Live”; Hedley, “The Show Must Go On”; Hinder, “The All-American Nightmare”; INXS, “Original Sin”; Eric Johnson, “Up Close”; Plain White T’s, “Wonders of the Younger”; T.I., “No Mercy”; and Robin Trower, “The Playful Heart.”
“Dead or Alive” by Tom Clancy: Jack Ryan Jr. and his Campus colleagues are on the trail of the Emir, a sadistic killer behind some of the deadliest attacks against the West, and the team will stop at nothing to bring him to justice.
For young adult readers, Richelle Mead wraps up her Vampire Academy Series with “Last Sacrifice,” which finds Rose on trial for her life and Lissa in line for the Royal Throne.
Also hitting shelves this week: “The Bards of Bone Plain” by Patricia A. McKillip; “Catacombs” by Anne McCaffrey and Elizabeth Ann Scarborough; “The Life and Opinions of Maf the Dog and of His Friend Marilyn Monroe” by Andrew O’Hagan; “The Lying Game” by Sara Shepard; “Seer of Sevenwaters” by Juliet Marillier; “Straight Talk, No Chaser” by Steve Harvey; and “Valleys of Death: A Memoir of the Korean War” by Bill Richardson and Kevin Maurer.