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cultural vandal | by maryann johanson

new on DVD: Down Under, and down under

If you liked March of the Penquins, then don’t miss Deep Blue (read my review/buy at Amazon), which equally beautiful and haunting but in a much bigger way. Instead of March’s laser-sharp focus on one little species of critter roaming the surface of this planet, this BBC documentary encompasses the entire biosphere of the Earth’s oceans, introducing us to some of the strange and wonderful beings who live there.

With its tenor of a recurring nightmare, the Australian horror flick Wolf Creek (read my review/buy at Amazon) is haunting, too. Relentless in its toying with your psyche and eschewing the pat Hollywood ending, this is brutally effective terror.

Fun with Dick & Jane (read my review/buy at Amazon) isn’t.

Two little films came and went from multiplexes with little fanfare and before anyone had a chance to see them, an offense that deserves to be rememdied now that they’re available for home viewing. The Greatest Game Ever Played (not reviewed/buy at Amazon) is the second film from actor turned director Bill Paxton, and his visual flair turns a trite story — about the 1913 US Open and the young golfer who stunned the world by triumphing in it — into an engaging one. (The always fantastic Shia LaBeouf as the young golfer doesn’t hurt, either.) And Lasse Hallstrom’s An Unfinished Life (read my review/buy at Amazon), about a pair of old friends (Robert Redford and Morgan Freeman) whose conentious relationship gets a jolt when the daughter-in-law (Jennifer Lopez) of one of them gets thrown into their little world.

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