Lots of good stuff this week, but my favorite two titles start with the letter "C" as in Cuality.
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory: Two Disc Special Edition
I didn't think anyone could pull it off, but Tim Burton manages to create a version of the Roald Dahl classic that's just as spectacular and moving as the 1971 dazzler starring Gene Wilder. Here Johnny Depp creates his own version of the mad genius, channeling not so much Michael Jackson as a misanthropic Mr. Rogers.
The backstory provided by the riveting adaptation from Burton cohort John August (who also adapted Big Fish, see his blog) helps flesh out Wonka in a warped-yet-endearing (aka: Burtonesque) fashion. The sumptuous production design and art direction (which deserve Oscar recognition) will probably be lost on the small screen, so you should by a Hi-Def flat panel roughly the size of your largest wall before watching this.
And somebody nominate Deep Roy for his performance as every single Oompa Loompa in the joint.
Extras in the special edition include a featurette on just how they managed to create so many Roys, some deep background on Dahl, trading cards (!), the training of the squirrels that attack Veruca Salt, and much, much, more.
The Devil's Rejects: Unrated
Along bascially the same lines as Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (well, they both came out in the summer and the leads have pasty skin) comes this bloody tale of a murderous clan on the run from the law. This is the long-awaited (by a small cult following) sequel to gore-mand Rob Zombie's House of 1,000 Corpses, but is generally held in higher regard.
Extras include two commentary tracks - one from Zombie, the other from the actors, a blooper reel, which on a movie this gory has got to be hilarious, plus alot of "in movie" bonuses like a home video from one of the killers, a Captain Spaulding Christmas Special, and an episode of the Morris Green Show.
Enjoy the unrated vittles!
Reefer Madness: The Movie Musical
A few years ago somebody got the bright idea to take the hilarious anti-pot reel Reefer Madness and do something useful with it like turn it into a musical. The result was a success, leading to the next natural step of turning it back into a movie, with everyone from Kristen Bell to Neve Campbell reveling in the camp.
Sadly, this effort did not make it to the big screen, but at least found a decent run on cable. Now it's available on DVD, with no extras to speak of, but when Alan Cumming is portraying a Goat-Man and FDR, do you really need anything more?