“CONVICTION,” starring Hilary Swank and Sam Rockwell. Based on a true story, this absorbing legal drama finds the leads in top form as close-knit siblings torn apart when Rockwell is accused of murder and normally mild-mannered housewife Swank is forced to try to prove her brother’s innocence on her own. It has all the makings of a made-for-TV melodrama, but the dependably fantastic performances of Swank and Rockwell ensure that “Conviction” never lapses into cliched territory, and supporting turns from Juliette Lewis and Melissa Leo round out the cast nicely. Rated R. Running time: 1:47.

Suggested retail price: DVD $29.99; Blu-ray $39.99. 

“LET ME IN,” starring Kodi Smit-McPhee and Chloe Moretz. Skillful reworking of the 2008 cult hit from Sweden failed to catch on as expected with American audiences, in spite of fine performances from the young leads as a bullied boy and the little vampire girl who loves him. If you watch only one version, the original is the way to go (as is generally the case), but there are really no glaring issues with this remake to point to, other than the fact that it probably doesn’t need to exist in light of the already widely recognized quality of its predecessor. Rated R. Running time: 1:56.

Suggested retail price: DVD $29.98; Blu-ray $39.99. 

“NEVER LET ME GO,” starring Carey Mulligan and Andrew Garfield (based on the novel by Kazou Ishiguro). A trio of inseparable friends, having grown up completely isolated from the outside world in a rigid boarding school, find both their relationship and entire worldview (however limited it may be) challenged in unthinkable ways upon receiving a certain piece of information that we wouldn’t dare spoil for you. A widely acclaimed adaptation from director Mark Romanek (“One Hour Photo”), “Never” is a powerful viewing experience, and one that serves to further prove that Mulligan (“An Education”) is quite possibly the best young actress working today. Rated R for some sexuality and nudity. Running time: 1:43.

Suggested retail price: DVD $29.99; Blu-ray $39.99. 

“ALICE IN WONDERLAND: SPECIAL UN-ANNIVERSARY EDITION,” animated with the voices of Kathryn Beaumont and Ed Wynn. In tandem with its 50th birthday comes this deluxe edition of the beloved Disney-fied version of the hallucinatory Carroll classic. Rated G. Running time: 1:15.

Suggested retail price: DVD $29.99; Blu-ray $39.99. 

“HATCHET II,” starring Danielle Harris and Tony Todd. Gore-soaked satire/homage of sorts pits damsel in distress Harris (“Halloween”) against indiscriminately slashing swamp creature Crowley (Kane Hodder, best known as Jason from the “Friday the 13th” series), who passes the time in between chase scenes by eviscerating everyone on screen whenever possible. Gore is amped to such a degree that the tone lurches from horror to parody and back again, but director Adam Green has clearly studied his source material, so fans of the ’80s slasher flick boom will no doubt enjoy themselves. Rated R. Running time: 1:29.

Suggested retail price: DVD $27.98; Blu-ray $34.98. 


“ALL ABOUT EVE,” starring Bette Davis and George Sanders. Vintage cattiness from 1950 provided the great Bette Davis with her signature role as Margo, a Broadway star who takes a shine to starstruck Eve (Anne Baxter), whose idol worship nets her a job as Margo’s personal secretary in this Oscar winner for Best Picture. The development works out well for both women until Eve’s intentions reveal themselves as more sinister than anyone could have realized. Performances are fantastic across the board, but “All About Eve” is all about the script, and writer-director Joseph Mankiewicz (“Guys and Dolls”) tosses off one classic line after another. Running time: 2:18.

Suggested retail price: $34.98. 

“BOYS DON’T CRY,” starring Hilary Swank and Chloe Sevigny. Another fact-based drama starring Swank, 1999’s “Boys” is an alternately moving and devastating account of Brandon Teena (Swank, earning a well-deserved Oscar), a transgendered Nebraskan teen girl who finds life far more enjoyable and comfortable as a boy. All goes reasonably well until her secret is found out by a pair of homophobic former friends (played with sickening menace by a young Peter Sarsgaard and Brendan Sexton III of “Welcome to the Dollhouse”), and the events that follow are likely to shock even the most jaded viewers. Not a movie one typically watches more than once, but essential viewing all the same. Special features include a commentary from director Kimberly Peirce (“Stop-Loss”). Rated R. Running time: 1:58.

Suggested retail price: $24.99.


“MONSTERS,” starring Whitney Able and Scoot McNairy. There are plenty of megabudget, sci-fi blockbusters out there to choose from, and they’re generally a lot of fun. But it’s even more impressive when you come across a film that manages to convey the same level of awe and otherworldliness on a mere fraction of the usual multimillion-dollar budget. Writer-director Gareth Edwards’ “Monsters” is just such a film. Thanks to a crashed NASA probe, it turns out that Mexico is now overrun by giant alien spider-like beings, which are barely contained through continued military efforts. In the midst of all this, a journalist (McNairy, “Bones”) has reluctantly agreed to help an overwhelmed tourist (Able, “Criminal Minds”) get to the U.S. border. Viewers hoping for a thrill-ride creature feature will likely come away disappointed, as here the aliens are subtly incorporated into the character-driven story, but the brief, infrequent appearances of the “Monsters” serve to ratchet up the already considerable tension. Rated R for language. Running time: 1:34.

Suggested retail price: DVD $26.98; Blu-ray $29.98. 

“WELCOME TO THE RILEYS,” starring James Gandolfini and Kristen Stewart. It’s always interesting to watch an actor stray from the character type they’ve become synonymous with, and in “Rileys,” the great Gandolfini drops the terrifying bluster and ursine charm he so famously displayed in “The Sopranos” to play a comparatively soft-spoken, bereaved father in this perceptive drama from director Jake Scott (“Plunkett & Macleane”). Here, Gandolfini makes the acquaintance of Mallory (Stewart, “Adventureland”), a profane, hard-living young woman currently working in a nightclub as a stripper. To the understandable concern of his wife, Lois (Melissa Leo, “Frozen River”), he begins to care for Mallory as though she were his own daughter, who in this case died in a car crash at age 15. Rated R for strong sexual content, brief drug use and pervasive language involving a teenager. Running time: 1:50.

Suggested retail price: DVD $28.95; Blu-ray $34.95.


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