“CORIOLANUS,” starring Ralph Fiennes and Gerard Butler. Fiennes ably directs himself in this gritty update of one of Shakespeare’s somewhat lesser-known works, the bloody tale of a Roman hero (Fiennes) forced to unite with a sworn enemy (Butler) after being banished from his homeland for his extreme political views and outright hostility toward his fellow citizens. Retaining the original prose, Fiennes ensures that Shakespeare remains the true star of the film, resulting in an adaptation that should please both English majors and viewers simply looking for some big-screen carnage. Rated R. Running time: 2:03

Suggested retail price: $26.98; Blu-ray $29.99

“GONE,” starring Amanda Seyfried and Jennifer Carpenter. Another attempt to catapult the winsome Seyfried (“Mean Girls”) onto the A-list, this time saddling her with a fairly pedestrian thriller wherein she attempts to track down and confront the serial killer who previously kidnapped and has now disappeared with her sister. Compelling but by-the-numbers fare. Rated PG-13. Running time: 1:34

Suggested retail price: $26.99; Blu-ray $30.49

“MAN ON A LEDGE,” starring Sam Worthington and Elizabeth Banks. Tight and tense throughout, this crime thriller from director Asgar Leth (“Ghosts of Cite Soleil”) doesn’t muck about with characterization or backstory. Instead, it thrusts the audience right into the nonstop action as escaped convict and former police officer Nick (Worthington) spends the running time threatening to jump off a 21-story building — effectively distracting local law enforcement from the diamond heist taking place just across the street, led by Nick’s brother (Jamie Bell). All killer and no filler, “Man on a Ledge” is perfect Friday-night escapist entertainment. Rated PG-13. Running time: 1:42

Suggested retail price: $26.99; Blu-ray $30.49

“TRUE BLOOD: THE COMPLETE FOURTH SEASON,” starring Anna Paquin and Stephen Moyer. While the worldwide vampire craze may be finally on the wane, thankfully nobody told the creators of HBO’s bloodsucker soap opera, who come up with all manner of otherworldly, alternately gory and sexy shenanigans for Sookie (Paquin) to get involved in. A return to form for a series many fans felt was starting to lose its bite, season four effectively brings the story back into focus. Special features include a post-production featurette. Not rated; contains language, violence, strong sexual content and drug content. Running time: 12:00

Suggested retail price: $59.99; Blu-ray $79.98


“MAVERICK: THE COMPLETE FIRST SEASON,” starring James Garner and Jack Kelly. At long last available on DVD after years of no doubt irate fan letters, this beloved TV comedy-Western holds up extremely well after all these years. That’s thanks in no small part to the eternally likable Garner displaying his usual good-natured rakishness as Bret Maverick, a roving gambler traversing the Wild West with his brother Bart (Kelly) in tow, on the lookout for ladies, poker games and whatever general trouble they can get themselves into. Good clean fun that should appeal to longtime fans and newcomers alike. Not rated; contains mild violence. Running time: 22:30

Suggested retail price: $39.98


“THE OUTLAW JOSEY WALES,” starring Clint Eastwood and Chief Dan George. One of Clint’s many iconic roles, this 1976 post-Civil War action-drama concerns a former Missouri farmer who takes up with a group of settlers in need of his particular brand of protection, a task that increases in difficulty when the Union soldiers who murdered his family show up. There are plenty of the tense face-offs and often hilariously macho dialogue that fans of Eastwood have come to expect, but “Wales” is a fine Western in its own right, and far more than simply “Dirty Harry on a Horse” (not that that doesn’t sound awesome). Special features include a making-of featurette and a commentary from film critic Richard Schickel. Rated PG. Running time: 2:15

Suggested retail price: $14.98


“GOON,” starring Seann William Scott and Jay Baruchel. Best known as smarmy smirkmeister Stifler from the popular “American Pie” series, Scott isn’t a performer often subject to critical accolades. But his particular brand of greasy yet honest likability can be surprisingly effective in the right role, and “Goon” represents his best work to date. Loosely based on a true story, “Goon” relays the bloody tale of Doug Glatt, a regular guy trapped in a family of above-average intelligence whose underachieving life is given an unexpected shot of adrenaline when he’s recruited by a semi-pro hockey team for the sole purpose of beating the living crap of the opposing team — a task he takes to with surprising good humor in spite of the inherent brutality. An undeserved underperformer at the box office, “Goon” stands a good chance of becoming a “Slap Shot” for the new millennium. Rated R for brutal violence, non-stop language, some strong sexual content and drug use. Running time: 1:32

Suggested retail price: $26.98; Blu-ray $34.98

“WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT KEVIN,” starring Tilda Swinton and John C. Reilly. The relationship between parent and child is such a revered and storied bond that you don’t often see the darker side of that equation on the big screen outside of over-the-top horror movies, but director Lynne Ramsay (“Morvern Callar”) isn’t one of those filmmakers interested in sugarcoating anything for easy consumption. Here, she adapts Lionel Shriver’s bestselling novel concerning an extremely put-upon mother (Swinton) struggling to contend with her rebellious and often outright hostile son, Kevin, whose violent behavior towards his mother becomes increasingly difficult to understand and deal with as he grows into a teenager. His ineffectual father (Reilly) is virtually no help. Applying her visually experimental and non-linear style, Ramsay successfully conveys a tone of incredible unease. Rated R for disturbing violence and behavior, some sexuality and language. Running time: 1:52

Suggested retail price: $29.99; Blu-ray $34.99

– Courtesy of Videoport

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