“ACT OF VALOR,” starring Alex Veadov and Roselyn Sanchez. Admirable attempt to shine a well-deserved spotlight on the efforts of Navy SEALS goes so far as to cast actual SEALS in the lead roles, with results that are mixed at best performance-wise. Thankfully, the focus here is on action, and “Valor” provides more than enough to satisfy “Call of Duty” fans. Those looking for a thoughtful meditation on the effects of war are encouraged to look elsewhere. Special features include deleted scenes and a commentary from directors Mike McCoy and Scott Waugh. Rated R. Running time: 1:50

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

“JOHN CARTER,” starring Taylor Kitsch and Lynn Collins. Based on a lesser-known work by Edgar Rice Burroughs, creator of Tarzan, this megabudget Disney production failed to ignite the box office furor clearly expected by the omnipresent marketing that heralded its emergence in theaters. But “John Carter” absolutely merits a second chance for its mind-boggling special effects alone, which bombard our steely-eyed hero with all manner of bizarre creatures and alien landscapes. Rated PG-13. Running time: 2:12

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

“JOURNEY 2: THE MYSTERIOUS ISLAND,” starring Dwayne Johnson and Josh Hutcherson. Fun sequel/remake finds young adventurer Sean (Hutcherson) answering the call of a coded distress signal from the island of the title, where treasure, new life forms and most likely certain death awaits. Following along with no small amount of reluctance is Sean’s new stepdad (Johnson), whose brawn and athleticism come in handy on more than one occasion. Kid-friendly action that doesn’t take itself too seriously. Rated PG. Running time: 1:34

Suggested retail price: $28.98; Blu-ray $35.99

“SAFE HOUSE,” starring Denzel Washington and Ryan Reynolds. A CIA rookie (Reynolds) finds himself quite possibly in over his head when the safe house where he’s looking after a captured rogue agent (Washington) is attacked by mercenaries. Smart and fast-paced, “House” will remind action fans of such films as “Assault on Precinct 13” and “The Bourne Identity,” but the top-notch cast and slick direction from Daniel Espinosa (“Easy Money”) ensure that the film makes a mark all its own. Rated R. Running time: 1:55

Suggested retail price: $29.99; Blu-ray $34.98


“BURN NOTICE: THE COMPLETE FIFTH SEASON,” starring Jeffrey Donovan and Bruce Campbell. Formerly blackballed CIA agent Michael Weston (Donovan) finds himself back on the force after being unexpectedly reinstated at his former employer, but the celebration proves short-lived when he’s framed for murder — all of which leads to Weston finally coming face-to-face with the man who originally “burned” him. Special features include a featurette about the show’s many villains. Not rated; contains language and violence. Running time: 12:54

Suggested retail price: $49.98

“CURB YOUR ENTHUSIASM: THE COMPLETE EIGHTH SEASON,” starring Larry David and Jeff Garlin. In what can’t possibly be good news for any women in his immediate area, professional curmudgeon Larry David is back on the market after finalizing his divorce from long-suffering ex-wife Cheryl Hines. To celebrate, he accompanies friends Jeff and Susie on a three-month vacation to New York, where his particular brand of communication actually makes a bit more sense, though certainly creates no fewer awkward situations. Not rated; contains nonstop language and sexual references. Running time: 5:00

Suggested retail price: $39.98


“THE STING,” starring Paul Newman and Robert Redford. The chemistry between screen greats Newman and Redford was never better than in this beloved 1973 comedy, which finds the pair scrambling to avoid and outwit a formidable numbers runner (Robert Shaw) bent on rubbing them out after they con his colleague in one of their patented scams. Reuniting with the director of “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid,” the trio succeed in delivering a follow-up with equal charm and pathos, and with a notorious twist ending that has yet to be topped. Rated PG for mild language and violence. Running time: 2:09

Suggested retail price: $19.98

“YELLOW SUBMARINE,” animated. Probably the best way to show your kids what the ’60s were really like without actually giving them drugs, 1968’s “Yellow Submarine” holds up very nicely thanks to the retro-cool animation and The Beatles’ constant witty, deadpan repartee. Rated G. Running time: 1:29

Suggested retail price: $34.98


“MACHINE GUN PREACHER,” starring Gerard Butler and Michelle Monaghan. We’re not made of stone here. Of course we’re going to recommend a film titled “Machine Gun Preacher.” Thankfully for our sake and yours, director Marc Forster (“Quantum of Solace”) has more than just a catchy title going for him with this fact-based tale of Sam Childers (played to the hilt by Butler). The drug addict and ex-con turned storied hero finds God and thereby discovers a new calling that puts his particular combination of talents to good use: rescuing the orphans of southern Sudan. Rated R for violent content including disturbing images, language, some drug use and a scene of sexuality. Running time: 2:09

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

– Courtesy of Videoport

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