“THE CROODS,” animated, with the voices of Nicholas Cage and Emma Stone. Hilarious, exciting, and thoroughly engaging, Dreamworks continues its winning streak with this prehistoric romp, which follows the titular caveman family – comprised of wary dad Grug (Cage, more invested than he’s been in some time), faithful wife Ugga (Catherine Keener, “Capote”), sons Thunk and Sandy (Clark Duke of “Hot Tub Time Machine” and newcomer Randy Thom), blossoming teen daughter Eep (Stone), and ancient mother-in-law Gran (Cloris Leachman – who else?) – as they venture out of their destroyed cave and put their trust in a young wanderer (Ryan Reynolds) who assures them of a better life elsewhere. That rare family film that won’t be a chore (at all, in this case) for the parents to sit through, “The Croods” has laughs and heart to spare. Rated PG. Running time: 1:38. Suggested retail price: $29.98; Blu-ray $38.99.

“THIS IS THE END,” starring Seth Rogen, Jay Baruchel. Gleefully self-parodying farce from director-star Rogen and filmmaking partner Evan Goldberg (“Superbad”) allows a who’s who of comedy superstars (including Danny McBride, Jonah Hill, Michael Cera, and many more) to indulge their worst behavior as over-the-top versions of themselves, enjoying an average night of debauchery at James Franco’s house until all hell literally breaks loose, forcing the in no way capable crew to contend with what would appear to be the apocalypse. Perhaps even more rude and crude than you’re expecting, “End” is a bona fide hoot for audiences who don’t mind a little gore and raunch mixed in with their comedy. Special features include deleted scenes, a gag reel, and several making-of featurettes. Rated R. Running time: 1:47. Suggested retail price: $30.99; Blu-ray $40.99.


“GLEE: THE COMPLETE SEASON FOUR,” starring Jane Lynch, Lea Michele. Significant casting changes shake up the dynamic in the fourth season of this pioneering musical dramedy, but at least there’s always Lynch as Coach Sue Sylvester to make sure the old magic remains intact. Not rated. Running time: 16:05. Suggested retail price: $59.98; Blu-ray $69.99.

“HOW I MET YOUR MOTHER: THE COMPLETE SEASON EIGHT,” starring Neil Patrick Harris, Josh Radnor. Eight years in, and viewers might rightly be wondering if this supposed “Mother” will ever show up, but with an ensemble this tight and writing this continually clever, Ted and the gang can be forgiven for wanting the fun to carry on a bit longer for this enduring and still extremely popular sitcom. Not rated. Running time: 8:38. Suggested retail price: $39.98.

“NEW GIRL: THE COMPLETE SEASON TWO,” starring Zooey Deschanel, Jake Johnson. One of last year’s biggest and most delightful comedy surprises, “New Girl” has officially taken Deschanel out of the “underdeveloped girlfriend character” rut that movies have tried to keep her in, and allowed her to exercise her considerable comedy chops as Jess, kooky roommate to possible love interest Nick (Jake Johnson, “Safety Not Guaranteed”), would-be lothario Schmidt (scene stealer Max Greenfield, “Veronica Mars”), and perpetually bemused Winston (Lamorne Morris, “Friend Zone”). Special features include an extended version of the popular “Virgins” episode. Not rated. Running time: 9:05. Suggested retail price: $39.98.


“THE LITTLE MERMAID: DIAMOND EDITION,” animated, with the voices of Jodi Benson, Christopher Daniel Barnes. Just when you’d finally gotten “Under the Sea” out of your head! Rated G. Running time: 1:23. Suggested retail price: $49.99.

“THE WIZARD OF OZ: 75TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION,” starring Judy Garland, Ray Bolger. If ever a movie didn’t require an introduction, it’s this timeless 1939 classic, and Dorothy and Toto’s unforgettable adventures down the fabled yellow brick road are given the deluxe treatment by Warner for its 75th anniversary, with a gorgeous remastering and a brand new feature-length making-of documentary, “The Making of the Wonderful Wizard of Oz”, introducing the magic to a new generation. Rated G. Running time: 1:41. Suggested retail price: $35.99.


“BOB AND THE MONSTER,” documentary. With his penchant for raw, honest lyrics and catchy tunes, Bob Forrest seemed primed to hit the big time with his popular and acclaimed L.A. punk band, Thelonious Monster, back in the late 80’s and early 90’s, but a deepening dependence on heroin to get him through his day effectively destroyed this dream. Having kicked the habit, Forrest uses the same honesty that served him in music to connect with people in his new career, that of a drug counselor. Forrest’s back story alone would make for a compelling watch, but it’s his interactions with patients and drive to help others that will leave viewers not only anxious to check out his back catalogue of albums, but to become a fan of the new, improved Bob Forrest. A success story unlike any other and a character study that a work of fiction couldn’t hope to match. Not rated. Running time: 1:26. Suggested retail price: $16.95; Blu-ray $19.95.

“MY FATHER AND THE MAN IN BLACK,” documentary. There’s certainly no shortage of documentaries with grown children attempting to get to know their estranged parents through archival footage and found documents, but they generally don’t involve Johnny Cash. The rare artist that transcends genre, appealing to young and old, hipster and nerd alike, Cash for all his popularity remains a bit of an enigma, but director Jonathan Holiff’s exhaustively researched and warmly delivered doc sheds considerably more light on this beloved performer. The son of Cash’s longtime manager, Saul Holiff, Jonathan’s recent discovery of a veritable vault of recordings and memorabilia detailing the elder Holiff’s time and countless conversations with the Man in Black informs the story, and viewers are not only treated to a touching (if late) reconnection between father and son, but an entirely new perspective on a towering icon in American music history. Not rated. Running time: 1:27. Suggested retail price: $24.95.

– Courtesy of Videoport

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