DD’s DVDs – Week of April 29, 2008Written by Dave Dykema | | firstname.lastname@example.org
There’s a lot of ’70s memories in this latest batch of DVDs. Here’s what’s coming out Tuesday, April 29.
If you’re a “Grey’s Anatomy” fan, don’t despair. The show just came back last week. But if you’ve been craving more, and your itch still isn’t scratched, 27 Dresses might meet your needs.
It stars “Grey’s” Katherine Heigl as the always-a-bridesmaid-never-the-bride heroine who has gone through this ritual 27 times (thus all the useless dresses) with no ring to show for it. I liked Ms. Heigl in “Grey’s” and the recent Knocked Up. She’s sunny, charming, and beautiful—prerequisites for the lead in a romantic comedy. If my wife wanted to drag this out for me to watch, I might not actually mind (don’t tell her that, though).
Dark Shadows: The Beginning Collection 4
As a teen I was so jealous reading the TV listings in the Detroit Free Press. In Toledo, there was a PBS station, channel 30, showing reruns of “Dark Shadows.” I loved that show as a kid and knew it was in syndication, but no stations around me picked it up. You lucky bastards got to see it.
Fast-forward a few years. I got a job in Toledo, moved here, and set the VCR to record the melodrama of Barnabas Collins. To my horror (pun intended), WGTE stopped showing it a few weeks later.
Years later the Sci-Fi Channel launched and “Dark Shadows” was one of its banner titles. I was able to see the entire soap from the beginning. This collection of episodes is from the pre-Barnabas era—the others already available on DVD from MPI for some time now. It’s weaker stuff, but still entertaining, and very interesting to watch what the show was before it evolved into what it became. To those who remember I’ll point out that this volume is the start of the Laura Collins, a.k.a. the Phoenix, arc.
Also of note: reportedly Johnny Depp is keen to bring “Dark Shadows” to the bring screen, with himself as Barnabas Collins!
Paddle to the Sea
The Red Balloon
The titles alone should be familiar to anyone growing up in the seventies. Memories of classroom lights being dimmed, the shades drawn, and the ever-popular movie projector being wheeled into the room come to mind when I think of these. I can’t count the number of times I’ve seen these in elementary school.
Paddle to the Sea has no (or very minimal) dialogue and follows the journey of a handcrafted wooden boat with a Native American inside as it makes its way from Canada through the Great Lakes to the ocean. Images of beauty and pollution intercut, making a child wonder if the tiny craft will complete its destiny. I grew up by Lake Michigan and used to imagine seeing the little canoe go by. I can picture children thinking the same thing here gazing out at Lake Erie.
My memories of The Red Balloon aren’t quite as fond. A French boy finds a red balloon floating in the streets of Paris and takes a liking to it. Somehow, the balloon seems to take to the boy as well. There are several playful sequences as the balloon displays an almost sentient quality. I remember the boy as being kind of wimpy. Maybe the European flavor didn’t translate as well as Paddle to the Sea. I don’t know. But I will say that I do remember this movie, so it had an impact on me.
Parents looking for something to show their child besides the latest trendy cartoon might want to check these out.