The Social Network
Sony, $28.96; Blu-ray, $34.95
A near-perfect match of screenwriter, subject, director and cast, "The Social Network" turns the founding of Facebook by Harvard student Mark Zuckerberg into a fast-paced, funny, up-to-the-minute story about how technological revolutions are redrawing class lines. Jesse Eisenberg plays Zuckerberg as a coldly brilliant, socially inept young man who leaves a trail of broken friendships on his way to phenomenal wealth, while Aaron Sorkin's witty script and David Fincher's stylish direction illustrate how "status" has taken on a whole new meaning in the Facebook era. This is Hollywood entertainment of the first order, turning the issues of the day into whizz-bang drama. "The Social Network" DVD and Blu-ray are as classy as the movie, adding two commentary tracks and a hours of featurettes.
Alpha and Omega
Lionsgate, $29.95; Blu-ray, $39.99
With so many terrific animated films having come out in the last year, there's no reason to waste your children's time with "Alpha and Omega," a painfully bland movie about a strong-willed female wolf (voiced by Hayden Panettiere) and the slacker male wolf (voiced by Justin Long) who complicates her life. When the canines wind up far away from their pack, they have to team with kooky animals to get home, but the high jinks are uninspired, and there's way too much wolf-meets-wolf/wolf-loses-wolf/wolf-gets-wolf-back romantic comedy nonsense for what's ostensibly a kids movie. The wee ones might have more fun with the interactive games and behind-the-scenes featurettes on the DVD and Blu-ray.
Hot in Cleveland: Season One
Comedy Central, $26.98
TV Land's first original sitcom, "Hot in Cleveland," is old-fashioned by design — right down to the live studio audience that the show tapes in front of — but an ace cast gives this throwback some zip. Valerie Bertinelli, Wendie Malick and Jane Leeves play fading showbiz types who move to Cleveland and live in a house with a wacky old woman played by Betty White while they figure out the next step in their lives. The jokes are too pat (and surprisingly raunchy), but the company's good, and the show succeeds at generating the nostalgic, "TV comfort food" vibe it's aiming for. The DVD adds featurettes, bloopers and the original pilot episode.
Sony, $28.95; Blu-ray, $34.95/$39.95
The original 1978 horror-comedy "Piranha" was an overt "Jaws" ripoff/parody, and the 2010 remake retains that tongue-in-cheek spirit, telling a self-consciously silly story about an earthquake that sends schools of flesh-eating fish racing toward a beach full of spring-breakers. Director Alexandre Aja piles up the R-rated gross-out gags, many of which make clever use of 3-D effects, for those who have the technology to appreciate them. But even 2-D TV owners can enjoy this movie's deadpan humor, well-performed by a cast full of young and old comedy stars (including Adam Scott, Elisabeth Shue, Christopher Lloyd and a suspiciously "Jaws"-y Richard Dreyfuss). The DVD and Blu-ray include deleted scenes, featurettes and an Aja commentary.
"The Freebie" (Phase 4, $29.99); "Funny or Die Presents: Season One" ( HBO, $29.98); " Louis C.K.: Hilarious" (Comedy Central, $16.99); "Masterpiece Classic: Downton Abbey" ( PBS, $34.99); "My One and Only" ( 20th Century Fox, $14.98); "Punk: Attitude" (Shout! Factory, $19.93)Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times