Available on: Blu-ray
Debuting on blu-ray, "My Fair Lady" represents the pinnacle of filmed musicals. Hepburn's voice was notoriously dubbed by singer Marnie Nixon, yet Rex Harrison simply "talked" his songs and does so with flair. At the close of the 19th century, professor Henry Higgins (Harrison) bets that nobles are made rather than bred. To prove the point he wagers a friend that he can teach Cockney flower vendor Eliza Doolittle (Hepburn), to be a proper English lady. It all begins with tutoring Eliza to speak like one of the upper crust. Following a number of comic flubs, Higgins slowly recognizes that Eliza has become an enchanting companion. Great songs include Higgins's lament, "Why Can't a Woman Be More Like A Man?" Eliza's, "I Could Have Danced All Night." and Higgins's "I've Grown Accustomed To Her Face." A gorgeous film owing much to its costume and set design, the movie remains a tribute to education's role in achieving upward mobility.
WEST SIDE STORY
* * * * (A)
Directed by Robert Wise, Jerome Robbins
Starring Natalie Wood, Richard Beymer, Simon Oakland, Rita Moreno, Russ Tamblyn, George Chakiris, Eliot Feld, Tony Mordente
MGM//Not Rated//Musical//153 minutes
50th Anniversary Edition, Available on: Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack
Winner of 9 Academy Awards, including Best Director and Best Picture, this musical reboots "Romeo and Juliet" as a pair of star-crossed lovers in New York's Upper West Side. It the 1950s, racial tensions ignite between rival gangs, the Puerto Rican Sharks and the Caucasian Jets. Natalie Wood plays Maria, a Puerto Rican seamstress who falls for ex-Jet member Tony (Beymer) -- despite her brother Bernardo's (Chakiris) position, leader of the Sharks. At Maria's behest, Tony attempts to prevent a rumble between the gangs, but tragedy ensues. Fine music, composed by Johnny Green and Leonard Bernstein, and exciting choreography, mark this production as one for the ages. Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack features include: hardcover book with rare photos, 10 collectible postcards, tribute CD with covers from Julie Andrews, Gloria Estefan with Dave Grusin, the Original Broadway Cast.
Disney unleashes four titles on 3D:
*1/2 (Grade C-)
Directed by Hoyt Yeatman
Voices of Will Arnett, Penelope Cruz, Zach Galifianakis, Nicolas Cage, Sam Rockwell, Tracy Morgan
Disney//Rated PG//Family, Animated//88 minutes
Available on: 3-Disc Combo Pack: Blu-ray 3D, Blu-ray, DVD
Disney teams with producer Jerry Bruckheimer for this film centered around a team of biologically engineered, brainiac guinea pigs trained in espionage. Tapped by the US government to stop a diabolical billionaire from taking over the world, the rodents are outfitted with tiny high-tech gear. Team members include squad leader Darwin (Rockwell), weapons expert Blaster (Morgan), and a martial arts master Juarez (Cruz), described as sexy in Disney's literature. The team's reconnaissance expert is a housefly, and for the dirtiest jobs they've recruited Speckles (Cage), a star-nosed mole. Presented in 3-D, this one's likely to benefit the pet store industry as g-pigs get wish-listed by 5 to 8 year-old's everywhere.
Out on Home Video: 'Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2' released
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