‘Flags’ will fly again
The afterlife: Clint Eastwood’s World War II drama “Flags of Our Fathers,” based on the bestselling book by James Bradley and Ron Powers about the three survivors seen in the Pulitzer Prize-winning Feb. 23, 1945, photo of the flag-raising on Iwo Jima, was one of last fall’s highly anticipated films.
Most of the major critics lauded the drama. But “Flags,” which lands Tuesday on DVD, didn’t attract an audience, making just $33.6 million domestically with $27.5 million more internationally. Even more surprisingly, it managed to earn only two Oscar nominations, both in technical categories.
“Flags” has been overshadowed by Eastwood’s companion World War II movie, “Letters From Iwo Jima,” which tells the story of the battle through the eyes of the Japanese. The intimate, low-budget drama, which was released just before Christmas, has already received best picture honors from critics’ groups, won the Golden Globe for best foreign-language film and is up for several Oscars, including best film, director and screenplay.
“Hell” is back: Mexican director Guillermo del Toro’s latest film, “Pan’s Labyrinth,” recently won the National Society of Film Critics’ best film honors and is nominated for six Academy Awards, including screenplay for Del Toro and best foreign-language film.
If that wasn’t enough on his plate, Del Toro has also managed to find time to produce the new animated fantasy “Hellboy -- Sword of Storms,” which premieres Tuesday on DVD.
Based on Del Toro’s popular 2004 live-action fantasy, “Hellboy,” the adventure finds a folklore professor opening a forbidden scroll that causes him to become obsessed with the Japanese demons of Thunder and Lightning. The Board of Paranormal Research and Defense sends Hellboy (the voice of the film’s star, Ron Perlman) to investigate.
Also along from the original are Selma Blair as pyrokinetic Liz Sherman and Doug Jones as Abe Sabien. Though Jones played the role of Abe in the feature, his voice was dubbed in by David Hyde Pierce. In “Sword of Storms,” Jones finally gets to voice his own character.
The film, which features a slew of extras, was also produced by Mike Magnola, the creator of the “Hellboy” comics.
A stand-up guy
Eddie’s roots: Dressed in a skin-tight, red-leather suit, a 22-year-old Eddie Murphy is crude, rude, outrageous in his 1983 comedy concert film, “Delirious,” which makes its DVD debut Tuesday just in time to cash in on his success in “Dreamgirls.”
Those accustomed to Murphy’s spate of lame family comedies such as “Daddy Day Care” and “Dr. Dolittle” will be shocked at his obscenity-laden, sexist and even homophobic routines.
If the slipper fits
Will second time be the charm? Disney’s first made-for-DVD sequel to its 1950 classic “Cinderella” was an embarrassment. But that hasn’t stopped the studio from making a second follow-up, “Cinderella III: A Twist in Time,” which arrives Tuesday.
Cindy and Prince Charming have been married for a year. But the Evil Stepmother is still carrying a grudge.
So she steals the Fairy Godmother’s Magic Wand. And faster than you can say “Bibbidi Bobbidi Boo,” the Stepmother turns back time and transforms the glass slipper so that it fits her ugly daughter Anastasia.
-- Susan King