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HolidayBuyer's Guide
Home Entertainment

Play: DVD -- Kill Bill 2, Gothika, Bad Taste

How do you get from high-class thrillers to low-budget schlock flicks? This week's new releases show the way. Also, there's something called Star Wars on the way, apparently.

How do you get from high-class thrillers to low-budget schlock flicks? This week's new releases show the way. Also, there's something called Star Wars on the way, apparently.

Gothika (Columbia, 94 mins)
Psychiatrist Dr Miranda Grey wakes up one day as a patient in the same asylum where she had worked, accused of the heinous murder of her husband. Having no memory of the incident that got her committed, Dr Grey (Halle Berry) has to endure being locked up with the criminally insane inmates she previously treated, such as Penélope Cruz's crazed character, Chloe. The plight to regain her memory finds Miranda spiralling into a world of madness and delusion as she is stalked by a spirit trying to get message across.

Gothika is a chilling thriller and features good performances from the supporting cast, including Robert Downey Jr and Bernard Hill. Special features on the DVD include the director's audio commentary, video clip by Limp Bizkit, as well as a behind-the-scenes feature on the making of the movie.

Kill Bill Vol. 2 (Buena Vista, 131 mins)
Director Quentin Tarantino delivers the style he's famous for in this action flick that's even bloodier than the first installment (if that's possible).

We follow The Bride (Uma Thurman) as she continues her vendetta with a vengeance. Vol. 1 saw two of her five enemies -- O-Ren Ishii (Lucy Lui) and Vernita Green -- taken out and her quest continues as she goes after Elle Driver (Darryl Hannah), Budd, and the most important target of all, Bill (David Carradine).

Part two gives us a bit more background into the reasons for revenge. We're taken back to the wedding where it all started, we find out the unborn daughter she thought killed when she was shot is still alive, and discover how her enemies fit into it all.

Kung Fu fantasy meets the Wild West in a malicious marathon of martial arts and murder. What more could anyone want?

Bad Taste: Collector's Edition (Universal, 88 mins)
It was inevitable with the massive success of the Lord Of The Rings trilogy that everything that Peter Jackson's ever filmed would see DVD release. This is is his directorial debut, and what it lacks in big budget, it makes up in pure splattery gore.

At its most basic level, Bad Taste is an alien invasion flick with a distinct New Zealand tone -- and we're not just talking accents here. It's also a rare chance to see Peter Jackson in front of the camera for once, as well as one of the only movies we can think of with a genuine laugh-out-loud exploding sheep.

The humour tone is deliberately dark, and while it's not a film you should watch while eating dinner, it is a rollicking good time if you're a fan of, say, the Evil Dead trilogy. Extras include commentary by just about everyone who isn't Peter Jackson, although the shoeless one does present a bonus slideshow.

Land Before Time 1-10 (Universal, length varies)
We can't think of a stranger contrast to Bad Taste than The Land Before Time. Then again, we can't think of anything more painful than sitting through 10 of these syrupy-sweet kid's dinosaur-centric epics, either. They're all out, as seperate movies -- this isn't some kind of brain-bending mega-boxed set. Clearly for a specific audience -- if you want your kid's brains to turn into cheese, just dump them in front of all of these in order. That'll make them behave if nothing else will.

Star Wars Trilogy (Fox, 372 minutes)
Blah blah blah, George Lucas. Blah Blah Blah the man's already got pots of money. Blah blah blah, he'd like some more, please. Blah Blah Blah Four Disc Set of reworked classic films with new digital bits added. Blah Blah Blah Fans already foaming at the mouth (and several other places) in anticipation of release. Blah Blah Blah Scene of ravenous ewoks descending on Jar Jar Binks not to be missed.