Rebel Wilson and Anna Camp work on their breathing exercises in "Pitch Perfect".

New DVDs this week

Published: Friday, Dec. 21, 2012 - 12:00 am | Page 26TICKET

"Premium Rush" (PG-13, 91 minutes, Sony)

Bicycle messengers have to deal with a lot of risks. Car doors suddenly fling open, minivans make right turns without signaling, potholes drop you. Or, as is the case in "Premium Rush," a dirty cop can get in the way of what should be a straightforward courier job, shepherding an envelope to Chinatown. That's the premise of the breezy and entertaining, if imperfect, action flick starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt as the appropriately named Wilee, a law school grad who opted for a life of adrenaline over one of suits and torts. Writer-director David Koepp immerses the audience in the action, setting the camera at handlebar height as Wilee weaves in and out of traffic. Contains profane language and violence. Extras: "Meet the Cast" and behind-the-scenes featurette on the action, stunts and chases.


"Total Recall"(PG-13, 118 minutes, Sony)

Try to erase from your mind the first "Total Recall," the campy, 1990 Paul Verhoeven blockbuster starring Arnold Schwarzenegger. While this may not be a fully realized take on Philip K. Dick's 1966 story, it's a far better film than the Verhoe- ven version. As Douglas Quaid, Colin Farrell displays an ever-evolving combination of bewilderment, terror and confidence as a man with no idea how he learned to handle ammunition, yet capable of firing guns while doing action-hero gymnastics. He brings realism to a hyper-real situation, something that eluded Schwarzenegger. Still, this "Recall" has more than its share of flaws. Contains sci-fi violence and action, some sexual content, brief nudity and profane language. DVD extras: gag reel, "Total Recall Insight Mode," "Science Fiction vs. Science Fact" featurette and a behind-the-scenes look at set production.


"Trouble With the Curve" (PG-13, 111 minutes, Warner Bros.)

Clint Eastwood plays Gus Lobel, scout for the Atlanta Braves who is beginning to feel his years. Gus has a strained relationship with daughter Mickey (Amy Adams), whose mother died when she was 6. Gus isn't warm and fuzzy, which makes it tougher for Mickey to join him on a scouting expedition – purportedly to keep an eye on some health concerns, but also to make one more try at bonding with her father. By the time "Trouble With the Curve" reaches its dramatic – and contrived – reveal, it resembles the blandness that so often passes for movies these days. What promised to be an unforced little comedy turns out to be low-energy to a fault. Contains profanity, sexual references, smoking. Extras: featurette with Adams and her character's love interest, Justin Timberlake. Also, on Blu-ray: "Rising Through the Ranks" featurette.


"Pitch Perfect" (PG-13, 112 minutes, Universal)

This comedy about the world of competitive collegiate a cappella is as funny as it is infectiously toe-tapping. In the lead role of Beca, Anna Kendrick brings a healthy amount of amused detachment as a reluctant member of the all- female Bellas; she also has a great set of pipes on top of a fine sense of comedy. And it's a real pleasure to see Rebel Wilson in the first role to truly showcase her talents since "Bridesmaids." Contains sexual humor, crude language and drug references. Extras: commentary with Moore and producers Elizabeth Banks and Max Handelman, and commentary with producer Paul Brooks; deleted and extended scenes.


"Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days" (PG, 94 minutes, 21st Century Fox)

The "Wimpy" kid residing in all of us should find ample heart, hearty laughs and heaping helpings of wholesome humiliation in the third chapter in what has become a winning, family-friendly film franchise. The major creative players – including "Rodrick Rules" director David Bowers – return to ensure that "Dog Days" trots down the same humorous paths carved by its predecessors. But my, how the boys are changing. Contains some rude humor. Extras: Commentary by Bowers, deleted scenes, "Class Clown" animated short, gag reel. Also, on Blu-ray: FX Movie Channel presents "Wimpy Empire."


"Arbitrage" (R, 107 minutes, Lionsgate):

There are few cinematic pleasures as satisfying as an actor in a role that fits him like a Savile Row suit. Richard Gere offers such gratification in this Wall Street thriller. Gere's character, hedge-fund billionaire named Robert Miller, turns out to be starkly different than the virtuous captain of industry he resembles. But in Gere's smooth characterization, and through the smart writing and direction of Nicholas Jarecki, "Arbitrage" becomes far more complex than just dramatized anti-corporate polemic, or even a simple fall from grace. It also gets fine supporting turns from Susan Sarandon's and Brit Marling's subtle portrayals of women who have benefited from Miller's largesse in far different ways. Extras: commentary with Jarecki, "Who Is Robert Miller?" featurette, "A Glimpse Into Arbitrage" featurette, deleted scenes.

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