New DVDs this week

Published: Friday, May. 31, 2013 - 12:00 am | Page 15TICKET

"Dark Skies" (PG-13, 97 minutes, Dimension Films/Anchor Bay): This is a workmanlike piece of suspense, despite its reliance on several tired tropes of the genre. The movie starts slowly, as a suburban couple (Keri Russell and Josh Hamilton) and their two young sons start to notice odd things happening around the house, such as finding a towering construction of precariously piled food containers in the kitchen.

From there, the weirdness keeps getting weirder. The film works its way to a satisfying-enough conclusion, even allowing for one fairly ridiculous inconsistency: Despite the fact that whoever (or whatever) is terrorizing this family initially seems to walk through walls, there are several scenes where it appears to prefer conventional doors. Contains obscenity, drug use, brief sensuality and scary, violent imagery.

"Lore" (unrated, 108 minutes, in German and some English with English subtitles, Music Box Films): The protagonist of "Lore," a haunting drama set in Germany after the country's defeat in World War II, is a teenage girl. Lore (pronounced "Laura") is just old enough to have learned to fear and hate Jews. It's a sick lesson imparted to her by her Nazi parents, who are taken into custody by Allied troops. Lore begins to unlearn that lesson and pick up a few new ones, as she and her four younger siblings make their way to a relative's house. The countryside they travel through resembles the setting of a latter-day Brothers Grimm tale. Death and moral ambiguity litter the roadside. Lore and her brood encounter a young man named Thomas (Kai Malina). Thomas becomes their protector when they are stopped by American troops. It is his yellow star, marked "Jude" (Jew), that allows him safe passage. Contains obscenity, nudity, sensuality, violence and disturbing images and thematic material.

Also: "The Loving Story" (documentary about the then-illegal 1958 interracial marriage between a white man named Richard Loving and his part-black, part-Cherokee fiancèe Mildred Jeter that triggered a landmark Supreme Court ruling; docu-drama); "The Numbers Station," "Hellbound?," "Shoot First, Die Later" (1971, Italy/France), "Life Is Sweet" (1990, the Criterion Collection), "Swimming to Cambodia" (1978, the Criterion Collection) and "Dead Mine."

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