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December 9, 2008 |

By Dustin Rowles | DVD Releases | December 9, 2008 |

Despite the fact that there’s only three weeks until Christmas (seriously, folks: Get on it. Those gifts don’t buy themselves, you know), there are only two new DVD film releases this week, neither of which are likely to tickle your uvulas.

Dr. Suess’ Horton Hears a Who: Dustin didn’t hate Horton Hears a Who, writing: “Horton Hears a Who isn’t a political or religious allegory, it’s not a right-wing metaphor or communist propaganda, it’s just a great little book about tolerance and friendship, about helping someone in need, and about putting aside stubborn pride and asking for help when you need it. It’s a simple, sweet story about community, about rallying together to further humanity — or, er, who-manity. The point is: Adults should lay the fuck off, and stop trying to impute higher meaning to a kid’s story in furtherance of their own beliefs. And if your bitchy core is hoping that the filmic version of Horton Hears a Who is another capitalistic assault, an exploitative rape on your childhood, I’m sorry to disappoint you. It is, at best, a bruise on your fond preadolescent memories. It shouldn’t even be spoken of in the same sentence as the other two Seussian shit trawlers, The Grinch Stole Christmas and The Cat in the Hat. Directors Steve Martino and Jimmy Hayward (the latter of whom was plucked from Pixar’s animation department) eschew live-action and present Horton Hears a Who as it should be, in splendid, vibrant animation, and my God (!) it’s amazing, perfectly capturing the illustrations on Dr. Seuss’ page. Above all else, Horton is gorgeous to look at, lush and lively, and it’s obvious that Hayward brought over at least the Pixar spirit when adapting the book.”

Man on Wire: Of the documentary, about a man who walks across a wire between the Twin Towers in 1974, Phillip writes, “And really, other than the pants-wetting spectacle that is Petit traipsing through the heavens, it’s the personality of the man that gives the film this kind of glowing effervescence. After he finally steps off the wire and is arrested by gaping port authority officers, Petit is continuously hammered by questions, of the American analytic why? -to which there’s no real answer. And in the spectacular reverie and media-frenzy which naturally followed Petit’s skywalk, Man on Wire takes an unexpected somber tone as its hero engages in a humorous fling (literal jouissance!) and then confronts the friendships and romantic relationships built around the stunt coming to an end. This human drama completes the film’s arc of triumph in an impressively mature manner.

And for Holiday Gift buyers who like to tease your Christmas gift victims, “Deadwood,” the “complete” series is now available, if by “complete,” you mean, the three seasons they were allowed to make before HBO pulled the rug out beneath the unfinished story. Bastards.

Oh yeah. There’s also this: The Dark Knight, which Dan described as a “harrowing, frightening, uncompromising, flat-out great superhero movie, wonderful in sad ways, hitting the perfect mix of characterization and humor, bouncing between phenomenal action set pieces and the brutally human moments that place the film in a recognizable world even as it soars into comic book fantasy. Put simply, Nolan just gets it. He’s a believer, and he’ll make one out of you, too.”

I seriously doubt anyone is interested in TDK, though.

This Week's DVD Releases / The Pajiba Staff

DVD Releases | December 9, 2008 |

Dustin is the founder and co-owner of Pajiba. You may email him here or follow him on Twitter.

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