DVDs Nuts!

Lesser-seen OW approved titles

Cedar Rapids

In this indie comedy from The Good Girl director Miguel Arteta, Ed Helms plays a well-meaning, slightly needy insurance salesman tasked with bringing home a coveted award from an Iowa convention. In the process, he provides a breath of fresh air for three of his more cynical fellow conventioneers, who introduce him to the pleasures of car chases, vandalism and public foreplay. Part of the charm of Cedar Rapids is its lack of self-awareness: From its clunky jokes to its highly typical "meaningful" moments, it's just endearingly dorky – and also free of cynicism or more than the slightest edge. (available now)

Special Features: Deleted scenes, gag reel, featurettes

Louie: Season One

By now, you've probably heard about comedian Louis C.K.'s unprecedented deal with cable network FX, in which he was given nearly complete creative control over the show bearing his name. What you don't know if you haven't yet seen Louie – and you really should, especially as season two commences (more on that on page 18), is what remarkable things he does with that control. From absurdist, drug-fueled diversions into the desert with Osama bin Laden to an entire episode told in a Catholic-school flashback (a standout that's remarkably touching), C.K., who writes, directs, produces, edits and stars in every minute of this premier season, does away almost completely with any semblance of a narrative throughline. Instead, he focuses on moments, be they poker games or playdates or dealing with hecklers, and finds the humanity – for 
better or worse – within them all. 
(available now)

Special Features: Audio commentary, deleted scenes

Season of the Witch

Forget Paul; this is hands down the most unintentionally hilarious stoner movie of the year. In what's otherwise a fairly capable (at least as capable as Swordfish director Dominic Sena is, well, capable) 14th-century thriller in which an accused witch must be transported to some monks for cleansing in order to end the Black Plague, along comes Nicolas Cage and Ron Perlman to plant B-movie dynamite along the trail. Cage literally appears as if he's been photoshopped in from another movie altogether – there's a bizarre kind of halo around him and his all-time worst hair piece – as he spews his dialogue with no regard for accents. Same goes for Perlman, who has the audacity to utter, "Let's get the hell out of here," as if he just rambled off the set of Sons of Anarchy. The worst offense: As made obvious in the "alternate ending," the C-level CGI demon we saw in the theatrical version was a post-production replacement for the actual witch (Claire Foy) in full-on Exorcist mode, the latter of which works way better. 
(available June 28)

Special Features: Alternate ending, 
deleted scenes, featurettes


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