NEW ON DVD
Somehow, Kevin Smith’s career survives Jersey Girl. R; $29.95.
The Ant Bully
Rent Antz instead. PG; $28.98.
Bryan Singer returns—and his string of superhero hits ends here. PG-13; $28.98.
Woody and Scarlett return—and Woody’s improbable comeback continues. PG-13; $29.98.
Kandy-kolored kung-fu craziness via a miniskirted samurai from Japan. NR; $24.99.
The girl in the black helmet was this sexy, this alive, only once: in G.W. Pabst’s epic silent Pandora’s Box, now restored in a magnificent Criterion edition. Louise Brooks was banished from Hollywood at the chattering dawn of the talkies, but her Weimar exile merely served to burnish the actress’s bad-girl legend when she was rediscovered in the sixties. She was too raw for Hollywood, onscreen and off, and never more so than in this 1929 film, as a woman so pheremonally hot she drives all good men to ruin, and nearly turns the evil Jack the Ripper good. Brooks said she learned how to act by watching Martha Graham dance, and learned how to dance while watching (her onetime lover) Charlie Chaplin act. A more honest appraisal is offered in this set’s Lulu in Berlin, Richard Leacock’s wonderful little vérité sit-down with an aging Brooks in her Rochester, New York, retirement: “I hadn’t the slightest idea of what I was doing,” she snaps proudly. “I was playing myself. Which is the hardest thing in the world to do.” NR; $39.95.