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Sopranos: Season 5 on DVD

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Nightmare Alley.  

Sopranos: Season 5 The body count rises, but the most lucrative racket might be the $100 the studio charges for these DVD sets. $99.98; NR.

Jules et Jim Forget Jules. And who’s Jim? François Truffaut’s sumptuous romance is all about the unforgettable Jeanne Moreau, who offers her commentary on this two-disc Criterion set. $39.95; NR.

The Complete James Dean Collection Too cool to be forgotten. $68.92; PG.

Be Cool Soon to be forgotten. $27.98; PG-13.

D.E.B.S. A bland action-comedy about schoolgirl spies that doesn’t have the courage of conviction to be properly trashy. $24.96; PG-13.

The Phantom of Liberty Luis Buñuel’s wacky Surrealist romp (in which monks play poker). $29.95; R.

Moonlighting: Seasons 1 & 2 Bruce Willis and Cybill Shepherd in the pre-jump-the-shark seasons of this wacky P.I. sitcom (the actors even sing a decent musical adaptation of The Taming of the Shrew, in iambic pentameter). $49.98; NR.

Stripes Bill Murray’s funny 1981 comedy—in which a drunken party boy skips training, then reforms and leads American soldiers off to war—is frighteningly prescient. $19.94; R.

The Machinist No amount of star-stunt weight loss (Christian Bale) could make Brad Anderson’s creepy drama convincing. $29.99; R.

The Agronomist A contemporary classic: Jonathan Demme’s vigorous documentary about Haitian rabble-rouser and radio host Jean Dominique. $27.95; PG-13.

Our Pick
The new Fox Film Noir Series, Vol. 2 is hit-and-miss. The House of Bamboo is more travelogue than thriller—and The Street With No Name is a slow, predictable sop to the FBI scripted more sloppily than most True Crime pulp. Neither is exceptional noir. But 1947’s Nightmare Alley is a minor period classic: the story of a cynical sideshow carnie (Tyrone Power) who becomes a superstar mentalist, and then a corrupt ghost-channeling psychic, before getting beaten at his own game. Screenwriter Jules Furthman (who collaborated with William Faulkner on To Have and Have Not and The Big Sleep) delivers the acid zingers you want from good noir—and tells a story that seems surprisingly evergreen too. Watching Power as he exploits the insecurities of the desperate, it’s hard not to think of celebrity psychic John Edward, or even Dr. Phil. $14.98 each; NR. Extras include trailers and commentary.


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