The Marx Brothers Collection
Seven films starring Groucho, Harpo, and Chico debut on DVD: A Night at the Opera, A Day at the Races, Room Service, At the Circus, Go West, The Big Store, and A Night in Casablanca. This excellent set packs in shorts, documentaries, commentary—even some cigar-wagging Looney Tunes cartoons inspired by the siblings. Five discs; NR; $59.92.
The Last Samurai
This overlong two-disc edition adds the overblown extra “Tom Cruise: A Warrior’s Journey.” R; $29.95.
Girl With a Pearl Earring
Watching this dull drama about Vermeer (Colin Firth) and his servant (Scarlett Johansson) is as thrilling as watching exquisitely handled paint dry. PG-13; $26.98.
New York’s Peter Rainer said Gus Van Sant’s film about a Columbine-style massacre was “a lurid tease posing as an art film.” R; $27.95.
Samurai Jack: Season One
Genndy Tartakovsky’s stylish toon. NR; $29.98
The Monster Legacy Collections
Pegged to Hugh Jackman’s Van Helsing, this is one cross-promotion we can learn to love: Three separate two-disc sets collect Universal’s Dracula, Frankenstein, and Wolf Man horror films, including classic performances by Bela Lugosi, Boris Karloff, and Lon Chaney Jr. NR; $26.98 per set.
French animator Sylvain Chomet’s The Triplets of Belleville was the most imaginative film of 2003. “Satirical, nightmarish, tender, goofy, icky, it’s a crazy quilt made by a visionary artist,” raved Peter Rainer. “It’s so inventive it’s impossible to take everything in on a single viewing.” Which is why you need this DVD: Even after a second and third look on the small screen, Chomet’s ecstatic film (about a strange bicyclist, his stunted but dedicated grandmother, and their fat dog, Bruno) continues to amaze. We had no idea how many more visual puns lurked in the edges of his hand-animated frames, or how raucous that jitter-jangling junk-orchestra score would sound at top volume in little speakers. Complemented by a simple selection of extras, it’s a must-have. PG-13; $24.96. Extras: interviews with Chomet; behind-the-scenes shorts; “Belleville Rendez-Vous” music video.