The Couch Potato Report

In case you need something to watch this weekend…or some gift ideas!!

The Couch Potato Report – June 14th, 2008
This week The Couch Potato Report peels 52 DVDs, including box sets for Dads AND Grads!
If you find yourself in need of a gift idea for Father’s Day, a Graduate, or just someone who loves to watch movies and DVDs this week, you are in luck!!
I have 8 BOX SETS to tell you about, AND this week’s FOREIGN FILM ON DVD.
Let me start with this week’s HOT POTATO – a set that includes two of my all-time favourite films – that set is ANNE OF GREEN GABLES – THE COLLECTION!
ANNE OF GREEN GABLES – THE COLLECTION is a 5-DVD set that includes the fantasic original 1985 CBC film, the superb 1987 follow up ANNE OF GREEN GABLES – THE SEQUEL and 2000’s ANNE OF GREEN GABLES – THE CONTINUING STORY, along with a bonus disc that features two new documentaries, Missing Scenes, Lost Footage and more.
But the real reason to pick up this COLLECTION is due to the films, and the performances they contain, especially in the first one!
The trilogy begins with a headstrong, chatty and sometimes stubborn orphan girl who ends up at the Green Gables farm in Prince Edward Island, even though the brother and sister who run the farm had requested a boy to work as a farmhand.
They decide to keep her, even though she has a vivid imagination, colourfully theatrical language and penchant for finding trouble.
That knack for trouble follws her throughout her life, even when she is not at fault.
The scenery, mostly filmed in Ontario, is beautiful, and the stories in these films are great.
Plus, Megan Follows will always hold a special place in my heart – and I am sure yours too – for her work as Anne,…and Montreal born Colleen Dewhurst will forever be Marilla, but above all else, there is the great Richard Farnsworth.
His performance as Matthew Cuthbert is one for the ages!
The original “Anne Of Green Gables” book was published on June 20, 1908, and as all Canadians who love great literature celebrate this centenary, films lovers can now join that celebration through ANNE OF GREEN GABLES – THE COLLECTION.
This is a great series of Canadian films, and if you love these movies as much as I do, then it is a must (START CLIP HERE) have.
PLUS, if you are a trivia buff, you will be able to answer this question after you see the films again: Which two members of the comedy troupe Kids In The Hall appear in the Anne Of Green Gables Trilogy?
I will give you that answer in just a few minutes, but right now, please allow me to tell you about a spectacular Box Set that would be a great gift idea for almost all Dads and Grads – the 17 DVD BBC NATURAL HISTORY COLLECTION.
The set features four documentary series:
Planet Earth – takes us to the highest peaks and the lowest valleys with astonishing photography and incredible detail.
The Blue Planet – is entirely dedicated to the deep oceans of the earth.
The Life of Mammals – shows us many of the 4000 species that have outlived dinosaurs.
and The Life of Birds puts on display the evolution and habits of birds, offering glimpses into the habitats of some of the world’s rarest ones.
These documentaries, and this box set doesn’t just cover the wildlife on our planet, it also gives us a one-of-a-kind look at mountains, caves, deserts, shallow seas, and much, much more!!
Plus, if you have ever wanted to see bears in Alaska opening clams, 14,000 walruses lying on a beach, snails surfing in South Africa and dozens of other things that you can’t even imagine,
The 17 DVD BBC NATURAL HISTORY COLLECTION is one of the most incredible box sets that I have ever seen, and I highly reccomend it!
I also highly recommend the 9 DVD set for ABSOLUTELY FABULOUS that has ABSOLUTELY EVERYTHING…but only if you love bawdy British humour.
ABSOLUTELY FABULOUS – also known as AB FAB – was an Emmy Award-winning sitcom written by and starring Jennifer Saunders and co-starring Joanna Lumley, that was broadcast on the BBC from 1992 to 1996 and 2001 to 2005.
The show is about Edina Monsoon and Patsy Stone, two well-off, substance-abusing fashion and fad-obsessed Londoners who value fame and style over all.
Edina’s daughter provides the voice of reality, and her mother supplies a voice of truth.
Ab Fab is now back on DVD in the first complete collection ever offered in North America and the 9 DVDs come in a plush, cross-stitched fabric cover.
The set is called ABSOLUTELY EVERYTHING because that is what it has…the Five limited seasons, the special that includes the Ab Fab trip to New York, and there are also extras aplenty.
ABSOLUTELY FABULOUS is a show that features comedy that never apologizes, and if you enjoy that sort of thing, or know someone who does, then this is a set that will make you – or them – laugh…repeatedly.
Up next is the 5 DVD set for SEASON ONE of the television series CROSSING JORDAN, starring Edmonton born Jill Hennessy as a crime-solving medical examiner.
CROSSING JORDAN ran from September 2001 to May of 2007, and even though I am a huge fan of Jill Hennessy, it was a show that I could never get into on TV.
But while watching this set this week, I did enjoy the show more…even though I still think that it is just a female version of QUINCY, and the creators of the show seemed to admit that when they cast Jack Klugman – the man who played QUINCY – on the show…but I digress.
CROSSING JORDAN – SEASON ONE is primarily for fans of the show, but if you liked QUINCY, or you enjoy shows that focus on solving crimes, maybe you’ll enjoy it too.
We all enjoyed THE COSBY SHOW, whether we were fans of the show when it first came on in 1984, or when it went off the air in 1992, and now the final two seasons of this beloved comedy are available on DVD in THE COSBY SHOW – SEASONS 7 & 8.
Each set has three DVDs, and even though I have seen the episodes on them dozens of times, I still laughed, enjoyed and was emotionally involved with the Huxtable family, an upper-middle class African-American family living in a brownstone in Brooklyn Heights, New York, at 10 Stigwood Avenue.
SEASON EIGHT was the show’s last, and so with the release of these final two Box Sets you can see Sondra, Elvin, Denise, Martin, Theo, Rudy, Olivia and Pam anytime you’d like.
Plus, you can see Cliff and Claire dance in their living room one final time as they walted off stage and into television history.
I will always love THE COSBY SHOW…and I will also always love THE INCREDIBLE HULK and that is because I started to watch and enjoy them when I was a kid…and as you know, many of the things we love as kids stay with us forever.
And no, with the release of the new INCREDIBLE HULK movie in theatres yesterday, SEASONS 3 & 4 of the HULK television series have been released on DVD.
The television show THE INCREDIBLE HULK that was based on the comic books of the same name ran from 1978 to 1982.
The SEASON 3 box set has five DVDs and SEASON 4 four, and if you enjoyed the show when it aired, they are must haves!
Of if you know someone who enjoyed either this new theatrcal release, or maybe even the one in 2003, then these would be great for them…or you.
Perhaps you don’t care for television shows, or huge summer films like THE INCREDIBLE HULK,…well, I can understand that.
If you’d prefer an alternative to the action filled, very loud, check-your-brain-at-the-door summer movie season, each week I will offer you an alternative, one current release that you will need your brain to enjoy.
This week I want to tell you about the film 4 MONTHS, 3 WEEKS & 2 DAYS from Romania.
4 MONTHS, 3 WEEKS & 2 DAYS won the Palme d’Or and the 2007 Cannes Film Festival and it is a compelling and engrossing film!
It is set in Communist Romania in the final years of the Ceausescu era and is about two female students who are roommates in a university dormitory.
They are trying to terminate a pregnancy, an activity that was a crime in the country at the time.
The film’s title refers to how far along the pregnancy is, and other than that, I am not going to say much more as the less you know about this film, the better.
What I will tell you is that I highly recommend it!
At times it is harsh, rough, and very disturbing, but even during those scenes you will still want to know what will happen.
Oh, and as for the trivia question I asked a few minutes ago…Which two members of the comedy troupe Kids In The Hall appear in the Anne Of Green Gables Trilogy?…the answer is Bruce McCulloch and Dave Folley. Both of them appear in ANNE OF GREEN GABLES – THE SEQUEL.
Coming up on the next Couch Potato Report
I will tell you about eight new releases, including BE KIND REWIND, THE DIRTY HARRY ULTIMATE COLLECTOR’S EDITION and MUFFINS FOR GRANNY about a filmmaker who helps tell the stories of seven elders dramatically affected by their experiences in residential school.
I’m Dan Reynish. I’ll have more on those, and some other releases, in seven days.
For now, that’s this week’s COUCH POTATO REPORT.
Enjoy the movies and I’ll see you back here next time on The Couch!