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“Taxi Driver” is Indeed Talkin’ to You and More New DVDs

“Taxi Driver” is Indeed Talkin’ to You and More New DVDs (photo)

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A look at what’s new on DVD and Blu-ray today:

“Taxi Driver” (1976)
Directed by Martin Scorsese
Released by Sony Pictures Home Entertainment

One can read about the extensive restoration of what many consider to be Martin Scorsese’s finest film at The Digital Bits, but if you’re a film fan, you might not need convincing to pick up the latest edition of the film about the disillusioned cabbie, which includes all the special features from the previous DVDs of the film (a feature-length making of doc, a score of shorter featurettes) while adding the commentary track between Scorsese and writer Paul Schrader that originally appeared on the 1986 Criterion laser disc. All in all, it’s the definitive edition that the film deserves.

“Casino Jack” (2010)
Directed by George Hickenlooper
Released by Fox Home Entertainment

Even at the height of his powers, disgraced Washington lobbyist Jack Abramoff might not have been able to maneuver his way through all the pre-release craziness that plagued Hickenlooper’s dramedy about Abramoff’s rise and fall as a political power player, beginning with the “Factory Girl” director’s tussle over the film’s title with documentarian Alex Gibney and then ultimately the director’s untimely death before it made it into theaters. However, Hickenlooper’s final film sees Kevin Spacey in his element, wheeling and dealing with partner-in-crime Michael Scanlon (Barry Pepper) to swindle from Indian gaming interests to win favor with politicians like Tom DeLay (Spencer Garrett). (Matt Singer’s review is here.)

“The Heroes of Telemark” (1965)
Directed by Anthony Mann
Released by Sony Pictures Home Entertainment

It’s been a long wait for this Anthony Mann World War II drama, but for fans of the Kirk Douglas and Richard Harris, it should be well worth it as the two stars go head-to-head leading the Norwegian resistance to destroy a water plant the Nazis have commandeered to aid their efforts to create a nuclear bomb.

“Little Fockers” (2010)
Directed by Paul Weitz
Released by Universal Home Video

If you were to go by the advertising for the third installment of the Robert DeNiro-Ben Stiller family comedy, you’d believe the central plot would involve a staring contest, but alas, it concerns Greg Focker (Stiller) once again proving his worth to his father-in-law when he starts selling pharmaceutical drugs to compliment his salary as a male nurse to support his growing family and a series of complications result from when Jack (DeNiro) doesn’t believe him. Barbara Streisand, Owen Wilson, Teri Polo, Blythe Danner and Dustin Hoffman are all back, in addition to newcomers Laura Dern, Harvey Keitel and Jessica Alba.

“I Love You Phillip Morris” (2009)
Directed by Glenn Ficarra and John Requa
Released by Lionsgate

As Jim Carrey told Matt Singer at Sundance ’08, the directorial debut of “Bad Santa” scribes Ficarra and Requa is just about “a guy who needs love and goes to any lengths to get it.” For a script he rated as high as “The Truman Show” and “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind,” Carrey went to great lengths to get the role of Steven Jay Russell, a police officer-turned-con artist who leaves his wife (Leslie Mann) in Texas to live an openly gay lifestyle in Miami, only to find his true love (Ewan McGregor) in prison when one of his schemes goes awry.

“The Mountain” (1956)
Directed by Edward Dmytryk
Released by Olive Films

Spencer Tracy stars with Robert Wagner in this drama about brothers who must scale a treacherous peak to reach the survivors of a plane crash, but although Tracy’s motivations are purely altruistic, Wagner is after the monetary remains of the dead.

“The Night of the Generals” (1967)
Directed by Anatole Litvak
Released by Sony Pictures Home Entertainment

A Sam Spiegel production, his “Lawrence of Arabia” stars Peter O’Toole and Omar Sharif lead the cast of this World War II-set thriller about three German generals (O’Toole, Donald Pleasence and Charles Gray) who are the suspects in an investigation into the death of a Warsaw prostitute.

“The Taqwacores” (2010)
Directed by Eyad Zahra
Released by Strand Releasing

Michael Muhammad Knight’s novel about the Islamic punk rock scene serves as the basis for Zahra’s feature debut about a Pakistani college student (Dominic Rains) who falls in with a group of Koran-reading punk rockers in Buffalo.

“Tron”/”Tron: Legacy” (1982/2010)
Directed by Steven Lisberger/Joseph Kosinski
Released by Disney Home Entertainment

Ah, remember those terrible days of December 2010 shortly before “Tron: Legacy” opened when the DVD of the 1982 original was going for more than $100 on the open market since it had been long out of print? Well, of course, only four months later, it is being released once more separately or in a five-disc package with its sequel, which tell the story of Kevin Flynn (Jeff Bridges) in the original and his son (Garrett Hedlund), both hackers who are drawn into the computer world and have to win a series of games to escape. Besides seeing those pretty lightcycles once more, the main attraction on the “Legacy” disc is the inclusion of a short epilogue called “The Next Day,” featuring original “Tron” star David Warner that acts as a bridge to a follow-up film, should there ever be one. (Evan Narcisse’s review of “Tron: Legacy” is here.)

New to Blu-ray: “A.I.: Artificial Intelligence”, “Benny & Joon”, “Jawbreaker”, “Lars and the Real Girl”, “Much Ado About Nothing”, “Mystic Pizza”, “The People Vs. Larry Flynt”, “Peter Pan”

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The Best Of The Last

Portlandia Goes Out With A Bang

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The end is near. In mere days Portlandia wraps up its final season, and oh what a season it’s been. Lucky for you, you can watch the entire season right now right here and on the IFC app, including this free episode courtesy of Subaru.

But now, let’s take a moment to look back at some of the new classics Fred and Carrie have so thoughtfully bestowed upon us. (We’ll be looking back through tear-blurred eyes, but you do you.)

Couples Dinner

It’s not that being single sucks, it’s that you suck if you’re single.

Cancel it!

A sketch for anyone who has cancelled more appointments than they’ve kept. Which is everyone.

Forgotten America

This one’s a “Serial” killer…everything both right and wrong about true crime podcasts.

Wedding Planners

The only bad wedding is a boring wedding.

Disaster Hut

It’s only the end of the world if your doomsday kit doesn’t include rosé.

Catch up on Portlandia’s final episodes on demand and at

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Your Portlandia Personality Test

The New Portlandia Webseries Is Going Your Way

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Carrie and Fred understand that although we have so much in common, we’re each so beautifully unique and different. To help us navigate those differences, Portlandia has found an easy and honest way to embrace our special selves in the form of a progressive new traffic system: a specific lane for every kind of driver. It’s all in honor of the show’s 8th and final season, and it’s all presented by Subaru.

Ready to find out who you really are? Match your personality to a lane and hop on the expressway to self-understanding.

Lane 10: Trucks Piled With Junk

Your junk is falling out of your trunk. Shake a tail light, people — this lane is for you.

Lane 33: Twins

You’re like a Gemini, but waaaay more pedestrian. Maybe you and a friend just wear the same outfits a lot. Who cares, it’s just twinning enough to make you feel special.

Lane 27: Broken Windows

Bad luck follows you around and everyone knows it. Your proverbial seat is always damp from proverbial rain. Is this the universe telling you to swallow your pride? Yes.

Lane 69: Filthy Cars

You’re all about convenience. Getting your car washed while you drive is a no-brainer.

Lane 43: Newly Divorced Singles

It’s been a while since you’ve driven alone, and you don’t know the rules of the road anymore. What’s too fast? What’s too slow? Are you sending the right signals? Don’t worry, the breakdown lane is nearby if you need it.

Still can’t find a lane to match your personality? Check out all the videos here. And see the final season of Portlandia this spring on IFC.

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Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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GIFs via Giphy, Photos via The Everett Collection

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