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Funny Games (R)
Warner Independent Pictures
I am all for art-house indictments of the American fascination with ultra-violence. Yet as I watched German filmmaker Michael Haneke's remake of his own film, Funny Games, Americanized for our protection, I was angered. Not by the point he was trying to make, but how he was trying to make it. All-American couple Naomi Watts and Tim Roth are at their lovely vacation home when two emo, fey lads arrive on their doorstep and proceed to torture them, both physically and psychologically. My problem? No one in their right mind would be scared of the two teen, white-bread leads. If the director really knew America, he would have known that we're all packing heat, and those two wusses wouldn't last past their first egg-dropping. Nice try, Europe! Louis Fowler


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Dirty Harry: Special Edition (R)
Warner Home Video
Clint Eastwood's hard-boiled San Francisco police officer "Dirty" Harry Callahan was a huge hit in the 1970s, when big-screen anti-heroes were still in their infancy. Callahan's the cop who doesn't "play by the rules," and when apprehended Zodiac Killer knock-off Scorpio uses the law to get released, Callahan goes on his own personal manhunt. Many who haven't seen the film consider Eastwood's character a totem of a fascist police state; if they were to actually watch this special edition, they'd learn that the cop was on the side of the victims, coming to their defense when the bureaucrats and their laws meant to protect the criminal let them down. Fast-paced and highly kinetic, Dirty Harry today, three decades later, remains as powerful as a .44 Magnum. Louis Fowler


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Heathers: 20th High School Reunion Edition (R)
Anchor Bay Entertainment / Release date: July 1
Who wasn't completely enamored with Winona Ryder in the late 1980s and early '90s? Between Beetlejuice and Heathers, she was the poster girl for an entire generation of nerds and outcasts. And it was in Heathers that Ryder really shone. In this incredibly dark teen comedy, Ryder and newbie Christian Slater team up to systematically destroy the fresh-faced, popular kids who make high school miserable. Cleaning fluid, firearms and even a bomb are used to expel the students in various ways that, at the time, were easily laughable. In the wake of Columbine and the like, there is little doubt that this movie could be made today. But Heathers is a true comedy classic that, 20 years later, is as relevant as ever. Louis Fowler
  • Funny Games, Dirty Harry: Special Edition, Heathers: 20th High School Reunion Edition

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