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Conan O'Brien Can't Stop (R)

Abramorama/AT&T Digital Media

Rodman Flender's documentary about Conan O'Brien's post-NBC-breakup tour of America may be little more than a vanity project for the ginger-haired comedian, but it also provides a revealing look at the demons and insecurities that propel him. When NBC dropped O'Brien after less than a year in Jay Leno's Tonight Show slot, he launched The Legally Prohibited From Being Funny on Television Tour, a multimedia show that allowed him to vent his considerable anger. To judge by his predilection for "playful" humiliation and punching people in the arm, O'Brien is significantly less mild-mannered than his TV persona. Still, it's impossible to imagine prickly televised desk-tenders like Carson or Letterman opening themselves up like this, much less simulating an onstage gang-bang with Tenacious D at Bonnaroo. — Daniel Barnes

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Straw Dogs: Unrated Version (NR) (Blu-ray)

MGM

Timed to coincide with the recent, sure-to-be-reviled remake, Sam Peckinpah's Straw Dogs is now widely considered an "untouchable" classic. While unappreciated at the time, like a lot of Peckinpah's '70s output, it has undergone a mass reconsideration and been deemed a perfect-enough movie, one that doesn't need a remake. There's no way, in our ultra-PC times, that the remake won't compromise every value, no matter how perverted, that the original proudly hailed. Dustin Hoffman is a wormy, cowardly mathematician pacifist who finds that his beliefs in peace and harmony and "talking it out" are worthless when a group of belligerent townies rape his wife and destroy his home. Straw Dogs is extremely bold in its thesis: Pacifism is the destruction of manhood, and only through violent retribution will we find our true selves. — Louis Fowler

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Camelot: The Complete First Season (NR)

Anchor Bay Home Entertainment

Starz takes the same historically accurate look at the legend of King Arthur as it did with Spartacus ... yeah, right! Of course, it takes the same sleazy, soft-core angle with Camelot. As someone who has seen umpteen retellings of the same old boring Knights of the Round Table mythos, it's a welcome, entertaining relief. This Arthur is a brash, sexually promiscuous teen who has just taken the throne. As he's learning the ropes to govern a still-infant England, his voracious half-sister/full-witch Morgan will use any means necessary to usurp the realm. As action-packed and tawdry as a dime-store Harlequin paperback for men, it's thoroughly enjoyable. I hope Starz continues this trend of dirty historical epics. How about the filthy side of the Habsburg monarchy? The private life of Abe and Mary Todd Lincoln? The secret perversities of Gandhi? — Louis Fowler

  • Conan O'Brien Can't Stop; Straw Dogs: Unrated Version; Camelot: The Complete First Season

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