Susan Granger’s VIDEO UPDATE for Friday, May 12:

Mother’s Day is this Sunday, so what better time to explore movie moms – good, bad and indifferent? If you’re feeling smothered, there’s Albert Brooks’ hilarious “Mother.”¬† If you’re into sentiment, “I Remember Mama” is an old-fashioned tear-jerker. Plus there’s “Mildred Pierce,” “Murmur of the Heart,” and “Terms of Endearment.” More recently, try “Steel Magnolias,” “One True Thing,” “Stepmom,” “Mermaids” and “Baby Boom.” And, if you’ve ever thought of switching roles, try “Freaky Friday” with a very young Jodie Foster and Barbara Harris.
Richard Farnsworth copped an Oscar nomination as the elderly Midwesterner who drove his lawn-mower cross-country in “The Straight Story.” And “Gladiator” Russell Crowe, Oscar-nominated for “The Insider,” plays a small-town hockey star in “Mystery Alaska.”
Martin Scorsese is one of our most respect auteurs but “Bringing Out the Dead” resounds as a chaotic but ultimately hollow melodrama. Nicholas Cage is a tormented, sleep-deprived EMS worker in New York City. Subsisting on whiskey and cigarettes as he roams Hell’s Kitchen on the frenzied graveyard shift, he’s haunted¬† by his rescues and failures.
“New Blood” is an action gangland drama in which Nick Moran, bleeding from a gunshot wound, turns up on the doorstep of his estranged father, played by John Hurt, who realizes his son might just be the heart donor who can save his ailing twin sister. But Nick’s not about to give up his heart for nothing – there’s a price to be paid and a deal to be struck between father and son.
PICK OF THE WEEK: Oscar winner “American Beauty” is a powerfully disturbing black comedy about dysfunctional families in American suburbia. Kevin Spacey won an Oscar as the burnt-out ad exec, while Annette Bening was Oscar-nominated as his high-strung, ambitious wife.


Susan Granger’s VIDEO REPORT for week of Friday, May 5th:

In honor of the Cinco de Mayo holiday, Columbia TriStar Home Video has repriced five titles at $9.95@ :”Dance With Me” starring singing star Chayanne; “Desperado” featuring Antonio Banderas; “Fools Rush In,” a cross-cultural romantic comedy with Salma Hayek and Matthew Perry; “La Bamba” with Esai Morales as Ritchie Valens; and “The Mask of Zorro,” a swashbuckling adventure with Antonio Banderas – all available with Spanish subtitles.
“Virtual Sexuality” is a cyber comedy about a 17 year-old (Laura Fraser) who is determined to find Mr. Right, even if she has to create an electronic facsimile using virtual reality. And “Dogma” is Kevin Smith’s controversial, irreverent fantasy about two banished angels who find a loophole to get back into heaven but must destroy humankind in the process. Matt Damon, Ben Affleck, salma Hayek, Linda Fiorentino and Alan Rickman star.
Susan Sarandon and Natalie Portman team up in “Anywhere But Here,” a kooky mother-teenage daughter coming-of-age road-trip from Bay City, Wisconsin, to Beverly Hills, California.
For tots, there’s the direct-to-video “Rugrats: Discover America,” featuring four different escapades plus a 7-minute behind-the-scenes feature on “Rugrats in Paris – The Movie.”
And, for collectors, a special edition of “The General’s Daughter” with John Travolta has four previously deleted scenes, including an alternate ending, and a “making of” feature.
PICKS OF THE WEEK: “Being John Malkovich” is Charlie Kaufman’s bold, unconventional and inventive blend of sci-fi with self-parody, starring John Cusack, Cameron Diaz, Catherine Keener and John Malkovich. And “Galaxy Quest” is a hilarious action comedy with Tim Allen and Sigourney Weaver as TV actors who starred in a once-popular sci-fi TV series and are now abducted by aliens who believe they really are intergalactic heroes.