Worth catching on DVD: Lisa Cholodenko’s The Kids Are All Right, for the sterling work of an ensemble cast led by Annette Bening and Julianne Moore as a couple whose kids open the proverbial can of worms when they discover the identity of their biological father. That he’s handsome, successful, yet earthy Mark Ruffalo inspires the kids to some degree of hero-worship, while arousing varying levels of passion in a taken-for-granted Moore and a distrustful Bening.
It’s being billed as a comedy, and while there are some laughs, it’s a pretty serious look at family life in America and the consequences when a combustible passion endangers a comfortable relationship.
Also on DVD: the long-awaited release of the complete run of HBO’s The Larry Sanders Show. If you’re a fan of edgy, often uncomfortable humor; if you want to see great comic talent at the top of their game; if you don’t want to see it broken up by commercials on IFC (Why IFC–WHY!!!), then rent or buy the series. The series, for those of you in the dark, is about the goings-on at a fictional talk/.variety show hosted by the talented, insecure Larry (Garry Shandling’s finest hours), with help from his sidekick Hank (ditto Jeffrey Tambor) and trusted, crafty producer Artie (double ditto Rip Torn). Add to the mix able support from cast members Janeane Garafolo, Sarah Silverman, Wallace Langham, Jeremy Piven, Penny Johnson…guest spots from Jim Carrey, David Duchovny, Jon Stewart…I could go on and on–do yourself a favor, see Larry Sanders in its uncut, unadulterated form. You won’t be sorry.