Laser light legacy

From camp to cult to classics, this summer’s DVD releases sizzle.

by Tom Horgen

Take a break from the megaplexes this summer and check out these 10 soon-to-be-released DVDs. Release dates are subject to change.

“Enter the Dragon – Special Edition” – May 18

This two-disc re-release boasts a couple of documentaries on the film’s star, Bruce Lee. But the main attraction will forever be watching the martial arts legend busting up “Mr. Han” in the hall of mirrors.

“The Good, the Bad and the Ugly – Special Edition” – May 25

This new version of the classic spaghetti Western starring Clint Eastwood restores 18 minutes of footage, pushing the epic to three hours. That’s more time to take in Ennio Morricone’s wacky (but masterful) score.

“Kiss of Death” – June 1

Nicolas Cage churns out a gonzo, hard-ass performance in this underappreciated, 1995 gangster film, which also stars Samuel L. Jackson and David Caruso.

“Flirting With Disaster” – Special Edition” – June 1

Ben Stiller fully establishes himself as Woody Allen’s neurotic heir apparent in this black comedy. In the film, Stiller gets into one humiliating situation after another as he embarks on a cross-country mission to find his birth parents.

“City of God” – June 8

This 2002 Brazilian gem follows a group of street kids trying to survive Rio de Janeiro’s darkest slums. The mix of hyper-stylization and violent realism will batter you until you can’t take it anymore. And it’ll be well worth it.

“The Simpsons: The Complete Fourth Season” – June 15

The series hit its creative stride in season four. The animation finally achieved a level of consistency. And then there’s the writing: remember Ralph in “I Love Lisa,” the classic “You choo-choo-choose me” episode?” Hilarious.

“A Woman is a Woman – Criterion Collection” – June 22

Here is another Jean-Luc Godard masterpiece released as part of the prestigious Criterion Collection. In the 1961 film, the director does what he does best, adore and critique the cinema almost simultaneously. His victim this time: the Hollywood musical.

“Bad(der) Santa – The Unrated Version” – June 22

It’s hard to imagine a version of “Bad Santa” more juiced with debauchery than the theatrical release. But here it is. Let’s hope it adds to the original’s dark, funny look at our No.1 consumer holiday.

“My Voyage to Italy” – July 6

In this 2001 masterpiece, Martin Scorsese is our personal guide on a tour of Italy’s greatest films. In a short four hours, Scorsese takes you so deep into the Italian cinema that you’ll come out a born again cinephile.

“Batman: The Animated Series: Volume 1” – July 6

This early 1990s cartoon (or rather, “animated series”) is a better translation of the Batman character than any of the many film and TV incarnations. Warner Bros. puzzled fans throughout the years with stand-alone DVDs of only a few episodes. But the studio will finally release the entire series starting with this 28-episode volume.