Now in Stores: Scarface (Anniversary Edition), Bend It Like Beckham, Nowhere in Africa and Warner Classics
Scarface (Anniversary Edition) When Al Pacino whipped out a gun and shouted "Say hello to my little friend," who knew he'd be influencing bad boys of tomorrow?
"I've watched this movie 63 times," says Sean "P. Diddy" Combs, who joins Snoop Dog, Jay-Z and other notorious bad boys in Def Jam Presents: Origins of a Hip-Hop Classic, one of five featurettes offered in this 20th anniversary edition of Scarface.
In its day, the tale of Cuban immigrant Tony Montana's reign as Florida's cocaine king pushed the limits on R-rated blood and gore, with the f-word being uttered a then-record 206 times.
While Scarface might have been a mixed success in its initial release, the gangster flick has gone on to become one of the top 10 all-time cult movie hits, according to Entertainment Weekly, and the new edition seeks to offer some perspective.
"Montana is an antihero with whom contemporary kids can identify," says director Brian De Palma, explaining Scarface's lasting influence.
"He's about greed, power and self-destruction in the land of opportunity," says De Palma. "The movie has become the On the Waterfront of this generation — and Pacino is their Brando."
Scarface was an update of a 1932 film based on Al Capone. Screenwriter Oliver Stone says that he found himself so entrenched in the Miami drug scene while researching the script that he had to flee to Paris for safety.
Reflecting on the cultural significance of Scarface, it also bears mentioning what it meant to the career of Michelle Pfeiffer, who had only been known for her performance in the legendary stinker Grease 2. After a turn as Montana's cocaine-addled trophy bride, she went on to earn three Oscar nominations.
The best laugh in this package might be a montage contrasting the cinematic release with the sanitized TV version, wherein an immigration officer asks Montana, "Where'd you get the beauty scar, tough guy? Eating pineapple?"
Bend It Like Beckham If you're craving an extra dose of motherly criticism, you'll find it in the DVD release of Bend It Like Beckham, this year's answer to My Big Fat Greek Wedding.
This feel-good movie is the story of Jess Bharma, who is being raised by her conservative Indian parents to cook well, find a husband and become a homemaker. But this British teenager dreams of becoming a pro soccer player, just like her inspiration, football star David Beckham.
"If he's so special, why doesn't that spicy girl of his do something about his hair?" Jess's mother says, in a tirade over the celebrity athlete and his wife, Victoria, formerly Posh Spice.
It's worth noting that Bend It Like Beckham comes out on DVD following the collapse of professional women's soccer in America. Nevertheless, the film hasn't lost its humor, nor does British-born writer-director Gurinder Chadha at all sacrifice her Indian heritage, calling the movie "semi-autobiographical."
In a 14-minute featurette, "Who Wants to Cook Aloo Gobi?," Chadha laughs through her attempt to cook a traditional Indian meal, as her mother and aunt chide her to peel potatoes.
The film's big wedding sequence is largely filled out by her family, who have clearly accepted that she's not a stay-at-home mom.