DVD releases: ‘A Band Called Death’

Drafthouse Films

EMPEROR Japan has surrendered. General Douglas MacArthur (Tommy Lee Jones) tasks a deputy (Matthew Fox) with investigating whether Emperor Hirohito should be charged with war crimes. Doesn’t sound very promising, does it? Watching Jones be Jones – he sure isn’t MacArthur — is, as always, a kick. But what a hopeless stick Fox is. Extras: making-of featurette, photo galleries, deleted scenes, director’s commentary. (Lionsgate, $19.98; Blu-ray, $24.99)

THE COMPANY YOU KEEP An improvement over director-star Robert Redford’s recent movies: A dramatic thriller about aging ’60s radicals that goes relatively easy on the moral lectures and gets back to storytelling. The pleasurably deep cast includes Shia LeBeouf (as a callow reporter), Julie Christie, Susan Sarandon, Nick Nolte, and Richard Jenkins. Extras: behind-the-scenes featurettes, press conference. (Sony, $30.99; Blu-ray, $35.99)

THE BIG WEDDING A stellar cast gets wasted in this ensemble comedy. Long-divorced Robert De Niro and Diane Keaton decide to pretend they’re still married to facilitate their son’s wedding ceremony, an idea that doesn’t sit well with De Niro’s current mate, Susan Sarandon. With Katherine Heigl, Topher Grace, Amanda Seyfried, Ben Barnes, and Robin Williams. Extras: making-of featurette. (Lionsgate, $19.98; Blu-ray, $24.99)


SECONDS Director John Frankenheimer gives this 1966 existential thriller a very ’60s look with jazzy camera angles galore as millionaire John Randolph gets the chance to “redo” his life, now as Rock Hudson. Extras: digital restoration, director’s commentary, making-of featurette, 1971 Frankenheimer interview. (Criterion Collection, $29.95; Blu-ray, $39.95)

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A BAND CALLED DEATH Despite the name, Death may be the most family-friendly punk band ever. It was also one of the first, and definitely the first made up of African-Americans — the three Hackney brothers formed it in 1971. The film focuses on the two survivors, but their deceased sibling, the band’s driving force, is only there in spirit, so Death remains a mystery. Extras: directors’ commentary, surviving Hackney brothers’ commentary, deleted scenes, music video. (Drafthouse Films, $27.97; Blu-ray, $29.97)

THE CREAM FAREWELL CONCERT The first and mightiest rock supergroup bows out, as Eric Clapton, Jack Bruce, and Ginger Baker play London’s Royal Albert Hall, on Nov. 26, 1968. Originally broadcast on the BBC’s “Omnimbus” program, with interviews with the band members as well as the concert. (Kino Classics, $19.95, available now)