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DVD releases: ‘The Address’

Lindsay Taylor Jackson

THE TRIALS OF MUHAMMAD ALI The archival footage in Bill Siegel’s documentary is wondrous. How could it not be, considering its namesake subject. Though boxing figures in the film, its concern is with Ali in the realm of politics during the ’60s and up to his vindication by the Supreme Court, in 1970. A real shortcoming is the documentary’s credulousness about Elijah Muhammad and the Nation of Islam. Extras: deleted scenes, director’s commentary. (Kino Lorber, $29.95)

INSPECTOR LAVARDIN COLLECTION Claude Chabrol, the French master of cinematic suspense, made four films featuring the policeman hero of the title. played by Jean Poiret. Two were theatrical releases, “Chicken With Vinegar” (1985) and “Inspector Lavardin” (1986); and two were made for French television, “The Black Snail” (1988) and “Danger Lies in the Words” (1989). Extras: critics’ audio commentary. (Cohen Media Group, $39.98; Blu-ray, $49.98)

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TO CHRIS MARKER, AN UNSENT LETTER Marker (1921-2012) was a one-of-a-kind film essayist and documentarian. This 2012 documentary pays tribute to him in appropriately idiosyncratic manner. Directed by Emiko Omori, who worked with Marker on his “The Owl’s Legacy.” (Icarus Films, $24.98)

THE ADDRESS Ken Burns turns to cinéma vérité and contemporary education to pay tribute to Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address. His latest documentary (it aired on PBS last week) follows learning-challenged boys at Vermont’s Greenwood School (pictured) as they attempt to memorize Honest Abe’s celebrated speech. (PBS, $24.99)

THE PAWNBROKER Sidney Lumet’s powerful 1964 drama about a Harlem shopkeeper who’s a Holocaust survivor earned Rod Steiger a best actor Oscar nomination. Quincy Jones composed the score, and the legendary Boris Kaufman did the cinematography. (Olive Films, $19.95; Blu-ray, $29.95)

A BRIEF HISTORY OF TIME In this 1991 film, Errol Morris, who may or may not be America’s most innovative documentarian, tackles what is definitely cosmologist Stephen Hawking’s most famous book. How innovative? The supporting cast includes a chicken. Extras: interviews with Morris and cinematographer John Bailey. (Criterion Collection, $24.95; Blu-ray, $39.95, already available)

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