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New on Disc: 'Pee-wee's Big Adventure' Blu-ray and more …

3 Oct, 2011 By: Mike Clark

Pee-wee’s Big Adventure (Blu-ray)

Street 10/4/11
Warner, Comedy, $19.98 Blu-ray, ‘PG.’
Stars Pee-wee Herman, Elizabeth Daily.
In terms of color, Blu-ray punctuates what has always looked like a nifty wax job on that “neat” bicycle Pee-wee possesses for a while — the theft of which puts him on the road to meeting (with us) an array of equally colorful characters.
Extras: You can see — in the deleted scenes from this resplendent straight carry-over from an earlier DVD release — that director Tim Burton, making his feature debut, had a pretty keen sense of what to include and what to excise.
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My Cousin Rachel

Available at www.screenarchives.com
Twilight Time, Drama, $19.95 DVD, NR.
Stars Olivia de Havilland, Richard Burton, Audrey Dalton.
Rachel was kind of a big deal upon its release for being the first film Olivia de Havilland did after winning two deserved Best Actress Oscars in three years: 1946’s To Each His Own and 1949’s The Heiress.
Extras: The print is spectacularly crisp, shadowy and detailed. As usual for Twilight Time, the DVD includes a Julie Kirgo essay and an isolated musical score track for screen music connoisseurs.
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American Experience: Houdini

PBS, Documentary, $24.99 DVD, NR.
Narrated by Mandy Patinkin.
Produced a little more than a decade ago, this presentation is a good example of how one keeps a documentary moving when there isn’t a bottomless pool of existent real-life footage. Those interviewed include illusionist David Copperfield and late caricaturist Al Hirschfeld.
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