April's DVDs

Prove You're No Fool This April

Feature by Graham McIntosh | 16 Apr 2006
April is a big month for big movies. First of all, one of modern cinema's biggest directors, Peter Jackson, brings us one of the most notorious giant creatures, 'King Kong', to the shelves. It's a fairly faithful remake, and in its own right, has an attractive all-star cast, some excellent special effects and is directed in the standard Jackson style we've all become so familiar with. For those of you who missed it in the cinema, you can catch the whole film on DVD on April 10, except the footage from the teaser trailer, which ironically never made the final cut. Jackson was a good choice of director to place at the helm of this colossal film, as his name was enough to generate interest in this remake. As you probably know, it won plenty of Empire Awards - and hardly any Oscars at all. Take from that what you will.

If one computer-generated animal isn't enough for you, then don't forget 'The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch & The Wardrobe' is out on April 3rd. Tilda Swinton plays the evil White Witch in the first live-action, big screen adaptation of C.S. Lewis' book. Though this is not technically the first instalment of the series, it is widely regarded as such, and stands in good stead for the other six, which have also been optioned for adaptations. Liam Neeson voices Aslan (replacing Brian Cox), supported by a whole host of British stars, or at least their voices, in the tale of four children who enter the magical land and end the terrifying reign of eternal winter. It's a (heavily biblical) morality tale at heart, but also a beloved children's tale.

An old Hitchcock movie also gets its DVD debut. 'Lifeboat' tells the story of survivors of a torpedoed ship, stuck on a lifeboat with one of the men who sank it. Starring the unsinkable Tallulah Bankhead, cast by Hitchcock due to her incongruous character, and Hume Cronyn. With the one set of a single lifeboat, Hitchcock still managed his infamous director's cameo. 'Lifeboat' is out now, so keep your eyes open for him.

Finally, released to coincide with the second series on Channel 4, the first series of 'The Green Wing' hits the shelves on April 3. From the creators of 'Smack the Pony', this hospital-based comedy show has a unique and easily recognisable directorial style. There's a clear storyline arc, but each scene is pretty much a sketch on its own. The ensemble cast provide downright hilarious stuff, not least because of the show-stealing performance by Michelle Gomez. Every type of character is here for you to sample, from ball-busting career woman, to downright simpleton. Prove you're no fool this April, and get yourself a decent DVD.