J. Edgar (Warner)
Clint Eastwood’s biopic about the long-running head of the FBI didn’t quite click with audiences, partly because the movie refused to take sides on J. Edgar Hoover’s controversial life. But it’s worth checking out for Leonardo DiCaprio’s sympathetic performance and Eastwood’s studied, careful depiction and dissection of a man who was once one of the most hated people in America (turns out he had mother issues and liked to rewrite his own history). Yes, Hoover puts on women’s clothes in a scene, but more importantly he barrels through the 20th century with a patriotic verve that borders on fanaticism. Eastwood gets it mostly right, and so does DiCaprio.
Martha Marcy May Marlene (Twentieth Century Fox)
The Olsen twins’ little sister Elizabeth is terrific as a young woman struggling to lead a normal life after spending years in a cult. Don’t expect a tidy conclusion or easy answers. This is psychological warfare on one girl’s fractured homefront.
Underdog: Complete Collector’s Edition (Shout! Factory)
This nine-disc box includes all 124 episodes of the 1960s TV show about a Superman-like dog who fights crimes in an ill-fitting cape. Extras include some bonus cartoons plus commentary by a bunch of people who worked on the show.
Unforgiven: 20th Anniversary Edition (Warner)
Clint Eastwood had a long line of shitty movies behind him when he struck gold with this 1992 western about an aging gunfighter. It’s still his best movie as a director. This anniversary set includes a 1959 episode of Maverick starring Eastwood.