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Bring rice and water pistols. 'Rocky Horror' anniversary DVD is interactive.

October 05, 2000|SUSAN KING | TIMES STAFF WRITER

Can it be time to do the Time Warp again?

It's hard to believe, but "The Rocky Horror Picture Show"--the ultimate midnight movie--is celebrating its 25th anniversary. And Fox Video is throwing a big birthday party for the kicky, kinky sci-fi musical that stars Tim Curry, Barry Bostwick, Susan Sarandon, Meat Loaf, Patricia Quinn and Richard O'Brien.

The film that has audience members dressing as their favorite characters, reciting key lines, throwing rice and squirting water has been transformed into an inventive, interactive, two-set DVD ($30).

The first disc includes both the restored wide-screen transfer of the original U.S. theatrical release and the British version that includes the deleted musical finale, "Superheroes."

More interesting is a "theatrical experience" function that gives home viewers a chance to see what "Rocky Horror" is like in a movie theater. Whenever a pair of lips appears on the screen, just click on the remote and the action switches to a movie audience reacting and performing during a screening of "Rocky Horror."

And if you want to get into the action yourself, there is an "ultimate-at-home interactive-experience" function that encourages audience participation. Audio and subtitle tracks allow you to scream along and signal you when it's time to throw things at the screen.

Rounding out the first disc is an eccentric commentary track from O'Brien, who plays Riff Raff, and Quinn, who plays Magenta.

The second disc includes two deleted musical numbers, "Once in a While," sung by Bostwick, and "Superheroes," performed by Bostwick and Sarandon. Outtakes include 11 alternate takes of the most popular number, "The Time Warp," plus two alternate credit endings and two theatrical trailers.

A fun goody is the VH1 "Pop-Up Video" version of "Hot Patootie" performed by Meat Loaf. There are also excerpts from VH1's "Behind-the-Music" documentary on "Rocky Horror" (featuring interviews with Sarandon, Bostwick, O'Brien, Quinn and Meat Loaf) and a documentary on the history of the play and film, "Rocky Horror Double Feature Video Show."

Fox is also releasing a special anniversary edition of the movie on video ($15), which contains the U.K. version and a trailer.

The original title of the blockbuster horror comedy "Scream" was "Scary Movie." That's just one of the juicy tidbits revealed in Miramax's four-disc "Scream Trilogy" boxed set ($90). The collection includes all three installments in the Wes Craven-directed horror franchise, plus an extra disc filled with treats.

Among the features on the fourth disc is a comprehensive documentary on the making of the three films that includes interviews with Craven, screenwriter Kevin Williamson and cast members Courteney Cox Arquette, David Arquette and Neve Campbell.

Also included are the screen tests of Campbell, Jamie Kennedy and Skeet Ulrich, plus several funny outtakes. You can also hone your editing skills by putting together deleted scenes from the opening of "Scream 3." The disc also includes spoofs of horror trailers, including a "Blair Witch" takeoff that's really a scream.

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Even 32 years after its release, "Rosemary's Baby" is still a chilling horror film.

Beautifully directed by Roman Polanski--it was the Polish director's first Hollywood film--this stylish adaptation of Ira Levin's bestseller stars Mia Farrow and John Cassavetes as a young couple who move into a funky New York apartment complex, where they are quickly befriended by their elderly neighbors (Ruth Gordon and Sidney Blackmer) who just happen to be a witch and a warlock.

The performances are all dead-on, especially Gordon's; she won an Oscar for her wonderfully over-the-top turn.

Paramount's new DVD of "Rosmary's Baby" ($30) features a restored wide-screen transfer and new interviews with Polanski, producer Robert Evans and production designer Richard Sylbert. There's also a "making of" documentary.

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MPI Home video is offering two acclaimed horror classics starring Jack Palance on one DVD ($25): "Dracula," a 1973 TV movie produced and directed by Dan Curtis of "Winds of War" and "Dark Shadows" fame, and "The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde," a TV movie from 1968 that was nominated for six Emmy Awards.

"Dracula" is a rich, compelling and scary version of the Bram Stoker classic, with Palance in the lead role and Fiona Lewis as the tragic Lucy, who has the misfortune of resembling Dracula's old love. The DVD features interviews with Palance and Curtis about the project.

Curtis also produced "The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde," an adaptation of Robert Louis Stevenson's novel. Palance is very effective in the title roles, and he's surrounded by a terrific supporting cast that includes Leo Genn, Oskar Homolka, Denholm Elliott and Billie Whitelaw.

Everyone's favorite Great Dane is back in a new made-for-video adventure, "Scooby-Doo and the Alien Invaders" ($20 on VHS; $25 for DVD). In this so-so outing, Scooby, Shaggy and the gang find themselves stranded in a remote desert town filled with unfriendly extraterrestrials. The DVD features such extras as a making-of documentary and an interactive game. Jennifer Love Hewitt sings the theme song.

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