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Comedy that's all dressed up

November 28, 2002|Susan King

"Dress to Kill"

Eddie Izzard

Anti, $20 for DVD

The British comedian, who refers to himself as an executive transvestite, a male tomboy and a male lesbian, shines in his Emmy Award-winning one-man show, which was shot in 1998 in San Francisco and debuted on HBO in 1999. Decked out in frosted blond hair, tons of makeup, a colorful tunic shirt, leather pants and heels, Izzard waxes comedic about Hitler, England's colonial years, JFK, Easter, Italians and their motorcycles, and the Anglican Church. The DVD features another Izzard one-man show, "Dress to Circle," which he shot in Paris and performs in French. Izzard supplies commentaries for both of his shows but is rather subdued, although he keeps saying that despite his penchant for women's clothing, he is definitely straight.


"Ice Age"


Fox, $25 VHS; $30 DVD

Charming, funny and sentimental, this computer-animated film set during the Ice Age is sort of a "Three Prehistoric Animals and a Baby." Three misfits -- a fast-talking, dimwitted sloth named Sid (voiced by John Leguizamo), a woolly mammoth named Manny (Ray Romano) and a saber-toothed tiger named Diego (Denis Leary) -- come together to return a human baby boy to his father.

The two-disc DVD, available in both pan-and-scan and wide-screen, also features such goodies as commentary with director Chris Wedge and co-director Carlos Saldanha, six deleted scenes with Wedge's commentary, a multi-angle look at the animation progression, Wedge's Oscar-winning short, "Bunny," and Sid riffing about his scenes in the movie. The DVD-ROM features several interactive games and numerous printables.


"Men in Black II"

Tommy Lee Jones, Will Smith

Columbia TriStar; $25 VHS;

$29 DVD

Despite the return of the two charismatic stars and director Barry Sonnenfeld, this big-budget sequel to the 1997 sci-fi comedy hit is a drag. The humor quickly wears out its welcome, and several of the special effects look cheesy, at least on the wide-screen DVD. Even the cameo by Michael Jackson fizzles. The movie's best performance comes from the cute little pug that plays the wisecracking agent, Frank. In fact, Sonnenfeld says that the little dog was a one-take wonder that always hit his mark.

The two-disc digital edition includes Sonnenfeld commentary, a dreadful alternate ending, a blooper reel -- a very cute animated short "The Chubbchubbs" and 14 passable production featurettes.



Miranda Stuart Ryne,

Charlotte Blythe

New Video, $20 for VHS;

$25 for DVD

Rebecca Miller, the daughter of Arthur Miller and wife of Daniel Day-Lewis, made her feature directorial debut with this award-winning 1995 film about a 10-year-old girl (Ryne) with an active fantasy life. The digital edition includes talent files and sharp, amusing commentary from Miller.

-- Susan King

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