It’d be a lot easier to tell you what’s not worth checking out this week than it is to point you to the gems. Among other things, this week sees the release of three of 2009’s best films: the sharp indie comedy Humpday, the moody Korean vampire romance Thirst, and the rousing summer blockbuster Star Trek. Television aficionados are well-served this week too, beginning with the DVD premiere of the It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia Christmas special, and continuing with complete series sets of Rome, The Sopranos and the short-lived Andy Barker, P.I.. Devotees of art-cinema should definitely pick up both the anthology Avant-Garde 3: Experimental Cinema 1922-1954 and the packed two-disc edition of the early ‘60s LA slice-of-life The Exiles (which includes bonus short films and documentaries by and about the movie’s writer-director Kent MacKenzie). Finally, fans of documentaries will have their hands full with Patricio Guzman’s ‘70s trilogy The Battle For Chile and the controversial Lil’ Wayne cinema verité piece The Carter. (Both docs are, in their own way, brutal but revealing.)

American Venus
MPI, $19.98

Andy Barker, P.I.: The Complete Series
Shout! Factory, $24.99

Avant-Garde 3: Experimental Cinema 1922-1954
Kino, $29.95

The Battle Of Chile
Icarus, $44.98

Blue Seduction
Starz/Anchor Bay, $26.97

Universal, $29.98; Blu-ray, $39.98

The Canyon
Magnolia, $26.98

The Carter
Virgil, $19.99

Darwin’s Darkest Hour
National Geographic, $19.98; Blu-ray, $28.99

Downhill Racer
Criterion, $29.95

Drawn Together: The Complete Series
Paramount, $59.98

The Exiles
Oscilloscope/Milestone, $29.99

Farscape: The Complete Series
A&E, $149.95

Fight Club
20th Century Fox Blu-ray, $34.99

Food Beware: The French Organic Revolution
First Run, $24.95

Image, $27.98; Blu-ray, $35.98

Galaxy Quest
Dreamworks Blu-ray, $29.99

Gone With The Wind
Warner, $24.98/$66.92; Blu-ray, $84.99

Hollywood Wives: The New Generation
Well Go USA, $14.98

How To Be
MPI, $24.98

Magnolia, $26.98

Is Anybody There?
Magnolia, $26.98; Blu-ray, $29.98

It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia: A Very Sunny Christmas
20th Century Fox, $26.98; Blu-ray, $29.99


Kevin Smith 3-Movie Collection (Clerks/Chasing Amy/Jay And Silent Bob Strike Back)
Buena Vista Blu-ray, $89.99

Léon: The Professional
Sony Blu-ray, $24.95

The Limits Of Control
Universal, $29.98

Margaret Cho: Beautiful
Image, $14.98

MVD, $24.95

A&E, $19.95; Blu-ray, $24.95

My Effortless Brilliance
MPI, $24.98

My Sister’s Keeper
Warner, $28.98; Blu-ray, $35.99

The Open Road
Anchor Bay, $29.98; Blu-ray, $34.98

MPI, $19.98

Code Red, $24.98

Rome: The Complete Series
HBO, $99.98; Blu-ray, $139.99

Scrubs: The Complete Eighth Season
ABC Blu-ray, $54.99

7th Heaven: The Ninth Season
Paramount, $34.99

sex, lies, and videotape
Sony Blu-ray, $24.95

Skills Like This
Docurama, $26.95

The Sopranos: The Complete Series
HBO, $299.98

Star Trek
Paramount, $29.99/$34.98; Blu-ray, $39.99

The Steve Coogan Collection
BBC Warner, $129.98

Universal, $29.98

Lionsgate, $26.98

Wagon Train: The Complete First Season
Timeless, $79.98

Wild Child
Universal, $26.98

A Wink And A Smile: The Art Of Burlesque
First Run, $24.95