New DVDs: Nicholas Sparks, 'The Half Brother,' and more

Sniff, sniff: "The Lucky One," adapted from the Nicholas Sparks novel, stars Taylor Schilling as Beth and Zac Efron as Logan.
Sniff, sniff: "The Lucky One," adapted from the Nicholas Sparks novel, stars Taylor Schilling as Beth and Zac Efron as Logan. (ALAN MARKFIELD)
Posted: January 25, 2014

Make sure you have a jumbo pack of facial tissues handy when you start watching the seven DVDs collected in Nicholas Sparks: Limited Edition Collection, due Tuesday from Warner.

(And be careful when you read this, lest you faint.)

The very idea will make many a fan quiver in anticipation, shudder with sheer excitement: a box that includes seven star-studded screen adaptations of Sparks' romantic melodramas - Safe Haven, The Lucky One, Dear John, Nights in Rodanthe, The Notebook, A Walk to Remember, and Message in a Bottle.

It's a digital cornucopia of love, featuring trysts tragic and comic among some of Hollywood's hottest stars, including Julianne Hough, Josh Duhamel, Zac Efron, Channing Tatum, and Amanda Seyfried. ( www.wbshop.com; $69.97; PG-13)

Other DVDs of note

The Half Brother. Family melodrama meets epic history in this Swedish production of Norwegian author Lars Saabye Christensen's international best-seller about a divided family as it grows and mutates in a Europe divided by the Cold War. It follows the lives of two brothers: Fred, who was conceived in 1945 during a rape, and Barnum, who was born to the same woman, but through an act of love. The brothers split up when Fred goes on a quest to find his father, only to be reunited four decades later after the fall of the Berlin Wall. ( www.mhznetworks.org; $49.95; not rated)

Ain't Them Bodies Saints. Rooney Mara follows up her incredible turn in The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo with this stylish Bonnie & Clyde- esque tale of doomed love and crime costarring Casey Affleck and Ben Foster. ( www.mpihomevideo.com; $24.98 DVD; $29.98 Blu-ray; rated R)

Plus One (+1). Director Dennis Iliadis, who turned up the shocks for 2009's Wes Craven remake The Last House on the Left, is remarkably restrained in this super-creepy take on Invasion of the Body Snatchers about a drug-, sex-, and booze-infested college bacchanalia that enters the Twilight Zone when the partyers start running into their own clones. Alien invasion or drug-fueled hallucination? ( www.mpihomevideo.com; $24.98; rated R)

Mike Tyson: Undisputed Truth. Spike Lee directs Tyson in an autobiographical one-man show written and performed by the former heavyweight boxing champ before a live audience. It's due Feb. 11 from HBO Home Video. ( http://store.hbo.com; $14.98; not rated)

Heart of Darkness. Joseph Conrad's extraordinary novel is known to film fans primarily from Francis Ford Coppola's very loose adaptation, Apocalypse Now. Director Nicolas Roeg tries, with mixed results, to remain faithful to the book in this 1993 TV film starring John Malkovich and Tim Roth, available directly from the Warner Archive Collection website. ( http://shop.warnerarchive.com; $21.99; not rated)

How to Make Money Selling Drugs. The new documentary from producer Adrian Grenier ( Entourage) isn't an instructional video, but a brutally candid look at the violent world of street dealers. Features interviews with 50 Cent and The Wire creator David Simon. ( www.newvideo.com; $26.95; not rated)

Best Man Down. This twisted if poignant comedy stars Justin Long and Jess Weixler as a couple whose perfect wedding is ruined when the best man up and dies, forcing the newlyweds to go on a surreal road trip home with his body in tow. ($26.98 DVD; $29.98 Blu-ray; rated PG-13)

Carrie (2013). It can't be easy to fill Sissy Spacek's shoes - or those of her Carrie director Brian De Palma. But rising young star Chloƫ Grace Moretz and filmmaker Kimberly Peirce managed to produce a respectable remake of Spacek and De Palma's film adaptation of the Stephen King classic. Julianne Moore is especially terrifying as Carrie's Bible-thumping, borderline-psychotic mom. ( www.mgm.com; $29.98 DVD; $39.99 DVD/Blu-ray Combo; rated R)


tirdad@phillynews.com

215-854-2736

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