DVD reviews

'The Thin Man' stars get their own fat boxed set. And it's time to take a peek at 'The Lives of Others,' if you haven't already.

The Myrna Loy and William Powell Collection (Not rated) "Darling, you don't need mystery," Nick Charles (William Powell) assures Nora (Myrna Loy) in "After the Thin Man." "You have something much better, something more alluring: Me." He was right. Loy and Powell had such classic chemistry that they were paired 14 times. After the success of 2005's "Thin Man" boxed set, Warner has gathered five of their less mysterious outings. "Manhattan Melodrama" is famous for being the movie John Dillinger watched just before he was gunned down outside the theater. If that weren't enough,

the tale of two orphans costars Clark Gable. A trio of screwball comedies round out the set. In "I Love You Again," a conk on the head helps Powell's pompous fuddy-duddy rediscover his past as a con man – just in time to charm his wife (Loy) out of a divorce. Extras: each disc includes a short and a cartoon, plus the original trailers. Grade: B+
– Yvonne Zipp

The Lives of Others (R) German director Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck's masterpiece snagged an Oscar and was lapped up by critics in the US. No surprise there: The film, which follows the doomed romance between a playwright and an actress five years before the fall of the Berlin Wall, is a startling achievement. Mostly, the credit belongs to Von Donnersmarck. He has an interest in history, but it is quiet passions that drive the movie – the raise of an eyebrow, the bead of sweat, the sly whisper. And as a Stasi agent assigned to monitor the two lovers, Ulrich Mühe is masterful. The best extra is an interview with the director himself, who manages to expound on the making of the film without ruining its allure. Grade: A
– Matthew Shaer

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