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VHS Video

Slapstick Comedy

George of the Jungle [VHS]

George of the Jungle [VHS] Lowest new price: $6.99
Lowest used price: $0.95
List price: $9.99

Disney presents the smash hit comedy that families and critics everywhere went bananas over! Deep in the heart of the African jungle, a baby named George, the sole survivor of a plane crash, is raised by gorillas. George grows up to be a buff and lovable klutz (ENCINO MAN'S Brendan Fraser) who has a rain forest full of animal friends -- like Tookie, his big-beaked messenger, Ape, a talking gorilla who's smarter than your average rocket scientist, and Shep, a gray-haired peanut-loving pooch of an elephant! When poachers mess with George's pals, the King Of Swing swings into action. But before you can say, "Watch out for that tree," George comes face-to-bark with a few vine-covered obstacles! You'll go wild for this "wonderfully wacky comedy" that People Magazine calls "impossible to resist!"

Disney scored an unexpected hit with this goofy live-action remake of Jay Ward's Saturday-morning cartoon, a zippy Tarzan parody with topical references and absurd gags. Disney's big-screen version, starring Brendan Fraser as the sweet, hopelessly inept jungle hero, puts the emphasis on slapstick and silly fun. The klutzy hero, still swinging into trees and stray boulders, saves a lost L.A. socialite (Leslie Mann) on safari and, completely smitten, leaves behind his tree-house home and simian best friend (an Oxford-accented ape voiced by John Cleese) to accompany the socialite back to the concrete jungle of LA, much to the frustration of her conniving fiancé (Thomas Haden Church). Fraser's enthusiastic performance enriches our hunky hero with endearing innocence and energetic pluck. The humor is spotty and consistently more juvenile than the original cartoon, but the unending parade of visual gags (including George's pet elephant Shep, transformed into an overexcited six-ton puppy by inventive digital effects) keeps the tone light, frothy, and winningly fun. --Sean Axmaker

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Ma & Pa Kettle: The Kettles on Old MacDonald's Farm [VHS]

Ma & Pa Kettle: The Kettles on Old MacDonald's Farm [VHS] Lowest new price: $4.99
Lowest used price: $1.39
List price: $9.98
Brand: Universal Studios Home Entertainment

"The Kettles on Old MacDonald's Farm" (1957) brings down the curtain on the likeable series as Ma & Pa (and kids) settle into new digs...and discover a young couple hiding out. And so, it's up to the Kettles to act as chaperones, along with some funny bits of business involving doing chores, a logging competition, and a pesky bear.

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Club Paradise [VHS]

Club Paradise [VHS] Lowest new price: $3.50
Lowest used price: $2.50

Robin Williams went through a period in the mid '80s when he looked like he'd turned into the next Richard Pryor: yet another brilliant standup comic neutered by the script mills of the Hollywood studios. Indeed, Williams seems almost like a spectator in this film, reacting to a supporting cast extremely deep in talent doing what they can with the mediocre script by Brian Doyle-Murray and director Harold Ramis. Williams plays a heroic Chicago fireman, who is injured and retires after saving several lives in a fire. He takes his insurance settlement and buys a resort on a poor Caribbean island (the film was shot in Jamaica). He spends the rest of the time playing straight man to a gaggle of guests that includes such SCTV alumni as Rick Moranis, Andrea Gross, Eugene Levy, and Robin Duke, as well as Jimmy Cliff and Peter O'Toole. Occasionally rising to the level of mild amusement, Club Paradise is, disappointingly, little more than a series of hit-and-miss sketches strung together by the feeblest of plots. --Marshall Fine

For Richer Or Poorer [VHS]

For Richer Or Poorer [VHS] Lowest new price: $4.50
Lowest used price: $0.51
List price: $7.77
Brand: Universal Studios Home Entertainment

Tim Allen and Kirstie Alley are New York scammers on the lam from the IRS--they got framed by their slimy accountant, Wayne Knight of Seinfeld--so they hide out as fake Amish farmers in Intercourse, Pennsylvania. As parodies of Witness go, For Richer or Poorer can't compete with the Woody Harrelson-Bill Murray flick Kingpin, by the creators of Dumb & Dumber. Allen and Alley are directed by the creator of McHale's Navy. But wait, come back! The true test of talent is a capacity to romp right through weak material, and while this story is hopelessly lame and formulaic, Allen and Alley are credible candidates for the clown prince and princess of broad TV comedy. When somebody wonders how come alleged Amish guy Tim Allen has no beard, Kirstie says, "Lice." Of course, his face has no lice on it either, so Kirstie adds, "Minute lice!" --Tim Appelo

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Abbott & Costello Go to Mars [VHS]

Abbott & Costello Go to Mars [VHS] Lowest new price: $17.29
Lowest used price: $5.00
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Brand: Universal Studios Home Entertainment

new vhs in factory shrink wrap

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Folks [VHS]

Folks [VHS] Lowest new price: $99.95
Lowest used price: $3.87
List price: $19.98

John Aldrich is about to come face to face with the most terrifying force known to man.....his parents.

Abbott & Costello Meet Frankenstein [VHS]

Abbott & Costello Meet Frankenstein [VHS] Lowest new price: $4.31
Lowest used price: $1.55
List price: $4.45

Universal Pictures made a great deal of money from its monster movies in the 1930s. In the early '40s, the burlesque team of Bud Abbott and Lou Costello kept the studio's coffers full. When the two franchises were combined in 1948, the result was another windfall--despite the apparent oil-and-water mix of subject matter. Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein was the first of these summit meetings, although the title is a misnomer. Actually, Bud and Lou bump into most of the Universal heavy-hitters, including Count Dracula (played by Béla Lugosi himself), the Wolfman (Lon Chaney Jr.), and the Frankenstein monster (veteran monster Glenn Strange). There's even a token appearance by the Invisible Man, whose disembodied voice is recognizable as that of Vincent Price. Sure enough, the film is funny, especially since it gives the portly Costello multiple opportunities to do his wide-eyed, quivering scaredy-cat routine. Audiences ate it up, and in future installments Bud and Lou would run into Boris Karloff, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, the Invisible Man, and the Mummy. But the first was the best. --Robert Horton

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Down Periscope [VHS]

Down Periscope [VHS] Lowest new price: $6.89
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Kelsey Grammer stars as the captain of a rust-bucket submarine who is fighting for his career by proving his skills in a contest against far more sophisticated ships. Rob Schneider provides comic support as an uptight ensign, and Lauren Holly plays an officer who has to fight her own will-they-accept-me-because-I'm-a-woman anxieties. The film didn't do well at the box office, but it is actually pretty funny, Grammer is enjoyable, and the above-the-water/below-the-water action sequences are as good as any in most submarine films. --Tom Keogh

How High [VHS]

How High [VHS] Lowest used price: $2.50
Brand: Universal Studios Home Entertainment

Two guys by the name of Silas and Jamal decided to one day smoke something magical, which eventually helps them to ace their college entrance exam.



Home Alone [VHS]

Home Alone [VHS] Lowest new price: $4.26
Lowest used price: $0.63
List price: $6.98
Brand: FOX Video

Eight-year-old Kevin McCallister (Macaulay Culkin) has become the man of the house, overnight! Accidentally left behind when his family rushes off on a Christmas vacation, Kevin gets busy decorating the house for the holidays. But he's not decking the halls with tinsel and holly. Two bumbling burglars are trying to break in, and Kevin's rigging a bewildering battery of booby traps to welcome them!

Now and forever a favorite among kids, this 1990 comedy written by John Hughes (The Breakfast Club) and directed by Chris Columbus (Mrs. Doubtfire) ushered Macaulay Culkin onto the screen as a troubled 8-year-old who doesn't comfortably mesh with his large family. He's forced to grow a little after being accidentally left behind when his folks and siblings fly off to Paris. A good-looking boy, Culkin lights up the screen during several funny sequences, the most famous of which finds him screaming for joy when he realizes he's unsupervised in his own house. A bit wooden with dialogue, the then-little star's voice could grate on the nerves (especially in long, wise-child passages of pure bromide), but he unquestionably carries the film. Billie Bird and John Candy show up as two of the interesting strangers Culkin's character meets. Joe Pesci and Daniel Stern are entertainingly cartoonish as thieves, but the ensuing violence once the little hero decides to keep them out of his house is over-the-top. --Tom Keogh


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