DVD isn’t just for two hours of boy-meets-girl (or -alien) any more. Here are non-movie DVDs I’ve liked:

More Treasures From American Film Archives The second and more entertaining of a series of box sets devoted to film preservation— a wonderful grab-bag of early film containing everything from a riproaring Rin-Tin-Tin feature to WWI-era cigarette commercials to a 10-minute silent Wizard of Oz.

Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy Fresh off phoning in Obi-Wan, Alec Guinness gave one of his greatest performances as the spectacularly introverted spy George Smiley, hunting a mole within M.I.6 in this deliciously catty, memorable-character-packed mini-series from a John LeCarré thriller.

Walt Disney Treasures: On The Front Lines
Startling compilation of Disney’s long-suppressed, often shockingly bloodthirsty WWII-era work, from Donald-Meets-Adolf burlesques to the fascinating hour-long documentary Victory Through Air Power, a kind of Fantasia of war with lushly animated scenes of bombing and devastation.

Ultraviolet The inevitable “British X-Files” descriptor hardly does justice to this brilliant miniseries about an anti-vampire police unit, which (unlike, say, Van Helsing) is both surprisingly thoughtful about the moral and sociological implications of vampirism, and jump-in-your-seat scary.

Samurai Jack
The answer to the question, what if Akira Kurosawa had built the It’s a Small World ride? Cartoon Network’s best show combines a serviceable lone-samurai-in-alt-universe plot with dazzling kitschy 60s-style graphics that make it the best wallpaper pattern on TV.

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