Jess Cagle's Picks For DVD Gifts

A quick trip to the video store can cover almost everyone on your gift list. With most DVDs priced from $15 to $30, they fit in almost anyone's budget. People magazine assistant managing editor and Early Show entertainment contributor Jess Cagle shared some of his ideas for great DVD gifts.

The Big Hits :

"Pirates Of The Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest" was released as both a deluxe two-disc special edition DVD set and as a single-disc DVD.

  • The single-disc DVD features screenwriter audio commentary and bloopers.
  • The special edition features limited availability holographic packaging and includes all single disc features, plus a behind-the-scenes documentary. It also includes red carpet footage and producer Jerry Bruckheimer's personal on-set photo diary.

    "The Da Vinci Code" DVD has more than 90 minutes of special features.

  • The special features are shot in high definition.
  • The special two-disc set also includes 11 featurettes, with individual pieces on Tom Hanks, Audrey Tautou and author Dan Brown.

    "Talladega Nights," starring Will Ferrell as NASCAR driver Ricky Bobby, was released on DVD with hilarious extras.

  • The DVD contains deleted and extended scenes, a gag reel and "25 Years Later" commentary with Director Adam McKay, Will Ferrell, John C. Reilly and others.
  • There is also an unrated and uncut version which has 13 extra minutes that were not seen in theaters.

    "The Devil Wears Prada" DVD also contains some extra features.

  • Audio commentary is provided by director David Frankel, producer Wendy Finerman and costume designer Patricia Field.
  • The DVD contains featurettes like "Trip to the Big Screen," "NYC and Fashion," "Fashion Visonary Patricia Field" and "Getting Valentino," as well as 15 deleted scenes.

    "Mission: Impossible III" was released in a special collector's edition DVD.

  • Blu-Ray and HD DVD presentations are each two-disc sets with behind-the-scenes bonus material.
  • The movie also will be available as a single-disc DVD in either widescreen or full screen, featuring commentary, a "making of" segment and deleted scenes.
  • The special collector's edition DVD is presented in widescreen with Dolby Digital English 5.1 Surround and French 2.0 Surround with English and Spanish subtitles. In addition, the DVD features a commentary by director J.J. Abrams and star Tom Cruise.

    "Invincible" stars Mark Wahlberg as a bartender who tries out for and makes the Philadelphia Eagles even through he didn't play college football.


  • For Kids:

    "Cars" was the biggest animated film of the year.

  • The DVD contains an Academy Award-nominated animated short, "One Man Band," as well as deleted scenes and an all-new animated short, "Mater and the Ghostlight."

    "Over The Hedge" was another animated success.

  • The DVD features a new mini-movie called "Hammy's Boomerang Adventure" created for the DVD release.
  • The DVD also has interactive bonus programming, including activities, games, creative projects and downloadables.
  • The DVD includes "Behind The Hedge," a look at the real-life animal counterparts that inspired the on-screen heroes.

    "Barnyard" shows what really happens when the farmer's back is turned.

  • The DVD includes bonus material including the music video "Barnyard Bop."
  • The DVD also features "Method Acting With Kevin James," a look at how the actor prepared for his role as a bull.
  • Kids can also create their own Barnyard comic book.

    "The Ant Bully" has the voices of some of Hollywood's biggest stars, including Meryl Streep, Julia Roberts and Nicholas Cage.

    "Barbie In The 12 Dancing Princesses: Horse And Carriage" brings the classic princess tale to life with choreography from the New York City Ballet, an original score and special bonus features.

    "High School Musical: Remix Edition" will delight any kid who was a fan of the Disney Channel original movie.

  • The two-disc DVD has retains a Spanish audio track and 34 minutes of new features.
  • Viewers can check out several minutes of red-carpet interviews from the DVD release party.
  • There are videos of the remixed versions of songs "Breaking Free," "We're All in This Together" and "Eres Tu," a Spanish version of "What I've Been Looking For."

    Movies to Make a Difference:

    "An Inconvenient Truth" is former Vice President Al Gore's look at global warming.

  • The DVD includes a new extensive interview with Gore as well as commentary by director Davis Guggenheim and producers Lawrence Bender, Scott Burns, Laurie David and Lesley Chilcott.
  • It also features a music video for Melissa Etheridge's song "I Need to Wake Up."
  • A portion of the proceeds will be donated to the Alliance for Climate Protection.

    "When The Levees Broke" is Spike Lee's four-part HBO documentary about Hurricane Katrina.

  • The entire series is presented on three discs and contains commentary by Lee.
  • It also features "Next Movement: Act IV," a 105-minute epilogue featuring new interviews and insights and "Water Is Rising," a gallery of photos by David Lee with music by Terence Blanchard.

  • The Classics:

    "A Star Is Born" celebrates its 30th anniversary by making its debut on DVD.

  • It contains all-new audio commentary from Barbara Streisand and a remastered Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack.
  • It features additional scenes and wardrobe tests, also with Streisand commentary.

    "Grease" is one of the most-loved American musicals, and now the "Rockin' Rydell" edition DVD offers new ways to appreciate the film.

  • The DVD showcases commentary by director Randal Kleiser and choreographer Patricia Birch.
  • It also contains deleted, extended and alternate scenes and vintage interviews with John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John. The special edition is presented in limited edition "T-Bird" leather jacket packaging.

    "Reds" may be Warren Beatty's most acclaimed film. It recently made its debut on DVD for its 25th anniversary.

  • The two-disc set features in-depth segments on how the project came about, an introduction to the cast, a discussion about the "witnesses" featured in the film, and features on the locations, sets, editing, scoring, release and ultimate reaction to the film.
  • The DVD includes all-new interviews with Beatty, Jack Nicholson, composer Stephen Sondheim and others.

    Boxed Sets:

    "Superman: Ultimate Edition" was released in November and includes all six films in the "Superman" theatrical franchise.

  • The 14-disc is loaded with more than 20 hours of bonus features like "You Will Believe: The Cinematic Saga of Superman," a feature length documentary and Bryan Singer's video journals chronicling the making of "Superman Returns."

    The Chronicles Of Narnia comes in a four-disc set and is available for a limited time.

  • The extended edition became available on DVD Dec. 12. It features a new, extended version of the film with enhanced special effects and an extended battle scene.
  • The set also offers a feature-length film "C.S. Lewis — The Dreamer Of Narnia."
  • "Visualizing the Lion, the Witch and The Wardrobe: The Complete Production Experience" is an in-depth look at the process and technology of adapting the book into the motion picture.

    Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton are being honored as one of Hollywood's most famous on- and off-screen couples with the release of the Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton Film Collection on DVD.

  • The set will feature "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" in a two-disc special edition, along with the DVD debuts of "The Sandpiper," "The V.I.P.s" and "The Comedians."

    TV Series:

    M*A*S*H, one of television's longest-running shows, is now available in one DVD collection. The Ultimate Collection contains all 11 seasons of the TV series, the original 1970 film, two all-new bonus discs and a retrospective book created for this release.

    "Six Feet Under" is also being released in a complete series gift set.

  • The set contains a 3-D animated menu, audio commentary, deleted scenes, episode previews and episode recaps.

    "SNL: Complete First Season" lets fans relive the glory days of NBC's "Saturday Night Live."

  • All 24 episodes have digitally remastered picture and sound.
  • The set contains eight DVDs and comes with a limited-edition collectible book, audition footage and a cast interview that aired the day before the first show.

    "Seinfeld's" seventh season is said to be the best by many fans.

  • The four-disc boxed set includes all 24 episodes from the season, including classics like "The Soup Nazi," "The Sponge" and "The Rye."
  • The boxed set also contains extensive bonus material, including two all-new animated "Sein-Imation" features, with Seinfeld scenes re-imagined with original cast voices. It also includes new interviews with the cast and creators, commentary, bloopers, deleted scenes and never-before-seen standup routines.