Six Picks for the Week of November 1-7

Kinect for Xbox 360 (Thu.)

ImageNow Xbox owners can show off their moves

It’s taken Sony and Microsoft four years to invent a technology that basically copies what Nintendo launched with the Wii in 2006. Sony’s PlayStation Move launched in September to mixed reviews, and now the Kinect comes out on Thursday for the Xbox 360. What sets the Kinect apart is that there is no physical controller; instead, the player controls the game using his or her own body. The majority of launch titles are generally weak, with Kinect Sports, Kinectimals, and Kinect Adventures! leading the pack. Dance Central seems to have the best buzz of all the launch titles, though we'll know more when the reviews are in later this week.

Start figuring out how to move your furniture at the official Kinect website.

Due Date (Fri.)

ImageRoad trip!

The Hangover director Todd Phillips follows up his wildly successful comedy with a modern-day take on Planes, Trains and Automobiles, with Robert Downey Jr. and Zach Galifianakis taking the places of odd couple Steve Martin and John Candy. In Due Date, sympathetic oddball Galifianakis helps and hinders high-strung straight man Downey Jr., who is trying to get back to his pregnant wife, played by his Kiss Kiss Bang Bang co-star Michelle Monaghan. Cameos from Danny McBride (Eastbound & Down) and Jamie Foxx add to the hilarity in this Friday release.

Have some ashy coffee at the official website.

The Larry Sanders Show: The Complete Series on DVD (Tue.)

Image It's Garry Shandling's other show

The king of meta television, Garry Shandling, finally has his entire run of The Larry Sanders Show released Tuesday in a 17-disc DVD box set. The innovative and hilarious series about self-involved talk show host Larry Sanders, his salty producer Artie (Rip Torn!) and dour sidekick Hank (Jeffrey Tambor) and their on-screen and behind-the-scenes hijinks with several celebrities (David Duchovny, Jon Stewart, and more) playing versions of themselves can now be enjoyed as a whole after two prior DVD releases that contained only the first season and a smattering of greatest episodes.

Enjoy some long-awaited laughs at the official website.

The War for Late Night by Bill Carter (Thu.)

ImageLenogate revisited

Author and New York Times reporter Bill Carter follows up his acclaimed 1994 book The Late Shift (about Jay Leno and David Letterman’s struggle to take over The Tonight Show after Johnny Carson's retirement) with an account of the recent fiasco involving Leno and Conan O’Brien. In The War for Late Night, released Thursday, Carter is able to provide fly-on-the-wall details from the notorious 2009-10 period, when mixed signals, poor communication, and NBC's ill-fated decision to try Leno at 10pm led to a battle between Team Chin and Team Coco.

Pity NBC at the official book website, or read an excerpt from the book at Vanity Fair.

127 Hours (Fri.)

ImageBetween a rock and a hard place

Director Danny Boyle follows up his multiple Academy Award-winning film Slumdog Millionaire with a drama based on the true story of mountain climbing adventurer Aron Ralston and the five excruciating days he spends alone trying to extricate his trapped arm from a boulder in a canyon. 127 Hours, opening Friday in New York and Los Angeles and expanding to additional cities on November 12, stars James Franco as Ralston and arrives on a wave of great reviews and outstanding buzz (plus a few fainting spells) from screenings at both the Telluride and Toronto International Film Festivals.

Spend some alone time at the official website.

Small Craft on a Milk Sea by Brian Eno (Tue.)

ImageEno shows off his warped side

Roxy Music member, electronic music legend, Microsoft sound creator, producer extraordinaire, oblique strategist, MGMT song subject -- Brian Eno has nearly done it all. Now, he follows his score for Peter Jackson’s unfortunate The Lovely Bones with his first album on the legendary Warp Records label. Small Craft on a Milk Sea, released Tuesday, is a beautifully atmospheric instrumental album that contains a few spiky moments like leaked track “2 Forms of Anger” (listen below), but mostly stays in a lush ambient comfort zone.

Coast on sound waves at the official Warp website.

stream the entire album at NPR (until Tuesday), or listen to "2 Forms of Anger" below:

Closing the book on last week

Weekend Box Office Champion (Estimated, U.S. only; source:
Saw 3D 23 $22.5 million; 1st week at #1
#1 Album on Billboard 200 (Source: SoundScan)
Sugarland: The Incredible Machine 59 1st week at #1
Top-Rated Primetime Broadcast Show (Source: Nielsen)
Sunday Night Football (Vikings/Packers) (NBC) 25.7 million viewers; week of 10/18 -10/24

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Comments (3)

  • Lucas  

    Due Date will be like the Hang Over, funny the first time but then it will be like no one can get over it. Not that good I say, not that good.

  • Gabriel  

    The Larry Sanders set is a complete fail for me. I'm not getting a 17 (!!) discs collection when this could have been printed on three or four blu-ray discs. Get with the times, publishers. You just lost a sale (probably more).

  • whas lup  

    kinect=end of 360s credibility

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