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VideoView by Jay Bobbin

  (NOTICE: Ratings for each film begin with a ‘star’ rating — one star meaning ‘poor,’ four meaning ‘excellent’ — followed by the Motion Picture Association of America rating, and then by a family-viewing guide, the key for which appears below.)


  STARTING THIS WEEK: “WRECK-IT RALPH”: A video-game villain (voice of John C. Reilly) escapes from the contest to prove he’s not such a bad guy — and unwittingly sets loose a much greater danger, which he then has to recapture — in this fanciful, animated Disney fantasy. There are plenty of fun nods to classic characters as Ralph attempts to show he’s not just the nemesis of the more-embraced Fix-It Felix (voice of Jack McBrayer, “30 Rock”). Jane Lynch, Sarah Silverman, Ed O’Neill (“Modern Family”), Dennis Haysbert and Mindy Kaling also are heard. DVD extras: “making-of’’ documentary; deleted and alternate scenes; “Paperman” short subject; video-game commercials. *** (PG: V) (Also on Blu-ray and On Demand)


  “RED DAWN”: Foreign invaders turn young Americans into freedom fighters in this less-effective remake of the 1984 adventure, delayed from release long enough by MGM’s financial troubles for stars Chris Hemsworth and Josh Hutcherson to have had respective successes with “Thor” and “The Hunger Games” first (though they made this before those). Interestingly, the nationality of the enemies was altered digitally after filming, so as not to upset some overseas exhibitors. Josh Peck, Isabel Lucas, Adrianne Palicki (“Friday Night Lights”), Connor Cruise (adopted son of Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman) and Jeffrey Dean Morgan also star in the tale directed by Dan Bradley, stunt coordinator for most of the “Bourne” movies. ** (PG-13: P, V) (Also on Blu-ray and On Demand)


  “THE INTOUCHABLES”: Based on a true story, this seriocomic French film by writer-directors Olivier Nakache and Eric Toledano earned international raves for its two stars ... veteran actor Francois Cluzet as a rich aristocrat suddenly incapacitated while paragliding, and Omar Sy (who won the Cesar, France’s equivalent of the Oscar, as best actor for this) as the much younger and more street-wise fellow hired to care for him. Though others are in the cast, the picture very much belongs to those actors, and their unlikely yet fabulous teamwork justifies it. DVD extras: deleted scenes. *** (R: AS, P) (Also on Blu-ray and On Demand)


  “PLAYING FOR KEEPS”: Gerard Butler’s charisma does much — if ultimately not enough overall — for this comedy-drama, as he plays a former soccer star whose personal and professional lives have taken downturns. He tries to put both back on track as he attempts to win back his ex-wife (Jessica Biel) while becoming the coach of his son’s sports team. In the latter role, he catches the eyes of several soccer moms (Catherine Zeta-Jones, Uma Thurman, Judy Greer). Dennis Quaid also appears. DVD extras: two “making-of” documentaries; deleted scenes. ** (PG-13: AS, P) (Also on Blu-ray and On Demand)


  “LAY THE FAVORITE”: He’s back on “Die Hard” territory these days, but Bruce Willis has been doing lots of other work lately, an example being this comedy casting him as a veteran gambler who gets an unlikely “business” partner. She’s a former stripper played by Rebecca Hall (“The Town”), and her expertise at predicting sports winners bodes well for them both. Catherine Zeta-Jones, Joshua Jackson, Vince Vaughn and Laura Prepon also appear for director Stephen Frears (“The Queen”). *** (R: AS, N, P) (Also on Blu-ray and On Demand)
 

  “A DARK TRUTH”: In one of her first major roles since the end of “Desperate Housewives,” Eva Longoria is teamed with Oscar winner Forest Whitaker as married environmental activists in this drama. They get into big trouble while trying to prove a powerful corporation is linked to a devastating massacre in Ecuador, prompting an ex-CIA man (Andy Garcia) to accept the mission to rescue them. Kim Coates and Deborah Kara Unger also appear. DVD extra: “making-of” documentary. *** (R: AS, V)


  COMING SOON: “HITCHCOCK” (March 12): Anthony Hopkins portrays the iconic filmmaker as he struggles to get his thriller “Psycho” made. Helen Mirren also stars. (PG-13: AS, P, V)

  “LIFE OF PI” (March 12): Survivors of a shipwreck, a young man (Suraj Sharma) and a tiger become wary lifeboat mates in director Ang Lee’s visually stunning adventure. (PG: AS, V)


  “RISE OF THE GUARDIANS” (March 12): Jack Frost, the Easter Bunny and other legends band together to save Earth. The animated fantasy’s voice cast includes Hugh Jackman, Jude Law and Alec Baldwin. (PG: AS)
  “SMASHED” (March 12): Mary Elizabeth Winstead and Aaron Paul (“Breaking Bad”) play a couple whose drinking binges become dangerous. (R: AS, P, V)


  “THE COLLECTION” (March 26): In this equally gruesome follow-up to “The Collector,” Josh Stewart reprises the role of a serial killer’s almost-victim enlisted to help save the felon’s latest captive. (R: AS, N, P, GV)
 

  “PARENTAL GUIDANCE” (March 26): Billy Crystal and Bette Midler play a couple who get a firsthand education in modern generational differences by baby-sitting their grandchildren. (PG: AS)


  FAMILY-VIEWING GUIDE KEY: AS, adult situations; N, nudity; P, profanity; V, violence; GV, particularly graphic violence.