The Big Lebowski: Collector's Edition Joel Coen

Arguably the best Coen Brothers film, The Big Lebowski gets the special edition treatment from a pair of directors whose films have been nothing but bare bones when it comes to DVD extras. Jeff Bridges plays Jeffrey Lebowski, but you can call him the Dude. Someone has taken it upon themselves to pee on the Dude's amazing living room rug, and what's even worse is that the thugs who did this have mistaken him for another Lewbowski, one who owes them money. So with the help of his bowling buddy, Walter (John Goodman), the Dude seeks to put an end to all the confusion but gets wrapped up in a messy plot involving a kidnapped wife and her amputated big toe. With the Coens involved it's a given that The Big Lebowski is often hilarious and always clever, so add long-time Coen DP Roger Deakin's incredible cinematography and career performances from Bridges and Candy and you have American filmmaking at its finest. The DVD, though touted as a "collector's edition," contains very little in the way of extras and the juiciest bonus (a 30-minute "making of" featurette) was found on the initial release. Added to the mix is a rather impressive photo gallery taken by Jeff Bridges on the set — his skills behind the lens are quite slick, with scribbled captions under each photo. Then there's yet another Coen film intro by Mortimer Young, letting us know the quality and care that was put into restoring The Big Lebowski. Though more involved than the Blood Simple intro, it just seems more confusing than anything else, though it's hard not to laugh when he mutters the "forget about the fucking toe" line in a deadpan delivery. So if you don't already own this Coen classic on DVD, then this is the version to grab, otherwise there's really no point for fans to upgrade. Plus: production notes. (Universal)