New on DVD: 'Knuckleball!' and other notables

05:00 AM, Apr 04, 2013

N.Y. Mets pitcher R.A. Dickey demonstrates how to throw the titular pitch in 'Knuckleball!' Charles Miller, FilmBuff/


Written By by Steve Jones, USA TODAY

Knuckleball!2013, FilmBuff, not rated, $25

The Major League Baseball season opens this weekend and mounds will be mostly manned by flame-throwing pitchers intent on blowing batters away. This documentary by directors Ricki Stern and Anne Sundberg focuses on a different, rare breed — knuckleballers, who depend more on guile than gusto. They follow the 2011 seasons of the Boston Red Sox’s Tim Wakefield (now retired) and the New York Mets’ Cy Young Award winner R.A. Dickey, the only ones using the unpredictable pitch. A wide range of experts chime in on its use and history, including retired masters Phil Niekro, Charlie Hough, Wilbur Wood, Jim Bouton and Tom Candiotti.

The Baytown Outlaws2013, Phase 4 Films, R, DVD and Blu-ray, $30

Three Alabama brothers — Brick, Lincoln and McQueen Oodie — who do contract killings for the local sheriff (Andre Braugher) are enlisted by a woman (Eva Longoria) to rescue her kidnapped son from his drug lord godfather (Billy Bob Thornton) in this action comedy. Paul Wesley plays a fed investigating the brothers.

Earth’s Final Hours2011, Starz/Anchor Bay, not rated, $20; Blu-ray, $25

When some super-dense space debris blasts holes through the Earth’s core, the planet is devastated and its rotation is nearly brought to a halt in this SyFy original movie. The only hope is a lost satellite, and it will take the combined efforts of an FBI agent (John Streich), his brilliant son (Cameron Bright) and a scientist (Julia Benson) to find it.

The Sweeney2013, Entertainment One, R, $20, Blu-ray, $25

Legendary detective Jack Regan (Ray Winstone) and partner George Carter (Ben Drew) specialize in armed robbery cases in this film inspired by a 1970s British TV cop show. When Regan learns that an old enemy may be helping another dangerous criminal, he defies orders to bring them to justice.