New on DVD this week

05:00 AM, Apr 25, 2013

Naomi Watts and Tom Holland struggle to survive in 'The Impossible,' based on a true story of the Southeast Asia tsunami of 2004. Jose Haro, Summit Entertainment/


Written By by Steve Jones, USA TODAY

The Impossible

2012, Summit Entertainment, PG-13, $30; Blu-ray, $40

Maria Bennett (Naomi Watts), her husband Henry (Ewan McGregor) and their three sons are enjoying the Christmas holidays in Thailand when the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami hits. They are separated in the ensuing chaos and barely survive the catastrophe. Though both parents are injured, and everyone’s disoriented, the family holds out hope that they can be reunited.

USA TODAY’s Claudia Puig says *** 1/2 out of four: “The Impossible is a nimbly acted drama that is at once a stellar visual achievement and a life-affirming story of familial love and courage.”

Promised Land

2012, Universal, R, $30; Blu-ray, $35

A salesman for a large energy company (Matt Damon) comes to a depressed Pennsylvania farming community to convince the residents to sign mineral rights leases that would let the company drill underground for natural gas. He meets resistance, though, in a town where farms have been in families for generations, and the safety of the fracking process is called into question. Puig: ***

Gangster Squad

2013, Warner Bros., R, $29; Blu-ray, $36

A group of Los Angeles cops form a special unit to take on a ruthless gangster (Sean Penn) in the 1940s using whatever means necessary. After a series of raids on the crime boss’ businesses, the police face a final violent showdown to end his meteoric rise. Josh Brolin, Ryan Gosling, Nick Nolte and Emma Stone star. Puig: **

A Haunted House

2013, Universal, R. $30; Blu-ray, $35

Malcolm (Marlon Wayans) and Kisha (Essence Atkins) star as a couple beset by paranormal activity in this spoof of the “found footage” horror genre. When it turns out Kisha is possessed, Malcolm tries a variety of exorcists to save her soul.