CAPTION: Jeff Bridges stars as country singer/songwriter Bad Blake, whose life gets turned around after he meets a younger journalist and mother played by Maggie Gyllenhaal in “Crazy Heart.”

Crazy Heart (Fox, Blu-ray or standard DVD, R, 111 min.). Jeff Bridges won both the Best Actor Academy Award and Golden Globe for his very lived-in role of country singer/songwriter Bad Blake. Blake is 57, an alcoholic and out of shape, dragging himself in his old car from bowling alley gig to bar gig, six states in two months. He’s basically headed nowhere, stalled out because his former backing guitarist Tommy Sweet (Colin Farrell, who, like Bridges, does his own singing in the film) would not tour with him and will not record another album with him. He does not help that Bad hasn’t written a song in three years.

When he reaches Santa Fe, his keyboard player (he always has local bands support him, rather than the cost of having a touring band) asks if his niece can interview him for the Sun Scene. She turns out to be Jean Craddock (Maggie Gyllenhaal in an Oscar-nominated performance), a single mother with a 4-year-old son. During the interview session, in which Bad asks as many questions as Jean, they develop a liking for each other, which leads to an affair that leads to Bad thinking he still has a chance at happiness. Of course, there will be bumps along the way.

The two leads are great and their performances help lift the material. Writer and director Scott Cooper adapted the film from the 1987 novel of the same name, written by Thomas Cobb. The character of Bad is based on Waylon Jennings, Kris Kristofferson (especially in looks) and Merle Haggard. In fact, Cooper had wanted to do a biopic on Haggard, but had no luck getting cooperation. The film’s other strength is the music, written by composer and producer T-Bone Burnett, the late Texas songwriter Stephen Bruton and Southern singer/songwriter Ryan Bingham. The song “The Weary Kind” won the film’s other Oscar.

The standard DVD has six deleted scenes, while the Blu-ray has deleted scenes, alternate music cuts and audio commentary by Bridges, Gyllenhaal and Robert Duvall, who plays a barkeep friend of Bad’s. Grade: film 3.25 stars

The Twilight Saga: New Moon (Summit, 2 Blu-ray discs, PG-13, 130 min.). In the middle film of the trilogy — although I understand the third books is being broken into two films — mopey vampire Edward Cullen (Robert Pattinson), who looks 17 but is 109, decides he must leave human love Bella Swan (Kristen Stewart) behind for her own safety. So, he makes up a story that he doesn’t really care for her and leaves. That gives Bella the perfect excuse to mope even more than Edward ever did, and boy do those parts of the film drag.

However, the film has one big saving grace, and that is in the form of a pumped-up Taylor Lautner, who plays Bella’s American Indian friend Jacob Black. They become close, near to romantic eventually, as Bella starts to come out of her self-induced mental coma. After going to a movie with a friend, she sees some bikers that she thinks may have been the ones who threatened her in the last film, and that brings visions of Edward, warning her away from danger. Just to see him even that way, Bella becomes addicted to danger, including cliff diving and working with Jacob to rebuild a couple of old motorcycles.

The big reveal here, as if you didn’t know, is that Jacob will learn he has the werewolf gene (he and his pals spend most of the film shirtless, to the delight of the audience). But Bella, poor Bella, passes up a very good thing with Jacob to help out Edward, who has gone to seek death at the hands of the ancient Volturi vampires in Italy. Bella jets off to Italy with Edward’s sister to save him. It seems so tacked on and the Volturi seem so pointless.

The film is at its best in the middle, with the deepening friendship between Bella and Jacob. Man, does Bella make the wrong choice. The werewolf special effects are well done. What was viewed was the two-disc Target version (different retailers had different versions), which also includes a collectible film cell. The film includes audio commentary by director Chris Weitz and editor Peter Lambert; a six-part, making-of documentary that can be watched separately or as picture-in-picture segments during the film; band rehearsal footage with Muse; and three music videos. The second disc includes exclusive deleted scenes; an interview with the Volturi; a look at the film‚s music; and a storyboards to screen feature. Grade: film 2.25 stars; extras 3 stars

Rating guide: 5 stars = classic; 4 stars = excellent; 3 stars = good; 2 stars = fair; dog = skip it

Additional reviews are available online at and include the Criterion releases of Ang Lee’s new director’s cut of “Ride With the Devil,” Sidney Lumet’s “The Fugitive Kind” with Marlon Brando and Jean-Luc Goddard’s “Vivre Sa Vie.”