The Video Tapeworm: October -- Week One

FLIPPER (1996; $19.98, Rated PG from MCA/Universal).Smelly old fisher-drunk Paul Hogan teaches rebellious teen Elijah Wood how to make one asinine excuse for a movie -- and still make it fun. Your kids'll love the dolphins and you'll love the scenes of pristine sand and crystal blue water; it s the best mental vacation twenty bucks can buy. You'll thank us in February.RACE THE SUN (1996; Rental, Rated PG-13 from Columbia Tristar).Okay, so it's just another inspirational corporate-formula feel-good family flick about the underdog succeeding against all odds; it's still gangs of fun. Halle Berry, James Belushi, and Casey Affleck (To Die For) all head out to the Outback to race solar-powered cars and learn the secrets of Life, Love, and why Sand Gets in Everything. Worth a rental.THE CRAFT (1996; Rental, Rated R from Columbia Tristar).Four teen witches lead by Fairuza Balk (Things To Do in Denver When You Have a Stupid First Name) basically take the plot of Clueless and tear its fingernails off. Starts off fun and campy, but turns downright mean when the special effects guys start snortin. Needs more broomsticks, but still a great little Halloweener.ANTONIA'S LINE (1995; $97.99/Rental, Unrated from BMG Independents).Something rare in American video: a subtitled Dutch drama about a single mother s devotion to her children that succeeds at being both raucously sexy AND funny -- despite the fact that it won an Academy Award. Even rarer, it s actually worth the read. Recommended.PINOCCHIO S REVENGE (1996; $94.99/Rental, Rated R from Vidmark).What a great idea! Famous oaken puppet meets the girl of his dreams and becomes a real, live boy -- only this one's an evil and savage woody that won't quit. Just another silly low-budget gore-fest with sawdust for brains, but listen for the theme song, that old standard, Wooden Tit Be Lov-er-ly (just kiddin ). In color!BLOOD & DONUTS (1996; $94.98/Rental, Rated R from Live Entertainment).Another great idea! A vampire crawls from the grave at midnight. Of course, everyone's asleep so he heads for the local all-night donut shop where the cashier falls in love with him. Stupid ... but, hey, it s October.

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