Life Gets New Meaning on DVD

Today sees a host of animated favorites hit DVD for the first time. In addition to releases from The Simpsons and Disney TV favorites Kim Possible and The Brave Little Toaster, we get a special edition version of the 1983 cult classic Monty Python’s The Meaning of Life, which features unique animated sequences.

Long before the Farrelly Brothers made There’s Something About Mary, director Terry Gilliam and Monty Python players Terry Jones, Graham Chapman, John Cleese, Eric Idle, Terry Jones, and Michael Palin took gross-out humor to a whole new level with The Meaning of Life. The two-disc 20th anniversary edition features animated characters from the film guiding viewers through newly created bonus features. Extras include audio commentary; interviews with Cleese, Idle, Palin, Jones and Gilliam; deleted scenes; an alternate ending and new versions of songs such as “Every Sperm is Sacred,” and “The Meaning of Life,” re-recorded by their authors. There’s also an animated Martin Luther, who sporadically invades the disc in an attempt to have his deleted sequence put back in.

Other bonus features created by the surviving Pythons include the 50-minute featurette The History of the Meaning of Life, guided by animated versions of characters such as Mr. Creosote, A Fish, The Headmaster and The Man in Pink. The Re-Mastering of the Meaning of Life combines earnest and satirical takes on the restoration of the film. DVD-ROM features include the original screenplay, lost scenes, song sheets of music and lyrics, Creosote cooking tips, and the Python’s “Good Death Guide.” The Universal release lists for $26.98.

In advance of Halloween comes a home video release of The Simpsons Treehouse of Horror, featuring four episodes of the series’ annual animated fright fest. Included episodes are “Treehouse of Horror V,” “Treehouse of Horror VI,” “Treehouse of Horror VII” and “Treehouse of Horror XII.” There’s also a special featurette with drooling aliens Kang and Kodos. The Fox Home Entertainment release retails for $14.98 DVD.

Fans of Disney’s newest animated teenage sensation can revisit some of her most daring missions with Kim Possible: The Secret Files. The feature-length film is culled from episodes of the hit animated TV series and released by Buena Vista Home Video. The DVD version is said to contain an unseen episode in which Dr Drakken attempts to use DNAmy’s DNA splicing ability for evil purposes. It retails for $19.99 DVD and $14.99 VHS.

Also new on DVD from Disney are three installments of the Brave Little Toaster animated film series. The Brave Little Toaster (1987), The Brave Little Toaster Goes to Mars (1998) and The Brave Little Toaster to the Rescue take a humorous and heart-felt look at the secret lives of home appliances and list for $24.99 DVD and $14.99 VHS.