DVD: Tyler Perry keeps it all in the family

Tyler Perry's "Madea's Big Happy Family" is stuffed to the gills with Perry's mix of the sacred and the silly and a serious dose of self-help. He and his ensemble are funnier than they've been in ages. Madea's niece Shirley (Loretta Devine) is sick with "the cancer." She resolves to round up her family to give them the news over a big family dinner. The joint-smoking/chain-smoking Aunt Bam (Cassi Davis, a hoot) has been her only help. But Shirley's kids are a problem. They won't sit down together. It's up to Madea to climb into her ancient Cadillac, risking "carbon peroxide poisoning," to round up the offspring so that their momma can say goodbye. The DVD and Blu-ray (Lionsgate, $30-$40) include outtakes.


Out on DVD 8/30

  • "Cougar Town," (Season 2)
  • "Desperate Housewives" (Season 7)
  • "Detroit 1-8-7" (Season 1)
  • "The 5th Quarter"
  • "Forks Over Knives"
  • "The Herculoids"
  • "House, M.D." (Season 7)
  • "iCarly " (Season 3)
  • "Laugh to Keep From Crying"
  • "Nikita" (Season 1)
  • "90210" (Season 3)
  • "Parenthood" (Season 2)
  • "The Perfect Host"
  • "Prom"
  • "Scooby-Doo and the Pirates"
  • "Sons of Anarchy" (Season 3)
  • "The Vampire Diaries" (Season 2)
  • "Wonders of the Universe"

Out on BLU-RAY

  • "Blood Simple"
  • "If ..."
  • "Miller's Crossing"
  • "Orpheus"
  • "Raising Arizona"
  • "Top Gun"

GAME: Latest craze just crazy

"Zumba Fitness: Join the Party" ($40-$50 for Xbox 360, PS3, Wii; rated Everyone) is the latest motion-based game to capitalize on the chance to get gamers (or non-gamers) to bring the gym experience into their family rooms. If you consider yourself on the cusp of having rhythm and sweet moves on the dance floor, you might want to avoid "Zumba Fitness," which is based on the fitness craze that uses high-energy dance moves rooted in Latin and hip-hop music. The movement detection on the Kinect is so poor that even the most skilled players might still receive failing marks. Perhaps more important, there is no real "game" to speak of; "Join the Party" is more like a digital instructional DVD. An introductory Zumba class on YouTube probably delivers better value.


GADGET: Time for a new TV?

If you're shopping for an HDTV, you're probably lost in a marketing morass. Ease your headache with a visit to Retrevo's HDTV model decoder (www.startribune.com/a624). The shopping site defines marketing terms -- you'll learn what Samsung's Micro Dimming/Plus is, as well as Vizio's Razor LED lighting and Sony's Motion Flow -- but the most helpful feature tells you the differences among a brand's product lines. So you'll know what separates LG's LK, LV and LW models. Retrevo does that for five other HDTV brands, too: Panasonic, Samsung, Sony and Vizio. Go to the link above, then scroll midway down the page and click on one of the brand names to learn their secrets. Once you get a handle on what brands are offering, it'll be easier to compare HDTVs.