Weird 'Lucy' among week's top releases

DVD/Blu-Ray

Lucy (2014) - Scarlett Johansson, Morgan Freeman, Min-sik Choi

A woman, accidentally caught in a dark deal, turns the tables on her captors and transforms into a merciless warrior evolved beyond human logic (IMDb). My friends and I couldn't make heads or tails of if this film was the good kind of weird or the "what am I watching?" kind of weird. The cinematography is great, and the concept is interesting if you put all science plausibility in the back seat.

The Boxtrolls (2014) - Ben Kingsley, Jared Harris, Nick Frost

A young orphaned boy raised by underground cave-dwelling trash collectors tries to save his friends from an evil exterminator. Based on the children's novel 'Here Be Monsters' by Alan Snow (IMDb). The stop-motion in this film is top notch, and the Oscar nominations are very well deserved. This is a great film for the kids, but all can appreciate the art of the medium.

Annabelle (2014) - Annabelle Wallis, Ward Horton, Tony Amendola

A couple begins to experience terrifying supernatural occurrences involving a vintage doll shortly after their home is invaded by satanic cultists (IMDb). Horror film. Mediocre reviews, but performed quite well at the box office. The director's previous outings include "The Butterfly Effect 2" and "Mortal Kombat: Annihilation."

The Internet's Own Boy: The Story of Aaron Swartz (2014)

The story of programming prodigy and information activist Aaron Swartz, who took his own life at the age of 26 (IMDb). Swartz was instrumental in the development of RSS, Creative Commons, and the website Reddit. His death in 2013 was marked with controversy, as he was facing pressure from federal prosecutors and MIT for accusations of violating the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, which could have landed him in prison for 35 years. This film received a standing ovation at Sundance and did very well on the festival circuit.

Books

Gods, Guns, Grits, and Gravy - Mike Huckabee (272 pages)

In Mike Huckabee's new book, he asks the question, "Have I been taken to a different planet than the one on which I grew up?" The New York Times bestselling author explores today's American culture, drawing from his travels as a presidential candidate to present average, small-town people and families, and their optimistic resilience in the face of hard times. (BarnesAndNoble.com).

Veronica Mars: Mr. Kiss and Tell - Rob Thomas (288 pages)

In the second book in the New York Times bestselling mystery series, Veronica Mars is back with a case that will expose the hidden workings of one of Neptune's most murderous locations (Goodreads.com). The Veronica Mars franchise has had a very successful reboot after the Kickstarter-funded film. Mars is a great modern Nancy Drew, and Thomas gears his writing to a very wide audience.

The Train to Crystal City: FDR's Secret Prisoner Exchange Program and America's Only Family Internment Camp During World War II - Jan Jarboe Russell (416 pages)

The dramatic and never-before-told story of a secret FDR-approved American internment camp in Texas during World War II, where thousands of families, many US citizens, were incarcerated (Goodreads.com). Internment camps are often under-represented in history books on World War II. This should be a very interesting read for the history buffs out there.

The Man Who Couldn't Stop: OCD and the True Story of a Life Lost in Thought - David Adam (304 pages)

Have you ever had a strange urge to jump from a tall building, or steer your car into oncoming traffic? You are not alone. In this captivating fusion of science, history and personal memoir, writer David Adam explores the weird thoughts that exist within every mind, and how they drive millions of us towards obsessions and compulsions (Goodreads.com).