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Tuesday, Sept. 3, 2013

Home Movies/Out on Digital: Sept. 3

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■ “Elementary”: The First Season

Manhattan provides a handsome backdrop to the U.S. remake of the brilliant BBC series “Sherlock.” In “Elementary,” Holmes is an expat and a recovering alcoholic. Dr. Watson is his rehab therapist. Jonny Lee Miller plays a shaggier, gaunter Holmes than we’ve seen before, but he’s still a match for criminals. Lucy Liu provides support as Watson. “Elementary” isn’t half as clever as “Sherlock,” but has its puzzle-solving insights and quick verbal jabs.

From Up on Poppy Hill

Saucer-eyed Umi is the teenage protagonist of this beautifully drawn Japanese animated feature. Set in Yokohama in 1964, on the eve of the Tokyo Olympics, the conflicting impulses of modernity and tradition form the backdrop to Umi and her boyfriend’s search for the mysteries in their own past. From Up on Poppy Hill is a charming evocation of a vanished place and time, voiced by familiar American actors such as Gillian Anderson, Sarah Bolger and Bruce Dern.

My Amityville Horror

Danny Lutz was 10 years old when his family moved into an infamous house in Amityville, N.Y. After 40 years and numerous dramatizations, Lutz agreed to be interviewed—and allow tapings of his psychotherapy sessions—for this compellingly creepy documentary. Darker than fiction, Lutz’s account concerns an abusive stepfather with many peculiar interests and a dysfunctional family. His sincerity is obvious. And yes, he believes things happened to his family that do not fit the paradigm of our age.

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