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Wednesday, Oct. 23, 2013

Home Movies/Out on Digital: Oct. 22

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■ “North America”

This Discovery Channel series didn’t need to venture to Africa to find wild kingdoms. The nature documentary found plenty of fascinating footage in America’s backyard. Tom Selleck narrates this breathlessly paced show, offering close-ups of hammerhead sharks preying on other sharks just off Florida’s sunny beaches and a baby mountain goat (born with agility few humans can learn) taking its first steps on the toe-narrow ledges of the Rockies.

The Salzburg Connection

The Salzburg Connection was regarded as a routine thriller upon release (1972), but the DVD reissue helps us appreciate just how well made routine films were in the ’70s. An American attorney (Barry Newman) vacationing in Austria gets caught up with Nazis, CIA, KGB and who knows what else in a triple-crossed scheme. Cinematography and composition is superb, as is the symphony of sight and sound and the efficient plotting and dialogue.

■ “The Wheels on the Bus: Animal Adventure & All Around Town”

Roger Daltrey hoped he’d die before he got old, but time went on and in the 21st century, he’s doing children’s shows. The voice of The Who’s “Magic Bus” is now voicing Aragon the Dragon on “The Wheels on the Bus,” a live action, puppet, animation kids show imparting life lessons and educational tidbits. Daltrey’s Dragon speaks in an odd voice (American South meets Southern England?) and sings catchy ditties in a ’60s R&B style.