The big studios are racking up many box office dollars with their sometimes cloying animated flicks,

Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs



, but there is plenty of edgier fare on DVD.

New releases from Kino ( celebrate two of the world's most influential animators.

Extreme Animation: Films by Phil Mulloy ($29.95; not rated) contains two dozen sexually graphic, bleak and profoundly funny shorts by the brilliant British animator Phil Mulloy, who gives the term dark satire a whole new meaning. His minimalist shorts, which are hand drawn with black ink, tackle taboo subjects with playful irony.

Pieces include the 10-part "The Ten Commandments," which attacks moral hypocrisy; the hilarious "The Sexlife of a Chair"; and the first two parts of Mulloy's masterful "Intolerance Trilogy," the story of a race of strange aliens called Zogs whose behavior turns our morality on its head.

The Astonishing Work of Tezuka Osamu ($29.95; not rated) features shorts by the Japanese doctor-turned-artist Osamu (1928-89) who has been dubbed "the father of anime." (He's best known for introducing the big, round eyes that distinguish characters in many works of Japanese manga and anime.)

The collection features 13 pieces made between 1962 and 1988, including two of Osamu's most famous works.

"Pictures at an Exhibition" is composed of 10 vignettes that riff on classic pieces of fine art. And Osamu's 30-minute masterpiece, "Legend of the Forest," is a fairy tale recounting the history of animation by using drawing styles from the Victorian era to the age of CGI.

Fans of Japanese anime will appreciate FUNimation Entertainment, which has one of the largest collections of animes on DVD.

A personal favorite, the seven-disc Gungrave: The Complete Series Box Set ($49.98), is an imaginative, violent mob series compared by some critics to John Woo's best action films. It follows the divergent paths of two childhood pals recruited by the Mafia.

The playful, beautifully stylized xxxHolic: The Complete Series Box Set ($69.98) follows the story of Kimihiro Watanuki, a kindhearted teenage boy who somehow acts as a magnet for all sorts of spirits, ghosts, and demons.

Luckily, he meets a beautiful witch named Yuko who offers to help him. The price: He must follow her every order, whim, wish, and desire.

Other titles include Claymore: Volume 6 - The Awakening ($29.98); Darker Than Black: Volume 6 ($29.98), due Tuesday; The Wallflower: The Complete Series ($69.98), due Sept. 1, and Dragon Ball: Season One ($49.98), due Sept. 15. (All DVDs are unrated.)

Visit for a full catalog.

Want more mainstream fare? Coralline from Universal (; $34.98 two-disc edition; $29.98 single disc; PG) is a dark take on family relationships from Nightmare Before Christmas helmer Henry Selick.

Jennifer Love Hewitt and Freddie Prinze Jr. star in the fantasy epic Delgo from Fox (; $22.98; PG). Don Quixote's story is retold in Donkey X, due Tuesday from Peace Arch (; 19.99; PG). America's most loving family is featured in The Simpsons: The Complete Twelfth Season from Fox ($49.98; not rated), due Aug. 18.

Other DVDs of note

The Saragossa Manuscript

from Facets Multimedia (


; $29.99; not rated) is a surreal head-trip of a film made in 1965 by Polish auteur Wojciech Has (

The Hour-Glass Sanatorium

). It was adapted from the 1815 novel by Jan Potocki, a collection of interrelated tales about the adventures of a motley band of Gypsies, thieves, inquisitors, and cabalists.

A '60s favorite, the film was restored in the '90s by Jerry Garcia, Martin Scorsese, and Francis Ford Coppola and rereleased in 2001.

The Michael Chabon adaptation Mysteries of Pittsburgh from Peace Arch ($29.99; R) features a star turn from Sienna Miller.

Legendary English director John Boorman, 76, roars with The Tiger's Tail, due Tuesday from MGM (; $26.98; R). The intense drama, which stars Brendan Gleeson as a man who believes his doppelgänger has stolen his life, is a commentary on Ireland's recent economic boom.

Baby boomers will have serious flashbacks with the classic TV drama from the late '80s thirtysomething: The Complete First Season, due Aug. 25 from Shout! (; $59.99; not rated).