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Originally published Tuesday, April 10, 2012 at 5:31 AM

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New DVDs | 'The Iron Lady,' 'Miss Representation'

New DVD releases for Tuesday, April 10, include "The Iron Lady," starring Meryl Streep as former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, and the documentaries "Miss Representation" and "Into the Abyss."

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New DVDs |

Tuesday brings Meryl Streep's Oscar-winning performance as "The Iron Lady" into the spotlight. Star ratings are by Seattle Times movie reviewers, freelancers or wire services. For full reviews, search the movie title at seattletimes.com.

2.5 stars "The Iron Lady" (PG-13): Streep disappears so uncannily into her role as former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher that her performance overpowers the movie. Filmgoers who come to see Streep in action will see only that — an actress delivering a bravura performance — but not a thoughtful, provocative portrait of one of the most consequential figures of the 20th century.

Framed as a sequence of flashbacks that Thatcher reflects on in late retirement, the result may be a more vulnerable, sympathetic portrait than the title suggests, but it also forces the filmmakers to leave far more vital aspects of her life and career on the cutting-room floor.

As adamantly un-intellectual as "The Iron Lady" is, it's still undeniably entertaining. The film leaves viewers with the sense that its subject has been both lionized and punished, but in neither case fully or fairly understood.

DVD extras: making-of and costume-design featurettes and the mini-documentaries "Recreating the Young Margaret Thatcher," "Battle in the House of Commons" and "Denis: The Man Behind the Woman."

The Washington Post

Other releases

3 stars "Into the Abyss" (PG-13): Werner Herzog's look at the death penalty.

3 stars "Miss Representation" (not rated): Jennifer Siebel Newsom's documentary — featuring Margaret Cho, Katie Couric, Geena Davis and others — explores the images of women in the media.

3 stars "Sleeping Beauty" (not rated): A young woman (Emily Browning), working her way through college, enters a specialized and highly lucrative form of sex work. This is no fairy tale.

TV on DVD

"Laverne & Shirley: The Fifth Season"

"Night Gallery: Season Three"

"One Tree Hill: The Complete Ninth Season"

Lori Taki Uno: luno@seattletimes.com

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