VIDEO GAME -- Def Jam: Icon: The latest episode of the popular fighting series (for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3) puts the focus on the story this time around. Gamers play as a money-hungry hip-hop mogul, who'll stop at nothing to boost his label's rep. Real-life rappers like Ludacris, the Game, and T.I. take part in the fisticuffs fun of this terrific outing. Coolest feature: smashing opponents to the rhythm of the music. Beatdown takes on a whole new meaning.
CD -- Ghosts of the Great Highway: Sun Kil Moon's debut album from 2003 gets upgraded with a six-song bonus disc of covers and alternate versions. Former Red House Painters frontman Mark Kozelek's moody project gets richer with each listen. Part indie rock, part haunting dreamscape, it's a portrait of an artist buried in melancholy. Lush strings add to the overall sadness. A quiet gem worth rediscovering.
MOVIE -- Shrek the Third: The big green ogre's third outing finds him on the verge of becoming king of Far Far Away . . . unless he can find someone else for the job. Pals Donkey and Puss in Boots join the adventure. The jokes are a bit more obvious this time, but the series' satiric spirit remains.
DVD -- Van Damme Triple Feature: The Muscles from Brussels has made some flabby flicks. The three movies in this set -- Kickboxer, Replicant, and Universal Soldier -- rank among his best for one simple reason: They forgo plot and focus almost exclusively on the ass-kicking. Maybe there's a message behind Jean-Claude Van Damme's three not-so-distinct killing machines. We're too knocked out to look for it.
COURTESY FLUSH, PLEASE -- Mullets Rock! Too!: Mullets in Love: This 18-track CD assumes that the word "mullet" automatically generates laughs. It doesn't. And a few of the songs -- "More Than a Feeling" and "Tuesday's Gone," especially -- are pretty good. Plus, many of the '70s and '80s artists featured -- including Ted Nugent, Blue Oyster Cult, and Cheap Trick -- didn't actually sport the infamous 'do. Keep moving -- you won't find a party in the back here.
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