New DVD releases for Tuesday, May 5, include films about race: “Selma,” “Black or White” and “Spare Parts.” On Friday, May 8, comes “Fifty Shades of Grey.”

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New DVDs

New releases that focus on race take center stage Tuesday, May 5. Star ratings are by Seattle Times movie reviewers, freelancers or wire services. For full reviews, search the title at Release dates are subject to change.

★★★★  “Selma (PG-13): The film, directed by Ava DuVernay, “is both mesmerizing drama and timely history lesson,” says Seattle Times movie critic Moira Macdonald. At its center is the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. (played by David Oyelowo). But “Selma” isn’t a biopic; rather, it takes place over several months in the spring of 1965 in Alabama, where a group of courageous African-American activists decided they could no longer wait to demand the right to vote. (The movie won an Oscar for best original song with “Glory”).

★★★½  Mr. Turner (R): Timothy Spall, speaking in a symphony of grunts and mumbles, portrays the great British painter J.M.W. Turner.

★★★  Black or White (PG-13): Octavia Spencer and Kevin Costner play a paternal grandmother and maternal grandfather fighting over the custody of a child in this melodrama about race.

★★  Spare Parts (PG-13): Four Mexican-American high-schoolers in Phoenix overcome big odds when they enter a national underwater-robotics competition. The cast includes George Lopez, Jamie Lee Curtis and Marisa Tomei.

Friday release

★½  Fifty Shades of Grey(R): The adaptation of the erotic best-seller by E.L. James — starring Dakota Johnson as new college grad Anastasia Steele and Jamie Dornan as Seattle tech gazillionaire Christian Grey, a tortured soul with a mysterious past who wants to sign her up as his submissive — arrives Friday, May 8.


“Broadchurch: The Complete Second Season”

“Parenthood: Season 6”

“White Collar: The Complete Sixth Season”