Another Christmas is upon us, as well as one more year down the drain. On that cheerful note, here are some recently released and upcoming DVD releases to help you survive another holiday season.

The first movie on our list is the third installment of the very popular family friendly "Shrek" series. In this sequel, Shrek and the love of his life Fiona attempt to have a fairy-tale wedding, but the death of King Harold throws a monkey wrench into their plans. The film stars the usual gang of suspects, Mike Myers, Cameron Diaz and Eddie Murphy, as well as the always funny John Cleese. It's enjoyable and entertaining for the entire family.

"Ocean's Thirteen," the final installment of another popular trilogy, is now on DVD. This crime blockbuster has the majority of its all-star cast returning, plus the addition of well-known actors Al Pacino and Ellen Barkin. This movie is about a hotel bank heist, not another casino pilfering, and how the 'gang' humiliates and disgraces the hotel's owner, played by Pacino. The film has the same glitz and flash as the first two and another good plot to keep all the viewers interested.

The computer-animated film "Ratatouille" is a computer animated family film that stars the incredibly funny Patton Oswalt as Remy, an undernourished but ambitious rodent who has a fondness for gourmet food. This penchant for sophisticated victuals leads Remy to aspire to become a chef, which has consequences of its own. This humorous and entertaining film also stars Brad Garrett, Will Arnett and Janeane Garofalo.

The next film in our "Holiday Movie Survival Guide" is "Deck the Halls." Evidently its name indicates the movie is about disastrous holiday turmoil. Danny De Vito and Matthew Broderick star as two small town neighbors who try to out do each other with their lavish Christmas lights. This out-of-control competition leads to a lot of laughs and a lot of electrocutions. This comedy also stars Kristin Davis and Kristin Chenoweth as the long suffering wives of the two battling and bumbling decorators.

If you are in the mood for some adolescent hi-jinx, "SuperBad" is the movie for you. This underestimated film stars Michael Cena and Jonah Hill as two socially incompetent high school seniors who try to 'score' with the opposite sex by acquiring some alcohol to help them with their almost seemingly impossible mission. The film provides constant laughs for everyone and ranks up there with other teenaged sex romps like "Porky's," "Losin' It" and "Revenge of the Nerds." Get it on DVD Dec. 4.

Another comedy being released this holiday season is "Balls of Fury" (Dec. 18). This gem was written and directed by "Reno 911's" Ben Garant. The story centers on a former ping-pong aficionado, played by Dan Fogler, who is conscripted to break into a high-stakes underworld competition to bring down the competition's evil and wicked leader, portrayed by the extremely popular Christopher Walken. This hilarious and inspirational film also stars David Koechner, George Lopez and Thomas Lennon.

Another animated film, due out Dec. 18, is the very popular "The Simpsons Movie." Based, of course, on the TV show, Springfield's favorite family has made it to the big screen and now back to the small screen. Homer, Marge, Bart, Lisa and Maggie embark on their first silver-screen adventure, even though the show has been on television for 20 years. The film also stars the voices of Erin Brockovich, Minnie Driver and the members of Green Day.

The last movie on our survival guide is the (nauseating) tween favorite "High School Musical 2." This film is a hit with anyone under the age of 10 or anyone who has an I.Q. less than a drunken orangutan. The sequel has most of the main cast returning, with Vanessa Anne Hudgens as the virginal Gabriella and the sexually ambiguous actor Zac Efron as the basketball hero Troy. The film is set during summer vacation where all the students of East Side High work at a posh and snobby country club. Like the first film, the delightfully evil Sharpey Evans, played by Ashley Tisdale, still tries to come in between the two lovers. There is also plenty of choreographed dance numbers for this movie, and it's so sugary sweet it will make your teeth hurt.

If these film classics don't help you with the holiday blues, there's always time to spend with Uncle Johnny Walker and Uncle Jack Daniels.

Written by contributing writer M. Fischer