I suspect you are in the US
Are you looking to buy online, or buy from retail stores?
I think under $1,000, you won't be able to game at max, maybe just mid-low settings. What games are you looking at playing?
My Infiti laptop (see my sig below) can watch videos fine. I even am able to watch movies on TV via S-video. Looks fine to me...
Any computer can hold pictures. You might want to get an external drive down the road. Easy backup
For me, I don't trust HP except for their spectacular printers. But if anyone else wants to recommend one, you're not hurting my feelings. I rather trust ASUS, Toshiba, Acer or Dell.
As soon as you answer the above, we'll have more of an idea what you want
Edit: What Lex said, too..