I can't believe how many kids' DVDs have been coming in here at The Madhouse for review over the past few weeks ! We've just reviewed Humf and the Fluffy Thing (here) and Tom & Jerry and the Wizard of Oz (here), and this time it was Thomas & Friends : Day of the Diesels, much to 2-year-old Pierre's delight (although 6-year-old Juliette sat and watched it all the way through too, while doing her colouring book).
As the blurb says, "It's Steamies versus Diesels in the brand new Thomas & Friends hour long adventure Day of the Diesels which is released on Blu-ray and DVD on Monday 26th September".
Prior to its release Thomas fans will be able to see their hero on the big screen at 68 Vue cinemas across the country during the weekend of 17th September (in other words, next weekend). But we got a preview copy so we watched it even earlier than that !
Day of the Diesels showcases the classic rivalry between the Diesel engines (that's the baddies) and the Steam engines (Thomas and his friends, so obviously the good guys) on the Island of Sodor. The hour long adventure follows the faceoff between the Steamies and the Diesels and introduces four new engines: Belle and Flynn (the brave firefighting engines), Den and Dart, as well as a brand new destination, the Dieselworks. It also reintroduces Diesel 10, the most devious of all Diesels, and a classic villain !
But this is a kids' DVD so it all works out OK in the end. Some of the good guys may go off the rails (not literally, luckily !) but they soon get back on the straight and narrow and see the error of their ways and the bad guys learn a few lessons along the way too so that they turn into better people, err trains, as well. It's a great message to young watchers, teaching them about being careful when choosing new friends, the ups and downs of friendship, bullying, loyalty (and misplaced loyalty), violence not being a solution and good things coming to those who wait.
It's also action-packed and ever so slightly scary (in a good way, to make it exciting - 2-year-old Pierre hid his eyes behind his hands saying "Scared !" during the fire scene, but I noticed that he spread his fingers apart so that he could still watch !!). The computer-generated animation is impressive - I'm always amazed at how much expression the creators manage to get onto the trains' faces.
A whole host of DVD-tie in products will be released, including books, games, engines, playsets and accessories, so I'm sure many of those will make their way onto numerous wishlists this Christmas.
Look out next week for a giveaway (yes, another one !) offering you the chance to win a copy of this brand new Thomas & Friends DVD.
star rating : 4.5/5
RRP : £12.99 on DVD and £14.99 on Blu-ray
for more information : http://www.thomasandfriends.com/
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