Barney's Great Adventure (1998)
|Year Of Production||1998|
|RSDL / Flipper||No/No||Cast & Crew|
|Region Coding||2,4||Directed By||Steve Gomer|
Universal Pictures Home Video
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||Full Frame||English Dolby Digital 2.0 (224Kb/s)|
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||None|
|Video Format||576i (PAL)|
|Original Aspect Ratio||Unknown||Miscellaneous|
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||No|
But once Barney is on the scene, an adventure begins that sees the three friends discover a most unusual egg that appears to be slowly changing colours. Throughout the course of the adventure the egg is lost and found many times through a variety of interesting locations, from a posh French restaurant to a circus and the egg narrowly misses being scrambled many times over.
This is good, harmless fun for kids that encourages the use of imagination and positive thinking. There are also many recognisable songs and nursery rhymes spread throughout the film, as well as a few new ones by Barney himself. The length of the film may be a little tiresome for toddlers, but preschoolers will certainly love its simple story and colourful characters.
The video transfer is presented in 1.33:1 and appears to be full frame, however it is unclear what this film's intended aspect ratio exactly is. There doesn't appear to be any action cropped to the left or right of the image which leads me to suspect this may not be a pan and scan transfer but I can't be absolutely sure.
The transfer itself is a little soft intermittently, but there is a good degree of sharpness present throughout. Black levels are solid and although there are very few dark scenes in the film shadow detail is quite good when it's needed. There were no signs of low level noise at all.
As you would expect for a children's programme, the colours used throughout the film are very bold and bright. I didn't notice any instances of oversaturation or bleeding during the transfer, apart from some slight smearing on the bright coloured lighting at 50:40.
I couldn't pick any examples of MPEG over-compression, which was very nice to see. Aliasing was very minor when it did pop up, and hardly noticeable. The condition of the source is very good - there is the odd spec of dust or dirt here and there, otherwise this transfer is relatively clean and free of film artefacting.
There are no selectable English subtitle streams available on this disc, however there is one scene that uses some burnt in subtitles to translate a brief portion of French dialogue.
This disc is single layered, so there is no layer transition pause present.
There is only one audio track included on the disc, English Dolby Digital 2.0.
I didn't encounter any problems with dialogue at all and found the spoken word always easy to understand. There were similarly no issues with the ADR work or audio sync, which appeared spot-on at all times.
The music of the film is very bright and cheerful, featuring a number of standard children's favourites such as Twinkle Twinkle Little Star and Do Your Ears Hang Low? - a personal favourite of mine. There are also a couple of new songs from Barney himself that most kids would love, however older children may find some of them a bit corny.
The stereo soundtrack fared quite well on its own and presented an excellent left-to-right pan of a passing comet at 18:35. The soundtrack also performed moderately well with Pro Logic manually engaged, which directed some soundtrack music to the rears and made the experience a little more enveloping. There was no subwoofer reaction, which was hardly surprising.
|Surround Channel Use|
NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.
The Region 1 is a clear winner in this case.
The audio and video transfers are passable, and there are no extras included.
|DVD||Pioneer DV-525, using Component output|
|Display||Panasonic TX76PW10A 76cm Widescreen 100Hz. Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.|
|Audio Decoder||Built in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.|
|Amplification||Denon AVR-2802 Dolby EX/DTS ES Discrete|
|Speakers||Orpheus Aurora lll Mains (bi-wired), Rears, Centre Rear. Orpheus Centaurus .5 Front Centre. Mirage 10 inch sub.|