Hi-5: Space Magic (2004)

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Released 7-Oct-2004

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Childrens Main Menu Audio & Animation
Music Highlights-Songs Of The Week (3)
Karaoke-3 Songs
Storybook-Sharing Stories (2)
Trailer-Previews Of Hi-5 Videos And DVD's
Rating Rated G
Year Of Production 2004
Running Time 49:25
RSDL / Flipper No/No Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 4 Directed By Ian Munro
Studio
Distributor

Roadshow Home Entertainment
Starring Kathleen De Leon
Nathan Foley
Tim Harding
Kellie Hoggart
Charlie Robinson
Case Amaray-Transparent-Secure Clip
RPI $24.95 Music Chris Harriot


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 2.0 (320Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 1.78:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 1.78:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English for the Hearing Impaired Smoking No
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

NOTE: The Profanity Filter is ON. Turn it off here.

Plot Synopsis

    Charli Robinson, Kellie Hoggart, Kathleen De Leon, Tim Harding and Nathan Foley are back in another DVD instalment of this very popular children's series. Space Magic is focused on the planets that make up our solar system and features many simple songs and stories with a sci-fi theme. There's also plenty of physical activity and dancing throughout the show, as well as the usual familiar characters and a few weird aliens! Magic tricks are also part of the theme, with everything from bottled genies to wise wizards. There are some great, catchy songs included in the show, in fact I think this disc boasts some of Chris Harriot's best song writing to date. These new songs include Hi-5 Base To Outer Space, Dream On and I Believe In Magic.

    If your child loves the moon and stars or the odd magic trick, there will be a lot for them to love in this great collection of stories, adventures and songs.

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Transfer Quality

Video

    This is a passable video transfer for a children's series.

    This transfer is presented in a ratio of 1.78:1 and is 16x9 enhanced. Hi-5 is broadcast in Australia in widescreen digital.

    The entire transfer is marred by some very ugly compression artefacting, making the level of sharpness highly variable at times. I imagine this transfer would look very ugly indeed on a large display. The production is so colourful and well lit that there are literally no shadows or dark scenes to speak of.

    Absolutely everything is bold and colourful - the sets, costumes and lighting are very bright and eye-catching. There were no examples of oversaturation or colour bleeding in the transfer.

    MPEG artefacts comprised of heavy grain and blocking are everywhere, and are highly noticeable. The transfer is at its worst during moments of fast movement on screen, and given the amount of dancing and fast action this is pretty much consistent.

    English Subtitles for the Hearing Impaired were activated by default on my DVD player, but not on my DVD-ROM. The titles are comprised of an easy to read font and are paced accurately with the dialogue. The titles are easily removed on-the-fly using your remote control.

    This disc is single layered.

Video Ratings Summary
Sharpness
Shadow Detail
Colour
Grain/Pixelization
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts
Overall

Audio

    The only audio option is a Dolby Digital 2.0 stream that manages to do the job adequately. Contrary to the cover slick, there is no Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack present.

    As you would expect for a children's series, the dialogue is first class and very easy to understand. There were a few minor instances of distortion through the tiny headpiece microphones when the cast speaks or sings too loudly, but this was only an intermittent problem stemming from the decision not to use overhead boom or lapel microphones in the studio.

    There were no problems with audio sync whatsoever.

    Composer Chris Harriot does a splendid job as always with simple, melodic songs that kids love. All the songs included in the feature are energetic, melodic and vary greatly from one to the next. The instrumentation is mostly electronic, but sounds better than one would expect. As I stated earlier, this is some of the best music you will find on a Hi-5 DVD.

    There was no surround activity or subwoofer response. I attempted to engage Pro Logic II processing but it didn't do this soundtrack any favours.

Audio Ratings Summary
Dialogue
Audio Sync
Clicks/Pops/Dropouts
Surround Channel Use
Subwoofer
Overall

Extras

Menu

    All menus are subtly animated but are not 16x9 enhanced. The accompanying audio on the main menu is the recognisable Hi-5 theme. The feature begins playback automatically after two rotations of the main menu.

Scene Selection

    As with other Hi-5 DVD discs, the viewer is able to select their favourite presenter and watch one or all of their segments from the feature. A repeat function is also available so the kids can watch their favourite presenter infinitum. There is also the ability to skip straight to any of the songs or stories, also with a repeat option.

Songs With Alternate Audio (3)

    All three songs from the feature are available with music only, enabling the kids to sing along to titles on screen. Some of the titles move pretty quickly, so it may be hard for very little ones to keep up.

Trailers

    Trailers are included for a range of other Hi-5 VHS and DVD titles.

Web Links

    Pop the disc into your DVD-ROM drive for links to the official Hi-5 website and Village Roadshow.

R4 vs R1

NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.

    This disc is only available in Region 4 at the moment.

Summary

    This is a great children's DVD - any kid that watches Hi-5 religiously on television will love the stories, dances and songs.

    The video transfer is disappointing, and there are a couple of little extras included on the disc.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Rob Giles (readen de bio, bork, bork, bork.)
Tuesday, October 19, 2004
Review Equipment
DVDPioneer DV-525, using Component output
DisplayPanasonic TX76PW10A 76cm Widescreen 100Hz. Calibrated with Video Essentials/Digital Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials/Digital Video Essentials.
AmplificationDenon AVR-2802 Dolby EX/DTS ES Discrete
SpeakersOrpheus Aurora lll Mains (bi-wired), Rears, Centre Rear. Orpheus Centaurus .5 Front Centre. Mirage 10 inch sub.

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