Thomas & Friends-Calling all Engines (2004)

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Released 2-Nov-2005

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Childrens Main Menu Audio
Featurette-Scenes One And Two
Karaoke-Dream Song
Game-Which Things Are The Same?
Rating Rated G
Year Of Production 2004
Running Time 60:02 (Case: 67)
RSDL / Flipper No/No Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 1,2,3,4,5,6 Directed By David Mitton

Roadshow Home Entertainment
Starring None Given
Case Handle
RPI $19.95 Music Junior Campbell
Andreas Fehrle
Graeme MacArthur

Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 2.0 (384Kb/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 None Smoking No
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

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

Plot Synopsis

    Title of Show : Thomas & Friends

    Title of Disc : Calling All Engines!

    Year of Production : 2004

    Country of origin : UK

    What's included? : 1 extended episode.

    Episode Length : 60 minutes

    Details of episodes : Calling All Engines is an extended episode of the series rather than a new feature like the disastrous Thomas & The Magic Railroad. Sensibly, they have used the same format as the normal episodes and just extended it, including more songs and interactivities along with the story about an airport being built on Sodor and tension between the steam engines and the diesels. Nearly every engine that has ever been on Thomas is included, even ones which only appeared in the aforementioned movie; Lady & Diesel 10.

    Style of Production : Models

    Premise of show : One of the best children's shows ever, especially for boys. A group of engines both steam & diesel work on the railways of the Island of Sodor having adventures and trying to be really useful. The long term engines are the most famous including Thomas, Henry, Edward, Gordon, James & Percy. Many new characters have been added over the years to this long running series.

    Age Group : 2-10

    Related to any other children's shows? : Not really, although many other shows have adopted a similar concept such as Busy Buses.

    Adult's view : Great children's television. Likeable characters, good stories, messages which are not beaten over your head. There are a couple of pieces in this story which many scare the youngest viewers especially if they remember Diesel 10. This episode feels like a concept for a 10 minutes episode stretched to one hour but the kids won't care.

    Child's view : My boys enjoyed this show, but I got the impression that they prefer the shorter episodes where there is one clear story rather than the story being interrupted by songs and interactivities.

    Other Releases of this show available? : There are numerous releases of Thomas available including a 60th anniversary box set.

    Overall : Recommended.

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Transfer Quality


    The video quality is very good.

    The feature is presented in a 1.78:1 aspect ratio 16x9 enhanced which is probably the original aspect ratio.

    The picture was very clear and sharp throughout, with no evidence of low level noise.

    The colour was wonderful, rich and solid throughout.

    There were no noticeable artefacts.

    There are no subtitles.


Video Ratings Summary
Shadow Detail
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts


    The audio quality is very good.

    This DVD contains an English Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo soundtrack encoded at 384 Kb/s.

    Dialogue was clear and easy to understand and there was no problem with audio sync.

    The music is fun and catchy as usual with Thomas.

    The surround speakers and subwoofer were not used.

Audio Ratings Summary
Audio Sync
Surround Channel Use



    The menu included music and a nice train motif for the cursor.

Interactivity (3:01)

    Kids need to pick the differences between steam engines and diesel engines.

Scene One (1:01)

    A couple of deleted scenes from the show.

Scene Two (0:47)

    More deleted scenes from the show.

Dream Song (1:57)

    An extra song (with karaoke lyrics) removed from the show. Good choice because it's a bit scary, involving the engines dreaming about being scrapped..

Which things are the same? (2:26)

    Another interactivity showing which parts of diesel and steam engines are the same.

R4 vs R1

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

    The Region 1 version of this disc includes a great many extras including games and read along stories not included on our local version, although you would also have to contend with the American rather than the British voiceover. To my mind, this means the local version is better but the choice is obviously up to you. I own one of the American releases of this series and found the voiceover quite annoying. The Region 2 release is the same as ours.


    A one hour Thomas episode, not a feature film. Recommended.

    The video quality is very good.

    The audio quality is very good.

    The set has a few minor extras, none of which are overly exciting.

Ratings (out of 5)


© Daniel Bruce (Do you need a bio break?)
Saturday, April 08, 2006
Review Equipment
DVDPioneer DV667A DVD-V DVD-A SACD, using Component output
DisplaySony FD Trinitron Wega KV-AR34M36 80cm. Calibrated with Digital Video Essentials (PAL). This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 576i (PAL)/480i (NTSC).
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationPioneer VSX-511
SpeakersMonitor Audio Bronze 2 (Front), Bronze Centre & Bronze FX (Rears) + Yamaha YST SW90 subwoofer

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