Adventures of Elmo in Grouchland" on DVD
sure to get a kick out of Elmo and his Sesame Street buddies as they take
a trip down Oscar's garbage can and into the world of the Grouches.
sees the Muppet chasing down his lost blanket, which accidentally wafted
down that garbage can. Once he's in "the underworld," he runs
afoul of the evil (well, not too evil) Huxley (Mandy Patinkin).
Elmo's heart is good,
however, and he gains allies in Grouchland, including the lovely Queen
of Trash (no, it isn't Madonna, it's Vanessa Williams!) who sings one
of the movie's best songs and helps him on his way.
The film brings together
onto the big screen (well, as big as your TV is) all the Sesame Street
regulars, from Bob McGrath to Grover and the Cookie Monster. It's a good
story for toddlers, and when the action looks as if it might get a bit
too much for the wee folk, up pop Bert and Ernie to interrupt things and
remind the ankle biters that, after all, it's only a movie.
In all, it's a film
the age bracket at which it's aimed will probably want to watch over and
over and over and over and over again, and thanks to the DVD release you
can indulge the kids forever without worrying about dropouts and other
deterioration. The kids'll grow out of Elmo before the disc wears out!
The DVD is only presented
in Pan and Scan, though it doesn't look very panned or scanned - and while
we prefer widescreen releases in this instance it's probably the right
decision to have made. Better the kids sit down and quietly watch Elmo
rather than popping up and asking Mom and/or Dad embarrassing questions
like "Why are those black bars on the screen? What happened to all
Audio is Dolby 5.1
surround and the audio/video quality are very good. You don't get a lot
of extras, just some theatrical trailers, chapter stops, some cast info
and a short promo for the film. There's also a quick introduction by Elmo
and his new friend Bug. Liner notes are virtually non-existent, but your
kids won't care.
The Adventures of
Elmo in Grouchland, from Columbia Tristar Home Video
approx. 73 minutes, fullscreen, Dolby Digital
Starring the Sesame Street Gang, Mandy Patinkin, Vanessa Williams
Produced by Alex Rockwell, Marjorie Kalins, Written by Mitchell Kriegman
and Joseph Mazzarino
Directed by Gary Halvorson
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