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Baby Superstar - Farmer (with Audio CD)
Videos such as this are based upon the Mozart effect that was discovered after a group of college students that listened to 30 minutes of classical music were found to have an increased learning capacity for a short time. This has been applied to infants with the theory that any activity at that age will stimulate the brain and learning process.
With that in mind, Baby Superstar Farmer presents 30-minutes of footage of farm animals, farm equipment and farm related toys set to classical music. There is a lot of variety in the footage, with the animals and equipment being the most entertaining. Movement is the key and it almost never stops. Whether it's horses running around or toys moving across the screen, the images easily keep time with the active music.
The idea of farm equipment and farm animals set to Swan Lake may seem strange and it really is. I know that part of the process is based upon the classical music, but perhaps a better selection of music could have been used. Something a little more pastoral or complementing to the farm theme, but this style of music may not interest children as much as the more active style present on the disc.
While not as polished as some of the other children's education DVDs out there, Baby Superstar Farmer has done a few things right that I've complained about before. First off, a music CD is included. The entire soundtrack to the DVD has been included on a separate CD allowing you to take the music that your child likes on the road or into another room. I know you can purchase classical CDs for a dime a dozen, but it's nice to have it included in the package.
Secondly, the disc actually features a few useful extras in the form of short video tips from Dr. Joyce Brothers and a pediatrician. Short clips are shown about topics like Ear Aches, Feeding, Colds, and other questions that new parents might have. It's something that most experienced parents will not look at, but for new parents it can easily answer several important questions.
Video: Like most other videos of this style, the video is of mixed quality, but it's almost always high. The stock footage shots of the animals and farm equipment do display a bit of grain, but I'm sure your baby won't complain in the least. Colors and saturation are near perfect and maybe perhaps a little too high, as the images are meant to appeal to the littlest of eyes. These are both nit-picking problems that are present in most videos of this style, but they will not deter your child from wanting to watch them in the least.
Audio: The audio is a vibrant stereo 2.0 mix that will keep your babies ears entertained and their tiny feet tapping. It's not a really dynamic mix and doesn't use the extra space that DVD offers. Again, it's perfectly acceptable considering the viewing audience.
Extras: As mentioned in the review, the disc has short information video clips and an audio CD of the music. Both are welcome additions that enhance the value of this package.
Overall: While not my favorite of this style of video, baby Superstar Farmer stands out with its extras and additional information. These little things make it as useful to the parents as it is to the child. I have a feeling this video will age with your child better than some because of the subject matter. Older children seem to be fascinated with animals and big machinery, which there is plenty of on this disc.