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Disney's Little Einsteins Collection (April 29/07, September 30/09, April 3/10)

Little Einsteins essentially continues the lessons started by Disney's Baby Einstein series, and generally follows four precocious kids - Leo, June, Quincy, and Annie - as they embark on a whole host of adventures.

The first disc, Our Huge Adventure, consists of one 60-minute tale, and finds our heroes involved in a whole series of misadventures. Much of Our Huge Adventure follows the four kids (and their sentient rocket ship) as they encounter a singing caterpillar and attempt to return him to his friends. Along the way, the foursome travel through Niagara Falls, a cave in Oklahoma, and a butterfly forest in Mexico (the latter of which is evidently home to the aforementioned singing caterpillar). Children receive lessons on musical terms such as "allegro" and "crescendo," and the movie is packed with old-school classical pieces (including Beethoven's Ode to Joy).

Disc two, Mission Celebration!, contains three individual episodes: The Birthday Machine, Go West, Young Train, and The Birthday Balloons. The first episode, The Birthday Machine, follows the kids as they travel abroad to Italy in order to find all three pieces for the titular device - a machine that will allow them to celebrate their respective birthdays at the same time. Go West, Young Train features an appearance by the gang's friend, Little Red Train, and follows their efforts to retrieve his party bag after it's stolen by the villainous Big Jet. In The Birthday Balloons, the gang must track down each of Annie's three balloons (which were blown away by a musical gust of wind).

The third disc, Team Up For Adventure, offers up an additional three episodes: How We Became The Little Einsteins: The True Story, I Love to Conduct, and Rocket Safari. As expected, How We Became The Little Einsteins: The True Story revolves around the origins of the troupe and the rationale behind their mission-oriented lifestyle. I Love to Conduct follows the gang as they attempt to retrieve Leo's baton after an intrepid eagle steals it. In Rocket Safari, Rocket finds himself stuck in some rocks and must consequently enlist the help of several animals to extricate himself from his predicament.

Disc four, The Legend of the Golden Pyramid, consists of the following three episodes: The Legend of the Golden Pyramid, Dragon Kite, and Annie and the Little Toy Plane. The Legend of the Golden Pyramid follows the gang as they fly to Egypt and explore a real-life pyramid. In Dragon Kite, the foursome must help the titular object find its way back to its friends. Annie and the Little Toy Plane finds the friends in San Francisco, where they must assist a toy helicopter that's trapped in a large tree.

The fifth disc, Fire Truck Rocket's Blastoff, boasts the following four episodes: Fire Truck Rocket, Melody the Music Pet, Carmine's Big Race, and Mr. Penguin's Ice Cream Adventure. Fire Truck Rocket details the gang's efforts at saving a monkey from an exploding volcano, while Melody the Music Pet follows the group as they attempt to help Melody find her ticket for a special all-pet train. In Carmine's Big Race, the kids find themselves cheering on a friend named Carmine at a race in Monaco. Finally, Mr. Penguin's Ice Cream Adventure revolves around Mr. Penguin's efforts at successfully delivering a train full of ice cream to his best friend's birthday party.

Disc #6, Animal Expedition, comes equipped with the following four episodes: Whale Tale, Duck, Duck, June, Jump for Joey, and Little Elephant's Big Parade! The DVD, which features Disney Sneak Peeks for the following titles: My Friends Tigger & Pooh: Super Duper Super Sleuths, Mickey Mouse Clubhouse: Minnie's Bow-tique, Beauty and the Beast, Toy Story and Toy Story 2 Double Bill, TinkerBell and the Great Fairy Rescue, Handy Manny, The Princess and the Frog, Ponyo, Muppets Studio DC: Almost Live: Extended Edition, Disney Blu-ray: Magic in High-Def, and Disney Movie Rewards, also boasts several bonus features: a game entitled The Animal Crane Game and a bonus episode of Mickey Mouse Clubhouse called Goofy's Petting Zoo.

 

About the DVDs: Buena Vista Home Entertainment presents each of these five titles in their original full-frame format, and packs each disc with a number of bonus games and stories (the requisite Disney Sneak Peeks are also included).
© David Nusair