Three summertime adventures from the internationally acclaimed, BAFTA and Emmy award-winning series. Set in Edwardian England 1908 - when Kenneth Grahame published the original book "The Wind in the Willows" - this collection includes:
- The Great Annual Show
- Toad: Photographer
- The Great Golfing Gamble
NZ Rating: G
Runtime 64 minutes
This DVD includes three tales, each in keeping with the spirit of the original Wind in the Willows story. The stories are a mix of adventure, true friendship and moral integrity.
I found Toad's voice a little grating throughout, but I suspect very young children might find it quite amusing. The theme song has a lovely melody and was sung by British singer-songwriter Ralph McTell.
I agree with the New Zealand 'G' rating. I think all of the episodes are suitable for children from around 4 years and up. No bad language or scary scenes. Created 1984-1990, the overall pace is slower than many of the movies and TV shows that older primary school children would now be used to.
This 'Summer Escapades' collection includes the following episodes:
The Grand Annual Show
Our riverbank friends enter an annual competition in hopes of winning 'Best in the Show' and taking home a silver cup. Mole prepares his special homemade black currant jelly, Ratty bakes a walnut cake, Badger preserves pickled walnuts, Toad enters some elderflower wine and the scheming weasels bring an enormous pumpkin. There is unscrupulous cheating and a surprise last minute entry.
It seems Toad Hall does not have a portrait of the current family heir. Toad decides to take up a career in photography to remedy this and demonstrate the naturally superior skills that he presumes he will have in the field. Ahem, pride goes before a fall they say.
The Great Golfing Gamble
Golfing is the thing to do! A sore loser at croquet, Toad decides that golfing is the proper sport, at which he will unquestionably excel. So confident is Toad, that he enters a foolish gamble with the weasels. The stakes are Toad Hall to the weasels if they win or a gold watch to Toad if he wins (his own gold watch that the weasels just stole off him). There is a sum total of ONE hole in the course; who will sink the ball in the least number of strokes and claim the prize?
Points of Interest
• The Wind in the Willows is a classic children's story written by Scottish author Kenneth Grahame in 1908; the year after he retired from his position as secretary of the Bank of England.
• The TV series production was done by Cosgrove Hall (UK). It included 52 episodes starring Toad (voiced by Sir David Jason); Badger (voiced by Sir Michael Hordern); Rat (voiced by Peter Sallis) and Mole (voiced by Richard Pearson). The narrator was Ian Carmichael.
• The series was produced in stop-motion animation using poseable figurines and scale sets. The figurines comprised articulate metal skeletons covered in latex rubber. (It is sometimes incorrectly noted as a claymation, which is a specific form of stop-motion using malleable materials such as clay and plasticine.)
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