Wallace & Gromit in Three Amazing Adventures
DVD | Box Set
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Featuring the extraordinary clay animation of their Academy Award winning short films, Wallace & Gromit in Three Amazing Adventures takes the hilarious antics of Wallace, the lovably eccentric inventor, and Gromit, his savvy canine companion, to new heights of fun!
Plus, available for the first time on DVD, Wallace & Gromit In Cracking Contraptions - 10 mini-shorts featuring more of Wallace's zany inventions and the hilarious dilemmas they always create.
A Grand Day Out
Join the ultimate human-canine team as they blast off in a home-made rocket to see if the moon is really made of cheese.
The Wrong Trousers
Mild-mannered Wallace and his faithful dog, Gromit, end up in a train-top chase as they try to stop a diamond heist by a diabolical penguin.
A Close Shave
The cheese lover and his sidekick investigate the wildest, woolliest sheep rustling yarn ever made of clay.
There are fewer bonus features here than on the BBC DVD, but fans are still going to want it. Along with the three original shorts, 10 two-minute "Cracking Contraptions" produced in 2002 are featured; each one deals with a new invention and every one is a gem. None of the in-depth features or Nick Park commentaries made the cut this time. It's hardly a definitive DVD, but with 20 minutes of new programming, there's nearly 25% more of Wallace & Gromit for everyone to enjoy. --Doug Thomas
- Cracking Contraptions
- Cracking Contraptions: Behind the Scenes
- Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of The Were-Rabbit: Sneak Preview
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Just gave this to my nephew and niece - age 6 and 3. They love it, and watch it over and over. I will get one for myself. It's just brilliant.
"Wallace and Gromit", unlike most American cartoons, is not based on wacky one-liners or sitcom setups. With its stop-motion/retro look and spare dialogue, the films are clever in that dry British way. "Grand Day Out" does have hints of the outer-space "Looney Tunes", but the "Marvin Martian" role is played by...an antique stove? No matter. It works. "Wrong Trousers" and "Close Shave", both Oscar winners, bring the duo through paces that recall Hitchcock, "Carry-On" Britcoms, and Rube Goldberg contraptions. You may not laugh out loud, but I guarantee these characters and format will grow on you and make you smile.
The "Cracking Contraptions" series- all no more than two minutes in length- are based on Wallace's latest inventions and Gromit's operating tricks, and many are true mini-gems. I loved the bits called "Socca-Matic" (a soccer-ball kicking machine),
"Telly-Scope" (a TV remote that just might remind you of the old "Mousetrap" game), and "Chopper 13" (an electronic shopping cart). These show off the duo just as effectively as the longer films and may be an even better intro if, like me, you're used to more elaborate animation.
The only major voice work is by Peter Sallis, now in his 80s, an old-time radio actor who gives Wallace his bemused, thick West-Country accent. Gromit, as noted, has no voice (or mouth!), but you know what he's doing thanks to classic eye moves and eyebrow twitches in the Chaplin/Keaton tradition. There's also a great little piece of cartoon music in all of the films- yes, even the quickies- the "Wallace and Gromit Theme", a jaunty music-hall ditty by Oxford-educated Julian Nott that, I guarantee, will become as familiar to you as the "Looney Tunes" theme.
This is a no-frills package with very little bonus material; that, I suspect, is being saved for the "Were-Rabbit" DVD when it comes out. I wouldn't recommend this for all animation fans- again, if you're used to either old-line Disney or today's flashier, funnier fare, this is an acquired taste and a little slow to boot. But once you catch on to Park's droll style and the homemade (literally) look, you'll love it and look forward to the movie as I do. Or, like Gromit, you can read his favorite book: "Pluto's Republic".
The three shorts are tremendous, but not quite up to the production values of the "Were-Rabbit". I'm hard put to pick a favorite, but at this instant (and this could change when I wake up tomorrow), I'd say "The Wrong Trousers". The idea of a sinister penguin is so bizarre, so surreal, as to be the key selling point, but no, there's more! The train chase scene (watch it, it is too hard to explain) had me laughing fit to bust. "A Grand Day Out" and "A Close Shave" were just about as funny, but in different ways, and both delightful.
The real hole card for this DVD is "Cracking Contraptions" These ten shorts (about three minutes each) are very well done (production values equal to or superior to the the three main features, and close to "Were-Rabbit"). Each one illustrates the rise, fall, and foibles of one of Wallace's inventions. Each one allows Gromit to shine in his expressions and common sense. Each and every one is a treasure.
If you've not seen Wallace and Gromit before, the titles of the books Gromit reads are worth your attention. If you've watched Wallace and Gromit before and not paid attention to the titles of Gromit's books, it is high time you do.
Not only does this collection exhibit wonderful animation technically, it also delivers humor that is hard to find in movies today. My parents and I watched this DVD, and they were impressed by the high level of humor. Often times the stuggle of animated features is the level of humor. It is very often geared towards Children. I would say this is enjoyable for all ages.
The last thing that I really enjoyed was the behind the scenes clip. I think that hearing why things were done from the creator adds to the ammount of respect that I hold for Nick Park. Amaizing animation, humor, and attention to detail...