Around my sons first birthday, we had introduced him to the Baby Einsteins Baby Newton which is all about shapes. We both liked this one so much we had asked for more for Christmas. The new addition to our collection was Baby Mozart Music Festival. Lets say I was not as impressed with this one.
Skepticism at its best
My very first exposure to the Baby Einstein series was through my sister. She basically use the video as a babysitter for her daughter while she took care of things around the house. The brief clips I ever saw at that point were simple toys, hand animated or manipulated to classical music. My thought... what a rip-off... its a $6 production sold for $20. (marketing at its best) The video I happened to catch at that time, I believe, was Baby Bach which is the same style as Baby Mozart. After discovering more about Baby Einstein since having my own little one, Ive noticed there are two levels of videos available; content oriented, suitable for 9 months & up and the Music Festival videos, suitable from birth on up... which includes Baby Mozart, Bach and Beethoven. Being exposed to Baby Newton first and then Baby Mozart, Im definitely not impressed with their presentation of classical music in these music festivals.
Toys, Toys and More Toys
The premise of this video is to have familiar objects (primarily toys) manipulated to Mozarts classical music with repetition being key to developing an infants cognitive skills. Examples of the toys include 2 different train sets, a seal sliding toy, several perpetual energy toys, a bear with a drum, animated dinosaurs and several more. There are also places where items like puzzles or a ring stacker are put together but a mysterious female hand. Other familiar images include many common animals. Interspersed throughout the video are scenes called puppet shows where the Baby Einstein characters do some action. My sons favorite of these is the Blah scene where a dragon puppet comes out and says blah. He thinks this is absolutely hilarious.
Baby Mozart Music
The box states All our DVDs are set to music specially reorchestrated for little ears. There are approximately 5-6 different Mozart songs that play over the course of the 30 minute video - maybe more as I dont have an exact list. The music itself is well done with some songs from an orchestra and others synthesized. All are good on the ears, with the exception of the Alphabet song (bet you didnt know that was a Mozart classic). About 2/3s of the way through the video we get to the Alphabet song which seems to be played with a synthesizer using animal sounds as the notes. Even though this song doesnt last long, its still rather annoying and out of place.
Shunned at first... then accepted
My son was 14 months when he received this video and had really very little interest in it at the time. Given a choice he would always pick his Baby Newton video. Baby Mozart just couldnt hold his attention so it just stayed in the cabinet with the rest of his videos. I dont really blame his as it was way too repetitive for what he was used to. Every so often over the past year we would bring it out again, but it just wasnt an interest. Now at the age of two, for some reason Little Man seems to enjoy this particular video. I think this is first because of the Blah guy and he has an understanding of what the toys are doing. Also, he really likes music of all sorts, so this is a nice calming video for him to watch before bedtime.
Baby Einstein videos have the expectation that parents will be interacting with their infant while watching their shows. This is usually how we use videos in our home (with the exception of the ones needed for shower taking). I find it very difficult to follow along with the Baby Mozart video, as I do with others. To begin with minus a few, there is no real excitement to the objects in the scenes, making it difficult as a parent to get excited about them. Additionally, the scenes spend so much time on certain toys, like the seal climb n slide toy or the trains that there is only so many times you can talk about the same aspect of the toy. Then they must revisit the toy five times even after you are bored with it. Needless to say, I dont like the logic of which toys appear, when and for how long.
A Little About the DVD
Baby Einstein Videos generally retail between $15-$20 each and can be found anywhere videos or baby stuff is sold. The DVD contains additional special features such as different language tracks (French, English and Spanish), discovery cards (flash cards of vocabulary), puppet shows (a replay of the puppet shows in the video) and the toy chest (clips of the toys used in the video).
Overall Im giving this three stars because my son does like it and the music is well done but the way the video is set up doesnt have much logic to it and thus make it difficult as a parent to interact with my child during this show. There are better Baby Einstein videos out, arranged in a logical manner to teach children basic concepts that would be a better pick than Baby Mozart.
Viewing Format: DVD
Suitability For Children: Suitable for Children up to Age 4
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