Monday, August 19, 2013

Arriving Tuesday on DVD From Phase 4 Films -- "Donkey Kong Country: He Came, He Saw, He Kong-Quered" (Review)

Disclosure: I was sent a sample from the vendor in order to write up an honest review.  The views shared are mine and mine alone.



"One of the most beloved video game characters of all time is swinging onto DVD! Donkey Kong Country brings all your favorite apes to life in stunning CGI animation. Join Donkey Kong, the peace-loving ape with a big heart as he teams with best-friend Diddy Kong to take on King K. Rool and his band of Kremlings."

My Thoughts:

If you were a child of the 80's, then you probably found yourself playing Donkey Kong on a home video game console or at the local arcade.  Oh, how I miss arcades.  Don't you?  One of my favorite games of all time was Donkey Kong.  There was something about this game that was so addicting.  While the game itself was easy to understand -- navigate Donkey Kong (and sometimes his friends) up ladders, while jumping over falling barrels, etc., to get to the top and save the princess, etc. -- as the game advanced so did the difficulty level.  I loved challenging my brothers to a Donkey Kong tournament, where we would see how far we could get before we died, and then have the others try to beat us.  Ahh, the good 'ole days of early ay CGI animation.  While I am still a fan of video games (when I get the time to play them with my hubby, which isn't often), there is just something about the simplicity of the old CGI animations that made the video games of the 80's and early 90's enjoyable to play.  

Recently, when we went to NH with the girls, my husband took Savannah to Fun Spot.  If you have never been here, it is an two story arcade filled to the brim with pinball and arcade games (some new, but most from the 80's and 90's).  Savannah ran around like crazy, checking out the different games.  While she was a fan of sitting on the motorcycles or in the stock race cars, she drifted over to the Donkey Kong game, and asked my husband to show her how to play it.  He couldn't say, "No" as this was also one of his favorite childhood video games, and one he is looking forward to playing when it arrives soon, for play on the Nintendo 3DS gaming system.  Savannah couldn't stop giggling as she watched my husband demonstrate the game, and then get frustrated as it got harder and harder to beat.   When his game was finally over, Savannah turned to him, and said "Good try.  Next time you need to eat your bananas before we play this game."  Hehehe.  I could only imagine how frustrated my husband felt losing the game, but how Savannah made him smile with her cute remark.  And, ever since, whenever Savannah sees bananas in the grocery store or at home, she reminds my husband to fill up on them, if he wants to win at Donkey Kong.  :-)

Recently, I was offered the opportunity to review an all new DVD, "Donkey Kong Country: He Came, He Saw, He Kong-quered" which is set to release on August 20th from Phase 4 Films.  Knowing that everyone in the house was a fan of Donkey Kong, I knew that this DVD would make for a great Friday Night Family Movie.  And, did it!  This past Friday, after the dishes were put away, we piled into the living room to watch a movie.  I told the girls I had a fun surprise for them, and showed them the 80's themed basket of goodies I was sent, along with this upcoming DVD, thanks to the folks at Phase 4 Films.  Included in the gift basket was jelly bracelets, two pairs of stylish 80's plastic sunglasses, slap bracelets (my personal favorite), mesh gloves, a yo-yo and a couple buttons (if only I had my button collection still).  The girls got excited when they saw the Donkey Kong DVD, but couldn't wait to deck themselves out in 80's accessories.  Here are some photos I took of the girls, wearing their 80's inspired goodies:

Savannah's favorite item from the basket turned out to be the mesh gloves.  Instead of slipping her thumb through the opening, she slides the whole glove over her hand and wears them as wrist warmers.  She went out the other shopping with them, and the lady at the register said she was starting a new trend.  Savannah turned to her and said, "I love the 80's."  I couldn't help by laugh and smile. Kids do say the darndest things!  As for the movie, this 70 minute disc contains four full filled episodes --
  1. Bad Hair Day
  2. Ape Foo Young
  3. Booty and the Beast
  4. Barrel, Barrel, Who's Got the Barrel

I personally loved how they didn't digitally remaster these episodes, as the old CGI animation made them enjoyable to watch as adults getting to relive their childhood memories of the this iconic game, while also showing the new generation of kids, how you don't have to spend millions on graphics to make a film enjoyable to watch.  Each episode was fast faced and reminded me of the cartoons I used to watch growing up based on this popular video game.  While the episodes seemed a little advanced for my daughters, they still loved pointing out Donkey Kong, and yelling to watch out for barrels being thrown.  Savannah kept telling Donkey Kong to eat his bananas to stay strong.  If you have older children, I would say 6 yrs. and up, then this definitely would be a fun family night film, as my niece and nephew who are 6 and 8 yrs. old thoroughly enjoyed it, and wanted to watch it again on Saturday morning in place of early morning cartoons.  My husband and I also found it enjoyable, as it reminded up of video games of yesterday, and how they didn't violence, blood or foul language to keep you engaged and wanting to spend your last quarter at the arcade on one last game. :-)  In addition to watching this fun DVD with the kids, my husband spent Sunday morning on the computer with Savannah playing games and other Donkey Kong themed activities that are available at

With the holidays around the corner, this would make for a great stocking stuffer of gift for those hard to shop for people on your shopping list, who were fans of Donkey Kong of yesteryear, or love 80's nostalgia.  :-) If you end up picking up a copy of this DVD, I would love to hear what you thought, including your favorite of the four episodes that make up this DVD.  So, leave a comment below and share your thoughts, or even just a fun memory of Donkey Kong. :-)

Disclosure: I was sent a sample from the vendor in order to write up an honest review.  The views shared are mine and mine alone.

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