The Bottom Line
First Flight: A Mother Hummingbird's Story provides an informative look at a black-chinned hummingbird's life through video clips and still photography. While the story does not differ from the First Flight book, the DVD offers magical, detailed views that are impossible to picture from text descriptions or single still photos.
- Superb images provide intimate, detailed views
- Includes "making of" featurette
- Suitable for all ages and great for classrooms
- Postscript text gives background on birds and film process
- Narration's heavy accent may be difficult to understand
- Text transitions appear abrupt
- Slideshow lacks captions or species names
- No subtitles available
- Title: First Flight: A Mother Hummingbird's Story
- Directors: Noriko and Don Carroll
- Studio: Concept Images Entertainment
- Release Date: May 20, 2009
- Length: 45 minutes (not including extras)
- ISBN: 978-0-615-29118-5
- Rating: Not Rated
- Extra Features: Scene selection, slideshow, trailer
- Price: $19.95
Guide Review - DVD Review: First Flight: A Mother Hummingbird's Story
A companion to the book First Flight: A Mother Hummingbird’s Story, this DVD is visually stunning and dynamic as it tells the story of how a hummingbird’s life begins. Amazing views provide outstanding visuals accompanied by unique music and informative narration. Unlike still photographs, the video gives viewers the opportunity to see the hard working efforts of a single mother hummingbird as she cares for her two demanding chicks. Intimate details such as how the nest stretches to accommodate the birds’ growth, preening and muscle strengthening activities and the mother bird protecting the nest from potential predators are all part of this unique perspective.
The video includes footage not only from Honey the black-chinned hummingbird that nested at Noriko and Don Carroll’s home in Las Vegas, Nevada, but also shots from Arizona and California to provide a complete picture of a hummingbird’s early life. From constructing the nest to the first flights of the two chicks, the growth, curiosity and awkwardness of these young birds comes through in exceptional clarity.
The footage for the First Flight DVD was shot after the photography for the book over a three year period that included observations of four broods. Well crafted, the visual aspect of the DVD is unmatched, but the sometimes jarring music can be distracting and the heavily accented narration can be difficult to understand. The extra slideshow of hummingbird species is attractive but lacks species names, and no subtitles are available.
First Flight: A Mother Hummingbird’s Story is a beautiful DVD and a perfect companion to the book of the same title. Suitable for all ages, this is an information and attractive video that can give hummingbird lovers a close, charming view of the life of these flying jewels.