One of my favorite Golden Age superheroes is the Green Lantern (Alan Scott) who made his debut in the pages of All American Comics #16 (July 1940). I covered this honored member of the Justice Society of America in Podcast #15 (September 2005). Later, in the Silver Age of Comic Books, a new Green Lantern appeared on a new Earth. Hal Jordan first appeared on Earth-1 in the pages of Showcase #22 (September-October 1959) and quickly became one of the founding members of the Justice League of America. Today, both of these Green Lanterns (and many others) appear in the pages of DC Comics titles. I never get tired of reading their adventures.
Now, not only can I read the adventures of this great hero, I can watch the first full length animated Green Lantern Movie, Green Lantern: First Flight. This two disc DVD (or Blu-Ray) set will be in stores on July 28, 2009 (a single disc set is also available). Warner Brothers sent me an advance copy to watch and review. Not only did I watch this DVD, but my son, Will, who is the ultimate Green Lantern fan watched it with me. We gave it a resounding two thumbs up!
The movie loosely follows the origin of the Silver Age Green Lantern from Showcase #22. The action begins quickly with test pilot Hal Jordan receiving the powerful ring from the dying alien Abin Sur. Not long after receiving this powerful weapon, Jordan is visited by other members of the Green Lantern Corps who tell him he must journey with them to meet the Guardians, a powerful race that created the Corps. During this encounter, we see that Jordan has quickly mastered many aspects of the ring. Before leaving Earth, Jordan meets one of the leaders of the Corps, Sinestro, who explains that the Corps was created by the Guardians to protect the many sectors of the known universe. From this point, the action moves completely away from Earth to the Guardians’ home planet, Oa where the Guardians appoint Sinestro to be Jordan’s mentor. I won’t spoil the rest of the story, but needless to say, we see Sinestro become the villain we all know. The climactic battle between Sinestro, the Corps and Jordan is worth the price of admission.
The animation on this feature is very well done and Allen Burnett’s script is great. As always, Bruce Timm’s role as producer is clearly evident as it is so often in other excellent DC animated features. The movie showcases the voice talents of Christopher Meloni, Victor Garber, Tricia Helfer, Michael Madsen, John Larroquette and others. Lauren Montgomery did a great job directing, and I really enjoyed the music by Robert Kral. The run time for the movie is 77 minutes and the feature is rated PG-13 for “sequences of sci-fi action violence”. There are over 2 1/2 hours of extras.
On disc one, you will find the movie and several other features. I particularly enjoyed watching the sneak peek of the upcoming DVD release, Superman/Batman: Public Enemies. In fact, Will asked, “When can we get that one to watch?”. I also liked the feature on disc one about the New Frontier animated movie. Disc two is very cool. It features Behind the Story with Geoff Johns, who discusses the mythology of Green Lantern. There is also a great vintage “Duck Dodgers” episode featuring “The Green Loontern”.
The packaging is well done. The plastic two-disc case is in a cardboard sleeve that will look good on your shelf with your other DVDs. Inside you will find a coupon to get a Windows Media (sorry, Mac and iPod users) digital copy of the movie for downloading. My only gripe is that Warner Brothers did not include an index for each DVD inside the case. I also thought it was funny that the single disc case has an image of Jordan carrying his power battery, a device that is conspicuously absent from the movie.
All in all, this is a great movie and the bonus content will thrill any Green Lantern fan. The retail price on the Blu-Ray set is $29.99 and $25.99 for the two-disc DVD set. The single edition DVD set has a retail price of $19.99. All are available at Amazon at a discounted price. For more information about this two-disc special edition, you can visit the official Green Lantern: First Flight web site.
There’s even a contest! Check out the official sweepstakes site.
Last but not least, below you will find the official trailer for the movie and a behind the scenes short. Enjoy!
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