Retro Review: Green Lantern: First Flight

Warner Bros has never really taken advantage of their brand of DC Comic heroes. They always seemed to have their tunnel vision focused on Superman or Batman.

Sure The Flash got his own live action television series in the 90s and Wonder Woman had one in the 70s but really all the focus was on Big S and the big Bat.

With the release of the animated Wonder Woman film a couple months back Warner Bros seems to pushing its animation department into a new light.

Emerging on the dawn of Warner Bros announcing that Ryan Reynolds will play Green Lantern in a feature film, Green Lantern: First Flight is an attempt at bringing the character into the public eye.

Who is Green Lantern?

Well the most common version of Green Lantern is Hal Jordan, a cocky, daredevil test pilot who is summoned by a dying alien, Abin Sur, to become a Green Lantern. The Lanterns are like an intergalactic police force guided by the all knowing Guardians (basically a race of Papa Smurfs).
Sinestro has his own ideas of what the Green Lanterns should or shouldnt be in the Universe. Basically Hal has alot to learn about space politics.In this film, we zip past Green Lantern’s origin and get Hal into space where he is being trained by an even more cocky and nihilistic Green Lantern, Sinestro.

The movie swims along at a brisk pace and is a nice overview of what the Green Lantern universe actually is.

I was kind of sad to see they hardly even touched on his time on Earth because the film is called First Flight not First Fight.

Its like okay we have less than an hour and a half to connect Hal Jordan’s origin to the popular Sinestro Corps War storyline in the comics: Go!

Really this should have been two movies, one on the origin and a sequel on Hal getting swept up in Sinestro’s plight.

The animation is clean crisp and dazzles on Blu-Ray. The action also isnt toned down much like the Wonder Woman film.

The voices I found to be really fun. I was especially delighted with Victor Garber as Sinestro. It was spot on perfect. I also really enjoyed Michael Madsen’s Kilowog, the drill sergeant of the Green Lantern Corps. Chris Meloni (Law & Order: SVU) as Hal was an interesting choice but no where near as inspired as say Nathan Fillion as Steve Trevor in Wonder Woman.

I liked Green Lantern: First Flight, I just felt it could have been so much more. I hope the film stays with Hal and builds him as a character before it exposes him to the Universe.

Really for me what Green Lantern should be is a mixture of Star Wars, Top Gun and The Last Starfighter. It would be really cool to see a sequel to this animated feature where they are allowed to flesh out Hal’s character more.

This movie is a doorway to bigger things and I hope it helps audiences finally see other characters beyond Superman and Batman.

3 out of 5

So Says the Soothsayer

2 thoughts on “Retro Review: Green Lantern: First Flight

  1. Ah, we’re the tough crowd, aren’t we? Of course, we’ve been reading GL since forever (as for me, a bit more foreverer than you :)), so we come to expect more. Haven’t seen it yet, but I’ll make sure to throw some comments up here when I do. It’ll be intriguing to see how we agree / disagree. It’s what keeps things interesting, and I’m glad you’re blogging out here so we canget back into the old thumbwrestling about the flicks.

  2. We agree. They glossed over the origin in favor of some contrived space fights. And next to no time was spent on Earth.

    It was not Burnett’s finest writing achievement. Despite the stellar voice cast, it was disappointing.

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