Monday, June 13, 2011

GREEN LANTERN: EMERALD KNIGHTS

In an efficient example of corporate synergy, Warner Home Entertainment has just released an animated tie-in to their forthcoming 3D, DC Comics super-hero film epic GREEN LANTERN - in this case, a cartoon anthology spotlighting the various extraterrestrial members of the comic book's exotic supporting cast, a galactic peacekeeping force known as the Green Lantern Corps.

In GREEN LANTERN: EMERALD KNIGHTS (2011), the three thousand+ members of the power ring-wielding Corps are preparing for battle against a cosmic menace known as Krona. As they gather and plan for the upcoming conflict, various Green Lanterns - including Earth's Hal Jordan (Nathan Fillion, SLITHER, CASTLE) and top Lantern Sinestro (voice of Jason Isaacs) - share with  new recruit Arisa (voiced by Elizabeth Moss) a half-dozen inspiring tales of heroism from the millennia-long history of the Corps. These stories include the tale of the first Green Lantern, the training of several of the Corps most legendary warriors, and the secret of the Corps' most mysterious Lantern, named Mogo.

EMERALD KNIGHTS is an enjoyable cartoon super-hero adventure flick, with gorgeous character designs, plenty of space opera spectacle, and exceptional action animation. The stories - by comic book and WB Animation vets including Geoff Johns, Dave Gibbons and Alan Burnett - are exciting and well-told. The voice work is up to the studio's high standards, thanks to the long experience and flawless instincts of voice director Andrea Romano. Segment directors Christopher Berkley, Lauren Montgomery and Jay Olivia manage a stylistic cohesiveness while allowing each chapter to have its own look and style.

Warners offers GREEN LANTERN: EMERALD KNIGHTS in a number of packages, but I have the single-disc DVD edition here for review. This version includes an exceptionally solid, technically flawless 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen transfer and Dolby 5.1 audio tracks in English, Spanish and French. On this single-disc version, the bonus features include advance looks at the forthcoming BATMAN: YEAR ONE animated feature and a trailer for ALL-STAR SUPERMAN. There are also promos for an upcoming GREEN LANTERN video game, a DC Digital Comics ap, and Mattel Toys. Among the trailers at the beginning of the disc is a preview of the live action GREEN LANTERN movie.

As with any anthology, some stories are better than others, and the creators presuppose that their audience already possesses a certain familiarity with the mythology that may confound newcomers to the franchise, but overall, GREEN LANTERN: EMERALD KNIGHTS a great entertainment and a lot of fun.

BUYGreen Lantern: Emerald Knights

BUY: Green Lantern: Emerald Knights (Blu-ray/DVD Combo + Digital Copy)