As far as the plot goes, it’s pretty basic to the character: Hal Jordan is the test pilot for Ferris Air when an alien named Abin Sur crash lands near the testing grounds and summons him. Hal is summoned by the Guardians and is tested for his aptitude as a Lantern and brought under the tutelage of Sinestro, the number one Lantern. Hal proves himself time and time again, but when framed for a murder he didn’t commit, Hal has to find out who did it and save the day. Voice acting comes from greats such as Michael Madsen (Kilowog), Christopher Meloni (Hal Jordan), and Tricia Helfer (Boodika), as well as featuring appearances from lots of famous Lanterns such as Tomar Re, Kanjar Ro, and someone who remains unnamed but I’m pretty sure is stupposed to be G’Nort.
To say that it deviates from the actual origin is to put it lightly, however. There are obvious nods to his original origin, but all things considered this is a brand new interpretation in a similar way that Geoff Johns’ recently re-did his origin story. Abin Sur has a new killer, and Sinestro’s eventual plunge into the dark side of Lantern-dom is also re-interpreted, although to some degree the Sinestro “Corps” is still a present entity. There are no mentions of Parallax, and Oa is also in it’s original incarnation as opposed to the latest one that is essentially a giant floating power battery in space. The question, in the end, is “Are these changes OK?” I would say yes and no. On the positive hand, the story flows well enough to get by. I can see how this interpretation could work out, and it could appeal to new fans who are not familiar with the vast Lantern mythos. The color spectrum is a big entity to tackle with, and it’s more than an hour and a half movie can handle on it’s own. However, on the negative hand, fans of the original Lantern stuff will obviously feel a tad bit slighted by this move on DC’s part. Let’s face it – the Lantern’s origin isn’t hard to tell at all. They don’t need to get into the creation of the universe with the Monitors and early versions of the Guardians, nor do they really need to explain the stuff about Manhunters, but I feel that some of the changes they made really lose the impact the original stories give. Also, a big thing about the Lanterns is that they can not kill, so giving one member the ability to is just ridiculous in my opinion. On top of that, the existence of the yellow entity is really mulled over briefly, and the explanation the movie gives is nowhere near as good as the one Johns’ invented for the Sinestro Corps.
So all in all I’d recommend Green Lantern: First Flight. It’s a fun movie, and it’s very well animated. DC Animated films are pretty good, all things considered, and unless you’re a real stickler for continuity I think you’ll enjoy it. I myself am a huge stickler for continuity but I’ve found myself relaxing and taking things as they come in regards to movie and television adaptations, and I ended up enjoying this for what it was. Honestly, I’m just happy to see a Green Lantern movie, animated or not, and have it be relatively close to normal. While I would have definitely done things differently, this just about hit the majority of my expectations.
Final Rating: B-