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The Flight Of Dragons Blu-ray Review

dragons

“The Flight Of Dragons” is a good old fashioned fantasy adventure.

Based on novels by Peter Dickinson and Gordon R. Dickson, “The Flight of Dragons” is a 1982 made for home video animated film from Rankin and Bass (the duo behind many of the stop-motion animated holiday specials). In the universe of this story, magic and science are co-existing, but magic has begun to dim. Troubled by the change, the Wizard Carolinus summons his three brothers (Lo Tae Zhao, Ommadon, and Solarius) to try and create a magic realm to save magic, but the black magic Wizard Ommadon passes on the proposal and hopes to spread darkness and destroy humanity and their love of science. The other 3 Wizards band together to form a team to stop Ommadon. This team is comprised of Gorbash the dragon, a Knight (Sir Smythe), and the leader of the group- a 20th century nerdy, dragon obsessed man named Peter (a descendant of a hero). Peter, however, winds up becoming placed inside Gorbash so he’s essentially a dragon for much of the story. As the 3 head out on a “magic quest,” they gather new allies and face numerous dangers from ogres to a giant worm. Expect to see a key storyline involving Peter and Princess Melisande (a ward of Carolinus).

After a bit of a shaky start in the first 20 minutes with some stiff exposition and plot set-ups, “The Flight of Dragons” settles into becoming an involving “hero’s journey” fantasy adventure that has definite shades of “Lord of the Rings.” Directors Jules Bass and Arthur Rankin, Jr. really do a commendable job of world building as they essentially create an entire fantastical world filled with dragons and magic in a mere 92 minutes while also dipping into the modern world (you’ll see what I mean). Sure, the journey itself may not be entirely surprising, but pulling off a fantasy story that actually works is tough to do even today on the small and big screen.

What really struck me about ‘Flight’ are some of the details. I loved the time travel subplot with Peter in the 20th century, the scenes revolving around Antiquity (a religious entity essentially), and some of the stranger creatures that pop up on screen (no spoilers here). In the grand scheme of the story, these are minor pieces, but, to me, they really added a lot to giving the story more depth to separate itself from other familiar fantasy tales.

Video/Audio:

Presentation: 1.78:1 1080p. How does it look? The 2D animation shortcomings more apparent in hi-def, but the colors and the print itself is impressive.

Audio Track: 2.0 DTS-HD MA. How does it sound? This DTS track presents clean sounding music, voice acting and sound FX.

The lone extra is the standard definition TV version of the film.

January 26, 2019 - Posted by | Blu-Ray review | , , , , ,

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