DVD Review: Dragonlance: Dragons of Autumn Twilight
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Dragonlance: Dragons of Autumn Twilight
Directed by Will Meugniot
Starring (voices): Kiefer Sutherland, Lucy Lawless, Michael Rosenbaum
Paramount Home Video
Release date: January 15, 2008

Dragonlance: Dragons of Autumn Twilight is a direct-to-DVD animated feature from Paramount adapted from the best-selling novel by Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman. Because I am so deeply steeped in the world from which Autumn Twilight stems, I was excited to receive my review copy, but also apprehensive about the faithfulness of the adaptation. Luckily, the makers of Autumn Twilight animated movie nailed it.

The Autumn Twilight novel, the first of nearly 200 in the Dragonlance series, served as a direct supplement to the Advanced Dungeons & Dragons role-playing game. If you’re unfamiliar with D&D, think J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings, of which the role-playing game was heavily influenced. Autumn Twilight offers up all the crucial elements expected of the fantasy genre: campaign members of varied race, class, and skill — some are strangers; others are life-long companions — set out on a quest involving the battling of evil creatures, rescue attempts, and the retrieval of an item of power.

In the world of Krynn, the evil Queen of Darkness Takhisis sends her minions of goblins and armies of dragons out to conquer lands so she can achieve total domination. She also enlists her most loyal servant Lord Verminaard to find the sacred Staff which has the power to reawaken her adversaries, the Gods of Light, who’ve been gone from the world for 300 years.

In Solace, the half-Elf Tanis, who’s been away for five years seeking proof of the Gods’ return, reunites with his companions to find that their village is now overrun with goblin soldiers. At the Inn where the friends are recounting the results of their personal travels, a woman named Goldmoon — who’s carrying a staff — and her companion Riverwind are attacked after Goldmoon claims that the Gods have returned. Sensing the importance of the staff, the group jumps to the couple’s defense and thus begins a new adventure, leading Tanis and his friends right into the realm of Takhisis and her evil forces.

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