SYNOPSIS: In a universe as vast as it is mysterious, a small but powerful force has existed for centuries. Protectors of peace and justice, they are called the Green Lantern Corps. A brotherhood of warriors sworn to keep intergalactic order, each Green Lantern wears a ring that grants him superpowers. But when a new enemy called Parallax threatens to destroy the balance of power in the Universe, their fate and the fate of Earth lie in the hands of their newest recruit, the first human ever selected: Hal Jordan (Ryan Reynolds).
I’ll cut to the chase here…
GREEN LANTERN disappointed me.
It could have -- and should have -- been much better. It’s inexcusable to me how Warner Bros./DC Entertainment didn’t knock this one out of the park with so much riding on this film. But alas, they only got a single.
Plot-wise, I’m sure you know the drill...
Fearless test pilot Hal Jordan (Ryan Reynolds) finds a dying purple alien (Temuera Morrison as “Abin Sur”) who gives him a green ring and lantern. Upon reciting “The Oath,” Jordan is whisked away to the planet Oa and finds out that he is the newest -- and first human -- recruit of The Green Lantern Corps. As far as the rest, yada, yada, yada.
I’ll lay out the bad first as I’d like to finish this review on somewhat of a positive note.
The script is not good. It’s all over the place plot-wise, full of exposition, and has some flat-out silly dialogue at times.
While Peter Saarsgard does a fine job, albeit a bit over the top, as Dr. Hector Hammond, there was absolutely no real reason to include the character or the subplot involving him in this film.
Blake Lively. Even though she does an OK acting job, I never bought her being a test pilot/bigtime corporate exec. She’s hot, quite nice, and a good interview at Wondercon, but I’d have gone with someone older.
Hal’s Daddy Issues? Quite frankly, they half-assed this plot point. Either cut it out entirely, or add more to it so it matters to the damn plot and Hal’s characterization.
Kilowog and Tomar Re were cool as hell -- and they were made even cooler being voiced by Michael Clarke Duncan and Geoffrey Rush respectively. But as characters in the film, they served no other purpose than to provide exposition. What a waste.
Marketing. GREEN LANTERN was sold as a comic book STAR WARS. Other than the brief time on Oa, there’s nothing even close to that sort of stuff here. No badass battles in space featuring the Green Lantern Corps -- I can’t believe they didn’t include at least one of those in the film. I guess GL Hal Jordan fighting an evil yellow cloud in New Orleans -- err, Coast City -- doesn’t sale.
Now on to “The Good” -- yes, there is some…
Ryan Reynolds. Why this cat was the target of so much fanboy bitching for being cast in the lead role is beyond me. (Nevermind, it’s not beyond me. These are fanboys we’re talking about here and that’s what they do for a living.) Reynolds as GL/Hal is the best thing about this movie. He’s damn good and there’s not one negative thing about this film that can attributed to him. Period.
Outside of the lame-o “Coast City,” the film looks fantastic -- especially Oa. Since Oa/The GL Corps/GL Hal are all actually an SFX, then I’ll go ahead and give a thumbs-up to the film’s production design. Yeah, it looks “CGI” if you will, but is it supposed to look, right?
Mark Strong as Sinestro is badass! I'd say he steals the show, but that credit goes to Mr. Reynolds. Regardless, he's awesome and I can't wait for more of him as Sinestro.
Is GREEN LANTERN an abomination and one of the worst comic book films of all time? No, it is NOT.
It’s simply OK. But being “simply OK” in the "Golden Age" of this great cinematic genre just ain’t going to cut it anymore. HOWEVER...
They didn’t strike out with GREEN LANTERN, trust me. It's my hope that Warner Bros. and DC Entertainment won’t freak out and kill something before it even has a chance to start. A great Green Lantern film can made made. SO…
For GREEN LANTERN 2, let’s stretch that single into a triple at least.
JETT's GRADE: C
A life-long Batman fan, "Jett" is the founder of BATMAN-ON-FILM.COM and resides in the great state of Texas.