Green Lantern Review

A test pilot is granted a mystical green ring that bestows him with otherworldly powers, as well as membership into an intergalactic squadron tasked with keeping peace within the universe.

Given that Warner Brothers in their infinite wisdom decided to release Green Lantern locally over a month after the US release, I’ve had plenty of time to hear how much people don’t like this movie. Reviews are almost universally scathing, and the ticket sales reflect that, so it was no surprise that I went into this movie with low expectations.

Unfortunately, those expectations were met. Green Lantern has some fun moments, but my general opinion is one of indifference. This is a very mediocre film. If Green Lantern had come out a few years ago when the Superhero movie boom was at its height it might not have attracted such a negative response, but given the quality that audiences have been seeing from movies like Captain America and Thor, Green Lantern’s failings are all the more obvious.

Most of the movies problems can be blamed on the story, the CGI is pretty good (even the controversial suit seemed to work fairly well apart from the mask) and the acting is pretty solid but the story that is supposed to tie them all together seemed completely unsure as to what it was supposed to do.

After a cringe worthy opening full of exposition from Geoffrey Rush things seem to pick up with the introduction of Hal Jordan (Ryan Reynolds), but things quickly take a downward turn as the character’s underlying fears are rammed down the audiences throat with detailed flashbacks. The lack of subtlety continues throughout the film with every detail explained with tiresome exposition.

The elements of the story that were interesting are usually completely dropped for no apparent reason leaving audiences scratching their heads as to what’s supposed to be significant. Also criminally absent from the story is the much hyped vista of Oa, the home planet of the Green Lantern Corps. We spend about 5 minutes there where we are introduced to the other Corps members such as Sinestro (Mark Strong), Kilowog (Michael Clarke Duncan) and Tomar-Re (Geoffrey Rush). But apparently the budget ran out and we quickly return to the much less interesting Earth-bound story of Hal feeling sorry for himself.

Overall, Green Lantern is an example of wasted potential. When you pull in actors like Mark Strong, Tim Robbins and Geoffrey Rush to boost the profile of your film, you’re actually supposed to use them. The story follows the same path, dropping some interesting story beats, but ultimately ditching them for a plot that was clichéd years ago. I didn’t hate the movie, but I can’t see myself sitting down to watch it again.

What I Liked – The special effects were pretty good. There were some fun moments.

What I Didn’t Like – Terrible opening. Lingering on unnecessary scenes while giving hardly any time to the important stuff. Waste of Mark Strong, Geoffrey Rush and pretty much everyone else.

Rating – 2 out of 5 (Disappointing)

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3 thoughts on “Green Lantern Review

  1. Oh Al…Al, buddy. Seriously? You’re going to choose to focus on the little things?

    Sure, many of these individual components are faulty – they run too short or too long in some places; the story seems cobbled together from four or five different screenplays; with the unlimited creative ability of the ring we never once see Hal create a harem of porn-stars. When you disect the entity, yeah sure, you have a dead picture.

    Lantern is like a grand city mural: you’ve got to stand way, way, waaaaaaaaaaaay back to appreciate it. It’s about the broad strokes, the general idea and the basic good times. We wade through the blurry and poorly colored filler in order to get to the good Green stuff. When the movie gets fun, I reckon it got really fun. And that was solid enough to carry me to the finish line.

    Of course, I’m one of the four guys who still likes Daredevil…

    • Lack of a coherent story counts as a little thing now? We’re obviously doomed as a species.

      I would argue that when the movie gets fun, it changes to an unnecessary scene. The good bits in this movie are few and far between. While they were enjoyable, they weren’t enough to distract me from the major problems with the rest of the film.

      I’ll stand way back, far enough that I can’t see it. Then I can appreciate it.

  2. I won’t be seeing The Green Lantern. I think the budget of $200 million is a joke. Another movie that’s just a CGI showoff and i’m over it. I heard rumours this movie has CHEESE. When are producers going to understand that CHEESE and comic book movies don’t mix:? The Green Lantern should of blown minds. It hasn’t. The movie will easily be a $100 million right off for Warners. Geoff Johns has to take some heat for this. I’m sure he can share it around the other 20 odd people who are listed as either producers or screenwriters.

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