Green Lantern – In Theatres Now
by Diane Ligman
Green Lantern, directed by Martin Campbell, tells the origin story of the first human Green Lantern, Hal Jordan (Ryan Reynolds). After a space craft crashes to Earth, containing an injured Abin Sur (Temuera Morrison), one of the Greatest Green Lanterns, he hands the Green Lantern and Ring off to Hal Jordan, a test pilot and a bit of a screw-up. The film then follows Hal’s journey as he must face his fear to defend his planet and earn the respect of the rest of the Green Lantern Corp.
Martin Campbell embraces the Science Fiction of the Green Lantern story. It takes five minutes into the movie to even see a human. There was a lot of concern that they would negate these aspects and just keep Hal Jordan on Earth. Far from it.
The CGI is pretty good. There are moments, such as when we first see all the Green Lantern Corp together, where they look a bit like toys, but their treatment of space is breathtakingly beautiful.
Ryan Reynolds does a decent job. I am one of those people who wanted Nathan Fillion to get the role of Hal Jordan, primarily because I wanted Ryan Reynolds to be Flash, but I can live with Reynolds as Hal. Although he is not as charming as he normally is in movies, he is believable and really is willing to show the range of emotions he is called on to portray. But when he is on screen with Mark Strong’s Sinestro, Mark steals the show. He manages to convey emotions purely with his voice and phrasing. The way he gives the speech announcing the loss of Abin Sur, you can tell exactly how Sinestro feels yet his face remains stoic. Peter Sarsgaard is fun as Hector Hammond, he plays both pathetic and evil at the same time so wonderfully. Though the make-up was not what I was used to for Hector, his portrayal won me over.
I know Blake Lively can act, I have seen her do so. But here? Not so much. Carol Ferris is a strong, independent woman who runs a massive company, is a test pilot and eventually part of the Star Sapphire Corp. Though we see moments from Blake where you can possibly buy her as Carol, it is rare. I hope she realizes that she is not in a kids’ movie and brings the awesome badassery of Carol to life in any sequel.
The CGI suit, primarily the mask, was ridiculous. Wow, did that looked horrible. The mask looked so bad that that every time I saw it I was taken out of the movie. Also long shots of Sinestro made him look utterly fake. Close up, he looks good, but the long shots looked terrible.
The music is completely average. Green Lantern deserves a theme song that gets stuck in your head. It failed completely to deliver. Which brings us to what is the biggest problem, the cheese factor.
This was the biggest concern after watching the footage at Comic Con last year. How do you make a Green Lantern movie that embraces the true power of the ring without looking horribly campy? Well we might never know since this movie includes using the ring to make a race car track. Now don’t get me wrong, it is not Batman and Robin level, far from it. But there were moments that just left me cold. And since these were primarily action moments, that is a problem.
For the sake of full disclosure, I should say I am a Green Lantern fan. My engagement ring is based off of the Sinestro Corp Ring. That said, after seeing the footage at Comic Con last year I really assumed Green Lantern would bomb in a truly epic way. I am glad I appear to be wrong.
It has been a while since I have seen a fun Science Fiction movie in space. It manages to give large stakes and handles it well. This is not a perfect movie, but I had more fun watching it than I did Thor, and I am a huge Kenneth Branagh fan. It is kid friendly and the 3D is pretty good. I think if you are a fan of Green Lantern, you will enjoy Green Lantern. I would recommend going to a drive in and seeing this movie. It almost has that 50s Sci Fi feel and against a dark sky, it seems appropriate to watch a movie about an intergalactic police force.