The Green Lantern fails in EPIC MAGNITUDE

| June 20, 2011 | 0 Comments


If you want genuine entertainment, I suggest you go see X-Men because this movie is not worth your hard earned money. Between gaping plot holes, horrible editing and lackluster acting, I don’t see this being on anyone’s top ten list. Let’s get started… WARNING!!! SPOILERS ALERT!!!!

Right off the bat I knew there would be a big problem with this movie because of the casting. I am not a fan of the comic book, but through research (and talking to a few nerd friends), I have learned that Ryan Reynolds just doesn’t have the right personality to pull off Hal Jordan. He isn’t a superhero, or action star for that matter.  While he is a versatile actor and has proven time and again that he can make you laugh and cry (Definitely, Maybe, The Chaos Theory, The Proposal), he just isn’t cut from the Christian Bale cloth of superhero. Maybe after he has gotten a few more action movies under his belt he can parley with the big dogs.

Next we have the ever so lovely Blake Lively as Carol Ferris, who wasn’t the stiff, emotionless robot many thought she would be. Surprisingly her acting was decent enough to sit through. However, that doesn’t make up for her character’s nonchalant attitude (we will get into that later). Other big names in the movie include Mark Strong as Sinestro, Peter Sarsgaard as Dr Hector Hammond and Clancy Brown as the voice of Parallax. Given the horrible script, I think these actors did a great job of pulling it together as best they could. Like the titanic, they remained on a sinking ship.


The Green Lantern is a great example of what happens when you try to do too much in too little time. The end result is a patchy, rushed, conglomeration of EPIC FAIL. Here are the biggest flaws:  

Too much going on with no background information: There are too many scenes in the movie where the viewer is left going, huh? How and why did that just happen? For example there is a scene where the Green Lantern busts into a private, very secret facility owned by some government agency (nobody bothered to mention). There wasn’t a big “bat signal” in the sky so how did he know there was danger afoot? Did he develop “spidey senses”? The transitions aren’t smooth or explained, but choppy and swift. Secondly, there is ZERO background information and character development. The narrator gave a half-hearted introduction at the very beginning of the movie, and just before you can process it, POOF we are on the next scene! Did you not catch that? Oh well! Keep up; we only have an hour and 45 minutes. Throughout the film, you don’t feel sucked into the plot or absorbed by the characters, the only thing you feel is regret, for wasting your time and money. There were no buildups of information, for example, who are the Green Lanterns and what do they stand for? What are the major differences between the power of will and fear? Who is the council? A lot of the information was either not given or the audience was left to assume.  

Editing was all over the place: If the Green Lantern were a song, this would have been the chopped and screwed edition. It seemed like there were big chunks missing from the movie, key moments were either lost in the editing room or just plain left out. Because of this, the overall flow of the movie was offset. There wasn’t a smooth transition from one sequence to the next. More like a push and a shove out the door to cut to the next reel of film.

Plot was a joke: The main point they make throughout the whole film is that Green Lanterns should be fearless. Yet, time and again we hear Reynolds declare how scared he is and how he never lives up to expectations. So will he ever get over this fear to become a true Green Lantern? Well of course! In less than 30 minutes! After he takes a journey through space to the planet Oa (of course no one on earth sees a strange green blob orbiting away from them) and figures out what he has become a part of, he trains. For all of 2 minutes. He gets his ass solidly kicked and goes back to earth to lick his wounds (again NO ONE sees a mysterious green man hurtling towards earth??). However, when it’s time to beat the bad guy, he does so in less than 40 seconds with NO help from the other Green Lanterns and is praised for being some kind of hero because his “humanity” made him special. Cue the violins. You have gotten over the one thing that would hinder your success in just half an hour? Yet other Green Lanterns that tried (and have been Green Lanterns for eons) get their asses handed to them? Yeah, I don’t think so.  

Characters were lack luster: Besides stand-up performances from the industry regulars (Mark Strong, Peter Sarsgaard and Clancy Brown), there were not any award-winning performances. Ryan Reynolds does have a certain charismatic appeal to him, there were a few well-timed jokes sprinkled in to appease the audience. However, he just doesn’t have that “save the day” magnetism to him. Surprisingly, Tobey Maguire as Spider-Man was more convincing as a super hero than Reynolds. Blake Lively, who wasn’t terrible, still didn’t translate well as the potential damsel in distress character. After discovering Hal (her long time friend/lover) is the Green Lantern who saved her life the night before, the shock lasts for all of 2 seconds. Before she goes right back into the, “you run away from everything” line. Seriously? I just found out I have super powers fueled by a magical ring which was given to me by an alien. Now I’m expected to save the day from the giant monster B-lining for earth, that more than likely will kill me. Excuse me if I don’t jump on the first train to martyrdom.


Director was clearly conflicted: A divergence between Martin Campbell (director) not wanting to upset the fan boys but still wanting to have a blockbuster hit was clearly evident. Since Spider-Man, X-men and Batman premiered a few years ago with such outstanding numbers; there has been a rush to find the next fan boy hit. However, the formula isn’t always bullet proof (Daredevil, The Punisher, The Spirit), just because there is a major following doesn’t mean the material will translate well into a film. Especially since most directors don’t pull from the main storyline anyway. Campbell had so much resourceful material to draw from, yet he got most of it just plain wrong. It takes a really skilled team of producers and screen writers to pull off a good comic book movie, with minimal use of the original material (a la X-Men: First Class). Hollywood on a whole takes so many liberties with already well-liked storylines, in the end the audience is left thinking they got ripped off.


The one decent thing about this movie was the action. The special effects were clearly the main focus of the budget because it all looked very shiny and expensive. Word to the wise, DO NOT pay for the 3D version, total gimmick. The movie wasn’t shot in 3D but re-worked afterwards for a couple of scenes. Save those extra dollars for a happy meal, after this trash, you will need it.

Also the comic relief by Reynolds was refreshing. He gave just enough humor for it to be chuckle worthy. Other than those two aspects, this movie was all over the place. Despite the cool CGI effects and the respectable action sequences, nothing could save this movie from its worst enemy, itself. If you are over the age of 12, then I suggest you look for your movie fix somewhere else.


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