Green Lantern is all setup and no execution. As as much as I wanted it to be excellent, as a Green Lantern enthusiast and a Comic Book Movie Fan, Martian Campbell’s Green Lantern just didn’t deliver.
Martin Campbell’s Green lantern was fun for me to see on some small level merely because Green Lantern / Hal Jordan, is one of the most popular characters in the DC Universe. Whilst I enjoyed seeing Green Lantern, sort of come alive on the big screen with eye catching visual effects I wish that there was more to it then just that. The only other good quality this movie had deciding on it was that it stuck near Green lanterns Origin story. My first response to to the first photo release of Ryan Reynolds in the CGI enhanced costume was that it was terrible looking. I had exactly the same reaction to the very first movie trailer which seemed to focus way too much on comedy relief. Based on these two early campaigns I didn’t think I wanted to see this movie in the theater and would look ahead to DVD. Later on trailers and Wonder Con footage changed my mind on the subject as the focus did actually shift more to Hal’s origin in becoming a Green Lantern. At the same time, when I went to see Mathew Vaughn’s X-Men : First Class,( Which was very good ) I got to see the Green Lantern movie trailer on the big screen it made a huge difference visually and was the deciding factor in changing my mind in wanting to see this in a movie theater.
The comic fan in me liked seeing other members of the Green Lantern Corps like Tomar-Re, Kilowog and Sinistro who was played wonderfully by Mark Strong. However, these characters weren’t given enough screen time. The Guardians who devised the Emerald Energy Source of Will and forged the Green Lanterns Power Rings didn’t have a strong enough presence in the film. Parallax, who’s a previous Guardian who tried to harness the alternative Yellow Energy Source of Fear that had been deemed to unpredictable by his fellow Guardians and is turned into a life sucking Entity who feeds on fear. Is suppose to be this universal threat that programs to destroy Earth and Oa, the home world of the Guardians and base of operations for the Green Lanterns but I didn’t get a real sense of that risk other than it being explained in the dialog or showing him poses a scientist named Hector Hammond performed by well by Peter Sarsgaard, and killing a hand full of Green Lanterns. Not too impressive for such a universal danger. The final show down between Green Lantern / Hal Jordan and Parallax seemed in a hurry and pointless.
But no more pointless then having a love between Hal Jordan( Ryan Reynolds) and Carol Ferris ( Blake Lively ). I say pointless because that’s exactly what it was. I’m sure why “Hollywood” wants every movie to have romance in it. It’s a theme that everyonecan associate to and it can bring heart and soul to a movie but why bother if it’s not accomplished well. In the case of Green Lantern, I didn’t care about the love story. I didn’t think Ryan Reynolds and Blake Lively had any real chemistry. Maybe they could have if the script offered them more to work with. There just isn’t any endearing scenes between the two of them. Even though it seems like the script needs it or tries to appeal to it, it’s old hat. While Green Lantern remains true to the source material’s origin of the popular DC comic book the movie lacks the same heart and fails at giving the film a soul because it doesn’t take the time to flesh out the core of main characters and make the audience care about them. With the exception of Mark Strong as Sinistro, I felt like the other actors were just providing dialog and lacked conviction or believability.
Which Brings me to the star of the film, Ryan Reynolds as Green Lantern was below average at best. In my opinion he’s wrong for the part of Green Lantern / Hal Jordan. I think a lot of the script was written to cater to Ryan Reynolds rather than Hal Jordan. But that is how movie scripts tend to suffer when a big star is included in a big summer movie. Reynolds is exactly the same in all of his motion pictures and while he has a very amiable and appealing personality to a lot of movie goers I feel he has not got the range to play duel identities or a character experiencing real inner turmoil like Hal in the movie. I do think Nathan Fillon ( Serenity ) would have been a much better casting choice for Hal Jordan / Green Lantern.
Overall I’d have to give Martin Campbell’s Green Lantern, 2 out of 5 stars. It has very cool visual effects and a few very good action scenes by having an Origin story that stays true to the source material but lacks the focus to flesh out the main characters in the film and tale delelopment is over shadowed by CGI, fast paced action and some times bad punch lines. Green Lantern is perhaps all set up and no execution. As as much as I wanted it to be great, as a Green Lantern fan and a Comic Book Movie Fan, Martian Campbell’s Green Lantern just didn’t deliver.
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