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Green Lantern (2011)

A 2011 film, loosely based on the comic book of the same name, directed by Martin Campbell and starring Ryan Reynolds.

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The Emerald Warrior In His First Full-Length Feature Film....is A Poozer* !!

  • Jun 19, 2011

With all the follow-up successes (if mixed) Marvel had achieved with their comic book adaptations, of course DC would do well to try and follow up with the groundbreaking success of “Batman Begins” and “The Dark Knight”. With the rather mediocre film but mixed success that is “Superman Returns”, DC is looking for the next big thing. “Green Lantern” is somewhat of an oddball choice to try to begin a new franchise, but I am rather both happy and at the same time concerned how the comic book character would make the translation into film. Well, “Green Lantern” is a film that brings the Hal Jordan character to life; no Guy Gardner, no Kyle Rayner and no Jon Stewart; just plain old Hal “Highballs” Jordan. The greatest Green Lantern whose light would shine both brighter and dimmer than anyone’s.

“Green Lantern” is a film whose execution comes as no surprise. There are two ways to approach a review of this film; as a comic book fan and as a lover of film. I am going to try to be both, seeing as comics and film are two of my favorite entertainment medium. The bottom line with the film is that it makes a rather risky assumption that all of its viewers would be fans of the comic and that those who aren’t wouldn’t have any issues believing into what it is trying to portray with its story.

                     Ryan Reynolds as Green Lantern and Tomar-re voiced by Geoffrey Rush in "Green Lantern."

                    Ryan Reynolds as Green Lantern and Mark Strong as Sinestro in "Green Lantern."

                    Mark Strong as Sinestro in "Green Lantern."

                    Peter Sarsgaard as Hector Hammond in "Green Lantern."

                    Kilowog voiced by Michael Clarke Duncan and Tomar-re voiced by Geoffrey Rush in "Green Lantern."

Hal Jordan (a severely miscast Ryan Reynolds) is a test pilot who likes to live life on the edge and seems determined to prove himself worthy of his father’s vaunted reputation. This makes Hal reckless and careless, at times overbearing but nonetheless very attractive to a childhood friend and sometime lover Carol Ferris (a radiant and very sexy Blake Lively). After a small mishap with a practice dog fight, Hal is taken to the crash site of an alien spacecraft whose mortally wounded pilot, Abin Sur (Temuera Morrison) is a member of the Green Lantern Corps that polices the known 3000+ space sectors of the universe. Given a ring of power, whose bearer is able to make constructs of energy that is limited only to his will and imagination, Hal is then whisked away to the planet OA, the home of the Corps and the Guardians of the Universe. Beginning a crash-training under the tutelage of Tomar-Re (voiced by Geoffrey Rush), Kilowog (voiced by Michael Clark Duncan) and Sinestro (Mark Strong), Jordan is found wanting because of his human qualities. But a threat from the past called “Parallax” (voiced by Clancy Brown) that has links to Abin Sur has re-surfaced and has enslaved a scientist called Hector Hammond ( Peter Sarsgaard) to do its work. Hal must accept his calling as a “Green Lantern” and to overcome great fear…

Marvel’s “Avengers” is looming in the horizon so it would be no doubt that DC is going to try for something similar (Amanda Waller is a good hint). As a comic book fan, it was easy for me to follow the workings of its script. I mean the film has serious deviations from the source material; the origins of Parallax lost a lot of its complexities, Hammond is reduced to a somewhat love-sick psycho, and Hal has undergone some serious changes to his character (he acts ala-Reynolds and not as Jordan, the one man Batman cannot intimidate). Some things bothered me a lot, while some I expected since it is also trying to cover as many bases of the “Green Lantern” mythos as much as possible. The qualities of the ring is underdeveloped and given a new feature, and the central green power battery concept has been abandoned to favor references to the recent events in the “Blackest Night” and the rise of the different “colored” emotions of power. (Green is for willpower while yellow is for fear, blue is for hope and so forth)

                     Ryan Reynolds as Green Lantern and Tomar-Re in ``Green Lantern.''

                     Peter Sarsgaard as Hector Hammond in "Green Lantern."

                     Blake Lively as Carol Ferris and Ryan Reynolds as Green Lantern in "Green Lantern."

                     Ryan Reynolds as Green Lantern in "Green Lantern."

I guess it would be too much for me to expect the complexities of the comics to come alive with a 2 hour film, but I have to say the film starts off strongly despite some of its flaws. I was interested, until the direction by Martin Campbell renders the script feel rather disjointed. I am not sure if the film has been re-edited, but I found the screenplay very uneven; at times overwritten but also underwritten often. After Hal’s arrival in Oa, I found myself slowly losing interest, as the movie begins to lose its focus. Campbell has the right tools to link the elements together but I had issues with the way they were executed. There were times that I felt that the film jumped around, all of sudden Sinestro and his group faced Parallax, then he proposes a risky plan of counter-attack, then we see Hammond doing something else against Jordan. I was able to put together why Parallax wanted Earth all of a sudden (Earth is a haven for great emotional fear), but non-fans would find it rather a ‘come from behind detail’. Now, I had major issues when Jordan seemingly ‘quit’ and got to keep the ring. I am not sure, the film feels rather silly and clumsy in storytelling at many points.

Now, the film does give the feeling of being in space quite well. I mean, this was the planet OA as portrayed in the comics. It looks and feels like the planet I’ve read about in the comics. The changes to the GL ring quality and the costume were reminiscent of the Hal Jordan in “Rebirth” and I was rather happy that they made this faithful to the comic. (where are the white gloves though?). The visual effects were quite nice and does emulate the feel of an ‘emerald construct’ made of energy. Effects-wise, I was not disappointed, it had the right things to make the film feel like a “Green Lantern” film. Kilowog and Tomar-Re were products of CGI, and frankly they looked quite cool (kudos to the voice acting). The Guardians were the ones after the “Kyle Rayner-ION era” and it was nice to see a woman among them, they looked the same enigmatic creatures in the comics. The battles in the film have been toned down quite a lot to stick to the PG-13 sensibilities, there is hardly any blood and I have to admit the battles felt inconsistent at times. I do have to give credit that there were some key scenes that may prove good enough to impress the casual Green Lantern fan.

                       Temuera Morrison as Abin Sur in "Green Lantern."

                       Ryan Reynolds as Hal Jordan in ``Green Lantern.''

                       Blake Lively as Carol Ferris and Ryan Reynolds as Hal Jordan in ``Green Lantern.''

                       Ryan Reynolds as Green Lantern in ``Green Lantern.''

                       Tomar-re voiced by Geoffrey Rush and Ryan Reynolds as Green Lantern in "Green Lantern."

Reynolds is miscast, and I wish he could’ve just stuck to the “Deadpool” character in “Wolverine”. His personality does not match the Hal Jordan in the comics; Jordan should be fearless and a little moody. He was careless often, but he wasn’t cocky or irresponsible. Reynolds makes his character as a clumsy bumbling fool that didn’t know better but I understood why the script went this route. I appreciate the attempts at humor but Jordan never spoke like this. Mark Strong does make for a good “Sinestro” despite the fact that he was underused. Blake Lively was well…so distracting. She was just so gorgeous, and the highpoint of her character was when Hal couldn’t hide his identity from her. (I mean c’mon, anyone would recognize the one they had sex with, no matter what).

Alright, I guess I’ve said all I could without spoiling the movie. So is “Green Lantern” a worthy comic book movie? As a fan, I could easily connect the dots, but the screenplay was a little lazy and definitely had a lot of tonal shifts that hampered my enjoyment of it. The film loses all the complexities of the source material and was more focused on including as many elements and "fan-service" as possible to try to satisfy what it thought were the requirements of the comic fan. I thought in doing so, it lost a lot of its potential, and while the film can entertain at some points, it sure wasn’t compelling as it felt unfocused and uninspired. “Green Lantern” is an attempt to test the waters, and like “Thor” it is not the definitive “Green Lantern” movie, but it is much further away from that standard. Yes, as expected, stay after the end credits as there is a cheap tease (that is if you care for one).

RENTAL [2 ½ Out of 5 stars]
*Poozer- A word Green Lantern Kilowog used to describe people from time to time. Kind of like a loser, jack-@$$ or "putz", or stupid useless rookie. Just for those who didn't know what it meant since they don't read the comic books... LOL!

Poster art for "Green Lantern.''  Poster art for "Green Lantern."

Poster art for "Green Lantern." Poster art for "Green Lantern."

Ryan Reynolds and Blake Lively in "Green Lantern 3D." 

The Emerald Warrior In His First Full-Length Feature Film....is a Bit of A Poozer* !! The Emerald Warrior In His First Full-Length Feature Film....is a Bit of A Poozer* !!

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December 06, 2012
Very unusual pictures to say the least! Good review.
December 10, 2012
thank you once again, sir
November 27, 2011
I thought way to much time was spent making it a "love story" when that time could have been used to explain further some of the superhero aspects of the movie that had i not read reviews of people who have read the comics i would still be confused over.
December 10, 2012
well, this movie was a poozer LOL
November 04, 2011
Yeah, you know, I finally saw this on DVD the other day, and I thought it was okay. I'd probably give it a 1 on the Lunch.com scale. I didn't have any major problems with it; the only significant drawback I sensed in the film is that there was just no compelling reason for this origins story. Batman -- yeah, you know his backstory almost always figures somehow into his flicks. Superman -- those are usually just major slugfests, when they're done right. Green Lantern? There just was no compelling narrative to it. Now, some of this may be due to the fact that -- let's face it -- there really ain't all that MUCH to his powers-of-creation. It's almost the most comic-bookish of superpowers to have, so that's a strike against it right there. GL really morphed out of a decidedly different mindset to comic bookdom, and he's probably had a hard time earning his stripes since then. I did enjoy the otherworldly stuff, so much so that I wished we had spent the entire time on Oa or out in space. The Earth stuff just didn't feel all that well-grounded.
November 05, 2011
Great comments and it would be a great idea for them to have adapted Emerald Dawn since it developed the source of the green energy (Oa) and Jordan himself, but Reynolds won't be able to pull it off. GL has grown throughout the years, and jumping straight to Parallax was insanely cheap. They should have developed everything first, and showed THE MANHUNTERS.
June 27, 2011
Nice review, William! I loved the fake trailer that was released with Nathan Fillion playing the Green Lantern. I bet he would have been great in this role! LOL! I didn't care for their final actor choice...but I might check it out someday. Who knows?
October 15, 2011
Thanks for the read, Adri!
June 25, 2011
Great review man, trying to see it this this week while I am gone again.
June 25, 2011
where you going?
June 22, 2011
Nope-this one's not for me!! Great review as always....
June 22, 2011
good decision. I paid $ 6 to see it and I wanted my money back. And Ebert liked this? gad....
June 20, 2011
Nice review. As expected, it appears that Reynolds botched this one up. I wish filmmakers would just tape his mouth and put him in the background for the ladies to look at because, let's face it, he's nothing but eye candy with an annoying sense of humor. I'll still go see the film because Jordan is one of my favorite DC characters, but I'm not expecting much.
June 20, 2011
Thanks for the comment, Kendall. I mean, I have nothing against Reynolds....but he can never be Hal Jordan. I saw this for the exact reasons you've said why you'd see it. I like GL, especially when he hanged out with Green Arrow and when he went through his challenges.
June 19, 2011
LMFAO! What did you expect? It's Ryan Reynolds! I truly hope to never see him in another comic book film. He's already ruined three great characters as it is. Poozer! Poozer! After Sean Astin made Rudy everyone chanted "Rudy! Rudy!" Now, I'm going to chant "Poozer! Poozer!" every time I see Reynolds. Poozer! Poozer!
June 20, 2011
I was expecting a lackluster film, but I wasn't expecting such an underwrtten movie with overwritten elements or vice versa....does that make sense? I feel that I need to see another movie after this one, it just didn't make my bday celebration better. arrgghhh. what three comic book characters has he ruined? He was alright as deadpool since that character was annoying anyway.
June 20, 2011
Go see Beginners. I loved it - Johnny - well you already know the answer. I can't remember if you've seen Midnight In Paris - If you haven't MUST SEE
June 20, 2011
@, "Beginners" I will definitely see this week. I liked the trailers and I like its premise. Thanks!

@, I'll respond to your message soon...trying to recover from all the partying. This was better than "Fantastic Four" though.....I mean almost anything is LOL!
June 20, 2011
He ruined Hal Hannibal King, Deadpool, and Jordan / Green Lantern. Let's face it, Reynolds should stick to romantic comedies and stay the hell away from comic book adaptations.
June 20, 2011
Oh yeah, I almost forgot about Blade Trinity. I think his mouth will be alright as DEADPOOL.
June 20, 2011
This poozer's a loser! LMAO! Ah, so much fun with made-up words.
June 20, 2011
Poozer poozer!! hey...I think I'll add it to my vocabulary. LOL!
June 20, 2011
Why the frell not?!
June 19, 2011
Great review and really well written. You were kinder then we were. I love all the detail you put into a review. Still recommend MR. POPPER'S PENGUINS OUT of all the films that have opened this weekend. And yes it is for 8 year olds. LOL
June 20, 2011
thanks, Joan and John! I tried to be kinder since I did like some of the effects on OA and I liked the constructs. I think I may need to see another movie after this, it just didn't make my weekend. It is better than TRON LEGACY LOL!
More Green Lantern (2011 movie) reviews
review by . June 17, 2011
Bursting onto the screen with a winning combination of action and dazzling effects DC Comics' "The Green Lantern" has arrived to the delight of comic fans the world over. The film stars Ryan Reynolds as Hal Jordan, a talented but cocky test pilot who is haunted by the untimely passing of his father during a test flight when young Hal was a child.     Hal avoids commitment and leads his life as a brash individual who does things his way and answers to no one.   After …
review by . November 16, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
From all the harsh reviews and knowing that it starred someone who is principly a comedian (having remembered how brutal The Green Hornet was), I was reluctant to spend any "quality" time watching this. Well it became available at the library so I took it out and with nothing on tv but Dancing With the Stars, I decided to pop it in the DVD player. It actually held my interest throughout. Furthermore, Reynolds played the role in a fairly "straight" manner.    It starts out with …
review by . November 08, 2011
Emeralds Aren't A Fanboy's Best Friend But....
I've always enjoyed watching DC Comics' stable of heroes in cartoons and films more than actually reading about them in comics.  To me, DC's heroes were, for the most part, more "super" than Marvel's crop of characters.  They always seemed to be a bit more fantastical and otherworldly.  Sure, Marvel has plenty of heroes who acquired there powers from things like radioactive spiders and the force cosmic, but they always came across as more …
review by . June 25, 2011
The Lantern Ring clearly didn't edit this movie.
I'm approaching this movie much the way I did with the Sherlock Holmes movie from a little back.  I have only a slight grasp on the character and the source material, so as long as the movie is entertaining and makes sense then I the regular ticket buyer shouldn't be annoyed by the touches that the comic fans will no doubt be looking for.  I'm not going to get bummed out say if, Green Lantern's costume doesn't look right or if he drives a Mustang instead of a Charger …
review by . November 07, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
I was prepared to love this movie. It had everything I would enjoy in a comic book super hero movie including the good looking hero, outstanding special effects. So what happened? I did like it, but did not love it. It definately needed some editing. It took forever for the story to take off. I know they had to explain all the back story, but it was so slow moving in the beginning. Coming from director Martin Campbell I was surprised. He usually starts off running and leaves you breathless. I would …
review by . June 18, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
Green Lanterns Light Shines
Ive never been a fan of DC Comics, Ive always been a Marvel fanboy. Although fictional Marvels superheroes just seem more realistic to me..........more believe able. That and some of the harsh reviews I read about this movie made me go into the theater with very low expectations.        Enter Hal Jordan an unorthodox US Military fighter pilot. After his reckless behavior causes him to crash an F-35 he is chosen by the ring of Abin Sur to replace him as guardian …
review by . June 27, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
Green Lantern is a very flawed movie-going experience. It’s by no means a “good” movie, but it doesn’t fall into the ranks of the “superhero movie gone wrong” league of the horrifyingly awful “Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer” or “Daredevil”, or even the “close but no cigar” category like “Batman Forever” or “The Spirit”. Instead, in a much more tragic fashion, Martin Campbell’s Green …
review by . June 18, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
   I discovered comic books back in the mid 1980s. We lived near a convenience store that stocked a fairly large number of them. I remember well going down there, getting a strawberry ice cream cone, playing some Super Mario Bros and buying comics. Being an imaginative child, and a fan of science fictiony stuff, I very quickly gravitated to Green Lantern. And why not? Here was a set of stories that often took place in space, featured aliens by the gross and had a ring that could be used …
review by . June 18, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
Star Rating:         Green Lantern does not seem to know who it was made for. There are expository sections of story so densely packed with detail that they will (1) confuse and alienate those who are not intimately familiar with the original comic book, and (2) bore those who are. Most of the characters are badly developed while the rest are introduced and then immediately dropped. Specific events are either explained at too great a length or not explained enough. …
review by . June 17, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
'Green Lantern' 'Two Jews On Film' Agree-This Comic Book Super Hero Falls To The Ground (Video)
      Okay, so this is how the story goes...In a universe far, far away (where else would it be) an elite, powerful force has existed for centuries.  Protectors of peace and justice, they are called the Green Lantern Corps.        Helpful fact to know, for those of you unfamiliar with the DC comic...Green is the color of will.  Yellow is the color of fear.  So...green is good...yellow, bad...very very bad.   …
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About this movie


Directed by Martin Campbell. With Ryan Reynolds, Blake Lively, Peter Sarsgaard. 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.

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As far as superheroes go, Green Lantern may lack the clean, iconic lines of his more respectable DC counterparts Superman and Batman, but the very wonkiness of the premise (earthling joins elite force of space cops) lends itself to a pulpy, operatic, not-entirely-serious approach. (One of his teammates is a talking carrot, after all.) Capitalizing on a charming performance by Ryan Reynolds, the feature-film adaptation is a big, messy movie that, at its best, generates a feeling of aw-shucks wonder. Much likeThor, it isn't afraid to loosen up on the inner turmoil of its hero and go macro. Based on comic writer Geoff Johns's retrofitting of the title character, the story follows Hal Jordan (Reynolds), an impulsive test pilot whose encounter with a dying alien leaves him with an energy ring capable of weaponizing his imagination. While struggling to master his will-based powers, he must deal with threats both earthbound (a hilariously nebbishy Peter Saarsgard, who may be the first supervillain to rock a hoodie) and galactic. Martin ...
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Director: Martin Campbell
Genre: Action, Adventure, Fantasy, Special Interest
Release Date: 17 June 2011
MPAA Rating: PG
Screen Writer: Greg Berlanti
Studio: Warner Bros. Pictures
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