Hal Jordan is an overconfident test pilot who can’t seem to stay out of trouble, but when an alien craft crash lands on earth, it’s dying pilot, a member of the intergalactic Green Lantern corps, must will his ring to choose a new master. The ring chooses Hal Jordan. Burdened by this sudden responsibility, Hal must overcome his own insecurities if he’s to properly wield this new power against an ancient evil who threatens all in its path.
I just walked out of GREEN LANTERN and I have to say I’m rather confused. All week I’ve been hearing negative buzz surrounding this flick which was bumming me out because I’ve been looking forward to it ever since I watched the animated origin story GREEN LANTERN FIRST FLIGHT. I’m confused because I don’t understand where all this hate is coming from. Let me be the one of the first critics to assure you that this film is everything a summer popcorn blockbuster should be…one heck of an epic good time! Forget the incredible Hulk, Hal Jordan is the new king of all things green.
Now to be brutally honest, I was never a Green Lantern fan, I don’t even think I knew his name was Hal Jordan until I watched FIRST FLIGHT. But after watching the animated version I grew very interested in this story and curious about how they would make it look believable on screen. Everyone’s been mulling over the fact that they dumped a few more bucks into the CGI and effects just prior to release but who cares? The effects were great. People were worried about Ryan Reynold’s suit, but I say relax folks, it too looked fine. Parallax, the other Green Lanterns as well as their home planet Oa, all looked phenomenal so rest assured when it comes down to effects they were bang on the money.
Now the storyline is where this film soars in my opinion and all the nay sayers really should take a step back and admire what’s been accomplished here. The mythos behind the Green Lanterns is vast and over and above any other obstacle that needs to be overcome, there’s the challenge of fitting as much back story into one movie as possible and that’s where things can get tricky. This isn’t a kid getting bitten by a radioactive spider here, this storyline travels a much more complex road with a strict hierarchy that can be a lot to take in for a novice of the comic book genre let alone a newcomer to the Green Lantern universe. The scope of this film is vast, epic, larger than life and you really have to think outside the box here. I remember when the first MISSION IMPOSSIBLE came out, so many people were belly aching about how confusing it was, leading to the “dummying down” of the second. Some people can’t handle a film that isn’t paint by numbers and that’s fine, not everyone can properly bask in the glorious spectacle that is DONNIE DARKO either, also fine, I’m not here to judge but you should know that about yourself and avoid these types of films rather than watch them out of spite and then rip them apart online.
GREEN LANTERN is not the end all, be all of comic book films, it’s no master piece but I liked it more than THOR and about as much as X-MEN FIRST CLASS. For a second tier hero in the DC universe, you certainly can’t ask for much more than GREEN LANTERN richly provides. Ryan Reynolds was perfect as Hal Jordan. Again, some people gripped about his comic relief but Hal Jordan is a smart-aleck, he’s a lot like Maverick from TOP GUN, an cocky smart mouth sure, but still the best at what he does. Mark Strong was also perfect as Sinestro, the character you love to hate. I won’t divulge any spoilers but Sinestro plays a rather unique part in the Green Lantern universe and will definitely play a major role in the next film (make sure you stay past the credits). This was no easy film to put together and mad props go out to DC, Warner Brothers, the stellar cast and director Martin Campbell for pulling off something special here, something no one thought would ever see the brightest day (sorry, I had to). This is no Nolan masterpiece but it’s a pretty tight way to start up a franchise that I personally hope we see more of.