Okay, little disclaimer: there will be spoilers and I haven’t read enough Green Lantern to be considered an expert on the subject. If we were friends, we’d be acquaintances who’ve gotten drunk together. If you want a real quick idea of what it’s like, I’ll tell ya. I thought it was not fantastic but it was pretty good. Now, on to the review!
As the movie began, it explained the reach of the Green Lantern Corps across the sectors and I thought it was nicely illustrated and beautiful to look at. As more origin was revealed, Parallax was shown to be an evil entity bent on ruling the galaxy through fear and kind, righteous Abin Sur took care of him lickety split. I’m not a scaredy cat but Parallax was pretty fuckin’ scary. A kid cried. I loved seeing all the details, the fearful souls that made up the “body”, the echoing screams as it moved…it was all nicely done. As it flipped over to Earth to show our hero, Hal Jordan, I was less impressed. The writers took the liberty of filling his opening scenes with cheap shots to evoke pity and sympathy for him but I understand it’s to make the character more personable. Honestly, I caught myself rolling my eyes as Hal joined the legions of superheroes with daddy issues.
When Hal botches a training exercise against two computer manned jets, he puts his life in danger recklessly due to fear (by this point, you can see where the movie is going). After suffering the repercussions from a stern Carol Ferris, Hal goes to his nephew’s birthday party only to be abducted by a green globe, sent by dying Abin Sur. I may be the only one to ever say this, but I thought Abin Sur is the only person to make dying look sexy. Maybe it was the thin magenta skin covering awesome muscle fibers or maybe it was the almost colorless, light blue eyes. Hal takes the ring and lantern from Sur’s ship only to attempt to activate it feebly. We’re shown another person’s story, Hector Hammond, who looks like an old 70’s creepy porn star.
He just seems to be that kind of smelly, awkward guy who’d smell your hair when you walk by and create a weird photo shrine of you. Sure enough, when he comes across Carol Ferris (who he’s supposed to have known, along with Hal, for years), he leans in and smells her hair. Creep. You get the idea he’s known them, you don’t quite know from where, and you know he’s secretly touching himself to Carol in his dark, probably smelly apartment. I think they wasted Peter Sarsgaard, but hey, it’s just my opinion.
I had my doubts about Ryan Reynolds but he seemed to do well in this role. He turned down that smarmy sarcasm he’s known for and does come across as genuine when delivering his lines about the human race. It’s touching to see him perform that well, knowing half of the fans hate him irrationally for just taking the role. As he’s whisked off to Oa to be trained by an underused mentor, Tomar-Re and beaten to a pulp with lessons of tough love by an also underused Kilowog, we finally get introduced to Sinestro. Sinestro reminds me of Severus Snape; he is able to speak quietly and command attention. The eyebrows and fuschia skin only add to his presence and he is able to be condescending while reminding you he is a boss. The scenes with Sinestro and Hal were my favorite as Mark Strong made me feel his conflicted feelings and his resentment toward Hal. Need I say it? He oozed arrogance and yeah, he’s the second purplish guy to be sexy in this movie.
Ten minutes into training on Oa, Hal gives up and bails. You know it’s coming because he kind of whines while he’s there. Oa was amazing to see brought to life and I loved seeing the guardians. They were always scary to me….omniscient, creepy, stern and cool all rolled into one tiny blue skinned package. I wish there’d been more time with them, but I understood it was a means to an end so I focused back on Hal as he zoomed back to Earth just in time to protect a gathering of important people from Hector Hammond. Hector has been examining Abin Sur and been infected with a teensie bit of Parallax, making his head swell and becoming even more disgusting looking. When he hears his father’s words and they enrage him, he gets a little vengeful and causes the helicopter his dad leaves on to crash. I’ll never understand why this huge ass group of people just stand there and watch it come hurtling their way and DON’T MOVE. Blake Lively unfortunately begins to play the damsel in distress and I inwardly groaned because I truly hoped she’d have some substance in this movie after appearing tough and outspoken and in charge of her destiny. She, fortunately, redeems herself with great acting and cracking jokes at Hal’s expense. She even calls him out on his little domino mask.
Once her disappointment in Hal’s lack of commitment to the Corps is apparent, he sulks off back to Oa, where he interrupts Sinestro’s latest appeal for help. Parallax has decided to destroy Oa and get revenge on the rest of the guardians who decide to do nothing yet. Hal zooms back off to Earth with their blessing and encounters Hector, who’s gone insane with envy and burns his daddy dearest to cinders. Parallax senses Hal’s powers and as the big climactic fight begins, I once again appreciate all the detail given to its form. It’s still scary and it made a big impact on the audience (the audience I was with was 85% deep hardcore Green Lantern nerds, and people like myself, and two kids who cried again). Of course, Hal wins with his ten minutes of training behind him, reusing his encounter with the jets from the beginning. Against a former immortal. Sinestro gives another speech to the planet of Oa and I sense in part two (oh yes, there’s gonna be a part two), he will be the villain who monologues. The movie ends with a sweet kiss between Carol and Hal and his repeating the oath.
Really wasn’t as horrible as the other reviews made it sound but it wasn’t the best movie of the year. If I had my choice, I’d have seen X-Men: First Class again. Go see it for yourself and let us know what you think! :3