Sunday, June 19, 2011

Green Lantern Movie Review (possible Spoilers)

I finally got around to seeing Green Lantern tonight. Normally I tend to write my reviews about a day after seeing a movie to let it percolate and give me time to mull it over, but this one I kind of just want to get it over with sooner rather than later.   

The first five minutes into the movie had me giggling (and not in a good way) at a flaming screaming skull flying out into space. If you lived during the 1970's you'd know what kind I meant. They used to adorn vans, blacklight posters, etc. and looked really cheesy even though some people think it used to look cool or even macho. It's explained in these first few minutes how the Guardians set up the Green Lantern Corps and split up the galaxy into over 3000 sectors. Each sector gets a Green Lantern to protect it, so it's kind of a big deal. 

After this we see the GL for our sector getting his ass handed to him fairly easily by the screaming skull, getting injured and then ejecting from his ship to find a replacement since he knows he is dying. This is where we meet Hal Jordan, or the version of Jordan they decided to use for the big screen. He's a test pilot and a screw up, a womanizer, and still has a hangup about seeing his dad die in a plane crash when he was a kid. 

Anyway, Hal gets the ring, makes the flight to Oa to meet the Lanterns and begin training. Here's where things go wrong. Hal decides he isn't right for the Corps so he returns to Earth. With the ring. You know, the ring that's supposed to be used to protect our sector of space. He does this without question from any of the other Lanterns or even the Guardians. 

In the meantime, on Earth, while Hal was playing soldier, the government was examining the body and aircraft of Abin Sur. They bring in another scientist named Hector Hammond to look at the body, and of course he gets infected with some leftover spooge from the screaming skull. 

Here's the really wacky part, somehow (it's never explained in the movie) Hal and Hector know each other, and they both have a thing for Carol Ferris (Hal's boss). Supposedly all three know each other, but it's kind of just thrust in there like a chunk of backstory was missing. 

Anyway, the screaming skull which is the living embodiment of fear (named Parallax), is coming to Oa to destroy the Lanterns for imprisoning it. But now that Hector Hammond has been infected with this fear agent, Parallax decides to come to Earth to kill everyone and get stronger before heading to Oa.  

Sinestro (a Green Lantern) asks the Guardians what they know about Parallax since they seem to know its name. They tell him that it was once a Guardian that tried to harness the power of fear to use since willpower (the power of the lanterns) seemed to be weakening. Mind you, the Guardians have billions of years of knowledge (or so they say), and have already lost one of their own trying to use fear as a weapon. So what does Sinestro suggest? Why not build a yellow ring harnessing the fear power to fight Parallax? Wasn't the asshole just listening to the story? It doesn't work. But what do the Guardians do with their vast knowledge and experience? Yup, you got it. They decide to build a yellow ring. Honestly, at this point my IQ started taking hits at how dumb this movie was becoming.

Anyway, Hal decides he wants to be a Lantern after all, so he flies all the way to Oa to ask for help against Parallax, and essentially is told good luck after he decides to take on Parallax alone. Really, something he could have phoned in with the ring (which we saw earlier in the movie) instead of wasting time flying back and forth. 

Long story short, the bad no-love triangle gets resolved, Parallax comes to Earth, yada, yada, yada. The end. There's yet another incomprehensible scene about three minutes into the end credits that has a main character doing something that they would have no reason, or motivation, or setup to do. It's basically done to setup a sequel.

First off, really, REALLY bad CGI and effects in this movie. Nothing looked real world. There's even a scene where a tanker truck is thrown into the air and that CGI looks like hot wheels car. The suit's energy crackle was visually disturbing as well. It kept reminding me that it was CGI, and since it didn't blend well with the actor, it reminded me that it was bad CGI. Add to that darkness and clutter (even on the Oa scenes), and you have entirely too busy CGI scenery that makes it look like a videogame, and not a big budget movie. 

And speaking of faking it, Blake Lively.....she tried, she really did, but she fell flat in trying to be human in the human moments. She was good in the few action scenes she was in, mainly because she didn't have to act against anyone else. Reynolds went through the movie with the sad puppy dog eyes he's good at doing, but there was no emotional depth to character at all. This was a paycheck from the looks of things. Seriously, there's a drinking game to be had in this movie every time someone mentions that the ring choose Hal for a reason.  

Skaarsgard and Strong were pretty much on the money as far as their characters are concerned, yet they weren't in the movie as much as Reynolds and Lively. Unfortunately for us all. 

Rating: Rental. Again, there's so much stuff coming out this summer that you can honestly miss this turkey and find something much more worth your time and money.

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