Weekend Review – “Green Lantern”

DC finally gets a movie made outside their Superman and Batman families. Is it worth it?

Cast and Crew Information

Ryan Reynolds as Hal Jordan / Green Lantern
Blake Lively as Carol Ferris
Peter Sarsgaard as Hector Hammond
Mark Strong as Sinestro Thaal
Temuera Morrison as Abin Sur
Angela Bassett as Amanda Waller
Clancy Brown as Parallax
Michael Clarke Duncan as Kilowog
Tim Robbins as Senator Hammond
Geoffrey Rush as Tomar-Re
Taika Waititi as Tom Kalmaku

Written by Greg Berlanti, Michael Green, Marc Guggenheim and Michael Goldenberg
Directed by Martin Campbell


The Green Lantern Corps are intergalactic peacekeepers. When Abin Sur, Green Lantern of sector 2814, is mortally wounded, his power ring is passed on to human Hal Jordan.

High Point

This version of the Superman/Lois Lane balcony scene. Specifically, “I grew up with you! I’ve seen you naked! You think I won’t recognize you because I can’t see your cheekbones?”

Low Point

The lack of followup to the alley scene. That had to have implications.

The Review

This makes some original changes to elements of the canon, but on the whole, it’s one of the more accurate adaptations of a comic book property. I give it 3 out of 6.

The effects are well done, and used quite constantly. I can’t think of a single scene that wouldn’t have some sort of effects shot, and the only effect that’s not particularly convincing is the mask. Sadly, that’s seen a lot. I give it 5 out of 6.

The story is a fairly solid, and remarkably accurate adaptation of the source material. There is a final convenience with “the coming of the three” and the low point against it, but it holds up fairly well. I give it 5 out of 6.

The acting is generally well done. Ryan Reynolds is great as Hal Jordan. Blake Lively is inconsistent as Carol Ferris, although she is better than I expected after the trailer. (The “this is important” line used in the trailer is probably her weakest line in the entire film.) Mark Strong’s performance as Sinestro is probably the best of the bunch. I give it 5 out of 6.

The production is very well done. Martin Campbell, director of the latest version of “Casino Royale,” reunites with editor Stuard Baird and composer James Newton Howard to excellent effect. These people know their craft, and they deliver on the technical aspects from start to finish. I give it 6 out of 6.

The emotional response was fantastic, at least from my perspective. The concept of Green Lantern is so far removed from our day to day experiences that a lot of people will find it hard to suspend their disbelief. However, as a hardcore fan (owning every issue of “Green Lantern” going back to Showcase #22, as well as every Golden Age issue that’s been reprinted this decade) this delivered every I love and hope for from the franchise. I give it 6 out of 6.

Overall, this was almost exactly what I hoped it would be. If anything, I’d have done a couple more retakes with Lively and added a bit of followup to the alley scene, but otherwise changed nothing. Your mileage may vary. I give it 5 out of 6.

In total, Green Lantern receives 35 out of 42.

3 replies on “Weekend Review – “Green Lantern””

  1. I won’t be seeing it for at least another week, but I found your review somewhat encouraging. Here’s an interesting other take:

    • I was disheartened a bit by Rotten Tomatoes as well. I’ve always hoped this would be a success, as we’ll need that if we’re going to see Flash and Justice League on the big screen, but it’s also a sci-fi concept so far from daily life that a large segment of the audience just won’t buy it.

  2. Just got back from the theater. That was REALLY bad.

    It reminded me of the Hulk movies in that they tried to stay true to the fiction but didn’t pay enough attention to the overall plot to make it interesting. Boring, jumbled, even bizarre at some points.

    I’m surprised you didn’t flambe this thing.

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