Review: ‘Green Lantern’
Man, that doesn't look like Seth Rogen at all. Good CGI. Warner Bros.
2. The main problem, among many, of "Green Lantern" is that the filmmakers seem to care so little about their material. The film walks on tender feet, trying not to offend those who know more about their characters, their story, than its makers do. When Zach Snyder signed on to direct "Watchmen," his major attribute for fans was not necessarily his directorial skill; it was that he loved "Watchmen," that he was such a fan of the material himself that it was as important to him that it be done justice as it was for fans. (That he was too slavishly devoted to the text was its own, different problem.) With "Green Lantern," director Martin Campbell clearly thinks this is all kind of silly, so he just plods forward, with no particular direction or perspective, nothing invested in this at all. The whole movie has a real "here you go, nerds" feel to it. It's less cynical than calculated, a recitation of the "Green Lantern" story by someone who isn't into "Green Lantern" at all. I'm not sure why people would be into the Green Lantern character; he's a pretty empty character, and his superpowers, all told, are kind of dumb. But I want a "Green Lantern" film to try to convince me why I should care.
3. Ryan Reynolds plays Hal Jordan, a fighter pilot (a profession that might have made more sense in a previous generation) for a global arms corporation that ... you know, I'm not sure I understood the point of anything Hal Jordan does or is, from his committment issues to the theoretically tragic loss of his dad to his relationship with his fellow fighter pilot Blake Lively. (Fellow Fighter Pilot Blake Lively should be the name of someone's fantasy football team.) The film doesn't really do anything with the Jordan character until he gets the special green ring from a dying alien, and Jordan discovers that he is part of an intergalactic police force protecting the galaxy from evil, as well as the color yellow. The ring is the source of any superpowers; it can "project" weapons from its wearer's mind, though the film doesn't have much fun with that. (I hope that if I ever have a ring like that, I come up with something better than "shooting a gun.") The power of the ring is derived from "will," and its evil twin is "fear," so other worlds have basically derived alternative energy sources from, well, serotonin, I guess. Mostly, the "will" vs. "fear" angle attempts to give the story some sort of mythic power that isn't there.