“Does this movie have a plot?”
That sums up this entire film, courtesy of my son. No one in my family cared about the characters in this film and nobody liked the storyline. Ryan Reynolds is the start of the problem with this film, but the film also has a major flaw in the character design itself. Let’s start with that shall we?
Superhero movies of late have a pretty grounded, real-world feel to them. When you look at the successful ones this is the key factor that they all share. The Green Lantern of DC Comics is a silly thought really – a pilot gets a magic ring that allows him to manifest anything that his mind can conceive. Really? He doesn’t suffer from any real mental issues, such as the responsibility that Spider-Man feels or battling with his own childhood tragedy as Batman does. Hey, even Iron Man suffers from alcoholism and narcissism and Superman wants to help everybody but can’t since he is only one guy. These struggles add depth to the character and give them a point through which we the audience can relate, even if only in theory. I suppose you can start by asking why Hal Jordan was chosen by the ring. Apparently, he is of such moral character that this is why he is chosen by the magical jewelry – which is never wrong. Yet, what the film shows us is that he has commitment issues to everything and has a death wish – fostered by witnessing his father’s death in a plane crash. That’s what I got from this movie anyway.
Ryan Reynolds is a bad choice for this character because he is a perennial wise-guy, a smug smart Alec. He’s witty and charming, but has no business portraying a heroic individual. As I said, nobody in my family who watched this mess of a film felt any connection to the main character and could have cared less for what he was going through. There’s a scene which Hal shares with his young nephew, but it is so out-of-place that it just screams “staged”. To boot, right after he leaves his nephew’s birthday party, he gets scooped up by the magical ring’s energy and hurled off to the site of the previous ring’s owner and his crashed alien ship. There is no segway to this. There is no easy transition; it is abrupt and VERY sudden.
When you look at all the alien stuff going on in this film, with some alien headquarters world for all the Green Lantern Corps and a 15 minute film segment to show Hal’s training, it seems like way too much of the film was focused on this. Apparently, somebody missed the memo where it spells out that nobody will care about this stuff. I don’t care where the Lantern Corps is located, nor do I care about all the other races of aliens that are Green Lanterns. An evil force is coming to Earth to consume the whole world and only Hal Jordan was worthy enough of the ring to fight this thing. THAT was the plot I wanted to see developed! However, there are so many plot holes in this film that I cannot even begin to dissect it. Suffice to say, this film is a bore with all the alien storyline garbage thrown at you. It’s just too much and without a way to connect to it, it lost any of its potential value. The irony is that there was another superhero movie out this year that included something like this as a storyline, but it excelled where “Green Lantern” failed. That film was “Thor”. I actually cared about Thor was doing and I felt bad for him when he couldn’t pick up his hammer. If the ring had been taken away from Hal Jordan, I wouldn’t have felt anything for him.
Too many special effects and green screen shots make this film a waste. They should have spent more time on the actors and their lines. They also should have trimmed back the alien plot and focused more on why Hal Jordan was chosen to be the Green Lantern of this world. As it stands, I have no clue why the ring chose him as I was too mired down in alien mumbo-jumbo to care. I was waiting for too many Van Wilder lines to come from Ryan Reynolds. Don’t waste your time or money on this trash – you’ll only come out with a true disdain for the color green and a very negative opinion about DC Comics. Go watch “Thor” again, if you haven’t already.
…and that’s it for this edition of THE REEL VOICE