MOVIE REVIEW: Green Lantern

Wil Avitt
Wil Avitt's picture

Green Lantern is amazing. That's it, that's my entire review. Green Lantern is amazing, great and good even. It's probably the superhero movie closest to the comic book counterpart ever made. Go see it. Right now. Turn off your computer, go see the movie, then come back. I'll wait.

Back? Wasn't it great? Now then, since that silliness is out of the way, Green Lantern has been getting just completely hammered by critics all across this great nation. Sure, most or all of them are liberals so their opinion doesn't really count, but I thought it would be fun to go a little different direction than the straight and (mostly) spoiler free road I usually take on movie reviews and actually do to these critics what they're doing to movies and the filmmakers who worked so hard to make them. Basically, I'm going to dissect their reviews, show them to be the snobby and ignorant morons we all know them to be, dash their hopes and hopefully make them cry. And I'll explain to you why they're completely wrong. First off, most of the criticism is aimed at material taken straight from the comics, and not the fault of the movie. I couldn't find the review again to cite who it was and which publication they wrote for, but yesterday I read a review where the reviewer was complaining that the giant fist Hal Jordan makes while in a bar fight is more at home "in a cartoon that a motion picture." Are you kidding me? That's the whole point of the character. His ring takes things from his IMAGINATION and makes them real and useful. This same cretin also hacked on the giant Hot Wheels ramp GL makes to save a crippled helicopter (a scene which is an obvious nod to Richard Donner's Superman). Um, yeah, that was cool.

First off we have some quotes from Dana Stevens of Slate Magazine:

"Even by the standards of the current run of mediocre comic-book movies, this one stands out for its egregious shoddiness. Its characters, dialogue, and pacing recall a destined-to-be-canceled Saturday morning cartoon from the early '80s or possibly an extended Hasbro infomercial. "

First of all, we already know from your first sentence that you don't like comic book movies and are already convinced it's a waste of your time. The truth is, it's way cooler than the cartoons of the 80's (which were awesome anyway, you twit) and thus, your opinion is already invalid. But wait, there's more!

"His ex-girlfriend and fellow pilot Carol (Blake Lively) gives it to him straight: Hal is an immature, irresponsible twit, perhaps due to unresolved grief over his pilot father's untimely death. (Are there any superheroes with unproblematic fathers? Caped crusaders who just call their dads on Sundays to talk sports?)"

Yes, John Byrne's Superman has a great relationship with his father. They do all the stuff you just asked about: talk sports, Superman regularly flies to Smallville to ask his Dad for advice, and such. Also, the period goes outside the parentheses. What you have in parentheses shouldn't be a separate sentence all its own, that's the point of the parentheses. And you're a professional? You get paid for this?

"There's the abovementioned Parallax, a city-block-sized galactic invader who's sort of an ash cloud in the shape of a fanged octopus. (I'll grant the movie this: Parallax's animated swirling smoke-tentacles look pretty rad.) "

Oh, look, you did it again. Again, the period goes OUTSIDE the parentheses. Also, "abovementioned" should either be two separate words, or hyphenated. Please, if you're goint to accept money for writing, try to pay attention to the rules of spelling, punctuation, sentence structure and grammar we've all agreed to.

Next we have some mindless drivel spouted from Claudia Puig of USA Today (a newspaper I don't read anyway). ATTN DANA: see how it's done?

"The action switches to Hal (Ryan Reynolds), a hotshot fighter pilot. We find out, via intrusive flashbacks, that he's scarred by witnessing the plane crash and death of his pilot father."

He's a test pilot, not a fighter pilot. Did you even watch the movie? Come on, you can tell me. You stayed home to watch Sex in the City dvds, didn't you? As for the intrusive flashbacks, I am forced to agree. That isn't how I would have done it, I would have shown the death of Hal's father at the beginning of the movie, then jumped ahead 20 years, but I didn't write it and the flashbacks aren't all that distracting. While we're on the death of Martin Jordan, I was perturbed that they screwed that up. Martin doesn't die saving the people at the airshow as in the comics. His plane malfunctions on take off and when he brings it to a safe stop, it explodes for no reason. They robbed Martin Jordan of his heroic death and that annoyed me.

"He accomplishes this with the aid of a gaudy emerald-colored ring, powered by a lantern. Also essential is his singsongy oath: 'Let those who worship Evil's might, beware my power-Green Lantern's light.'"

I'll bet fashion was foremost on the Guardians' minds when they forged the ring. They'll be so disappointed to hear you think it's gaudy. Oh wait, they won't because that's not important. My bad. Or, more precisely, your bad. As to the oath, really? That's what your going to complain about? An oath that's spoken all of twice, and taken right out of the comic book? You can do better. Our next quote, from Mary Ann Johansen of Flick Filosopher, is kinda long, but it's the last one so bear with me.

"Two quick tips if you want to save your planet from certain doom:
1) Do not create something called “The Forbidden Chamber” that, if you enter it, will turn a guy who already looks like Megamind into a rampaging intergalactic supervillain. But if you do create that Forbidden Chamber, do not let that guy who already looks like Megamind near it. Cuz you’re only asking for trouble.
2) Do not give the power to save entire planets to smug, self-centered a**holes. The smug, self-centered a**hole may well end up saving the planet, but you’ll give the rest of the intergalactic kiddies the wrong idea about you and your species. If it’s the other intergalactic kiddies who give the smug, self-centered a**hole the power to save entire planets, pick up and move to a different universe. Because now you’re really in big trouble.
Meanwhile, in the northeast quadrant of the lost sector, Green Lantern is a godawful disaster of such proportions that I wish there really were intergalactic supercops looking out for us, if only to save us from ourselves. I confess I’m not familiar with the comic book this is based on, but: “The emerald energy of willpower”? Really? Seriously? I had no idea the premise here was so, you know, ridiculous. There’s also apparently a “yellow power of fear.” No word on what power red or blue embody, though I suppose in this parallel reality, Rainbow Brite would be a fearsome creature of such unspeakable power that she would rule all of time and space."

Well, at least she admits to not being familiar with the comic book. Too bad she also doesn't admit to being too lazy to do a little research, but then, that's pretty apparent, isn't it? Yes, green is the color of willpower (actually it's courage, but Geoff Johns is a moron and that's not the fault of the filmmakers). People, this isn't War and Peace, ok? It's a comic book. Let's all agree not to expect Shakespeare from something that isn't pretending to be. IT'S A COMIC BOOK, please keep this film in the proper perspective. Also, since you obviously didn't do your homework, I'll tell you: red is rage and blue is hope. It has been stated, you just don't read comics and it shows.

Green Lantern is a fabulous roller coaster ride from start to finish. It does a great job of explaining the mythology to those who aren't familiar with the comics and has a great cast (except for Gossip Girl's Blake Lively who mostly sucks). If Green Lantern has a fault, it's that it stays too true to the comic book (well, that and that it stays mostly true to the Geoff Johns comics), but isn't that what the real target audience for this movie has been crying to see anyway? When it does stray, it strays in understandable directions. For instance, there is no mention of Qward or the anti-matter universe, because it would be out of place and isn't really necessary. Also, the yellow power ring, which DOES make an appearance, is created by the Guardians at the behest of Sinestro, not the Qwardians (since there is no Qward). I can't wait for the inevitable sequel and seeing Sinestro take his rightful place as Hal's archnemesis. Make sure you stay in your seats for a mid-credits sequence that is sure to make you stand up and cheer!

SheldonCooper is a loose canon, and his views and opinions are not necessarily those of republibot.com. If any professional reviewer was offended, you can contact the author of this article directly at sheldon@republibot.com (but I wouldn't if I were you)

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