The Herald Bulletin

Afternoon Update


June 16, 2011

'Green Lantern' fails to energize


SYNOPSIS: Test pilot Hal Jordan receives a mystical green ring from the dying alien Abin Sur that bestows him with otherworldly powers and comes with a membership into the Green Lantern Corps, an intergalactic squadron tasked with keeping peace among the stars. When a force built of fear threatens to overwhelm the Corps, Jordan must become the “greatest Green Lantern” to save not only Earth but the entire universe.

THE GOOD, THE BAD AND THE UGLY: Most moviegoers will enjoy this film. Ryan Reynolds is his usual charming self. There’s plenty of special effects. Laughs come easy and often.

But discerning moviegoers, especially those familiar with Green Lantern’s comic book origins, will leave disappointed and left wondering what might have been.

Reynolds works in the role provided him, even if that role isn’t Hal Jordan. And it isn’t. From the pervasive daddy issues to his frat boy irresponsibility, Reynolds’ Green Lantern doesn’t exude the heroism and bravery that define Hal Jordan.

This isn’t Reynolds’ fault. Blame falls on the script, which too often reveals its writers television roots and smacks of studio interference. A meddling studio might also be the explanation for not seeing Campbell’s influence in the film at all.

It’s also hard to concentrate on character development when the special effects are constantly taking you out of the story. The effects aren’t well hidden, and whether on purpose or not, even real sets look like something rendered on a green screen.

FINAL SCORE: Had “Green Lantern” come out a decade ago, its flashy special effects and blindingly bright colors may have been enough to thrill moviegoers. But comic book films have evolved from bombastic spectacles to the elevated heights of this summer‘s “X-Men: First Class.”  “Green Lantern” feels like a step backward in the genre’s evolution.

EXTRAS: Stay through the initial closing credits sequence for a bonus scene featuring one of the Green Lantern Corps.

“Green Lantern” has a run time of 105 minutes and is rated PG-13. Enjoy the show.

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