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Green Lantern movie poster

Green Lantern: Movie Review

Genre: Sci-Fi, Action
Rated: PG-13
Directed by: Martin Campbell

Starring: Ryan Reynolds, Blake Lively, Peter Sarsgaard, Tim Robbins, Angela Bassett, Michael Clark Duncan, Mark Strong, Jon Tenney
Released by: Warner Bros. Pictures

In Short: An arrogant, self-involved human becomes the Green Lantern in this misguided re-imagining of the classic DC Comics intergalactic hero of the same name.

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"Green Lantern" Falls Flat

What has happened to all of our comic-book heroes? Certainly in the case of Hal Jordan, the guy who has been the "Green Lantern" in DC Comics since 1959, something bad has happened to him as he leaps to the silver screen in the new Warner Bros. flick of the same name.

He used to be a real hero, a guy who stood for all the right things and used his superpowers (those granted by a ring and a lantern) for good. Now, as re-imagined by director Martin Campbell, writer Greg Berlanti and actor Ryan Reynolds, he is a complete jerk.

The movie begins before Jordan is chosen by a magical ring to become one of the Green Lantern Corps, an interstellar, interspecies group that watches over the universe and protects all of its inhabitants from evil. As we meet him, he is an arrogant, reckless, cocky test pilot who wrecks a prototype jet and basically puts the company he works for out of business...all while treating the women in his life like crap. This is the guy the ring chooses, out of all the humans on the planet, to be our hero? What? Where's the Hal Jordan we loved from the comics?

Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds in Green Lantern Tim Robbins and Angela Bassett in Green Lantern

This Hal Jordan is not a guy we want to cheer for, especially when he's too stupid and self-centered to figure out how to use his powers. He actually lets a helicopter crash into the middle of a huge party he's attending, sending people flying in all directions; then later, as the increasingly ridiculous plot develops, he allows a horrific evil monster from outer space to wreak havoc on the city before he gets around to fighting it. At the time, he's busy pitching woo to another test pilot, portrayed by Blake Lively.

Part of the problem with "Green Lantern" is also the special effects, which come off as completely unreal. The aliens that make up the Green Lantern Corps seem completely unreal, too; obviously manufactured in a computer, and the visuals that are supposed to be outer space simply look fake. When we have all seen such great aliens in other movies, as well as incredible visions of space in so many films, what "Green Lantern" offers up is distinctly second-rate. Throw in the terrible hero and the dopey plot and it is a true waste of time and money.

And by the way, the film is showing in both 2D and 3D, but it was not shot for 3D. So if you feel you have to see it, save some green and see it in 2D.

Reviewed by Jenny Peters

(Updated: 06/16/11 CT)

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