After waiting for somewhere over 30 years I finally got to see a Green Lantern movie on the big screen. And as a fanboy of longstanding I have to say my feelings about it were pretty mixed.
On one hand I think they got some things right – the aloofness of the Guardians, Sinestro’s focus at bringing order at all costs, the diversity of the Corps, Jordan’s confidence tempered by his father’s death, the alieness of Oa, and even Carol Ferris. Plus I think some of the CGI worked well. And the little things for the fanboys and girls – like Carol’s ‘Sapphire’ call sign, the green boxing glove construct, and Sinestro’s yellow ring.
What didn’t work so well was that it felt like two movies joined together – the space focus is a key point of the GL mythos, but it felt like they didn’t really think they could take it off Earth for most of the movie. So we ended up oscillating badly between the two. Secondly, the ‘training’ sequence was so abrupt it didn’t make sense at all – in the comic books it takes several months at least – which would make Kilowog’s comment at the end of the movie about training more real. Two villains didn’t work – either could have worked, but Parallax really should have been embodied in some way (like the big yellow insect thing in the comics). And marketed really badly too.
Interestingly, I’ve recently rewatched the first DVD animated Green Lantern film – Green Lantern: First Flight – and I have to say I think it works better in terms of the plot than the new movie. I also watched the new animated film Green Lantern: Emerald Knights which came out a week to two back. That too caught the spirit of the comic books, though not all of the stories in it were as strong as each other.
I’ll buy the DVD when it comes out, and in the meantime hope that if they ever make a sequel they get back out into space more and give Kilowog and Sinestro way more screen time.
In the meantime, here are some links from the GL universe:
- DC Comics Green Lantern Secret Origin (PDF) : Shorter origin story over here.
- List of Green Lanterns in the DC Universe including Hal Jordan, Guy Gardner, John Stewart and Kyle Rayner, plus Kilowog and Sinestro. No mention of Alan Scott though – but a good write up on him at Agent of S.T.Y.L.E.: Alan Scott, Earth’s First Green Lantern!.
- io9’s ‘A beginner’s guide to Green Lantern’
- Green Lantern: First Flight (Official Site)
- Green Lantern: Emerald Knights (Official Site)
- Reviews over at Political Jesus: Review of Green Lantern: A fan’s perspective | Political Jesus; Movie Review Tri-Blog (Rod)- Green Lantern | Political Jesus; and Sunday Funnies: The Real Reason I Went And Saw Green Lantern | Political Jesus
- Newsarama.com : Review: GREEN LANTERN Avoids Cheese and Charm in Film Debut
- Newsarama.com : Infographic: Science Fiction Superhero – GREEN LANTERN
- Newsarama.com : Why They Endure: GREEN LANTERN’s Everlasting Light
- The moral power of Green Lantern – The Globe and Mail and Green Lantern and the Psychology of Willpower | Political Jesus.