An Insensitive and Non PC Review of Green Lantern
(There are some minor spoilers in this) This is my review and rant of the highly underrated Green Lantern movie. Are the bad reviews uncalled for? Did I like the movie or did I agree with the other reviewers? Let’s see.
I saw the movie twice, once in 3D last night and once in 2D today. Well let us start with the acting. Some fan boys did not like the casting of Hal Jordan (Ryan Reynolds) and Carol Ferris (Blake Lively) but I thought their acting and portrayal of the characters was spot on. I especially liked the scene with the two of them together where she recognizes that it is Hal under the mask. Kind of poking fun at idea of a domino mask hiding the identity of someone you know so well and kind of a swipe at the Superman/Clark Kent glasses thing. Some reviewers said they had no chemistry but in this scene and in the tower scene it showed their intimacy toward one another. Of course I thought the acting of Mark Strong as Sinestro was great, even though there was not much character development for him but just enough to give you an idea of what to expect from him in a sequel and the movie was not about him anyway. As for Peter Sarsgaard as Hector Hammond I think he portrayed a perfect creepy introvert that all of a sudden gets all this power. I was never a fan of the character in the comic and was kind of hoping when WB started making the movie they would have gone with Legion from Emerald Dawn I. But I think he serves as a decent villain along with Parallax for this first movie being an origins tale. All the other actors like Tim Robbins, Angela Bassett, Geoffrey Rush, and Michael Clarke Duncan were all great. And even Clancy Brown as Parallax was awesome.
Now for the script, unlike others I thought the tone, pacing, editing and story was good. It kept getting better as the story moved along. It showed only the points that had to be made and did not drag it out like The Dark Knight did. There is no reason to do that. I know some people wanted to see what drives Hal Jordan but what drives him is to overcome fear and save the Earth and the ones he loves once he realizes they are threatened. The movie succeeded in this. The fight scene at the end was pretty good, could it have been better maybe. But I found it much better than the fight scenes at the end of Ironman I and II.
On the jokes in the movie and on the cocky character of Hal Jordan, well Hal is former military and a test pilot that’s the way they act. He is not a moody guy whose parents were murdered by a thug, nor does he have a stick up his butt like Batman. He is the opposite of Batman in the comics, Batman being very dark and Hal being light. Also he did not have to hide who he is most of his life like Superman. In the comics Hal faces danger with a smirk on his face. The jokes he cracks in the movie are indicative of a guy who is like this and is 30 years of age especially in this day and time. I like that about him. The jokes were not cheesy at all except maybe the jokes that he intended to make light of the situation and he was having with his new found power. That is what I would have done under those circumstances. It was not overly cheesy and it did not seem unrealistic. There was also a scene that might seem cheesy when Hal was trying to act like a cop to Carol but that was him pretending to be what he thought an authority figure should act like. Remember he is new to this hero thing. It provided a good laugh.
About the FX I thought they were pretty good. The suit, the constructs, the look of the aliens and Oa were all great. The mask could have been better but even in the movie they kind of joke about it. The FX of Parallax was not great but was good. Nothing like the cloud Galactus in Fantastic Four 2 like some feared. And the 3D was probably the best post 3D I have ever seen.
The only major complaint I would have about this movie was the music score. It was pretty bad. A lot of times the score sets the tone for a movie and I think that is the reason people thought the tone was a little off.
Now for the Insensitive, Non PC rant portion. It has to do with why I think this movie got such bad reviews. Some of the things I have said this week about the reviewers of this movie (which I still believe) were that liberal Hollywood reviewers can’t stand this movie (Rolling Stone and Village Voice for example) because it has a cocky superhero that never learns humility. They always love superhero movies where the hero is flawed or is an allegory for how homosexuals are persecuted. I am not saying I think the movie was perfect but all I kept reading was they thought he is a too good looking cocky hero who does not show emotion and they don't like it, well guess what real men don't cry every 5 minutes like Peter Parker in Spider-Man 1,2,and 3. All the bad stuff they kept saying is exactly how Hal Jordan is portrayed in the comics. If you have read the comic and don't like it or old school cocky non Emo non flawed heroes or can't understand the concept of the ring or an intergalactic police force then you will not like this movie.
Or a lot of these reviewers were bashing this movie as soon as it was announced how much WB spent on it. Like these reviewers find it obscene that the studio spent $300 million on it and that amount of money should only be spent on an environmentally conscious movie like Avatar or it has to deal with some sort of social issues.
It also seemed these reviewers were trying too hard to go lock step with all the other reviewers just to say “Look at me I gave it a bad review as well, I can chop heads and be critical too.” Case in point some of the Junior Editors on this site who want to grow up to be big time Movie Reviewers. And after reading the other's reviews were trying to find anything to scrutinize. (Not really hating on the Junior Editors just making an Observation.) Even worse were the Marvel fan boys who have always been unsupportive of this movie, who have commented that feeling on this site many times and have now been saying in recent comments that “Oh I was so looking forward to this movie but it was awful.” You Marvel fan boys doing that are full of shit.
Something else I would like to say about the character of Hal Jordan to fans and non fans of the comic is that young Hal Jordan is a cocky joker in the comics. Some might say “no he isn’t“ or “that is Geoff Johns’ recon version” well you would be wrong just read Emerald Dawn I and II also read Green Lantern Vol. 3 from the late 80’s he has always been cocky and had a little problem with authority. Some might also say that Guy is the joking ass hole of the human Green Lanterns and that is also true. But one thing to understand about the human Green Lanterns that came after Hal was that each of them has a more extreme aspect of Hal’s own personality. Guy Gardner is the Asshole side, John Stewart the Serious side, and Kyle Rayner the Creative side. Put all three of those together and you have Hal Jordan. And if you still don’t think he is a joker just look at some of constructs he makes like giant fists, springs and baseball bats. A Green Lantern’s constructs are indicative of the ring bearer’s personality.
I am a former Marine and while in the military my fellow Marines and I took our job very seriously but we cracked jokes quite a lot, we were pretty cocky too. Let me ask you who you would rather have on the battle field next to you the serious guy with a stick up his butt quoting rules and regulations, the guy off to side on his knees praying, the guy behind you crying about how much he misses his girlfriend or the joker who smirks at the coming storm? I will take the Joker any day.
In closing I loved the Green Lantern movie was it perfect no but what is. Both times I went to this movie everyone in the theater walked out saying they loved it. The first night I went to see it with my wife, best friend and his girlfriend they all said they had great time and the movie was good. To the critics your out of touch, most people don't want to go see a movie and get a message beaten over their head they go to be entertained and have fun. This movie does both of those.
Overall I give The Green Lantern 4 out of 5 stars.
(On a side note my best friend that went with me to see Green Lantern walked out during the first 20 minutes of Thor when it came out and snuck off to see a comedy instead he said he thought Thor was bad and Asgard looked cheesy. He loved Green Lantern though. I disagree with him about Thor but I do think Green Lantern was better.)
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