Director: Martin Campbell
Starring: Ryan Reynolds, Blake Lively
Runtime: 114 mins
Green Lantern is one of those films that gets everything right apart from acting and plot. It’s a terrible movie, shrouded in great cinematography, spellbinding visual effects and a gloriously dramatic score.
The film centres on pilot turned superhunk Hal Jordan (played desperately by Ryan Reynolds), who following the death of another one becomes a member of the Green Lantern Corps, a fearless group of intergalactic peacekeepers who harness the power of will to make bad things go away.
A bad thing happens. Hal Jordan overcomes his fear (which he shouldn’t technically have) and makes the bad thing go away, aided (kind of) by Blake Lively: a surefire contender for Most Uninspiring Female Lead Of The Year. This is – more or less – the extent of the two-hour film. Peter Sarsgaard throws a bit of manic glee in there, but the thing this film inspires more than anything else is apathy – you don’t end up caring about Hal, and you certainly don’t end up caring about any of the peripheral characters. It’s incredible how a film this visually mindblowing can feel so dull.
If the film has a saving grace, it’s that a lot of stuff that should look ridiculous and fake (fish-people, big-brained translucent guardians in the sky, a tentacle monster that lives on fear) looks alarmingly realistic. It’s hardly surprising – Warner Bros. reportedly stalled the film’s release so they could spend $8m on tightening up the CG – but for all of the numerous false starts and problems with flow, none of them come from awkward visuals. Reduce this to the level of “art with nothing to say”, and perhaps it’s not bad. Otherwise, it’s awful.