Green Lantern (2011)
Green Lantern is a superhero film starring Ryan Reynolds as Hal Jordan/Green Lantern and co-stars Blake Lively, Peter Sarsgaard, Mark Strong, Angela Bassett, Taika Waititi and Geoffrey Rush.
Sworn to preserve intergalactic order, the Green Lantern Corps has existed for centuries. Its newest recruit, Hal Jordan (Ryan Reynolds), is the first human to join the ranks. The Green Lanterns have little regard for humans, who have thus far been unable to harness the powers of the ring each member wears. But Jordan, a gifted and cocky test pilot, may be the corps' only hope when a new enemy called Parallax threatens the universal balance of power.
Why Green Lantern's Light Won't Take this Flick
- One of the main issues of this film is that it has a poorly written script, that leads to many plot holes such as Hal's father not ejecting from the crashed jet when he was young.
- The film doesn't really follow up with the actual character.
- Too many cliches that were already used in previous superhero films.
- Poor grasp to the source material:
- Hal Jordan gets summoned by Abin Sur from Coast City than a cockpit test.
- The plot is weak and boring, as most of it is just filler.
- Sub-par special effects, especially for the fighter jets and Parallax himself.
- Overuse of cartoonish CGI which takes them straight into the uncanny valley, even for the masks.
- Unlikable characters, especially for the main protagonist, Hal Jordan (or known as Green Lantern).
- Bad acting from actors such as Mark Strong (who would later portray the villain Dr Sivana from 2019's Shazam film), except for a miscast Ryan Reynolds.
- Hal's Green Lantern costume looks terrible and downright creepy. For some reason, they decided to design the suit itself with a visible muscular system, as you can see individual lines representing muscle tendons. His mask is by far the worst, as it makes his eyes look completely white.
- The post credit scene where Sinestro finds a yellow lantern ring is just a sequel-baiting.
- As a result, the film tried hard to set up both a sequel, but due to under-performing at the box office, the sequel was cancelled and rebooted.
- Bad cinematography, making the film look dark and bright at the same time.
- Aside from the poor characterization, the supporting characters are weak and not faithful at all.
- Despite the negative reception of the film, the Arrowverse crossover event "Crisis on Infinite Earths" also establishes that the 2011 Green Lantern film takes place on the world of Earth-12 making it questionable why this is supposed to be.
- Terrible direction by Martin Campbell, who directed better films such as the James Bond films GoldenEye and Casino Royale (which are way better than this film) and admitted the experience of using proper CGI did not go very well.
- Not great pacing.
- There are a lot of good fight scenes, even with the poor cinematography.
- The supporting cast members do a decent job for what they were given. In particular, Blake Lively is actually pretty good as Carol Ferris.
- A few funny moments like when Hal said "To infinity, and beyond" (a reference to Buzz Lightyear's iconic phrase) while trying to figure out what the Green Lantern official oath is.
- Ironically, Taika Waititi would've ended up being part of the voice cast in Lightyear, referencing the name.
- Certain supporting characters that were in the comics appear and are nods to the original comics (e.g. Kilowog).
- The romance scene is okay.
- The music by James Newton Howard is well composed.
- Despite hating this film, Ryan Reynolds however did get one thing from this movie. He would later meet his future wife, Blake Lively, which he happily married soon after, meaning that he didn't get completely wasted without getting something good, and despite being miscast, Reynolds actually did a good job portraying Green Lantern, even if his acting talents would later improve with Deadpool (2016).
Green Lantern received negative reviews from critics and audiences with people criticizing its poor writing, bad CGI and lack of faithfulness to the source material. On Rotten Tomatoes, the film has an approval rating of 26% based on 241 reviews and an average rating of 4.64/10. The site's critical consensus reads, "Noisy, overproduced, and thinly written, Green Lantern squanders an impressive budget and decades of comics mythology.". On Metacritic, the film has a score of 39 out of 100 based on 39 critics, indicating "generally unfavorable reviews". Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "B" on an A+ to F scale.
Richard Roeper remarked in his review of the film, "He's an ambiguously...heroic hero."
The film opened at #1 on its opening weekend with a domestic gross of $53,174,303. Its domestic gross later went up to $116,601,172. In foreign countries, the film made $103,250,000. Overall, the film grossed $219,851,172 against its $200 million budget making it a box office bomb.
The original plan was to have a sequel be made after the original, but was cancelled due to poor performance at the box office (mentioned earlier in "Box Office" section). Warner Brothers hit the reset button for Green Lantern Corps, which was scheduled for a 2020 release, but has since been delayed along with numerous other DC projects.
- The film had been in the works since the late 1990s and went through countless rewrites.
- According to animation producer Greg Weisman and voice actors Josh Keaton and Khary Payton, the movie's poor box office reception played a major role in the eventual cancellation of Green Lantern: The Animated Series which was superior and faithful to its source material, and also Young Justice (though the latter was brought back after a strong fan campaign).
- Even Deadpool cracked a joke in his 2016 film of the same name about it by saying "And make sure my suit isn't green or animated". In the sequel, Deadpool is shown shooting and killing the real Ryan Reynolds when he was about the read the script for the 2011 film.
- Ryan Reynolds admitted he hated the film and was happy that it bombed at the box office and got panned by critics, as he did not wish to reprise his role and later references it negatively in Deadpool and Deadpool 2.
- There was even a scene in Teen Titans Go! To the Movies that proved that even DC hated the movie, and John Stewart/Green Lantern said that there was a Green Lantern movie, but he doesn't really talk about that...
- Robot Chicken made a skit out of this film where Nerd replaces Hal Jordan as Green Lantern.
- Geoffrey Rush stated he was not initially familiar with Green Lantern but was drawn to the part after seeing the concept art explaining, "When I got the offer for it I said, 'Haven't they made that film?' They said, 'No, it's a completely computer-generated character.' I saw the artwork and I said, I would love to be that guy. Because I had voiced an owl in Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'Hoole and I'd voiced a pelican in Finding Nemo and I thought I could really improve on that now by being half-bird, half-fish, part lizard. You don't get to do that in a live-action film."
- Ryan Reynolds actually met his future wife, Blake Lively, on set of the movie, who also happens to be the love interest of Hal Jordan/Green Lantern.
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