Released: Out now
Director: Martin Campbell
Screenwriter: Greg Berlanti, Michael Green, Marc Guggenheim, Michael Goldenberg
Cast: Ryan Reynolds, Blake Lively, Mark Strong, Peter Sarsgaard, Tim Robbins
Distributor: Warner Bros
Running Time: 114 mins
Welcome to the most bizarre superhero movie yet. Green Lantern is filled with space opera, Top Gun-style flight sequences, wise-cracking and prominent moustaches, all of which are new aspects within this superpowered sub-genre. It’s certain to put off members of the mainstream collective, particularly those who have their minds blown simply by the concept of outer space. You, however, as a sci-fi fan, will likely enjoy this movie, providing you’re not looking for a flick with any depth or interesting psychological undertones. This is pure popcorn entertainment, a one-dimensional outing that is more in the ballpark of Thor and Fantastic Four than anything else.
Green Lantern is the story of a reckless test pilot, Hal Jordan (Reynolds), whose head is in the clouds when it comes to any kind of responsibility in his life. After trashing a brand-new aircraft, Hal is picked up by a mysterious green energy, and discovers the dying alien, Abin Sur, who has crash-landed on Earth after a battle with the world-eating creature known as Parallax. Abin Sur reveals himself to be a member of the intergalactic police force known as the Green Lantern Corps, and that Jordan will be his successor.
Jordan then joins the Corps, and heads to the planet Oa for a tough training session, where he’s deemed inadequate by senior corps officer Sinestro (Strong). There’s trouble brewing back on Earth, too: oddball hair-sniffer Hector Hammond (Saarsgard) becomes infected by Parallax after examining Abin Sur’s body, giving him telepathic powers, and Jordan stands alone in defending Earth and his childhood sweetheart, Carol Ferris (Lively) from the creature constructed entirely from fear.
For those uneducated in the Lantern lore, it’s quite a dense amount of continuity to swallow at once, not to mention filled with comic-book oddities that only true believers will accept. Why is will coloured green? Why is fear coloured yellow? Why is the universe divided into 3,600 sectors? Seasoned readers know what the Source Wall is in the DC Universe, but the audience Warner will want to bring in will likely reject all the fictional science of Green Lantern outright – and that’s before we even get to the talking space chicken (voiced by Geoffrey Rush).