The Green Lantern (2011 Warner Bros.) was pre-screened in Atlanta to an audience of celebrities, media and select general viewers. The turn out resulted in a packed house, complete with security, instructions to turn OFF your phones and roaming guards searching for violators. A leak was nearly impossible on this night…
Hal Hess (Ryan Reynolds) is chosen to join the ranks of the Green Lantern Corps after being chosen, by the essence of the ring itself, on the death bed of one of the Corps bravest warriors. After going through a series of trials, to include an impromptu training by fellow members of the Corps, he quits the ranks, just as he has everything in his life. That is, until the earth is threatened by a menace unlike any seen before in any galaxy – the evil Parallax, who is energized by fear. With urging by friends and a former lover, Green Lantern finds the will and strength to fight off and defeat this menace – and ultimately receives full acceptance into the Corps by his colleagues.
The film is relatively predictable throughout and has ebbs and flows for the first 2/3 of the movie.
In the final 1/3, the action picks up, significantly, as the villain begins to take shape in the form of a brilliant scientist, Hector Hammond, (played by Peter Sarsgaard) who is infected by an evil life force during the autopsy of the Green Lantern’s predecessor. The action intensifies as Hammond is killed and the Green Lantern must engage the source of evil, which infected Hammond – Parallax himself. A galactic chase and battle ensue and the Green Lantern defeats Parallax through sheer will, determination and by recalling a lesson learned during his training.
The special effects were plentiful and incredible – we saw the Real 3D version of the film. However, many of the scenes were obviously shot via green screen and there was a clear delineation of actors from the background – so much that at times the background looked fully animated when compared to the actors. The film was riddled with these types of scenes unfortunately. Additionally, there were clear product placements by Chevrolet, Apple and LG. The placements were supposed to be subtle (general rule of thumb, anyway), but ended up being glaring promotions. The film included a number of relatively unknown actors, but also included veteran actors in key roles (Angela Bassett and Tim Robbins) and/or voice over roles (Michael Clarke Duncan). Blake Lively performed relatively well in the Leading Female role as the beautiful, multi-talented and highly sought after Carol Ferris. Additionally, Peter Sarsgaard provided several instances of comic relief in the role of Hector Hammond, the under-achieving, yet brilliant, scientist who rapidly began to go mad after being infected by Parallax.
Overall, on a scale from 1-5 (5 being awesome), I’d have to rate the film a 3. The plot is predictable, along with the outcome. Special effects are incredible (again, we saw the Real 3D version); however, several of the scenes looked VERY unrealistic due to how the scenes where shot and post produced. The movie started with action but then experienced a number of slow periods during the first 60-90 minutes, picking up in the final 30 minutes or so.
For more information on the Green Lantern movie, visit http://greenlanternmovie.warnerbros.com.
For additional footage from the Green Lantern after party in Atlanta, revisit The “HIGH UP” this weekend to see interviews with the likes of Dee Woods (former Danity Kane member), Strings (Chicago rapper, formerly of both R. Kelly’s camp and former first lady of Cash Money) and Rennie Curran (Tennessee Titans rookie linebacker). Also, look for a second review of Green Lantern from AOM’s T. Monet later today!
-Jay Young for AOM and The “HIGH UP”
Bringing the enduringly popular superhero to the big screen for the first time, “Green Lantern” stars Ryan Reynolds (“X-Men Origins: Wolverine”) in the title role, under the direction of Martin Campbell (“Casino Royale”).
In a universe as vast as it is mysterious, a small but powerful force has existed for centuries. Protectors of peace and justice, they are called the Green Lantern Corps. A brotherhood of warriors sworn to keep intergalactic order, each Green Lantern wears a ring that grants him superpowers. But when a new enemy called Parallax threatens to destroy the balance of power in the Universe, their fate and the fate of Earth lie in the hands of their newest recruit, the first human ever selected: Hal Jordan.
Hal is a gifted and cocky test pilot, but the Green Lanterns have little respect for humans, who have never harnessed the infinite powers of the ring before. But Hal is clearly the missing piece to the puzzle, and along with his determination and willpower, he has one thing no member of the Corps has ever had: humanity. With the encouragement of fellow pilot and childhood sweetheart Carol Ferris (Blake Lively), if Hal can quickly master his new powers and find the courage to overcome his fears, he may prove to be not only the key to defeating Parallax…he will become the greatest Green Lantern of all.
Campbell directs “Green Lantern” from a screenplay by Greg Berlanti & Michael Green & Marc Guggenheim and Michael Goldenberg, story by Greg Berlanti & Michael Green & Marc Guggenheim, based upon characters appearing in comic books published by DC Comics.
The film also stars Blake Lively (upcoming “The Town,” TV’s “Gossip Girl”) as the spirited Carol Ferris, a test pilot and the heir apparent to her father’s aviation company; Peter Sarsgaard (“An Education,” “Flightplan”) as scientist Dr. Hector Hammond; Mark Strong (“Sherlock Holmes”) as Sinestro, Jordan’s powerful mentor in the Green Lantern Corps; Jay O. Sanders (“Revolutionary Road”) as Carl Ferris, Carol’s aircraft designer dad; Temuera Morrison (“Star Wars” Episodes II and III) as Abin Sur, Jordan’s alien predecessor; Taika Waititi (TV’s “The Flight of the Conchords”) as flight navigator Tom Kalmaku, Hal’s good friend and confidante; Academy Award® nominee Angela Bassett (“What’s Love Got to Do with It”) as enigmatic government scientist Amanda Waller; and Academy Award® winner Tim Robbins (“Mystic River”) as Hector’s influential father, Senator Robert Hammond.
The film is being produced by Donald De Line (“The Italian Job”) and Greg Berlanti (upcoming “Life As We Know It”). Herbert W. Gains and Andrew Haas serve as executive producers. Geoff Johns and Lucienne Papon are co-producing.
The film’s behind-the-scenes creative team is led by a number of Academy Award® winners, including director of photography Dion Beebe (“Memoirs of a Geisha”), production designer Grant Major (“The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King”), and costume designer Ngila Dickson (“The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King”), as well as Oscar®-nominated editor and longtime Campbell collaborator, Stuart Baird (“Gorillas in the Mist,” “Superman”). The film’s visual effects are being overseen by Oscar®-nominee Kent Houston (“The Adventures of Baron Von Munchausen,” “Casino Royale”).
The film is currently scheduled for release in 3D and 2D on June 17, 2011. “Green Lantern” will be distributed worldwide by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company.
AOM and The “HIGH UP” will be covering the private VIP pre-screening tonight in Atlanta. Stay tuned for updates and follow us throughout the evening on Twitter @AspireOnline!