[img]http://www.hometheatershack.com/gallery/file.php?n=7216[/img]Title: Green Lantern
Starring: Ryan Reynolds, Blake Lively, Mark Strong, Peter Sarsgaard,
Directed by: Martin Campbell
Written by: Greg Berlanti, Michael Green, Marc Guggenheim, Michael Goldenberg,
Runtime: 123 Minutes
Blu-Ray Release Date: 10/14/2011
HTS Overall Score:81
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 (Ryan Reynolds). 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.
Since the characters inception in 1940, “The Green Lantern” has had many incarnations, but Hal Jordan was by far the most popular of all of the heroes that have worn the ring. As an avid Green Lantern fan from the 80’s, I watched the development of this project fairly close in the beginning, but there were a couple of key moments during the films production that, in my opinion, spelled certain failure for the movie. Sadly, after watching the extended release of the movie on Blu-Ray, all of my concerns proved correct.
The first sign was when it was leaked that the movie would partially take place on the planet Oa and involved the Green Lantern Corps. This is a universe that needs to be built up to and not thrown in for the sole purpose of the eye candy visuals; which were also lacking by the way. The Green Lantern Corps has its own history that could actually be a film in itself. The second sign was to find out that the villain would actually be Parallax; a galactic supervillain from the Green Lantern series that in this film is not unlike the “Galactus” villain from 2007’s Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer”. Lastly, this movie was also an origin story for Hal Jordan to introduce the character to audiences. That alone needs the time to be properly fleshed out, but when you are trying to also throw an entire universe worth of lore at the audience, something has to suffer and in this case it is the film as a whole that suffers.
Another real issue I had with the movie as a film was the camp factor which I felt was very high indeed. This movie played out a lot like the before mentioned Fantastic Four movies which struck me as very odd considering that director Martin Campbell’s other efforts include Edge of Darkness, Casino Royale, The Mask of Zorro and Goldeneye. But I guess we all have our hits and misses and this one was just a miss. Green Lantern could have easily been Warner and DC’s “Iron Man” but somehow it just all got convoluted and in the end is basically all over the place and very inconsistent. All of the signs point to what can only be described as a very rushed production from beginning to end and given that some of the visual effects look like they belong in 2001, I would say that is more than likely what happened.
[img]http://www.hometheatershack.com/gallery/file.php?n=7218[/img]As far as the cast goes, I disagree with a lot of reports that suggest Ryan Reynolds was miscast. I think that he and the rest of the cast performed their roles to the best of their abilities given the films lack of identity. There are times that I wondered whether or not the movie was supposed to be character driven or just a campy romp through the universe. Overall ‘Green Lantern’ isn’t the worst comic book adaptation out there by any means, but I personally had a real interest seeing one of my favorite heroes from childhood finally come to life on the big screen and I really think an extra year in the hands of a better writing team could have avoided the huge setback that Green Lantern has now created for other heroes in the DC universe to ever see the big screen.
Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of sci-fi violence and action.
Green Lantern comes to us on Blu-ray in 1080P AVC and the results are a bit mixed. I’ll do my best to guide everyone through it and keep the transfer separated from the production. The biggest detriment to Green Lantern is that it releases on Blu-ray after Transformers: Dark of the Moon which is arguably the best live action Blu-ray release to date. Green Lantern on the other hand suffers from a few noticeable deficiencies, most of which are post production related issues. A lot of the movie takes place at night or in the depths of space and with that comes limited lighting options. Black levels have plenty of depth but do succumb to some eventual crushing. This isn’t something that I found terribly distracting, but noticeable none the less. Colors are nearly perfectly rendered and very well balanced even when more vivid contrasting hues appear such as the green of Synestro’s suit and the red of his face. Resolution is very well done with regard to natural objects such as human faces and features as well as natural surroundings however; when off world in full CGI mode, resolution can suffer and soften edges abruptly. This is definitely a result of the CGI work that was done as a couple of scenes clearly show some of the less resolved effects that are more than apparent. The takeoff scene involving Hal’s father is a perfect example to refer to for this. I wouldn’t say that this is a horrible transfer nor would I say that the CGI is the worst I have ever seen, I have just come accustomed to seeing better execution out of a movie with a two-hundred million dollar production budget.
The DTS-HD-MA does fare much better than the video presentation of Green Lantern. Dialogue reproduction is clear and succinct and never falters under the barrage of fallout from the action on screen. I was also very impressed with the dynamic use of LFE throughout the movie which I felt was very thoughtful as well. Actually, from top to bottom this is a very dynamic and engaging surround presentation. There is plenty of thoughtful use of surround channels and the imaging is as good as I have ever heard. I honestly could not find anything that I would consider complaining about whether it be directionality, clarity, dynamics, LFE or anything else.
- Green Lantern’s light
- The art of Green Lantern
- Weapons hot: The U.C.A.V dog fight
- Reinventing the superhero costume
- Ring slinging 101
- We are the Corps
- Acting under 10 pounds of silicone
- Guardians revealed
- When Parallax attacks
- The universe according to Green Lantern
- Ryan Reynolds becomes The Green Lantern
- 5 Deleted scenes
- Justice League # 1
- Green Lantern: The animated series
- Ultraviolet Digital Copy of Green Lantern
- Bonus DVD of Green Lantern
- BD-Live access
Overall I thought Green Lantern was just “OK”. It wasn't anything to write home about by any means, but the real letdown was the monumentally missed opportunity for DC and Warner to establish a character to the masses outside of the Superman and Batman franchises. There is a huge folklore in the Green Lantern universe that could have been tapped that would have made for an extremely entertaining and fun origin story instead of the overcrowded and convoluted plot that we ended up with. Any of the four intertwined story lines could have been used as the basis for a movie by itself, but when they come together the overall identity of the film is unofrtunately lost. It will probably be a while, if ever, before we see another Green Lantern film but hopefully we will get a proper reboot of the character or a different DC franchise in more capable hands later down the road.
Recommendation: Rent It!
Official Blu-Ray Reviews Scoring