Green Lantern lacks punch

Green Lantern is a pretty cool ride, and probably everything a comic book movie should be. So then, why does it feel like this feature is missing — oh, I dunno — something?

Ryan Reynolds as the Green Lantern in Warner Bros. Pictures’ action adventure Green Lantern

Ryan Reynolds as the Green Lantern in Warner Bros. Pictures’ action adventure Green Lantern

Green Lantern is a pretty cool ride, and probably everything a comic book movie should be.

So then, why does it feel like this feature is missing — oh, I dunno — something?

Could it be that the Lantern, very slick and very emerald, is a second- tier character from the DC Comics universe? That’s not to take away anything from the fans who sincerely love this dude, but let’s face it, gang: Batman, Superman, those guys are on the first line. Green Lantern is riding the bench with Aquaman.

Maybe. But more likely, Green Lantern suffers from origin overload. That is, in unravelling all the details on how the hero came to be, by the time it’s all said and done and he’s suited up and ready to roll, there just isn’t a whole lot of time to rock in Martin Campbell’s overly-pricey but not quite-as-peppy flick.

You can’t blame star Ryan Reynolds. Not exactly a rookie when it comes to comic book fare (he participated in one of the Blade sequels), Reynolds brings both his comical chops and his apparent bundle of hours spent with the Ab-flex to the proceedings. He’s not a vanilla personality, and that helps. Doesn’t elevate Green Lantern to instant classic territory, but it helps.

The tale educates us on the 3,600 (give or take a few) sectors guarded by the Green Lantern Corps, a massive peace-seeking organization woven together to battle evil threats to the galaxy. Threats like the Parallax (voiced by Clancy Brown), a giant half-mist, half-goo thing that has the face of a razor-toothed alien, but the body of week-old linguini that oozes its way towards Earth to challenge the first earthling ambassador of the Corps, Hal Jordan (Reynolds).

And — because this is a big ol’ origin yarn, remember? — we get to follow Hal on his journey, from when he screws up in his job as a hotshot pilot, to when he’s gifted a mystical ring and lantern, to when he finally hits the crossroads where he must abandon all fear (a pre-requisite for the gig) and rumble with the brown, cloudy pasta looking to destroy our planet.

Blake Lively (The Town) is decent as Jordan’s love interest, though not terribly genuine — not that fleshing out personality in such an emotionally flimsy story is an easy task. Ditto for the film’s CGI; the pretty lime backdrop is quite dazzling, but doesn’t quite make that leap from the comic book pages.

So why do I still have a smidge of a fondness for Green Lantern? Simple. It’s fun. Not as fun as last month’s summer popcorn offering, Thor, and we’ll see how Captain America fares next month. But for all its faults — and there are many — Green Lantern isn’t dull. Flawed, but not dull.

Out of a possible five stars, I’ll give Green Lantern a two and a half. The feature is currently playing at the Pen-Mar Cinema Centre in Penticton.

Jason Armstrong is a movie reviewer living in the Okanagan.



Just Posted

Keremeos’ heritage Grist Mill and Gardens. (Brennan Phillips - Keremeos Review)
Keremeos’ Grist Mill looking forward to restrictions easing with exclusive concert planned

Juno Award-winning folk artist Valdy is set to take the stage

Letter writer says COVID has created lots of newbie cyclists who don't know rules of cycling. (File photo)
LETTER: Newbie cyclists in Penticton need lessons on rules of the road

Penticton cycling group just received city funding, should give back by offering how-to lessons

No dental coverage for low income Canadians. (File photo)
OPINION: Penticton MP’s proposal for universal dental coverage rejected

One in 3 Canadians have no dental coverage, with COVID making it even worse

The weekly COVID-19 map for June 6 to 12. (BC CDC)
South Okanagan sees only 5 new cases in last week

The Similkameen Valley went a second week without any new cases

Sandra Krauer, Penticton Mayor John Vassilaki and Barb Hoolaeff were in Skaha Park to announce the return of Ribfest for September, 2021. (Brennan Phillips - Western News)
Ribfest returns to Penticton

Festival runs from Sept. 17 - 19 at Skaha Lake Park with proceeds going to new splash park

Bear wanders Kelowna on June 15. (Michelle Wallace/Facebook)
Bear climbs fence, uses crosswalk in Kelowna

The bear was spotted on Baron Road Wednesday evening

Hundreds of people, young and old, joined the three-day Walking Our Spirits Home procession, honouring residential school survivors, those who never made it home and all those affected by the institutions. Here people walk the third portion on June 13. (Martha Wickett - Salmon Arm Observer)
Walking Our Spirits Home from Kamloops provides path to healing

First Nations in and beyond Secwépemc territory join in to honour residential school survivors

More flames
UPDATE: Lake Country home destroyed in massive blaze

Fire crews are responding to 10839 Hallam Drive

(Facebook/Kelowna Cabs)
Kelowna Cabs reaches tentative agreement with dispatchers union

The tentative agreement could help end the dispute between the taxi company and the dispatchers

FILE – A science class at L.A. Matheson Secondary in Surrey, B.C. on March 12, 2021. (Lauren Collins/Surrey Now Leader)
Teachers’ union wants more COVID transmission data as B.C. prepares for back-to-school

BCTF says that details will be important as province works on plan for September

A boat sharing service is extending to Summerland. The company, Penticton Boat Club and Rentals, is also taking over the boat rentals at Summerland Waterfront Resort. (Photo by Chris Stenberg)
Boat sharing service extended from Penticton to Summerland

Company will also operate boat rentals at Summerland Waterfront Resort

201 First Street West 1980s. Prior revitalization. (Photo from Revelstoke Museum and Archives)
Man who redesigned downtown Revelstoke honoured with lifetime achievement award

Robert Inwood has worked on historical projects across the province

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry outlines B.C.’s COVID-19 restart plan, May 25, 2021, including larger gatherings and a possible easing of mandatory masks on July 1. (B.C. government photo)
B.C. records 120 new COVID-19 cases, second vaccines accelerating

Lower Pfizer deliveries for early July, Moderna shipments up

Most Read