In brightest day or blackest night, DC Comics’ Green Lantern is still pretty dull. The latest in a seemingly endless line of comic book flicks follows rash yet effective fighter pilot Hal Jordan (Ryan Reynolds) as he is chosen to become a member of the Green Lantern Corps., a universal police force charged with upholding justice. Jordan’s muscle is a ring that transforms thought into reality, granting him powers limited only by his imagination.
You would think that this aspect of the Lantern’s story would give its makers creative carte blanche. Unfortunately, their own imaginations prove to be more than a little limited.
Rather than the action that typically drives superhero adaptations, Lantern feeds audiences a heaping helping of sappy romance with a side of pity and self-doubt. In fact, for a movie based on a comic book, Lantern serves up surprisingly little combat at all, despite the fact that it deals with a superpowered fighting force, 3,600 strong, battling a planet-pulverizing villain. The action scenes we’re given are disappointingly brief while the real conflict — literally, a universal war — is hastily glazed over. The fight scenes themselves demonstrate a glaring lack of ingenuity. Add that to the forced sensitivity of a typecast Ryan Reynolds and you wind up with a film that’s more rom-com than beat-em-down superpowered adventure. Read the comics; skip the movie.