Movie Monday: Green Lantern

I have NOT forgotten that Texas Gothic comes out tomorrow! Don’t forget there’s a giveaway on Goodreads (see post below). And I’m signing the book at the Barnes and Noble at the Parks Mall in south Arlington, TX starting at 1pm on this coming Saturday (7/16).

But first… Green Lantern.

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I was REALLY looking forward to seeing this movie, but the critical press reviews popped the bubble of my enthusiasm. I didn’t go see it until this weekend.

And I LOVED it. It’s not dark and gritty. It’s not a post-modern examination of war profiteering or Cold War isolationism. It’s a grand and slightly idealistic movie about the uncomplicated issue of good versus evil.

Eating planets? Bad. Digging deep and finding the willpower to overcome fear and save everybody? Good.

I especially like that the movie lampshades some of the awkwardness of the premise. Green Lantern is, after all, a magical space cop who makes stuff out of green energy. And Hal Jordan? Kind of an ass when the movie begins. Maybe even still a little bit of an ass when the movie ends, but in the best possible “I’m ready to put everything on the line” sort of way.

The bottom line is this: Green Lantern sets out to entertain, and it does. Are there other superhero movies with more undertones and psycho-social commentary? Yes. Superhero movies that go to a more “grown-up” place? Definitely. As my friend A. Lee Martinez pointed out on his blog recently, even Transformers is full of “gritty” robot gore.

But not everything needs to go to a dark, grown up place. Some movies need to speak to the kid in us. The one who can recite the Green Lantern oath without a shred of irony.

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In brightest day, in blackest night
No evil shall escape my sight.
Let those who worship evil’s might
Beware my power… Green lantern’s light!

(I may have teared up a little just then.)

There’s nothing cheesy or simplistic about a movie about a white (or green) knight fighting a dragon to save the village. Choosing good over evil doesn’t have to be a complicated decision. Part of me thinks that if more people recited the Green Lantern oath in the mirror every morning, the world might be a nicer place.

Anyway. I really enjoyed this movie. Ryan Reynolds is adorable and cheeky, a likable rogue. Well cast as Hal Jordan, I think. Kinda nice to look at, too.

Terrific fun. Bring your sense of adventure and check your cynicism at the door. (Provided you can find a theatre still showing it! Movies come and go so quickly in the summer!)

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