I went and saw Green Lantern this weekend. I had been hearing nothing but bad things about the movie, but I went anyway. Mostly because my old friend Jeff Wolfe has a part in the movie (it was really cool seeing him 20 foot tall on the screen!). He played Bob Banks, who is the main guy of the three that beat up Hal Jordan in the parking lot, before Hal smacks them down with a giant green fist.
I'm going to digress from my main point a bit, because I wanted to say how proud I am of my friend Jeff. Eighteen years ago, he moved to Los Angeles to pursue a career in acting. Now,at the time, I think I probably thought what most people think when they hear a friend or family member wants to act for a living, something on the order of, "Yeah, right!" I should have known better. When I first met him, Jeff was a singer, and a good one to boot. He and his guitarist (our friend Hoffy)never quite seemed to get much going, but the stuff they recorded was simply awesome. To put it bluntly, Jeff is a talented guy. He's also sure of himself. He's also a martial-arts expert, so I first started seeing him here and there in some martial-arts B-movies. He actually had a sizable role in a Jet Li movie called Once Upon A Time In China And America, where he played, basically, a kung-fu cowboy (the movie, BTW, has some strong parallels to Shanghai Noon).
As time went on, Jeff started making his mark as a stunt performer and stunt coordinator. He's worked on all the Pirates Of The Caribbean movies. He did the sword-fighting choreography for Hidalgo. And then he landed a part for Green Lantern. I originally thought it was more stunt work, but he ends up being in about two scenes of the movie, and actually has some dialog with Hal Jordan. Sitting in the theater, watching him, it hit me, the dude made his dream come true. Maybe he was never going to be a movie star, but then that's not what he told me what he wanted to be. He is an actor and making a good living at it, and for that, I say good work buddy!
Now, what was I saying? Right! Green Lantern. It's not a bad movie at all. It may not be a great one, but it certainly is a good one. What makes the movie good is, for the most part, the actors portray characters that are interesting to watch. Ryan Reynolds has certainly come a long way from his Van Wilder days. He plays Hal Jordan with enough charisma that I felt interested in the character and cared about what happened to him. Same with Blake Lively. The story may not have been perfect, but what shortcomings were there were not glaringly apparent, and the movie moves along well enough that it didn't feel like it dragged anywhere. Oh, and the CGI was just amazing! This was also the first 3D movie I saw that my eyes weren't stinging by the end of the movie (apparently, this has something to do with getting the color right).
So, while this movie is no Spider Man, or Dark Knight, or even Iron Man, it's still a worthwhile movie. Heck, it's definitely better than either of the Fantastic Four movies!