Green Lantern (film)

    Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.
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    A Live Action Adaptation of DC Comics' Green Lantern released in June 2011, intending to serve as an origin story for Hal Jordan, with Ryan Reynolds in the lead role.

    The Green Lanterns are an intergalactic peacekeeping force, whose members are given a ring that "turns thought into reality." The greatest danger to the corps is Parallax, who represents fear and the yellow energy. When respected Corps member Abin Sur is fatally injured a new Green Lantern is called, Hal Jordan.

    As Parallax sets its sights on Earth, Hal is forced to harness the power of the ring and save his planet.

    Tropes used in Green Lantern (film) include:

    Hal: So you're speaking fish?

    • Arson, Murder, and Lifesaving: Sinestro delivers it at the end.
    • Asteroid Thicket: Hal and Parallax fly through one during the final battle.
    • Big Bad: Parallax.
    • Body Horror: Hammond's head expanding. It's rather quite painful.
    • By the Power of Grayskull: Abin Sur advises Hal to say the oath to activate the battery. When Hal, who doesn't know what "the oath" is, tries every activation phrase he can think of, he finally gets to the actual "By the power of Greyskull!" itself.
    • Car Cushion: An extended one happens during the battle against Parallax. Though it's not a vertical fall, Hal being thrown back into the side of a truck, flying out as it turns over and crashing into an SUV, then finally stopping against another parked car, definitely qualifies as an example.
    • Catch and Return: In the climatic battle, Jordan lands a blow against Parallax by creating a catapult to catch one of the monster's energy blasts and fling it back into his face.
    • Chainsaw Good: In a duel with Sinestro during Hal's training, Hal makes a sword construct, Sinestro counters with dual wielded swords. Hal counters with a chainsaw. Sinestro counters with a chainmail net.
    • Chekhov's Gun: Quite a lot, mostly well placed. The robotic planes, Hal's father's sayings.
    • The Chosen One: Literally, and the ring choosing Hal is brought up quite often.
      • The Chosen Many: All of the Green Lanterns were in fact chosen by their rings.
    • Clark Kenting: Subverted, hilariously. When visiting Carol, Hal tries behaving a little more cocky, wears his mask and lowers his voice Batman-style. She is briefly overwhelmed but soon sees through it.

    Carol: I've known you my whole life! I've seen you NAKED! You don't think I would recognize you because I can't see your cheekbones?!

    • Composite Character:
      • Parallax. While he is a fear demon like in the comics, he has taken on Krona as a host. Furthermore, his role as Abin-Sur's archenemy and the cause of his Death by Origin Story is taken from Atrocitus; whilst the idea of a Guardian being possessed by Parallax was used with Ganthet in Green Lantern: Rebirth. He may also have parts of Appa Ali Apsa, a well-intentioned Guardian who ended up insane.
      • Hal Jordan himself has a few elements borrowed from fellow Lantern Kyle Rayner in this film. In the comics, Hal was much closer to the Green Lantern ideal, being 'a man without fear'. Like Kyle, though, the film's version of Hal finds that knowing fear and being able to overcome it is what gives him the strength to face Parallax. Though it is Hal in the comics that figures out how to turn that to their advantage. Kyle knowing fear was able to identify the threat but stayed on the run until meeting the other Lanterns who were fearless.
    • The Corruption: Touching any little bit of Parallax gives you Psychic Powers and a Psychic Link to him, along with, er, turning you evil. Although Hammond is the only one this happens to, he threatens to do it to Carol.
    • Cool Car: Hal makes one out of a helicopter and his powers.
    • Crazy People Play Chess: Hector Hammond, shortly before being infused with yellow fear energy, is seen playing chess on his computer.
    • Crowd Chant: "We! Are! The corps!"
    • Crucified Hero Shot: As Hal punches Parallax into the sun he had exerted all of his energy and passed out, drifting into the sun himself only to be rescued by the other Lanterns. He sprawls out slightly but it isn't a full on cross-shape.
    • Curb Stomp Battle: In their training fight, Hal pulls off a couple good moves, but ultimately is absolutely no match for the far more skilled and experienced Sinestro.
    • Deadpan Snarker: Hal. Then again, it's Ryan Reynolds.
    • Death by Origin Story: Abin Sur.
    • Death Glare: During Sinestro's addressing the Corps on the situation with Parallax, he mentions Abin Sur's death, and specifically that he could never be replaced, prompting a few Lanterns in the crowd to give a few angry looks straight at Hal, his successor.
    • Deceased Parents Are the Best: It's a superhero film. It's basically required.
    • Description Cut: "Don't heroes usually get the girl?"
    • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: Hal defeats Parallax by literally punching him out and into the sun.
    • Drives Like Crazy: Hal was late to the test flight and was also trying to wrap a package, leaving him to almost hit an oncoming car in the other lane. Hal swerves back into place with the horns blaring from the other cars, muttering "Asshole."
    • The Dragon: Hammond to Parallax. Something of an unusual example in that Parallax never meant to recruit Hammond and didn't seem to even know of him until near the end of the movie, when Hal links to Parallax psychically through Hammond. As well Hammond is clearly inferior in power to Parallax and other than bringing him to Earth Hammond didn't seem to be actively working for him.
    • Drill Sergeant Nasty: Kilowog revels in this.
    • Driven to Villainy: Hammond. All his acts of villainy would never had happened if it wasn't for Parallax infecting him.
    • Earth Is the Center of the Universe: Thoroughly averted (Oa is), as it was treated as pure coincidence that Abin Sur crashed on Earth and Hal is chosen as the next Green Lantern. Parallax taking an interest in Earth is also directly connected to a fragment of Parallax (from Sur's body) infecting Hammond and attracting the Eldritch Abomination.
    • Eldritch Abomination: Parallax.
    • Establishing Character Moment: Hal is first seen late to work, jumping out of bed with a woman in it, rushing to a test flight against two AI fighters and while outmatched in almost every way he manages to outwit the drones by doing a stunt that almost got him killed. As he learns how to control the ring, Hal demonstrates the tendency to act intuitively (the Racetrack) and think outside of the box. This is later key to his battle with Parallax, because who says you can't trick your enemy into flying into the Sun.
    • Mr. Fanservice: Hal is nearly naked after he first arrives on Oa. Again, it's Ryan Reynolds.
    • Evil Cannot Comprehend Good: The biggest reason for Parallax's downfall is because he was incapable of understanding what true courage is: He thought it meant the absolute absence of fear, it really meant not giving in to fear. Made especially apparent when Hal Jordan, despite having fear in him, managed to defeat Parallax and not allowing him to feed on his internal fear.
    • Evil Costume Switch: In the credits scene, Sinestro takes the yellow ring and puts it on, switching his Green Lantern uniform to a movie version of his Sinestro Corps uniform.
    • Evil Counterpart: The film heavily parallels Hal becoming a Green Lantern with Hammond being empowered by Parallax. Both Hal and Hammond are part of the same social circle and have several very similar psychological hangups, including daddy issues and chronic underachieving. This is quite a contrast to the comics, where the Hammond character was a fairly minor villain with no personal or thematic connection to Hal.
    • Evil Laugh: Hammond the more he becomes evil. Sinestro after putting on the yellow lantern ring.
    • Evil Mentor: Sinestro. As if his name didn't already give it away. Besides if there's a sequel, he will inevitably become the Big Bad.
    • Fan Nickname: Green Lantern: The Motion Picture, due to the movie being seen as boring and flashy, and the ending, which suggests that the sequel, if there is one, will be Green Lantern II: The Wrath of Sinestro.
    • Foregone Conclusion:
      • Sinestro puts on the yellow ring.
        • This looked like it might actually be averted, despite the fact that every adaptation of Green Lantern has Sinestro make a Face Heel Turn and gain a yellow power ring. After Hal beats Parallax, Sinestro leads the group that saves him from burning up in the sun and gives a speech indicating he's come to respect Hal and see him as a worthy successor to his friend Abin Sur. Then he retrieves the yellow ring and puts it on anyway.
      • Sinestro's eyes appear quite yellow when dueling with Hal.
    • Foreshadowing:
      • The credits show multiple swirls of colored light spreading and expanding throughout the universe, hinting at the rise of the Emotional Spectrum and the coming War of Light.
      • In the beginning of the film, Sinestro's holographic message malfunction, making his suit look yellow...
    • Four Is Death: Parallax kills four Green Lanterns when Sinestro led a squad to confront him.
    • Gatling Good: Hal summons a gatling gun during his duel with Sinestro.
    • Genre Savvy: Tom shows signs of this. After Hal's first dramatic rescue, Tom brings up the fact that the hero usually gets the girl, prompting Hal to pay a visit to Carol.
    • Getting Crap Past the Radar: When Hal shows the Lantern uniform to Tom and how it all works, he visually demonstrates "Ring... Finger." It's Ryan Reynolds - it couldn't have been unintentional.
    • Gilligan Cut: Carol repeatedly turns down Hal's offer to dance. Guess what she winds up doing.
    • Gravity Is a Harsh Mistress: Invoked when Kilowog creates the pull of a sun behind Hal. And then shuts it off without warning. He even states a cruder version of the trope name, saying that "gravity's a bitch".
    • Gravity Sucks: Kilowog demonstrates to Hal Jordan, and Hal uses the Sun's gravity to defeat Parallax.
    • Green Lantern Ring: No duh.
    • Groin Attack: Kilowog sucker-punches Hal, warning him that "Your enemy is not going to play fair." Hal takes the advice to heart and returns the favor with one of these.
    • Helicopter Blender: Hal constructs a propeller engine, which he uses like a drill.
    • Heroic BSOD: Sinestro has a very subtle one when he tries and fails to contain Parallax with some of the finest Lanterns under his command. Mark Strong's facial expressions convey that Sinestro is freaking out when Parallax shatters the bonds of his Lantern's constructs
    • Heroic Resolve: Parallax makes the mistake of Evil Gloating when it thinks it has Hal on the ropes. Hearing it tell him it's going to destroy all he cares about along with the Oath is what gives Hal the true resolve to continue the fight and defeat Parallax alone.
    • Hey, It's That Voice!: Temuera Morrison as Abin Sur, Geoffrey Rush as Tomar-Re, Clancy Brown as Parallax, Michael Clarke Duncan as Kilowog.
    • Homage: The dog fight with the AI shares a lot of the elements of Top Gun: Hal does Maverick's quick-climb trick to duck behind pursuing fighters (it doesn't work this time), he freezes up mid-flight over memories of his father, and he ultimately loses the plane when it goes into a flat spin.
    • How Do I Shot Web?: Occurs when Hal tries to figure out how to activate the power ring. See also Shout-Out, below.
    • Humans Are Special: The official synopsis and the movie itself state that Hal's special as a Lantern since unlike all other Lanterns, he possesses humanity (though Viewers Are Geniuses/Captain Obvious bonus for the obvious reply of "Well yes, because they're all aliens"). The film posits that humanity's special trait is the ability to recognize one's own flaws and weaknesses, as exemplified by the phrase "I'm only human." In contrast, Hal accuses the Guardians of being "afraid to admit [they're] afraid."
    • Humanoid Aliens: Filling up the third of the Corps that aren't Human Aliens/Rubber Forehead Aliens or Starfish Aliens. This is Lampshaded by Hector; after studying Abin Sur's body he talks about the staggering implications of aliens being humanoid.
    • Hurl It Into the Sun: Hal's eventual solution as to how to defeat Parallax.
    • I Lied: Hammond promises he'll let Carol go if Hal gives him the ring, and naturally tries to kill Hal as soon as he has it. Of course, Hal lied too - since the ring didn't choose Hammond, he can't use it, and it backfires on him.
    • Illuminati: Hinted at - the popularly held "all-seeing eye" logo can be seen on the hard drive containing Hammond's autopsy of Abin Sur. It's the symbol of the US Department of Extranormal Operations, likely being set-up for future DC-universe films.
    • I'm Dying, Please Take My MacGuffin
    • Instant Expert: Hal Jordan demonstrates considerable skill with a Power Ring after minimal training. Although its is established that it downloaded all its knowledge into his head which presumably included the manual.
    • Ironic Echo: "I just want what's best for you." Kind of weakened in impact since it was repeated ironically only a few minutes after it was first said.
    • I Surrender, Suckers: Hal Jordan gives his ring to Hector Hammond in exchange for Carol Ferris' life. After playing around with the ring for a bit, this happens:

    Hector: Hal, I Lied! (tries to blast him, but the blast stops inches from Hal's face)
    Hal: I Lied, too. (sends the blast back at Hector)

    • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Jordan himself, as well as Kilowog and several members of the Corps who don't exactly take kindly to an "Earthman" being granted a spot in their group. They all eventually get over it, of course.
    • Kaleidoscope Eyes: Hal's eye change from brown to very light blue whenever he has the mask on, when his ring signals danger and when he first learns the oath. Hammond has a version of this too, overlapping with Eyes of Gold.
    • Kill It with Fire: How Hammond kills his father.
    • Like Father, Like Son/Pursuing Parental Perils: Hal's father was a test pilot, Hal becomes a test pilot.
      • Hammond's father was a huge asshole, which eventually got him killed; Hammond also became a total asshole and died because of it, though arguably it wasn't his fault.
    • Marquee Alter Ego: Lampshaded by Carol, but also cleverly played with in such a way that it has an in-story justification. The mask is an extension of the ring's will-generated constructs, which means it appears only when the wearer feels the need to protect his identity and is not present otherwise, which means we also see Sinestro, Tomar-Re, and Kilowog without their masks.
    • Megaton Punch: When Hal traps Parallax in the sun's gravity field, he finishes him off with a slug from a giant fist.
    • Merchandise-Driven: That tiny throwaway bit where Hal activates his nephew's Hot Wheels loop-the-loop toy? Done so that Hal could replicate it with the ring for Rule of Cool, but also because of a merchandise tie-in with Hot Wheels.
    • My Brain Is Big: Hector Hammond after becoming infected with Parallax. Also, the Guardians.
    • Mythology Gag:
      • Carol's callsign is "Sapphire" and she's got an eight-pointed star (the Star Sapphire symbol) on the side of her helmet. Probably also counts as Foreshadowing. An an article about her possibly becoming head of Ferris Aircraft has the headline "Rising Star".
      • Ferris Aircraft's big project is testing out the effectiveness of A.I. fighter jets, which Hal ruins by outmaneuvering and destroying the jets, despite being told they react faster and better than human pilots. In the comics, Hal continually performs the same song-and-dance against the Manhunter robots.
      • The beautiful fractal that Tomar-Re generates for Hal while training him to focus his will to use the ring is a 3D representation of the Mobius strip the Green Lanterns use as a form of greeting in the Silver Age comics.
      • When the yellow ring is forged, Sinestro tells the guardians that after he's mastered how to use it, they can make more, and he'll teach recruits in using them, effectively creating an entirely new Corps under his command, using yellow rings. Not to mention The Stinger showing Sinestro putting on the ring and triggering a literal Evil Costume Switch.
    • Names to Run Away From Really Fast: Sinestro. More than one article about the movie has noted that with a name like that, he's obviously not going to stay a good guy. And that is without knowing the comics. Strangely, he's actually nicer than his comics counterpart.
    • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Thanks to Hal going out of his way to shoot down the A.I. fighter jets, Ferris Aircraft looks like it'll lose the government contract they were looking to get with the display and a lot of people are going to lose their jobs. Thankfully, Carol's able to turn it around; she pointed out that Hal broke the rules to do so and the engineers were able to fix the jets' flaw. Of course, Hal pointed out the same thing immediately after the simulation exercise, but didn't get any credit.
    • Nonuniform Uniform: All the Green Lantern's have a similar look to their uniforms, but they all have slight variations. In the case on Tomar Re, his suit has a sort of fish-scale texture to it. Sinestro has a more militaristic appearance while Hal's has a pattern resembling human muscle tissue. It is hinted at least twice that this is because the "uniform" consists of the ring giving you transparent green skin; the texture looks different based on your skin and muscle textures.
    • Offstage Villainy: We see Parallax eat the souls of a few aliens and Green Lanterns directly, but he completely devoured four planets before coming to Earth.
    • Paper-Thin Disguise: Subverted! Tom immediately sees through it just from the news report (though he was already in on the ring from the dying alien), whilst Carol realizes it's Hal once she gets a chance to actually look at his face. Lampshaded in what is probably the most hilarious scene in the movie.
    • Patrick Stewart Speech: Hal's "I'm only human" speech.
    • Playing with Fire: Hal makes a flamethrower during his first fight with Hector.
    • Planet Eater: Parallax has been upgraded from a rather large bug that's the embodiment of fear to a Guardian turned Eldritch Abomination who devours the populations of entire planets. Sound familiar?
    • Precision F-Strike: In the form of precision ring placement...
    • Product Placement: Verizon Phones
    • Psychic Powers: Hammond gains telepathy and telekinesis from Parallax's DNA, as well as a Psychic Link with the latter.
    • Red Shirts: The three aliens at the beginning who open the lid on Parallax's can. Did you really think anything good was going to happen to them?
    • Rubber Forehead Aliens: Sinestro and Abin Sur, as they're the only aliens that aren't Serkis Folk.
    • Screams Like a Little Girl: Hector Hammond. My god.
    • Sealed Evil in a Can: Parallax.
    • Self-Made Orphan: Hector Hammond makes two attempts - after bringing down his father's helicopter fails, he kills his father after the latter tries to vivisect him.
    • Shout-Out: While trying to figure out the oath, Hal mentions |"To infinity and beyond!" as well as "By the power of Greyskull!" as he gets more frustrated not knowing how to use it.
      • Also, a copy of Pokemon Sapphire can be seen briefly within Hector's room as he slowly gains his psychic powers.
      • When Hal goes all Gatling Good during training, Sinestro summons up a familiar-looking round shield to deflect the bullets - then throws it at Hal.
      • The placement of green and black on Kilowog's suit (black "pants" with green everywhere else) make him look like the Incredible Hulk.
      • The radio transmissions of an Imperial Probe Droid are heard early in the movie.
    • Smart People Play Chess: Hector Hammond is first shown playing chess over the internet.
    • Starfish Aliens: A whole lot of the Green Lantern Corps.
    • Stalker with a Crush: Hammond. There's a joke online that the actor was doing an impression of his girlfriend's male fans. Most likely started by one of said fans.
    • Start of Darkness: For Sinestro, though like several recent comic book movies, it'll take several installments. We also see Hammond's, who goes from just an ordinary xenobiologist to genocide happy.
    • The Stinger / Sequel Hook: Just before the entire credits roll, we get to see Sinestro slip on the yellow ring and be consumed by its power.
    • Sufficiently Advanced Alien: The Guardians of Oa are a race of immortal blue dwarfs with huge heads that have outfitted an army of space cops with semi-sentient rings that can focus raw willpower into any form imaginable by the user.
    • That Poor Car: When Hal punches three guys at once (first time he uses the ring) it causes all the alarms in the parking lot to go off.
    • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: After proceeding to Curb Stomp Battle Hal, Sinestro looks over him and says he's an insult to Abin's memory when he wears that ring. If he meant to show how much Hal sucks being a lantern, he succeeded because Hal quits and sulks back to Earth.
    • Trailers Always Lie: The trailers paint the other Corps members as having a more prominent role than they actually do.
    • Trailers Always Spoil: Trailers have shown Parallax draining Hector Hammond's body of energy, leaving behind a crispy corpse. In one of the clips released before the film, some fans recognized a Chekhov's Gun when Kilowog explained to Hal the dangers of flying in space, including the gravity of the Sun. In the trailers, Hal appears in front of the Sun.
    • Training from Hell: Both Kilowog and Sinestro put Hal through his paces, Sinestro bordering a No-Holds-Barred Beatdown.
    • Tron Lines: Most of the variations of the GL uniform have streaks of energy running around them, but it is most notable on Hal. When he starts exerting more power/will you can see the energy flowing around his body and through the ring.
    • The Unfavorite: Hector seems to resent Hal for generally being more successful than him, and it presents itself as his father greets Hal with more warmth and praise than ever given to him.
    • "Well Done, Son" Guy: Hammond.
    • What Could Have Been: Originally they were gonna use the villain Legion, until they changed it to Parallax.
    • What Happened to the Mouse?:
      • Remember those three guys Hal injured (and possibly killed if you consider the guy who got smashed through a brick wall) in the parking lot? He sure doesn't. And neither does the company that they thought laid them off, except probably didn't because Carol saved the project.
      • An early scene has Hal's attending his nephew's birthday and talking with his extended-extended family for a time. While it builds a bit of Hal's character (and subtly sets up a Chekhov's Gun) they don't show up again.
    • World of Cardboard Speech: Hal gives one to the Guardians and Sinestro once he realizes why claiming you are fearless is self-defeating.
    • You Are Not Alone: When Jordan, forced to battle Parallax alone, defeats the entity and threatens to fall into the sun himself after losing consciousness, Sinestro, Kilowog and Tomar-Re arrive to rescue him and take him back to Oa.
    • You Have Failed Me...: Parallax kills Hammond for failing to kill Hal - he even says the line word for word.
    • You Shall Not Pass: Basically what Hal is saying once he recites the Green Lantern Oath while fighting Parallax. Doubles as Survival Mantra.