Summation: As an avid fan of both comic books and film, I operate under the firm belief that the quality of a comic book adaptation has nothing to do with the accuracy with which it was adapted. To me, Batman Returns is a prime example of a fantastic film experience that’s nothing like the comic book version of Batman. Basically, it’s a really disturbing fever dream from the creatively depraved mind of Tim Burton, with a ghastly gorgeous aesthetic and some of the darkest, weirdest, and wackiest fairy tale characters to ever grace the silver screen … guest-starring Batman. And that’s all it’s trying to be.
The point being: if a film is good, it’s good. If it stands on its own, it stands on its own. The quality of the film is not dependent upon whether or not the filmmakers met one fan’s preconceived notions based on the source material.
That said, Green Lantern is a film that actually tries to be accurate to the source material. But whereas something like Watchmen – which, in full disclosure, I also didn’t like – actually worked hard to develop those comic book elements onscreen, Green Lantern doesn’t work very hard to do anything. It just wants to make everything easier for the audience to understand and quicker for them to digest. The things it does change or streamline are almost always less effective or interesting than they were in the books.
Warner Bros. could’ve gone completely off the rails with their Green Lantern film and I would’ve been ecstatic, provided that they had done so successfully. Instead, they lazily tried to adapt Green Lantern: Secret Origin and failed to the extreme. Better luck next time, I guess. Here’s hoping they go the semi-reboot route for the sequel a la The Incredible Hulk and make a buddy cop film in space called Green Lantern Corps.
Overall Score: The Comic Books = 7.5; The Movie = 0.5
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