Could Green Lantern’s CGI Costume Ruin the Movie?

Published 3 years ago by , Updated August 7th, 2012 at 1:26 pm,

green lantern trailer140 Could Green Lantern’s CGI Costume Ruin the Movie?

It’s no secret that Superman and Batman are the two biggest characters in the DC comic and movie universes, but the famous duo may have to clear space next year when fan-favorite Green Lantern shines in theaters.

Most of Warner Bros.’ decisions, so far, have all been the right ones as they attempt to bring a second-tier DC character to the big screen – hiring Martin Campbell (Casino Royal) to direct, bringing Greg Berlanti (Dirty Sexy Money), Michael Goldenberg (Contact) and Marc Guggenheim (Eli Stone) onboard to write the screenplay, securing the musical talents of composer James Howard (The Dark Knight) and casting fanboy favorite Ryan Reynolds (Deadpool) as Green Lantern himself.

However, the filmmakers’ decision to ditch the standard latex/leather/spandex combination for Green Lantern’s superhero costume in favor of a more modern, completely CG costume remains the most questionable choice they’ve made to date.

WB and other involved parties have supported this decision from the get go – at least publicly – telling fans to expect a truly masterful sight on screen. However, every trailer or picture released up to this point doesn’t seem to support their claims. After taking a good hard look at more stills from the Green Lantern trailer, I’m very worried the SFX of this movie may be headed into realm of SyFy channel original movie.

Before fanboys starting coming at me with the “CG isn’t done yet” argument, I fully understand there are still likely hundreds of man hours worth of work left on SFX.  But I have to call foul on that argument because a trailer is supposed to give potential audiences a reason to see a film…not reasons to doubt a film’s success.

green lanter movie still2 570x243 Could Green Lantern’s CGI Costume Ruin the Movie?

Putting out shoddy CG and expecting viewers to forgive it because it’s unfinished is like a five-star chef serving food while he’s still preparing it, then telling his patrons, “Don’t worry; it’ll taste better when I’m finished cooking it.” No one would wait around to find out if he is true to his word; they would just move on to better food.

The first picture of Reynold as Green Lantern which debuted on the cover of Entertainment Weekly looked pretty good even if the “alien grooved” concept wasn’t warmly received right away – but from there it has mostly been a downhill slide. The transformation scene at the end of the first trailer (see the picture at top) was almost laughable because of the cheap looking CGI and off-putting tone of the color scheme. These latest pictures aren’t helping the situation either.

Nothing really seems to have changed in this latest round of stills – the color scheme is still off, the suit still looks too fake, the hands, arms and feet look ridiculous and then there’s the awful mask. Even if the CG animators are able to fix the colors and add more realism to the suit, if they aren’t able to make Green Lantern’s mask look like it actually belongs on Reynolds’s face then the entire suit concept is sunk.

green lanter movie still1 570x243 Could Green Lantern’s CGI Costume Ruin the Movie?

As the suit looks right now, there is no way it could possibly make our top six superhero costumes list – although it could reside easily next to Steel and the infamous “Bat Nipples” of 1997. There have been plenty of great-looking practical superhero costumes made for movies in the past few years, and there have been plenty of movie characters who were either created entirely from CG or at least enhanced with it.

Marvel’s Incredible Hulk looked fantastic as an entirely CG character and James Cameron’s epic film Avatar consisted almost entirely of CG created Na’vi and those looked incredible as motion capture characters –  so why then can’t the Green Lantern suit look just as good?

Answer – because neither the Hulk nor the Na’vi tried to combine the flesh and blood tones of a live actor with a CG effects. This is, as I see it, the main problem with the Green Lantern suit. Reynolds’ face doesn’t look like he’s wearing a mask, there’s no bunching or indentations on his face where the edges of the mask would sit, nor any of the other little nuances that just can’t be recreated within a computer environment. For all of its vast technical achievements, even Avatar had its moments of unrealistic CG and they spent YEARS perfecting those graphics – the Green Lantern CG staff has no such window of time in which to churn this out.

green lantern the ring1 570x243 Could Green Lantern’s CGI Costume Ruin the Movie?

It could be the case that when Green Lantern releases in theaters next year WB has another Dark Knight-type success on its hands with Oscar-worthy story, acting and directing; however, if the quality of the all-CG suit becomes a distraction to audiences, then none of the good things about the film will be remembered.

Do you think Green Lantern’s all CG suit currently looks sub-par and has the potential to derail the film if not corrected, or does it even matter to you what it looks like?

Green Lantern protects the universe from evil June 17th, 2011.

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  1. The suit looks OK at best.

    • Do you even know what it’s supposed to look like?!

      • Uh… a guy wearing a somewhat believable-looking costume?

        • Yes ^

      • Sam, again he doesnt read comics LOL, don’t go to battle of wits with an unarmed opponent such as Ricky, it gets old lol.

        • You know I’ve got nothing against the boy but he has never read a single comic book, how in the name of Oa does he even know who Green Lantern is or what his costume should look like?

          • Wait what? Ricky hasnt read a comic book?

            • Nope. Lets not get into it, the fact upsets me deeply.

              • Why does it upset you DSB? LOL

                Ive been to comic book stores and ive seen pics of the green lantern. And many other things i have no idea about . But hey im in screenrant where everyone reads comics….

          • I have read plenty of comics and watch plenty of films. This costume is a very poor interpretation. It is as Rick says, it is ok at best. For me it’s not working at all. Very poor execution.

            Also you shouldn’t have to read comics in order to comment on what you like or don’t like. The film is meant to appeal to everyone including those unfamiliar with Green Lantern.

            • We know that, but i just thought its weird that Rickster hasnt read a comic book. And watch this will just be the unfinished cgi.

            • I didn’t say he couldn’t comment. I was saying he didn’t know what he was talking about.

              Joke.

              • Guys not everyone in the world reads comics lol.

                • That is true, lol i guess i got caught up in the moment

  2. Im not happy with it right now, and he is one of my favorite DC characters. Yes it could get better as in the King Kong case a few years ago where they showed unfinished cgi effects of Kong but still they should have gone the normal rout.

  3. Talk about judging a book by its cover!!! Come on! Give the film a bloody chance!!! A few still images and a 150 second trailer, a film that isn’t out for six months, maybe, just maybe some of the effects aren’t quite finished.

    • I’m not judging the entire movie based on this one item but come on Doc, you have to admit it’s a pretty big item. It’s the entire reason for the movie to even exist IMHO.

      Besides, just like I said in my article the movie could be great but if the suit looks crappy the Green Lantern=FAIL to me.

      Also, the whole point of a trailer IS to judge a book by its cover.

      • Maybe the next trailer will show the suit differently?

        I’m not willing to give up on my second favourite super hero just yet.

      • So true, it IS the selling point. It is the sample,if your sample,snipit or whatever doesn’t taste,look,smell,or sound good then most people won’t buy. That’s the whole purpose for a trailer. It’s ok to give die hard fans an unfinished taste cuz they’ll support it anyway but you can’t do that with people somewhat or totally unfamiliar with your product.

  4. great article, I agree with every word, plus I think the comedic and light hearted tone is also throwing everyone off. It feels more like The Mask or a Looney Tunes movie

    • The comedic and light hearted tone? From 2-3 scenes on one trailer?
      Have you read the entire script?

      • Actually Doc I did read an early version of the script last year and it wasn’t lighthearted at all. This cut of the trailer is meant to make audiences think its a funny movie to get them interested. I suspect we’ll see a much darker cut in the coming months.

        • That’s my point. I think this is going to be a much darker movie than people are expecting.
          Trailers have been misleading in the past.

          Also, I wasn’t having at go at you at all Paul, you make some good points in the article. I just wanted to defend something everyone seems determined to destroy before they have even seen it.

          • Oh I know you weren’t bud it’s all good :)

    • The Mask!

      Great comparison! It is kind of just like that the more I think about the trailer… Especially the costume

      • Except that in The Mask Stanley was an affable loser who found used the power of the Norse god Loki to wreak mischief, whereas Hal Jordan is a cocky arrogant test pilot who becomes an interstellar policeman with a power ring…

        The only real similarity is the colour green.

      • @Rob Keys, LOL! Just LOL!!!! ;P

  5. yes

  6. I wish they would just get rid of the face mask altogether. It just looks silly up there on the screen that like. I can’t take him seriously at all. What’s the purpose of it anyway? To conceal his identity (even though you can clearly tell who it is)? I know it was like that in the comic book but this just looks very cartoonish. The more and more I see of this movie, the more and more I lose interest.

    • The mask is there for 3 reasons:
      1. Conceal his identity to humans and others.
      2. The Lantern Corps are like a police force so ts part of a uniform.
      3. And to protect his face from micro-asteroids and the such.

      • LOL micro-asteroids :) He’s supposedly covered in an impenetrable covering of green light which allows him to breath in space…air stays in, asteroids stay out. Mask has nothing to do with it.

        Did I really just write that as a argument? *facepalm*

        • LOL its ok

          • lol but you can easily tell who it is though. I don’t think it does much to conceal the identity unless it covered his full face. It just covers the area around his eyes and a little bit of his nose. I think they’re not giving enough credit to face recognition among contemporary humans these days.

            • You can make the same arguement against Superman and that noone can tell that he is Clark Kent. Its just part of his suit as he is part of a Police Force…Intergalactic Police Force that is.

              • Yeah I know, I do make that same argument with Clark Kent/Superman. That’s why I always thought his “secret identity” was always stupid. And it makes the other characters look stupid for not figuring it out. I couldn’t help but laugh during “Superman Returns” when he’d visit Lois and she didn’t seem to have any idea who he was.

                And yeah, it’s part of the uniform, I understand that. It still doesn’t mean it doesn’t look silly to me.

                • It would look better if it was the mask that…I think Kyle Ranner wore…it was an armored masked and was cool.

                  And I think everyone in the DC universe is a tad bit stupid sense they can never figure out super heroes secret identities.

              • lol yeah, I’ve always wondered that about Superman until a hardcore DC nut friend of mine told me that it’s because Supes has a slight mind control ability so people won’t realize he’s Clark Kent (Superman)How many powers does this guy have?! lol

                • I didnt know he had mind control….but he has gained a billion powers after his debut so it wouldnt surprise me.

                • Then why would he need glasses at all?

        • @Paul Young This is making my day. I needed to laugh a little more today. “Who was that masked man”? We shall remove his eye mask to reveal his secret identity.hahaha!

          • Well come to think of it,Clark Kent looks nothing like Superman with his glasses on. ;)

    • I don’t mind the idea of a mask, but it just doesn’t seem right. They should have outlined it in black to tone it down a little.

      That being said, I am still psyched for this movie.

  7. I seem to remember that the first opinion of Thors costume was that it looked too plastic. Now seeing some of the new footage people are saying it looks awesome. No one is saying that about GL. sadley this good ruin it.

    • That’s exactly it.

      If Thor, a dude wearing armor, a red cape and a helmet, whose brother has giant horns coming out of his head, can be done with real practical costumes. Why are they CGIing Reynolds’

      It looks pretty bad to me and I don’t think it comes off as ‘cool’ at all :(

      • Completely agree sir.

      • I know this looks like CGI from the “Dire Straits” Money for nothing video. Hey maybe they could use that as the theme song. :o

  8. The CGI suit by Sony Imageworks is an EPIC FAIL!

  9. Think about it this way.
    It was a great idea to release the trailer like that so they can hear opinions…now that they now people have problems with the suit and other things..they will fix it…if the didn’t release the trailer till later on it would be to late to edit everything in the film to make it great…im sure it will change a little bit by beein more realistic…lets wait for the second trailer, yeah?

    • That’s true or its like the Peter Jackson’s King Kong, they aren’t finished and they are being rushed to show it when its not even the final product.

      • Same. Remember when the first Iron Man trailer hit, and the CG looked bad? Give it some time. Even the CG for the Transformers 3 trailer wasn’t complete.

        • Yep so I’m not gonna bash it.

  10. I’ve not been impressed so far and I agree, anything you release prior to the movie should not be anything but awesome. Well, unless you are doing some sort of ‘process’ reveal in a behind the scene way where your potential viewers see the effects take shape and improve.
    We’ve not seen this yet.
    All of these poor pictures of the suit keep reminding me of the last big budget, poor effects film ‘Wolverine’. And before you try to argue with me, go back and honestly watch that film again.
    Hopefully someone somewhere will have the guts to say “This is not working. Fix it.”

    • Hoo boy.

      PERSONALLY, I think it’s a case of being early CGI. I think it’s a great concept for the Green Lantern suit considering how utterly alien the technology is.

      Studios have to balance putting out not quite finished product in an early trailer against fans clamoring for said trailer and the need to start building buzz early.

      Vic

  11. I like the suit. The only time I don’t is in the scene where he reveals the suit to his friend.

    • Glad to see I’m not the only one!

  12. “second-tier DC character to the big screen”

    Ummm I would like to disagree with you on that one.

    • As would I, Green Lantern is one, if not the biggest, title they currently have in print. It’s certainly the highest quality title around at the moment and has been for a few years.
      I’m willing to bet it outsells almost all of their other monthly titles.

      • Green LAntern is like one of the best comic series i haveever read in my lifetime

    • I would too but then if you think about, nobody over at DC or WB cares about any other hero except Superman and Batman so that makes them second tier in their eyes.

    • Anyone who’s not a comic book fan knows who Superman and Batman are … that’s not really the case with Green Lantern hence the “second-tier” label. As far as comic book fans are concerned GL is definitely first-tier but to the general public that’s just not the case. Just my opinion …

      • Well he would be a first tier character to the general public if it wasnt for DC and WB just wanting to show the Big Two every time they can get the chance.

        • Agreed. Still the way it is though, unfortunately …

          • Yep, that’s why Marvel, evening with their stupid cut costs mentality, is doing better. Sad cause most of my favorite DC characters wont get a movie soon unless Green Lantern does good.

      • Guess what?
        he will be first-tier on June 17, 2011

        • Agreed.

  13. While I’m not as passionate about this character as Sam, I trust in the vision of the parties involved. They’re trying something new, good for them. I seem to recall James Cameron trying something new and having great success. Similar to The Matrix being something new and different once upon a time. GL is cosmic and the tech is there to make a truly out of this world, comic book film. I’m still looking forward to seeing it.

  14. I also like the suit a little up until that last scene. It looks waaayyy too cartoon in that scene but in motion in looks fine. I don’t like the mask though. I’m a bug green lantern fan but I too dislike the mask. This might be one of those times that I say go against the comic. I’m still really looking forward to this movie though cause I love hal jordan and kilowog :)

  15. What’s wrong with the colors? The green looks a LITTLE muted but I’m fine with that. The only real knocks I have against the costume is the lack of white gloves and the boots are a little short.
    Aside from those it ranks in my top 5 so far, and I’m a HUUUGE GL fan.

  16. It wont ruin the film for me.
    GL has always been at the top of my movie list for Summer 2011.
    And so far,I have seen NOTHING to change that opinion.

  17. Yes… because watching the trailer to a movie coming out in five months is the same as eating raw chicken….

  18. The only time in the trailer the suit doesnt look good, is when he shows his friend, in which he is standing in front of a window in broad daylight!
    So that affects the colouration of the suit for a start, and it doesn’t look like a finished effect to me at all, because there are numerous other pictures of the suit and it is a different colour completely.

  19. I believe the suit won’t kill or make the movie, although I do have a problem with the mask.

    What worries me more than anything is the directing. Look at the trailer and you’ll understand what I mean – there should have been a better scene included that showed the wonder of transforming into Green Lantern, to bridge the pre-origin parts and the adventure part. There was nothing. It was a very shoddy trailer and makes me worry it will be a shoddily-directed movie.

  20. I think it looks good. Maybe not GREAT, but good. I actually liked the Green Lantern trailer better than the Thor trailer.

    One poster noted that the studio is likely going to make changes based on fan reaction, and I honestly hope that that isn’t so. Sure, they should fine tune the CGI a bit, especially in regards to the suit and mask. However, I hope that the studio doesn’t interfere too much to get people into seats. This is an ambitious project, and it will eventually be appreciated for what it is.

  21. personally i always liked the idea of the CG suit as it was supposed to give in an alien like quality and in parts of the trailer i think it works well.

    i do however agree with the article that the mask is a major problem and really looks false and i guess they would have been better going with a physical suit and careful use of CG to enhance it.

    however i am very happy with the people making the movie (good director, writers and main star choice) so am still looking forward to this and hoping that the CG will be tweaked – but so far it isn’t a deal braker.

  22. Okay.
    Stupid Question.
    Could they glue a regular mask over Reynolds face and then insert a”Cosmic Mask” efffect using CGI?
    I just thought that might address Pauls concern about the mask.

  23. Brodie,
    Great minds think alike!

  24. I really can just not stand that mask. The fullbody costume is alright, but that mask is just horrid.

  25. It’s really hilarious that anyone on this site is against the CGI suit. Considering how over half the people on this site think a fully CGI Superman would be a great idea, it’s kind of funny that you guys flip-flop on the concept.

    You can’t be for one thing and against something that’s almost exactly the same.

    • Folks,

      Don’t bother responding to this guy. Based on a couple of comments that were caught for moderation that were particularly vile, I’ve banned him – thus sparing him the pain of reading a site and commenters he obviously despises.

      Vic

      • thanks boss, i was beginning to lose it with that PoS always hating on everyone and thinking he knows everything.

        glad you made the the choice :)

        • Which guy was banned?

          • Gary

      • @Vic Thanks bud will do.

      • Good Call Vic I never understood someone constantly saying I hate this site and then coming back every day to tell us how much he hates it again.

        • Well whoever it was they’re missing out ;)

  26. i think the costume should be darker and looks way to cartoony.
    i think the mask should be a darker green as well but keep the metallic shine

  27. Yeah so pretty much, they Fed up and they should’ve gone with a real costume instead of a CG one cuz this looks horrible. End of story.

  28. The should have done the suite & especially the mask as Practical Fx then added the CG atop of it, if need.

    Is it sad that I liked the fan-made trailer from a year or so back W/Nathan failion mor than the actual trailer ??

    • nah i thought that trailer was awesome too.

    • @Brodie Bruce That’s the same thing that I said but nobody seems to agree. If they would have put on a practical suit and mask of material and add CGI on top,the depth would have been better and they would’ve had a better idea of where to go especially through movement and standing still.

  29. I would have dumped the mask at least; and/or give him a Guy Gardner like jacket-uniform. Personally, I’m not feeling the CG suit. I’m very skeptical.