I'm a huge fan of the Green Lantern characters from DC Comics. With the Green Lantern movie in theaters now, I can't help but consider how I could go forward making a Green Lantern movie. I will share that with you.
The Green Lantern does not share the same notoriety with the general populace that say Superman, Batman, and Spider-man do. Therefore it is necessary for the Green Lantern to come with an origin story. Additionally, I can only envision of Green Lantern has having a trilogy of movies as opposed to just one. That is nothing earth-shattering as just about every genre movie these days has at least three movies planned or made if not more. The way that I enjoy movies I like to see hints of things that are yet to come. Therefore I feel it is important to introduce characters and elements in the first movie that will be expanded upon in the second and third movies.
I am tempted to start the first movie off with the epic battle between Abin Sur and Atrocitus, and then move into the ring finding Hal. However, we are at base telling the story of a man - Hal Jordan, who is thrust into a fantastic and galactic-spanning story. The movie must then start with him and move outward into the universe as Hal himself is introduced to the Green Lantern Corps.
I'm going to take a moment and talk about the structure of the whole trilogy. Movie one - introduces the character and setting to the masses at large. Movie two wrecks the status quo that was created in movie one. Movie three creates a new status quo and the triumph of good versus evil.
Begin Movie One:
The first movie then needs to introduce the earth-bound audience to the larger idea of the Corps through the vehicle of the first human Green Lantern. Expanding from that introduction the story gets larger in scope to finally encompass the entire galaxy. We start with Hal, a test pilot, and the woman that loves him, Carol Ferris. Unfortunately for Carol, while Hal does love her he does not return the same love she gives him. This sets up the tragedy of the Star Sapphire. Also, we meet William Hand - the unhappy son of a funeral home operator and the nemesis of movie one, aka Black Hand. There doesn't need to be any connection between Hand and Jordan prior to them coming into direct conflict as hero and villain later on. I think this is where many movies fail - they try to make it personal between the hero and villain rather than the hero just being a force of good and the villain being a force of evil.
Hal Jordan is an out-of-control thrill-seeking test pilot working for Carol Ferris and her father's company, Ferris Aviation. Through seemingly irresponsible behavior Hal crashes his test plane. Little does he know that this is actually the mechanism of fate in the form of the Green Lantern ring seeking him out. The plane crashes/disintegrates mid-air, leaving Hal in free-fall. The ring safely guides him down and brings him to the dying Abin Sur and his crashed prisoner transport vehicle (UFO). Abin dies, giving him the ring and lantern. The ring transports Hal to a safe place (his home) and disintegrates the ship and Abin Sur's remains. Thus making it clear that the alien body and ship are not important to the story. There is no requirement for secret government operations and the like that so many movies use as a cheap vehicle for suspense. Note that while a Green Lantern does not need a spaceship to fly through space, rather Abin was using one to transport the highly dangerous Atrocitus rather than rely solely on his ring.
Hal awakens at home - unable to explain even to himself how he got home or what happened during the crash. He receives the mistrust of Ferris Aviation and is grounded. Carol believes him though as she loves him dearly even though he does not return the affection. During his down time, Hal discovers the Green Lantern ring and starts doing stuff with it. He starts doing stupid things with it - not beating up muggers or saving kittens from trees. The story has to evolve Hal into a hero and forge the desire in him to BE a hero. Anyway, the story has to happen at a fast pace because you have to keep the audience's attention. Probably include a scene where Hal could have furthered his connection with Carol, but instead keeps her at a distance and pursues Jillian Pearlman who is less compatible, but more exciting perhaps than Carol?
William Hand is obsessed with death - even to the point where he kills himself to experience it. Turns out, through some movie-magic he becomes undead with the ability to cause the death of anyone he touches. (In reality the spirit of Death, Nekron, chose Hand has his anchor to our reality, to be explored further later and Nekron revealed in movie three.
Hal Jordan, through using the ring and repeating the oath that Abin Sur gave him before dying, is pulled to the planet Oa - act two! He meets some other Green Lanterns, who are wearing suits that do not suck. Among the Lanterns he meets Sinestro, Kilowog, others, and the Guardians. Tomar Re shows him the ropes and takes him around. Kilowog shows him how to use the ring and not die so quickly. Sinestro doesn't even want to know his name as "most new Lanterns die before they become worthy for me to know their name, Trainee." He is not a nice man.
Hal's ring has to be taken in and the record of Abin's last mission downloaded or some such vehicle by which we are shown what happened to Abin and all that stuff. Epic battle between Abin Sur and Atrocitus. Atrocitus is committing wholesale genocide against a race of people because some of them killed his family or whatever. Through a long battle that Abin was actually losing, Abin tricks Atrocitus into the prison cell/chamber whatever on his ship. In the process he gets mortally wounded - that's how dedicated Abin was! On route to Oa with the prisoner, he realizes he won't make it and needs to find a new Lantern. He puts Atrocitus into hibernation or some such and steers toward Earth where Hal is found, yadda yadda. Hal asks what happened to Atrocitus, Tomar Re (or probably Salaak really) tells him that the prisoner arrived and was placed in confinement. Hal wants more of explanation but gets none. (foreshadow movie two!!!)
The guardians - all male, very logical, no names. They are the Guardians of the Universe, an immortal group of little guys with lots of power. Hal to Tomar Re, "So - they're all dudes?" "Well, actually they weren't always like that. The males of the species gave up their individuality and most emotions to create the Corps and harness the power of Will. The women did not agree and..." Tomar is cut-off and unable to finish - foreshadow of the Star Sapphires! It's important to show in the background the other happenings and stories of the Corps. Sinestro is frustrated with limitations placed on the Corps by the guardians. He wants to use more power and instead of simply safe-guarding the various races of the galaxy, direct them and their civilizations into his idea of order. He's a power-hungry would-be tyrant bent on the idea that he is a force of good and therefore justified in whatever actions are required.
Sinestro has had enough of "being a [dog] on the leash of the guardians." He goes into the archives/storehouses/vaults/whatever. In the background are various items and weapons of horrible power - taken from the comic mythos - IE Manhunter Robots. Sinestro gathers various instruments and devices and takes off. Have to work this into the story so as to make it work.
Anyway, Hal is told he must fight for justice and order in the sector of space assigned to him. He will return to Earth and practice using his ring. Hence, he decides to take on responsibility and be a better man and all that. He comes back to Earth. The ring points him toward the weird happenings of the Black Hand and epic battle ensues. Through cool constructs and imaginative stuff Hal wins the day, is seen publicly as a new Super-Hero, gets the girl (not Carol), and so on. Black Hand is taken to Oa because he was using a power the Guardians hadn't seen or wanted more information about (Black Lantern stuff!). Developed more later on
Post Credit scene: (c'mon - they're fun!) Anyway, Sinestro is setting up shop on the planet that Atrocitus was terrifying. He is harnessing the fear of the inhabitants to forge the new rings of fear. In his mind, one planet doesn't matter in the big picture of saving the entire galaxy from chaos. He shuns his Green Lantern ring and puts on the yellow ring of the Sinestro Corps! He's a truly terrible being partially because he THINKS he's a good guy! That's the hallmark of your really interesting bad guys.
End Movie One.
Begin Movie Two.
A year or so later. Hal is living it up - back on the job as a test pilot - dating women here and there - being a run-of-the-mill super-hero. That is until...
Sinestro assaults Oa and takes over the holding center to break out violent scary criminal types. He considers letting Atrocitus out as he would be a great weapon of fear, but he knows there'd be no controlling him. He leaves taking an army of horribleness with him. Atrocitus breaks out anyway, violently killing a few Green Lanterns and drinking their blood. I say have him create the Red Lantern ring right then and there from his uncontrollable rage, but dunno - it has to happen at some point. The Red ring could be the means by which he flees Oa.
The Corps have been bloodied. All Lanterns are called back to Oa to assess the situation and prepare for the future. A few Lanterns call on the Guardians for more guidance. They are mired in deliberations. Until two Guardians dissent and come forth - they take names as a sign of defiance to the Council - Ganthet and Sayd. Ganthet contacts the Zamarons for help taking Hal Jordan along with him. Sayd goes off on his own mission to be revealed later.
The females of the Guardians' species are the Zamarons. They did not agree with forsaking emotion and the splitting of their race. They took a different path from the Guardians, going to their own planet and dwelling on love and such. They listen to Ganthet and finally agree to help by giving up one of the crystals they use to be immortal. A Zamaron dies to do this. The crystal, studying Hal - goes to Carol Ferris. Hal is told this by the Zamarons after the crystal has left. She was chosen because of her connection to Hal and that was seen by their alien logic as being the best help they could give. Ganthet warns Hals of what the crystal may do to Carol. Hal takes off as fast as he can to help her but will be far behind the crystal. This creates the Star Sapphire - the manifestation of their un-returned love for the Guardians. It is a crazy, single-minded love with little thought of consequences.
Meanwhile Sinestro is quickly building his ranks - forging new rings on the suffering of lesser beings and creating monstrous soldiers for his army. The Green Lanterns are still in disarray and have been dealt a demoralizing blow not only in the loss of some Lanterns lives but also in the betrayal of their best Lantern.
On Earth - the crystal finds Carol, making her into the Star Sapphire. She goes totally nuts and do some perhaps overly violent things to men mistreating women or even just to men that do not return the love that women give them. She's barely Carol at all anymore and needs to be stopped by Hal.
Hal and Carol fight - until carol is able to gain some control over her own love for Hal and the power of the Sapphire. He convinces her to come to Oa where forces are gathering to confront the Sinestro Corps.
Huge, epic battle ensues - Sinestro Corps and Green Lantern Corps giving it their all - no holds barred. The tide of battle goes back and forth between the yellow and green. What the Green Lanterns and the Sinestro Corps don't realize is that Atrocitus has turned his hatred against Abin Sur against not only the Green Lantern Corps but also against the Sinestro Corps. He enters the fray with a few other Red Lanterns that he had recruited. We'll show her some of the interactions between the different rings. Some sides have strengths that others don't and weaknesses in regards to others.
The Green Lanterns and Star Sapphire are fighting together against the Sinestro Corps and the Red Lanterns while both of the latter are fighting against all other sides. Oa is in shambles and the Green Lanterns are running out of power and members. Along come Sayd and his Blue Lantern Corps - "Green Lanterns of Oa do not despair - there is HOPE." Their arrival charges all the Green Lantern rings fully. The Green Lanterns push back hard against both the Sinestro Corps and the Red Lanterns. The invaders flee, day saved.
Not long after the battle - just a few moments. Star Sapphire, some Carol coming through, talks with Hal. She tells him of her complete love for him. That she cannot stay, she must go the Zamorans to atone for the things she's done wrong back on Earth but also because she can't stay by Hal as her love for him makes her crazy. Hal realizes that he loves Carol, he's about to tell her so but she stops him with a construct and leaves instead.
Post Credit Scene: (Yeah I'll always want to use them!) William Hand is in a cell on Oa - the battle raging around them. The barrier flickers, the point of view turns away from the cell and to the lone Green Lantern keeping watching over the cells. A black, dead hand reaches out and touches the Green Lantern. The Green Lantern shrivels up and dies, the light of his ring goes out and it falls to the ground. Black Hand picks up the ring - now powered by the Black Light of Death. He chuckles perhaps as he walks out of the prison and takes off for parts unknown.
End Movie Two.
I so want to call the second movie, Green Lantern: The Curse of the Star Sapphire. I think it's a great title for numerous reasons. However, it doesn't really encompass the whole story. It could be called Green Lantern: The Sinestro Corps War but that doesn't seem to have the same kind of catchiness that the Curse of the Star Sapphire has. Dunno. Leave it to others that are better at such things I suppose.
Start Movie Three. This one is going to be called Green Lantern: Blackest Night. There's just no way around it.
Starts on Oa. The citadel is being rebuilt, lots of Green Lanterns swarming about. A few Blue Lanterns are here and there. In all there are not thousands of Blue Lanterns - just a handful. The Guardians have created a new law - two lanterns for every sector! New Lanterns are being trained and chosen. Rings are being created as fast as they can be. A new Lantern will be chosen from Earth - this could be Kyle Raynor, John Stewart, or Guy Gardner. I think they'd all be good choices. I'm honestly not sure which one I'd pick, probably John Steward because do we really need more white-guy superheroes?
Discussion is going on among the Guardians and some Lanterns regarding the powers that have emerged and their interactions with each other. Green - Will, Blue - Hope, Yellow - Fear, Red - Rage, Pink - Love. "What about Orange?" "No, not him." "Him? What do you mean, 'him'?" The guardians decided, against their better judgment that an envoy must be sent to the Lost Sector to seek the help of Larfleeze and his Orange Lantern. Ganthet along with Hal and perhaps some other Lanterns depart to meet with Larfleeze.
The envoy travel to Larfleeze's planet. Here's a chance for come comedic relief. They get to the planet and find it pretty much devoid of animal and even insect life. Larfleeze is so consumed with greed and avarice that he can't bare to share anything with anyone for any real length of time. He is essentially immortal; sustained by the power of his Lantern. The comics do a great job with this character and this scene can mirror what happened there.
There are some missteps, but through some wrangling, they convince Larfleeze to come with them and get lots of great stuff! Just then an urgent message for Hal comes from Oa: the Zamorans are under attack, Carol's in trouble! Oh noes! Hal leaves for the Star Sapphire planet.
Devastation - the Red Lanterns or the Sinestro Corps arrived and killed everyone. Carol lies dying or dead. Hal was too late. He kneels beside Carol, cradling her lifeless form. He stares in her vacant eyes and realizes that he loves her - always loved her but would never admit it. He cries. She is lost... but not really, come on. He kisses her, igniting the Star Sapphire and returning Carol to life. She returns his kiss, gaining in strength as their shared kisses become more passionate. The Zamorans are still dead, and their planet in ruins so don't get too excited - this ain't Disney.
Cut to Sinestro - he is meeting with Atrocitus - trying to form an alliance. He wants to direct Atrocitus and his Corps' rage toward the Green Lanterns - they want to make a feint against Earth to draw the Green Lanterns out from Oa as they are too strong so close to their Central Battery.
Cut to Earth. Black Hand has been busy, at the direction of Nekron (note perhaps have a whisper in the earlier movies that is just barely audible). He's learned from his past mistakes in movie one to not attract too much attention to himself before he's strong enough. He's been practicing with not only killing people, but creating Black Lanterns. Not entire sure what there would be time for - probably not much. He can build up legions of Black Lanterns of dead humans, he could bring back fallen Lanterns - of any Corps, or something else. Either way - he'll have a seemingly insurmountable advantage.
The Red and Yellow travel toward Earth - a few elements within each group picking fights with the others. The Green, Blue, Star Sapphire, and Larfleeze with his Orange Constructs launch toward Earth. The barely begin fighting when they notice that down below, rising out of Coast City is a huge Black Tide of death and destruction.
The Black Lanterns are able to suck the power away from any other Lantern they encounter. The battle rages in orbit, in Coast City, wherever - frickin' epic. A rift begins to open revealing the giant specter of Nekron coming through from the "other side" to claim our reality. Everybody realizes they are screwed.
The various corps realize that they can't do this separately and whatever else they had wanted has to be set aside. They consider that their powers are stronger in conjunction and realize that must combine their rings to form one power strong enough to defeat the evil before them. Sinestro, of course steps forward to wear all the rings and go forward. Representatives from each corps eventually give up their ring. Sinestro puts them on and powers up more with every ring he wears. Eventually he becomes the White Lantern! He engages in direct battle with Nekron and initially makes some headway. Others, including Hal observe that the white energy brings back to life a few black lanterns and what not. Sinestro is defeated by Nekron and falls to the ground, unable to fight anyway. Hal forms a plan - he quickly runs over (he gave up his ring) and puts on the rings. Nekron sees this and turns his attention toward him. Hal does not engage him; rather he goes to Black Hand and infuses him with the white light of life. Nekron defeated, dramatically falls back into the rift and back to the other side. Revelation: the dead Black Hand was the tether that allowed Nekron access to our world. Black Hand is again taken back to Oa, Hal uses what's left of the white light to bring Black Lanterns back to life, and everybody's happy.
The rings are given back to those that offered them up, per the agreement. All sides call it a day and head back to their own problems and plottings. Carol and Hal - meh, we could go "Hollywood" and have them get together or maybe have her go off to do her own Star Sapphire thing. John Stewart may be set up for his own "Tales of the Green Lantern Corps" movie or something like that.
Post Credit Scene. Maybe none or maybe something to set up a new set of movies. Dunno.
End of Movie Three.
Time for the self-professed problems: I left out the Indigo Tribe entirely! Yes I did. Maybe they could be included, but it might just be too much. Larfleeze could be left out too, but he offers up a chance for some levity from time to time. The biggest problem with this treatment - Sinestro doesn't get much time to shine as Hal Jordon's major nemesis. It's a shame, but I think there's a lot of good story to be had with all the other elements that I did include. Besides - you got to leave something for the fourth and possibly fifth movies. :)
That's it for me - now it's your turn - what do you think of my treatment and what's your treatment?