It sounds like you may have stumbled into the Kernel Modesetting (KMS) issue. It can manifest in several ways. Check this post. First try the nomodeset boot parameter outlined in the post and its links before trying the commands for specific hardware.
There was a regression in the intel drivers used in the kernels for Mint 7 and 8. Many of the issues were worked out for Mint 8, but not all. Here are links to three posts which may offer some insight.
Link 1: viewtopic.php?f=46&t=36622&p=220783&hilit=82845#p210673
Link 2: viewtopic.php?f=90&t=44859&p=258538&hilit=intel+regression#p258538
Link 3: viewtopic.php?f=46&t=38828&p=222542&hilit=intel+regression#p222514
Users browsing this forum: Google Adsense [Bot], Google Feedfetcher, happywm, MSNbot Media and 22 guests