Filmpopper Review: ‘The Green Hornet’

Published by Seth Quillen in: Film,Reviews -- Date: 14 Jan 2011 Comments: 0

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Starring: Seth Rogen, Jay Chou and Christoph Waltz
Written by: Seth Rogen, Evan Goldberg
Created by: George W. Trendle
Directed by: Michel Gondry
Rating: PG-13
Runtime: 119 min
(2.5/4)

Admittedly, I have virtually no knowledge of The Green Hornet. I never read the comic book, listened to the radio serial or watched the shortlived 1960’s television show. In fact the only reason I know about The Green Hornet is due to the 10 minutes or so devoted to it in Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story. That being said I was still skeptical about how good it could be given that funny man Seth Rogan would be starring as the Hornet and co-writing the screenplay with Evan Goldberg (Pineapple Express). But I’ve been wrong before… well a couple times.

In The Green Hornet, Britt Reid aka The Green Hornet (Seth Rogen) takes over his father’s newspaper company after his father’s sudden death. Reid teams up with his late dad’s assistant Kato (Taiwanese pop star Jay Chou) to become a masked crime fighting team. Essentially The Green Hornet is just like Bruce Wayne’s Batman, as he has access to unlimited money and resources for his crime fighting lifestyle, but minus all the sad brooding around.

After sitting through the obligatory story of Reid realizing he has the power to help others and stop the rising Los Angeles crime rate, the story finally took off. The Hornet and Kato fought a lot of criminals and each other a couple times on their road to bringing down the ultimate criminal lord of L.A..

While there are several holes in the story and the dialog is not always spot on, Rogan and Chou riff off of each other as good as any buddy flick in the last decade, with most of the big laughs coming from Rogan himself.

Christoph Waltz (Inglourious Basterds) perfectly played Chudnofsky, the bad if not scary looking nemesis to the crime fighting duo. Cameron Diaz as Reid’s assistant Lenore didn’t add much. Perhaps she’s attempting to enter the geek culture like Gweneth Paltrow tried to do in her run as Pepper Pots in the two Iron Man movies.

The Green Hornet gives you plenty of gratuitous action scenes, although I found director Michel Gondry’s (Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind) fancy camera work distracting at times. While this probably wont be on anyones “best of” list, and despite being about ten minutes too long, The Green Hornet was a fun action packed gizmo filled thrill ride.

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