Thursday, January 20, 2011
Green Hornet Review
The new Green Hornet movie starring Seth Rogan as the Hornet, Jay Chou as his sidekick Kato and Cameron Diaz and Edward James Olmos opened about a week ago and I guess has been doing pretty well at the box office. I went to see it in 3D, which was OK, but didn't have anywhere near the impact of the 3D in Avatar. I think seeing it in 2D wouldn't have altered my opinion of it. For those of you who don't know the full story behind the Green Hornet, the character began in the mid-1930s as a radio show back when radio dramas were very popular. It followed the Lone Ranger radio show and was really envisaged as a contemporary version of the Ranger and Tonto. My first exposure to the character was in the mid-1960s with the Green Hornet TV series that ran for one season starring Van Williams and the incomparable Bruce Lee in the role of Kato. In the current movie Seth Rogan plays Brit Reid, the wastrel son of the editor and publisher of a newspaper. When daddy dies and leaves Brit the paper he doesn't really seem to care. During the course of the movie he decides to take up the mantle his father left, using Kato (who was working on cars for the old man right under Britt's nose) and Lenore (played my Cameron, who is savvy about criminology despite the fact that she's only a temp with the paper) to help him in his quest. I don't want to spoil the plot for anyone who hasn't seen it, but basically there's a lot of misadventures as they try to track down the big crime boss in town, with Kato supplying all the high tech equipment and Seth acting the buffoon. As action/adventure movies go it's serviceable and reasonably entertaining. The funniest part of the movie is when Kato creates a gas gun and Brit shoots himself with it, which has been in one of the trailers. There's a lot of stunts and general mayhem, but I didn't really take the villain too seriously and I could see the "mystery" villain coming from a mile off. Fans of the original Green Hornet (and even the Williams/Lee TV series) may find this a little trite, but it's probably worth a look. It's certainly not as bad as the worst of the genre.