Following the death of his father, Britt Reid, heir to his father’s large company, teams up with his late dad’s assistant Kato to become a masked crime fighting team.
The Green Hornet
I have watched this movie once, which was on .
The Green Hornet is a comic-book-esque action movie starring Judd Apatow’s comedic favourite Seth Rogen, Asian pop star Jay Chou and, surprisingly, directed by the whimsical french filmmaker Michel Gondry. And it’s presented in 3D.
Michel Gondry is a favourite director of mine. All of his films have a sense of fun, enthusiasm and experimentation but his recent films have been hit and miss. I found it an odd decision, wanting to direct this action movie, but it is good to see a director expand their horizons and push their talent in to different styles. There are a couple of scenes early on which have Gondry’s style all over them but unfortunately they are few and far between. This movie could have been directed by pretty much any half competent Hollywood director and in that respect I think Michel Gondry’s talents have been wasted on this project.
The story is a simple one, the story of revenge and redemption, a plucky underdog duo against organised crime. The movie doesn’t try to tackle these topics, but simply uses them for competently directed action set pieces and overly-long cringe-worthy banter between both the partners in crime and their opponents.
Although the movie isn’t a traditional superhero movie, the genre that has been popularised and overdone during the last five years, and is more akin to last years success “Kick Ass”, it still follows a very conventional story-arc. This is not a major complaint, as most genre movies follow the same rules, but the half-way through I was waiting for the conflict between the two protagonists, over a girl no less, which was then promptly delivered.
The masked vigilantes, Seth Rogen as The Green Hornet and Jay Chou as Kato – his kung-fu kicking sidekick with superpower abilities – work well together. Their presence together is good and there are some good moments, notably a clever fight scene involving the two bickering. The majority of Seth Rogen’s dialogue is terrible, but I don’t find his delivery helps. Chou on the other hand is understated and cool and contributes a lot to the movie.
The cameos are the best part of the movie. Firstly, the main villain Chudnofsky, a Russian crime boss, played by Christoph Waltz. This Austrian actor shot to fame (to English-speaking audiences) playing a insane villain in Tarantino’s Inglourious Basterds, and he pulls off another superb performance, this time a more nuanced and subtle insanity with flashes of a horrifying temper. Secondly, James Franco as the arrogant young new guy in town, trying to jump to the top of the crime tier without any hard work. He is only in one scene, but it is the best scene of the movie. Tom Wilkinson plays the work addicted newspaper owner with his usual high-class calibre.
The 3D. Well, after the first ten minutes of everything looking too sparkly and fake, I hardly noticed it, except for my eyes becoming sore. The 3D didn’t add anything to the movie – except for the increased ticket price, watering eyes and uncomfortable glasses.
Overall, I would skip this at the cinema and watch it at home. If you haven’t seen Kick Ass, I would watch that instead.