Plot summary (from the studio): In The Green Hornet, Britt Reid (Seth Rogen) is the son of LA’s most prominent and respected media magnate and perfectly happy to maintain a directionless existence on the party scene — until his father (Tom Wilkinson) mysteriously dies, leaving Britt his vast media empire. Striking an unlikely friendship with one of his father’s more industrious and inventive employees, Kato (Jay Chou), they see their chance to do something meaningful for the first time in their lives: fight crime. To get close to the criminals, they come up with the perfect cover: they’ll pose as criminals themselves.
Protecting the law by breaking it, Britt becomes the vigilante The Green Hornet as he and Kato hit the streets. Using all his ingenuity and skill, Kato builds the ultimate in advanced retro weaponry, The Black Beauty, an indestructible car equal parts firepower and horsepower. Rolling in a mobile fortress on wheels and striking the bad guys with Kato’s clever gadgets, The Green Hornet and Kato quickly start making a name for themselves, and with the help of Britt’s new secretary, Lenore Case (Cameron Diaz), they begin hunting down the man who controls LA’s gritty underworld: Benjamin Chudnofsky (Christopher Waltz). But Chudnofsky has plans of his own: to swat down The Green Hornet once and for all.
Warning: Spoilers below!
- I am not ordinarily a fan of comic book movies, but I found this film oddly interesting. I think it’s because it played out more like your average action-comedy than a superhero movie. I’ve read that fans of the original Green Hornet comics hated this one, so maybe that’s why it was palatable to mainstream audience members like me.
- While I would stop short of saying Seth Rogen is able to carry an entire film by himself, I thought he was pretty decent here. He has an everyman quality about him that makes it easy to relate to whatever characters he plays. I liked his take on The Green Hornet and the fact that he let himself show emotion. For example, he was just as amazed by Kato’s gadgets as the audience was, and frequently allowed himself to “ooh” and “aah” about something. That’s quite a refreshing change from the stony-faced stoicism of, say, Christian Bale’s Batman.
- I liked that there wasn’t a romance between Cameron Diaz’s character and the Green Hornet. That would have been stretching the bounds of realism a bit too far, even for a superhero/fantasy movie. Again, it was nice that the woman just provided support and friendship instead of being a full-blown romantic interest. Yes, she did have that moment with Kato, but luckily that didn’t go very far.
- The story was actually understandable. In so many comic book adaptations, I find myself completely lost in regards to the plot. At least I was able to follow along here.
- The guy who played Kato was very annoying to me for some reason. I couldn’t tell if he was a terrible actor or if the character was supposed to come off as being stiff and dweebish like that. Either way, he was totally grating on my nerves by the end.
- The bad guy wasn’t much of a bad guy, ya know? I expected him to be able to put up a bit more of a fight than he actually did. After all, The Green Hornet didn’t even have any special powers and was still able to beat him pretty easily!
- Does every comic book hero have to have Daddy issues? I mean, is that like a requirement in the genre? It sure as hell seems like it!
Count me among the few people who liked The Green Hornet. I thought the film was funny and had good pacing to it. I don’t know how it stands up as an adaptation, but for someone who had never even heard of The Green Hornet before seeing the movie, I found it quite enjoyable. I give it 4 stars out of 5.