Monday, January 17, 2011

"The Green Hornet" (2011)

I'll be totally honest and not pose a bit when I say that I have absolutely no frame of reference when it comes to The Green Hornet television show aside from the iconic images and the knowledge that Bruce Lee, whom I've been a fan of since I was a kid, played Kato. And the television show probably was not the only incarnation of these characters, but again, without doing any research for the sake of objectivity, I'm admitting ignorance on the universe of The Green Hornet.

That being said, the new "The Green Hornet" movie worked for me on levels that I didn't expect, nor do I think most audiences would have anticipated after seeing the less than impressive trailers that hit theatres not too long ago. Turns out, it's a damn good blend of action and comedy, a really fun ride rooted almost entirely in the chemistry between Seth Rogen as Britt Reid A.K.A. The Green Hornet, and musician/actor Jay Chou as Kato. Throw in some pretty impressive ... and violent ... action sequences, and I was reminded of what Rogen contributed to "Pineapple Express," which was a surprising balance of his trademark ironic humor within a kinetic action movie that gave him more than enough opportunity to play into his everyman vulnerability. The character of the Green Hornet is making it up as he goes along, hoping he doesn't get too badly hurt in the process, and we're right there with him. I don't want to say that liking this movie totally depends on whether or not one is a fan of Seth Rogen, but it sure does help. Rounding out the cast is the always charismatic Christoph Waltz, who more than adequately fills-in the blank of "villain," and Cameron Diaz, who to be honest again, I kept forgetting was even in this movie until I finally saw her on screen.

It's just a good time at the movies. And let me report that the 3-D is quite good, an instance where, for lack of a better word, they seemed aware that they were making a 3-D movie. Hang around for the end credits. You'll see what I'm talking about.