The Green Hornet

Seth Rogen, Jay Chou, Cameron Diaz, Christoph Waltz

Canadian Rating: PG

Hello everyone! I have to say it felt a little weird last week posting my novel chapter because I was not directly communicating with you.

So…how ARE you?

So anyway, I was excited to see the Green Hornet because my first two movie reviews were fairly positive and I was looking forward to shaking things up with a scather! And some of you who read my DeviantArt page know that I have proficient skills in expressing anger (especially for movies of the Marvel/DC variety). So I figured, piece of cake.

But the cake was going to be so delicious and easy, that it actually became difficult to bake. And I got cocky. And then when I started to think about it, the only real opinion I had formed about the movie was as follows:

I think I am ok with the main character being a jerk, but on the other hand, I am not ok with him being a stupid jerk.

And that was it. The rest was East of Yonge (riff raff).

So I’m going to do what I have learned is the best thing to do when your article is shaping up to be one sentence long: WRITE ANYWAY.

So here we go!

The first scenes of the movie set you up with some foreshadowing of the stupidity and jerkiness of our hero, Britt Reid (Seth Rogen). His father James (Tom Wilkinson) is the rich owner of a big city newspaper, the Chronicle (if it’s not called that, that is because I’m getting it mixed up with Spiderman). Since his birth Britt was verbally abused by his father, who taunts him with discouraging words like, “if you’re just going to fail, why are you even trying?” He snatches lil’ Britt’s toy superhero doll and rips off the head and Lil’ Britt yells, “noooooooooo!”

I felt like this scene was thrown together in 6 seconds. “Ok take one: James say something mean. Ok good. Britt, scream and cry. That’s a wrap. Awesome guys! You’re so good at this!” I’m pretty sure I heard these words being spoken in the background through the scene. The movie actually had a lot of necessary scenes, the ones that set you up for something later. Sadly they all had that thrown together quality. When watching it, you knew that they knew that you knew that scene needed to be there. And you’re not supposed to know that!

Britt grows up and obviously becomes a partying womanizer. James dies from a bee sting not long after yelling at his son one last time and dramatically knocking an espresso out of his hand. He means business! Sorry, meant business. May he rest in peace.

Britt meets the talented and smart-looking Kato (Jay Chou), and they decide to team up and become heroes disguised as bad guys. I actually liked their reasoning for this. If everyone knows they are heroes, villains will exploit their good morals (using hostages etc), but if they are disguised as bad guys, then no one will know that they have that weakness.

So basically, Kato is ALL the brains of the team. He is the sidekick and the Alfred, the provider of awesome gadgets, weapons and vehicles, the maker of delicious espresso, the goodlooking one, the calm one, the one who actually has something close to a superpower….and Britt is the immature child who jerkishly stupids it up all the time and can’t shut his mouth for one second.

I know I haven’t read the comics, but I feel like SOMETHING ISN’T RIGHT HERE. Can’t Britt bring something to the table? Can’t you have daddy issues and at least one good quality? Or if you can’t muster up a quality, a superpower maybe? Batman lost both his parents and he was able to fight crime without whining. Superman may have grown up in a nice family, but he still had abandonment issues from losing his original parents and from being the last Kryptonian. Spiderman accidentally allowed his own uncle to be killed by a robber. I’m just saying.

The actors/acting in general did annoy me, but the plot was not actually bad. And I did laugh quite a bit at some parts and I enjoyed the way everything came together as the film progressed. There is one scene where Britt finally starts to understand the conspiracy that he had unwittingly stumbled into. His brain is trying to explain it to him like he’s a child, step by step, and it is ridiculously funny.

I did not like the villain, Chudnofski (Christoph Waltz). He was one of those “the guy who kills everyone” villains, even if his victims just say something that hurts his feelings. It was not in the cool, “apology accepted, Captain Needa” way. It was in the “please think that I am scary” way but that is only scary once because it’s not real life and viewers get bored easily by killings. That is why Vader only threatened to do it in A New Hope and actually did it once in Empire Strikes Back, then he gracefully passed on his killing rights to the Emperor.

Bottom line: The movie was a bit too cartoony, but not cartoony like Scott Pilgrim, but cartoony like too lazy to make anything feel realistic. Good for a laugh if you aren’t picky or if you’re in the mood for Seth Rogen.

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About pertobello

I live in Toronto but I'm from the east coast originally. I like photography, psychology, writing, pictures, the brain, literature and the creation of, taking snapshots, therapy (of myself and others), manuscripts, digital renderings of events and places, exploring the capablities and workings of the human mind, transcribing my thoughts and stories into a readable format. Wow I have an impressive list of interests!! cindy.pert@gmail.com
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5 Responses to The Green Hornet

  1. Ripplin says:

    I’m not gonna read your post too much [yet] cuz I hate spoilers. :p I was gonna go see GH last night, but it was gone.

  2. pertobello says:

    Sounds good. The paragraph that starts with “The actors/acting in general did annoy me” that part has some spoilage. Everything else I say about the movie in this particular review happens in the first 15 mins. (They don’t really allow much time for character development.)

  3. Mercules says:

    Here is the thing about Kato being the “super hero” part of the Green Hornet team. The legendary Bruce Lee played Kato in the TV adaption of the Green Hornet in the 60s. When aired in China it was called “The Kato Show” and Bruce’s martial arts prowess often stole the show from Van Williams.

    I believe the current Kato being the heroic force behind the duo is an homage to Bruce Lee and the TV show. Seth Rogan was a co-writer for the movie and purposefully wrote the Britt character as inept and bumbling even if he was going to play him.

    I actually loved the scene in which Britt tuned into the same focus that Kato would. He started to kick ass and had me, for one, going, “Wow… he is actually doing it. He is going to… ulp… there we go, he flubbed it.” with a big smile on my face.

    Yes the character development was lacking. Yes you never really felt any sympathy or connection with any of the characters. The plot was shallow and forced. However, it is the Green Hornet and was supposed to be cheesy, with stilted dialog, and Kato being a scene stealer. It is supposed to try and play things seriously but fail and end up cheesy, just like the 60s show.

    • pertobello says:

      You know what? I totally get that. That reminds me of the time I was watching the new Get Smart. I had only seen the old TV show once when I was young and I had forgotten everything except that he used his shoe as a phone.

      The first time I saw the new one (which I loved, haha), I assumed that they were making the new Max waaay dumber for our generation. Then the second time I saw it, I asked my friends, “I’m assuming he was smarter in the original,” and they all looked at me and said, “Are you kidding? They are being KIND in this movie. TOO kind!” and they filled me in that in the old show, Agent 99 always saved the day, and Max always screwed up. Same type of relationship as Kato/Britt.

      Sometimes when things pay respectful homage to older stories, they don’t exactly fit our expectations for what is entertainment now. In the 60’s people’s lives were not as focused on entertainment, media and graphics so their needs when watching TV were far different. That makes sense.

      Thanks very much for your thoughts! 🙂

  4. Austin says:

    Hey! I got here from your Twitter link.

    I liked your one-sentence summary of the movie. The Rogen character was unbearable from the start, and only got worse since. Nice review, and great site! Keep it up.

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