Feel The Sting
image from filmofilia.com
RANT: Went to the theater with my housemate today. Big problem... the first two rows behind the rail were reserved! Apparently, they do not let you know that when you arrive at the box office. Problem was, the film was PG-13 and not truly suitable for the young party goers. Oh well, I guess the parents know what's best.
SYNOPSIS: After the death of his newspaper mogul father, playboy Britt Reid decides to change the direction of his life by helping people as a costumed, masked avenger.
Get ready to hear the trumpets. Michel Gondry directs a story from Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg based on The Green Hornet radio series and the 1966-1967 TV series by George W. Trendle. The Green Hornet and Kato, characters made famous on the small screen by Van Williams and the legendary Bruce Lee, get their big screen treatment at long last.
Many were unsure, me included, that Seth Rogen was the man for the job to fill Britt Reid's shoes - let alone fill the Green Hornet's mask. But what we get from Seth's is a Britt Reid who is a wannabe masked adventurer with all of the enthusiasm and none of the fighting skills. It is refreshing, like Kick Ass before it, that the hero be just the regular guy without any cosmic rays or radioactive spiders - just the desire to help people. Thank the gods Britt has a martial arts mechanical genius, Kato (Jay Chou) to watch his back and keep him outfitted with all sorts of vehicles and gadgets. And since neither Britt nor Kato have a clue how to be the heroes they need to be to take down the kingpins of Los Angeles crime, Britt, as the new owner and editor of his father's paper, has to enlist a criminologist secretary Lenore Case (Cameron Diaz) to give them some much needed advice - Lenore not suspecting that she is really helping the Green Hornet.
Of course, it is code that every great hero needs a great villain. And in this case, we are fortunate enough to have Inglourious Basterds own Christoph Waltz as Los Angeles crime boss, Chudnofsky. In a great opening scene with Mr. Clear (James Franco) as an up-and-comer crystal-meth dealer and night club owner, Chudnofsky shows great concern and worry from Mr. Clear's comments that Chudnofsky was not modern or scary enough to be the big boss. It is not a Col. Hans Landa caliber performance, but above par, nonetheless.
The movie has chemistry, action and laughs. Seth Rogen takes on Britt Reid with childlike vigor and eagerness to get out and fight crime. And Jay Chou would make Bruce Lee proud with his turn as Kato. The Black Beauty is a crazy, cool car with its missiles and hood machine guns and chases through downtown. Plus we get some funny moments with the introductions of the Green Hornet's gas gun. The trend to use 3D technology results in adequate effects, but the film would be fine without it. As with any Seth Rogen film, I make sure that I have an over sized bucket of popcorn and a kidney-busting soda, looking to escape the early afternoon reality. But I was pleasantly surprised with the flick - getting my fill of action and amusement.
Worth: Matinee or DVD
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