This is Seth Rogen's first live action film not to be rated R.
The Green Hornet is a franchise that spawned a successful radio series, television show, and even two film serials. Now it has finally been made into a full length motion picture with Seth Rogen taking up the green mask and becoming the vigilante crime fighter.
Britt Reid is the son of a successful newspaper publisher who spends his days squandering his father's money. One day, after suddenly dying from an allergic reaction to a bee sting, Britt becomes the sole head of The Daily Sentinel. It is then that he meets his father's long time mechanic, Kato (Jay Chou), a skilled martial artist who does a whole lot more than just fixing cars. The two instantly connect and, after some late night vandalism turns into them saving a couple from gangsters, they decide to take on alter egos and become superheros. Thus, the Green Hornet was born.
Seth Rogen is most known for his comedic roles and The Green Hornet is no different. He's the lovable party man with no responsibilities. Even when staring down the barrel of a gun, Rogen manages to crack a joke. At times he's funny but his act gets old rather quickly. I was rather hesitant about seeing Rogen take on the role Van Williams is most known for. He's definitely not the Green Hornet we're used to but I enjoyed the fresh new look on a classic character, even if he can be dumb as a brick sometimes.
His partner is crime, Kato, is a whole other story. He's the brain and the muscle of the team and is primarily the one responsible for getting Reid out of danger. Jay Chou lives up to the role that the legendary Bruce Lee held. He's definitely got the martial art skills to back him up, easily taking down four or five armed thugs at a time with little to no effort. I was, however, turned away by the method where time would slow and you'd see Kato's plan of attack sort to speak, highlighting weapons and enemies. It felt unnecessary and tacked on. Chou clearly has the fighting skills so it would have been better just to see him lay the smack down on some bad guys rather than watch it all in 300-style sequence. Chou isn't all about fighting though as he also manages to crack a few jokes every now and then. Let's also not forget his creative genius when it comes to modifying the Black Beauty.
James Bond may have his Aston Martin but that has nothing on the armored Chrysler Imperial Kato creates. This car has everything; bullet proof glass, rocket launchers, machine guns, and even an old school record player. If that doesn't scream Green Hornet then the green tinted headlights and custom license plate will. As its name describes, the car is a thing of beauty. It's also worthy of some insane car chases that probably end up destroying half of the downtown city area.
The Green Hornet isn't your typical hero movie. With Seth Rogen, it comes off more as a comedy in which some random guy attempts to become a hero and has no knowledge of what he's actually doing. That's primarily how everything plays out, with Rogen usually getting lucky in his attempt to end crime. It's not something that should be taken serious. If you do, you'll most likely be disappointed. Give The Green Hornet a chance, and I think you'll be pleasantly surprised.
Want another perspective of the film? Read Lee Roberts' review!