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The Green Hornet (2011)

With this summer already set to be jam packed full of super hero stories which production companies all hope will become super blockbusters, 2011 begins with a different type of hero. The popular character, The Green Hornet, which was brought to audiences in many different production markets throughout the early 1900s and originally created by George W. Trendle and Fran Striker meets new foes…in 3-D.

Britt Reid (Seth Rogen) is the party happy and neglected as a child son of media mogul James Reid (Tom Wilkinson). Britt’s father, who wrote and published articles about the crime and corruption taking over the city of Los Angeles, unexpectedly dies and leaves his newspaper publication to his irresponsible son. After grasping the fact that his father is gone forever and a seemingly innocent prank turns violent, Britt realizes that he needs to do more with his life.

With his newfound friend who used to be his father’s mechanic, Kato (Jay Chou), Britt decides to create vigilante personas for each of them as they tackle the crime plaguing their city. Christening himself the Green Hornet but leaving his handy sidekick nameless, Britt and Kato pose as criminals themselves in order to attempt to uncover and eventually bring down the crime bosses in L.A. With the aid of the Black Beauty, their state-of-the-art missle toting, maching gun shooting and nearly impervious tank of a car, they cruise the streets during the night looking to stir up whatever trouble they can find.

Directed by Michael Gondry with the screenplay written by Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg, The Green Hornet truly packs a punch almost as fierce as one delivered by Kato himself. Great action sequences tailored by slow motion effects and enhanced for 3-D was a real treat to be seen on the big screen. This being my first ever IMAX experience, I admit that I had my doubts at first but I was pleasantly surprised by the usage of the three-dimensional camera work and enhanced surround sound score. The fight scenes I think would probably have made Bruce Lee proud, who played the original Kato.

You won’t have to look far to find the comedy in this one as the opening scene will have you chuckling. Rogen is his usual funny guy self whose dialogue throughout the film presents his character as somewhat of an idiot who means well. The on-screen chemistry between him and Chou is a funny thing to see. Their character involvement and humor brings another function to the super hero genre. Cameron Diaz, who plays Reid’s secretary, Lenore, is nothing really special but as usual is nice to look at. Her constant rejections of Rogen’s advances are quite funny as well.

Apparently there were a number of actors, directors and producers attached to bringing this film to life throughout the years dating back to the 90’s. But those deals always seemed to fall through. Allowing Rogen and his often collaborating partner, Evan Goldberg, to co-executive produce seemed to work out very well for this project. By the end of this one, I almost forgot that I had paid $16 to see it in IMAX 3-D. That is until I looked at my ticket stub again.

Although it was a little surprising by the harsh ways that some people met their demise in this film, it still managed to avoid unnecessary blood and gruesomeness to receive its PG-13 rating. In general, as the first movie that I have reviewed to be released in 2011, I wouldn’t mind seeing this one again. I give The Green Hornet “4 blasts from the Hornet Gas Gun out of 5”.

“Mess with the Hornet and you’ll get stung.”



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