2011 is promising to be huge for super hero fans. With DC’s Green Lantern coming in June and Marvel’s Thor showing up in May, it’s no surprise that some of the lesser known heroes will be trying to hang onto the big guys’ capes with their own movies. Leading the pack is The Green Hornet, a super hero movie that shows that any super hero has the potential for an awesome movie, not just the ones with action figures.
The Green Hornet was originally a radio series in the 1940’s and was created by the same man who created The Lone Ranger, George Trendle. There are even a lot of similarities between the two: both are masked vigilantes, and both believe in exploiting minorities. Lucky for them, though, since without their stereotypical sidekicks, they’d both be dead on their first adventures.
The Green Hornet film follows Britt Reid, played by Seth Rogen (Monsters Vs. Aliens, Funny People), the rich son of a wealthy philanthropist and newspaper editor. After his father’s sudden death, Reid meets his father’s mechanic Kato, played by John Cho (Star Trek). Kato is a Chinese orphan with ninja skills and the ability to build weapons into things that Batman would be proud of. After Reid finds out about Kato’s amazing abilities, he convinces him to become a super hero and try to clean up the dirty streets of LA. Opposing them is Chudnofsky, the evil mob boss who controls all the crime in LA, played by Christoph Waltz (Inglorious Bastards). Cameron Diaz (Shrek) plays the love interest, Lenore Case, who never actually falls in love with anyone. In fact, the missing shoe-horned love subplot is refreshingly missing from this super hero movie.
The film follows our not-so-dynamic-duo as they punch, kick, and shoot their way around LA. Black Beauty, the car that Kato tricked out to make into an arsenal on wheels, makes all this incredibly entertaining. Ever wonder if it would be easier if Batman or Spider-Man just gave up on the whole “never kill” thing and just started wasting people left and right? Well that’s what these guys do. At points they try to use non-lethal weapons, shooting sand bags from the car and using a gun that shoots knock-out gas, but they usually break down and start using the rail guns mounted to the hood of the car and just up the body count.
This is another great popcorn movie, like Season of the Witch. The plot is simple but not stupid, and the chemistry between Rogen and Cho is executed really well. It shows that Rogen can do well outside of mindless comedies, and star in more higher quality works – at the very least, better comedies.
The Green Hornet is rated PG-13 for watching a lot of people brutally die, and strong language.