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DVD Review: The Green Hornet

May 3, 2011

The Green Hornet – A Sony Pictures’ Release

http://www.sonypictures.com/homevideo/thegreenhornet/

DVD Release Date: May 3rd, 2010

Rated PG for violence, language may offend

Running time: 119 minutes

Michel Gondry (dir.)

Seth Rogen (writer)

Evan Goldberg (writer)

Based on the radio series by George W. Trendle

James Newton Howard (music)

Seth Rogen as Britt Reid / The Green Hornet

Jay Chou as Kato

Cameron Diaz as Lenore Case

Christoph Waltz as Benjamin Chudnofsky

Our reviews below:

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The Green Hornet DVD Review By John C.

** (out of 4)

When his father mysteriously dies, young slacker Britt Reid (Seth Rogen) is left in charge of a large estate and a failing newspaper.  Teaming up with his father’s brilliant mechanic, Kato (Jay Chou), Reid creates an alternate personality as The Green Hornet.  Bumbling through a newspaper job by day and fighting crime at night, they make it their mission to take down sinister and self-conscious drug lord, Chudnofsky (Christoph Waltz).

Waltz is suitably creepy but pretty much playing a caricature of his usual role, and Cameron Diaz seems miscast and doesn’t get much to do as a newspaper assistant.  Directed by Michel Gondry, The Green Hornet is uneven and often dumb, but the interactions of the main cast and highly stylized action sequences usually serve to provide a bit of goofy and admittedly outrageous entertainment.

The DVD includes a filmmaker commentary, a gag reel, as well as several featurettes.

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The Green Hornet DVD Review by Erin V.  

**1/2 (out of 4)

Based on the radio serial from years back, The Green Hornet stars Seth Rogan as Britt Reid/The Green Hornet, and Jay Chou as his sidekick Kato.  After Britt’s father is killed, he decides to become a hero and together with Kato, they pose as bad guys in order to take down the real bad guys.

Sure, the whole film is over the top and could easily be considered stupid, but it’s also a ton of fun.  From an opening scene with James Franco as a drug-dealer facing off with a crime-boss played by Christoph Waltz, the dialogue is sharp and funny.  It’s ridiculous to listen to, but yes, it’s funny.  Audiences are going to enjoy this one if they’re looking for nothing more than an action-comedy with lots of stylized PG level violence.  I’d recommend it as a light action rental to pass an afternoon or evening.  Most in the 12-35 age range are going to find at least something to like here.

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The Green Hornet DVD Review By Nicole

**1/2 (out of 4)

Based on the classic radio program of the same name, The Green Hornet provides an updated version of this classic hero.  Seth Rogen stars as Britt Reid, a young slacker who has it easy until his father dies from a bee sting allergy.  Britt inherits his late dad’s newspaper, but he would much rather be doing a cool job.  So he teams up with his dad’s mechanic Kato (Jay Chou), a genius inventor and martial arts master, in order to take down the methamphetamine labs that are run by deadly crime boss, Chudnofsky (Christoph Waltz).  Britt, under the alias The Green Hornet, becomes an infamous crime busting vigilante.

The Green Hornet is a fun action flick.  It isn’t going to win any Oscars, but the film captures the right tone for each scene.  The villain is sufficiently creepy, and The Green Hornet/Britt Reid and Kato are charming and funny.  In many ways, this could be considered an action comedy.  The violence is highly stylized and never graphic.  The Green Hornet is a cool film that is worth checking out.

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The Green Hornet DVD Review By Maureen

** (out of 4)

If you’re prepared to not take the whole action hero thing too seriously then The Green Hornet provides 119-minutes of mildly amusing entertainment.  Seth Rogen is Britt Reid, slacker/partyer/newspaper heir by day and bumbling crime-fighting action hero by night.  Every superhero needs a sidekick.  Reid’s assistant, Kato (Jay Chou) is the brains and the brawn behind the crime-fighting duo.  The scenes between the duo are manic at times, often silly and generally over the top with stylized fight scenes.  The effect is the kind of funny where you’re laughing at and not necessarily with the film much of the time.

Crimefighters need criminals to fight and the leader of the pack here is an L.A. crime lord with low self-esteem played by veteran villain actor, Christoph Waltz.  While Waltz is suitably evil in The Green Hornet it feels like he deserves better roles.  Cameron Diaz also deserves better than the role of Reid’s personal secretary.

Overall, The Green Hornet provides some cheap laughs and enough hyper-action to hold the attention of overactive teen boys.  If that’s what you’re looking for, then this is worth a Saturday night rental.

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The Green Hornet DVD Review By Tony

** (out of 4)

Back in my high school days in the late 1960s I enjoyed the TV series of Batman and The Green Hornet. Unlike the later feature films, the TV Batman was played for laughs with mock serious heroes and quirky villains, while the TV Green Hornet with Bruce Lee as Kato took its comic book stories more seriously.  The new Green Hornet is more reminiscent of the old Batman, though Seth Rogen as Britt Reid never takes himself seriously with Jay Chou as his straight man Kato.

When his severe father (Tom Wilkinson) suddenly dies from wasp venom, Britt at first hopes that the family newspaper business won’t curtail his Arthur lifestyle, leaving most of the work to his new personal secretary Lenore (Cameron Diaz). Lenore turns out to be a brilliant investigative journalist, immune to Britt’s attempts at a more intimate relationship. Kato is a stereotypically inscrutable martial arts master and mechanical genius providing all the cool gadgetry and cars that inspire Reid to become a comic book hero. Despite all the mayhem he causes, the villain (Christoph Waltz), whom we first meet in a funny confrontation with James Franco (uncredited), is vain and silly in the old TV Batman tradition.

I didn’t hate The Green Hornet as much as many critics did. Though the story is thin and the action sequences from French director Michel Gondry are over the top, they are fun to watch and Rogen and friends provide a few laughs along the way.

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Consensus: Although Michel Gondry’s take on The Green Hornet is uneven, the interactions between the lead actors and goofy action sequences consistently provide a bit of silly superhero entertainment.  **1/4 (Out of 4)

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