NEW YORK (CBS) Vacillating somewhere between purely asinine and just plain preposterous (even for a super hero flick) is Columbia's "The Green Hornet."
Based on the comic book series and radio serial from the 1940s,, "The Green Hornet" has enjoyed some longevity through comics and a 1960's television series starring Van Williams in the title role and Bruce Lee as his faithful sidekick.
In this 2011 souped-up, 3-D version, it is, strangely enough, Seth Rogan who is cast in the dual role of masked vigilante and spoilt brat Brett Reid. He also happens to be a newspaper heir who inherits his father's (Tom Wilkinson) publishing conglomerate when the patriarch is accidentally killed after supposedly being stung by a bee. The storyline, - and the movie- go downhill from there.
Much of the blame for this farce should fall solidly on Rogen, who served as co-writer on the screenplay. Instead of wit and slapstick to pump up flashy action scenes, he delivered idiotic dialogue that failed to develop
a story. Inane and unnecessary, much of what Rogen has to say in the film has very little to do with the plot and serves to drag the film down, sucking the life out of it.
By contrast, the high- octane action, on which director Michel Gondry seems to have pinned his hopes is often too fast and too convoluted - clearly designed to give audiences quick thrills. As a result, the movie lacks cohesion on all levels.
The one bright spot comes, somewhat unexpectedly, from Taiwanese pop star Jay Chou, who inhabits Lee's role. He cannot compare to the legendary martial arts master, but does bring his own unique character to the role of Reid's faithful valet and chauffeur, Kato. He also makes what looks like the best cup of coffee you are ever likely to see in your life.
As an auto-mechanic hired by Reid's father, Kato was commissioned to create a fleet of trumped -up cars that put vehicles from a Bond movie to shame. The two form a bizarre bond, borne out of disdain for their boss and the father's seeming indifference towards them. They decide to put the cars to use and rev up their bruised egos at the same time, fighting crime on the streets as masked vigilantes in their tricked-out "Black Beauty."
The prerequisite crime boss in the city, Chudnofsky, is played by Oscar winner Christoph Waltz
. Though hardly a role to rest his laurels on, Chudnofsky calls for cool-as-a-cucumber killer instinct, juxtaposed with an inferiority complex that gives us something to latch on to in an otherwise fragmented set of action sequences and vapid conversation.
Cameron Diaz, who plays Reid's temp secretary does little, besides providing some much needed eye candy
She's also welcome relief from Rogan, 부안출장안마
who for most of the film is simply annoying. Sometimes, particularly when he tries his hand at newspaper publishing, you wish he would live up to his nickname and simply buzz off.
For comic book cultists and for adolescents who really just want to see car chases and explosions, "The Green Hornet" delivers. Fans who loved Seth Rogan in "Pineapple Express" may just cut him some slack and give this film a pass. But for anyone else, there's a "sting" in having to endure this absurd action feature.