Story and Screenplay
Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg’s story and screenplay draw heavily from ‘The Green Hornet’ radio series and its television adaptation. However, the writers have added the humour element to the story by turning the protagonist into a funny character. While this might not appeal to fans of the franchise, it certainly makes the film a better watch. The comedy is bang on most of the times but there are scenes where one wishes that the writers would have pushed the envelope. Moreover, the story has enough action sequences and visual wizardry to appeal to most audiences. Having said that, one must add that there are a few things that are wrong with the script. Britt’s sudden transition from a rich brat to a good Samaritan is unconvincing. So also is the fight between Kato and Britt, especially given the fact that they are basically fighting over a girl, who evidently does not really like either of them. The climax of the film could also have been better.
Watch out for classy performances by Seth Rogen and Jay Chou. Cameron Diaz has little to do. Tom Wilkinson, David Harbour and Edward James Olmos (as the newspaper editor) act well. Christoph Waltz, as the frustrated yet funny villain, is too good. James Franco’s cameo, as the metrosexual don, is impressive.
Direction, Visual Effects & Editing
Michel Gondry’s direction is fair but one expected much more from him, given his track record of visually mesmerising films (Tokyo!, Be Kind Rewind, Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind, The Science Of Sleep). However, he manages to tell the story of the midnight masked vigilante and his accomplice in an interesting manner. Choreography of the action scenes is excellent, as is the judicious use of 3D technology. Visual effects are fine. Background score by James Newton Howard is appropriate. John Schwartzman’s cinematography and Michael Tronick’s editing take the director’s vision forward.
The Last Word
On the whole, The Green Hornet may appeal to the fans of the franchise but there aren’t many of them in India. The weak script will tell on its box-office performance.
The Green Hornet opened today in the US as well (January 14th, 2011).