Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Superhero Media: The Green Hornet

I'm not actually entirely sure how this film came to be. Well, I do know that a major Hollywood studio wanted to get some cash from the booming superhero trend and grabbed the first license they could find; but I'm not sure how this film, specifically, was the result. Firstly, Green Hornet is probably not as bad as you may have been told it is. Sure, it's not great but I'd describe it more as a "poor" or "not very good" film than an outright bad one. The Green Hornet feels more like it should have come out a decade earlier, not in the aftermath of Iron Man when the idea of quality production on superhero films was generating profit and critical acclaim. The casting of the film cops a lot of flak, but even Seth Rogen does ok and even Christoph Waltz can't make his character convincing. 

I'm not normally one to forgive asinine "Fanboy Rage", but I do wonder that the story of the Green Hornet was so changed. Although the character is quite old, many versions keep the idea that the Lone Ranger was an ancestor of Britt Reid and the inspiration to turn his live of idle leisure into something more meaningful; enter Kato and the rest is history. I get the feeling that the more "traditional" Green Hornet origin would have worked better with the characterisation that Rogen brought to the role. There would have been more of an arc for the Hornet and some moments of temptation to compromise could have made him more identifiable. Also, the central place of the newspaper in the narrative feels anachronistic even for 2011, it probably should have been replaced with a The Newsroom-style subsidiary of one of the bigger outlets for verisimilitude.

A guy I used to play music with really likes this film, and I can see why; it is a lot of fun in places and looks really polished. As a fan of Gamera films and DBZ, I really can't criticize anyone too harshly for enjoying this, it's not Super Buddies bad after all. I've heard that the new Green Hornet comic series that spun out of this film are actually really good, though I'm yet to check them out. I'm hoping that there will be a good version of Green Hornet put to film at some stage, the character has such a legacy that it really deserves to take its place alongside the pantheon of superheroes that have achieved new acclaim in recent years. 

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