Box office preview: Will “The Green Hornet” sting? Will anyone want to solve “The Dilemma”?

Time is at a total premium tonight, so I’ll be keeping the bad puns and what not brief.

There’s some disagreement about whether it’ll make an amount in the $30 millions or $40 millions at my usual sources. However, I don’t think there’s any way around the likelihood that this will be the weekend in which Seth Rogen, co-writer Evan Goldberg, and director Michel Gondry’s take on “The Green Hornet” will dominate things.

Seth Green and Jay Chou lose their cool in

If only because the trollish fanboys who pre-decided to hate this movie irritate me no end, I’ve been rooting for this action comedy approach to the masked hero of old-time radio and a short-lived sixties TV program, remembered today mainly for the presence of Bruce Lee. In fact, there’s been some positive buzz on it lately and our own Jason Zingale mostly likes it. Overall, however, the overall critical reaction is disappointing, with top critics being significantly harsher. Even the usually rather gentle Roger Ebert calls it “almost unendurable” and gives it the one-star rating qualifying it for his next edition of Your Movie Sucks.

Still, I’ll probably check this one out eventually, if only to see new-Kato Jay Chou, who I really think might be a very big U.S. star in the making (he’s already huge in Asia), do his stuff. I’ll probably avoid the extra price tag for an extra dimension, however. The 3D on this is getting a negative reaction from at least some. It’ll be interesting to see whether audiences who’ve been stung by sub-par 3D before steer more towards the 2D “Hornet.”

Vince Vaughn, Kevin James, Jennifer Connelly and Winona Ryder think about their odds in With Vince Vaughn, Kevin James, Jennifer Connelly, and Winona Ryder starring and Ron Howard directing and a easily understandable premise, you might expect big things from a comedy like “The Dilemma.” However, the box office gurus tell us that not a gigantic people will actually go to see it this weekend. The critics mostly tell us they shouldn’t.

Maybe see one of those potential Oscar nominees you’ve missed so far this weekend. Perhaps “Black Swan,” which is still expanding several weeks into it’s run and expected to continue its strong run. That’s what I’ll do if I can find the time. If you’ve seen all of those and live in New York or L.A., there’s “Barney’s Version” featuring a great lead performance by Paul Giamatti and an outstanding supporting cast and getting mostly good reviews, if only for the great acting. Of course, I didn’t think even the cast made up for the drab second half of the film. Still, you could easily do worse in this or any January.

  

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Another Saturday trailer: “The Green Hornet,” the gay panic edition

If there’s one recurring theme in Seth Rogen‘s career so far, is that he thinks that straight male friendships and straight male fears of being perceived or perceiving themselves as not so straight, not-that-there’s-anything-wrong-with-that, are hilarious. He’s right, of course, but anything can get a little old.

Fortunately, that’s not quite only the only arrow in the quiver of this latest trailer which provides us with more gadgetry, more of the very real martial arts skills of Taiwan’s Jay Chou, and a bit more of the apparent go-to-baddie of the next several years, Christoph Waltz. See what you think.

H/t Deadline where the schadenfreude brigade in comments has declared it horrible, horrible, horrible because Seth Rogen lacks abs of steel and because everything is horrible, horrible, horrible — because they said so. Not saying it’s going to be director Michel Gondry’s best, or even necessarily good, but I liked parts of this trailer a lot, particularly the gas gun gag right at the end. Also, I still think Rogen is funny, though that the internalized homophobia shtick feels forced.

  

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Trailer time: “The Green Hornet”

I’m taking a brief hiatus from my hiatus to present the first trailer for one of the most widely discussed upcoming films on the ‘net. First impression: no surprise that Seth Rogen and Michel Gondry’s “The Green Hornet” appears to be another slacker superhero flick, but take a look for yourself.

The performances from Rogen and highly skilled costar Jay Chou look reasonably okay. (You probably also noticed that we get a very brief look at Tom Wilkinson, Cameron Diaz, and villain Christoph Waltz, who I’m sure will be fun.) Still, I can’t get over my vague disappointment that it’s not a period piece, even though I probably already knew that it wasn’t and forgot.

Even though the sixties TV show was set in the same out-of-time contemporary time period as the “Batman” TV show, I’ll always associate the Green Hornet with the thirties and forties, the era in which the original radio show was made and set. There’s just something very old fashioned about the entire character and concept — Britt Reid is actually supposed to be the great nephew of the Lone Ranger, which was created by the same team of writers — but since I’m one of the very few people whose ever even listened to more than one classic-era radio broadcast of any sort, I don’t imagine that will be a commercial problem. There may be others, however.

H/t Pajiba.

  

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Ladies and gentlemen, we have our new Kato

So says Sony and Nikki Finke.

And he can sing.

He can do the other thing, too.

I didn’t see Taiwanese pop-star turned actor/martial artist Jay Chou in “Curse of the Golden Flower,” but if he can hold his own with Gong Li and Chow Yun Fat (though I understand his Asian reviews were less supportive than English-language critics), I think he can manage Nicolas Cage‘s sure-to-be-nuts villain and Seth Rogen’s jokey Green Hornet.

Screenrant
has some more.

  

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