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Jun 19, 2008

Fletch's Film Review: The Incredible Hulk

(Note: spoilers abound. Enter at your own risk.)

Why......?

...is it that every time Bruce attempts to contact Mr. Blue, Mr. Blue is right there on the computer, ready and willing to type 200 wpm, save for the one time that Bruce and Betty require him not to be at his computer (when they visit him and oh-so-coincidentally meet him outside)?

...does Betty plead for Banner/Hulk to stop choking Blonsky/Hulk? She would prefer that he lived?

...is it that when Banner is searching for data using Betty's profile that when he clicks on "Encryptnet," it connects him immediately to Mr. Blue? Are all computers hard-coded to connect to him?

...wouldn't Banner even attempt to get his heart rate up before voluntarily falling out of a helicopter? Was he that confident that he'd change? Seems like an awful risky manuever to me.

...would the Army even be chasing after Banner/Hulk after he releases Blonsky/Hulk? Isn't, you know, a GENERAL standing right there, ready, willing and able to give the call to stop chasing him, given all that he's just witnessed?

...didn't the producers keep Downey's cameo where it no doubt belonged - after the credits just like Iron Man? I understand the reasoning (Iron Man's a hit and many were anticipating it), but they not only had a better ending (closing on Banner), but compromised their lead character and actor in favor of a different film's lead character and actor. If I were Norton, I'd be pissed.

...is it that not even a single one of Betty's hairs was singed when a fireball engulfed her and the Hulk?

...does Blonsky/Hulk have the ability to speak cogently, while Banner/Hulk has the brain of a three-year old (no offense to three-year olds)?

...isn't United Blood Services contacting Mr. Blue, asking him to save the world's blood supply by "concentrating it and making more?" The man could have been a millionaire at worst!

...had I never noticed that Tim Roth is a borderline midget? (IMDb says 5'7"; I say bullsh*t.)

...did Norton do this?
...is this movie so effing stupid?
...did I let myself get swayed by all of the positive reviews, when it ended up being exactly what I thought it was (right, Denny Green)?

Listen, I know this is a comic book adaptation that is not grounded in reality in the least. For that reason, I've tried (I might've failed) to avoid even broaching questions like "why doesn't the Hulk's hair burn?" or "why does Banner even bother buying stretchy pants when his outbreaks are so relatively rare?" I understand the all adaptations of the comic book are either stuck with the conventions that they were born with or risk pissing off fanboys and girls everwhere by altering them. Therefore, I've tried to ask common sense questions that should be asked of any film, no matter how "out there" the the concept is. It passes none of them. Were I so inclined, I could probably drum up 40 more, but the movie's just not worth it (and if you ask Mrs. Fletch, it's not even worth the ones I did ask). Kingdom of the Crystal Skull - will you take me back?

Fletch's Film Rating:

"I want you to punch me as hard as you can."

(By the way, for what it's worth, I enjoyed the first act - you'll notice, most of the questions I posed above circle around the third, horrendous act. It really all started to go downhill right about the time when Banner hulks out at the college campus. Just FYI.)


19 people have chosen wisely: on "Fletch's Film Review: The Incredible Hulk"

Joseph B. said...

Whaa? No Cyd Charisse RIP post? How dare you....

And I've really been avoiding seeing this for fear of everything you just described. I think I'm manufactured to go see any and every Ed Norton film in the theater, so I'm conflicted.

Nick said...

Aw... I loved the third act, and the college campus fight scene between Hulk and the Captain America-like Tim Roth was awesome.

There were a few of your questions I pondered (specifically the ones regarding Mr. Blue... and the one about why she asked him to stop choking The Abomination... and the one about the blood supply). But I just shrugged them off due to the fun-ness of the movie.

Though, I did hear that Edward Norton WAS upset with Marvel Studios because they forced a bunch of things to be cut and such that he thought would have made the movie better (and thus disappeared to Africa for a while when the movie premiered).

Fox said...

Those are all relevant questions. I just took it that Mr. Blue was so OMG BFF with Bruce that he was online like ALLLL the time, and stuff.

But the question I keep asking myself is... did I like it? It's odd, b/c I'm usually pretty quick to decide these things. It's been almost a week and I'm still teetering.

Like Nick, I liked the college campus section, but I though the final battle was weak. I did like Norton in this role. I prefer his Hulk to Robert Downey's Iron Man. I thought Liv Tyler and Tim Roth were both solid.

Nick said...

I'm in disagreement with Fox there. I thought the Final Battle was very worthy, and loads better than the climax of Iron Man (which was weak).

Michael J. Mendez said...

I just watched Ang Lee's version on Sci-Fi channel and sorry, sir, I still like the new one better. The new Hulk looks better, Liv Tyler looks better and the action is better. And isn't that what comic movies are all about?

Daniel G. said...

Holy crap, we might not have seen eye-to-eye so closely on a movie this year, Fletch. All of those thoughts were running through my head as I waited for the pain to stop. Allow me to continue...

Why?

...did it turn into Cloverfield 2 for a few minutes?

...was Liv Tyler's camera on in her pocket? She just has it on permanently and then the battery dies? And what, she only took that ONE picture with it?

...didn't they notice/hear all the commotion outside Mr. Blue's lab until Banner got nailed with the tranq? There were choppers hovering right outside the window!

...was the campus ENTIRELY empty? I went to college in a city, but I can't imagine a "rural" campus ever that dead. Not one human being walking from one place to another at 7 or 8 AM? Just 1-2 kids in the library? Took people long enough to notice the chase, too.

...did Banner, after sneezing away everything but a SCUD missile, feel the pain from bumping his head in the cave? Poor baby. He's LITERALLY INVINCIBLE, but watch your head...

I can't agree with you, Mike. I haven't seen the old Hulk in a couple of years, but I remember thinking that was just as ridiculous. Couldn't he fly in that one? At least Ang Lee had some fresh editing/framing techniques. Oh, and I'll take Jennifer Connelly over Liv Tyler anyday...

Clive Dangerously said...

I am five-seven, and indeed it is short.

Dave said...

Thank you, thank you for saying what others out there seem to be missing. There are a lot of wholes in this film. I liked it in spite of those and thought it was better than the 2003 film, but the 2003 film had so much more creativity and classic Ang Lee style to it that it was impossible for me not to like it. I think you may have been a bit harsh on this new one though. There should be plenty of extra explanation added with the DVD release which apparently has a ton of extra run time (70 minutes). I totally agree with the falling out of the airplane thing; it just didn't make sense to me even at 1:30 am when I am sure I allowed a few things to roll off my back because I wasn't thinking clearly. Thanks for saying what I wanted to, but didn't.

Chivid said...

Hulk's hair never burns for the exact same reason why Superman's costume never burns. I don't know the reason myself. I'm just saying they're connected.

Yes the movie was relatively mindless, because that is what the whiny fanbois wanted it to be.

I was so hoping (when banner was about to drop himself out of the helicopter and Betty asked him how do you know this will even work") that Banne would just be honest and say "Its going to make for a more dramatic sequence.

Fletch said...

@ Joseph - resist the urge. It ain't worth it.

@ Fox - made up your mind yet?

@ Nick - the climax of Iron Man was indeed weak (compared to the rest of the film, anyway), and probably the main thing that kept it from "effing awesome" status. But the one here in Hulk was the LXG "tribute" I thought it would be.

@ Daniel - that's saying something, because I think are tastes are pretty damn close in line overall.

Ell oh ell at the camera stuff. I hadn't thought of that, but yeah, that was pretty inane, too.

Even funnier was the head bump in the cave you mention. Thousands of gunshots, no biggie. Knock to his wittle noggin - waaaa!

@ Dave - you're probably right RE: the DVD stuff. Unfortunately, I don't care nearly enough to put myself through watching it...

@ Chivid - trust me, I have a million more questions like the hair one, but I imagine most of them are "legacy" issues that just kind of come along with the character, dating back to either the TV show or comic. They still bothered me, but I could shrug them off much easier than the scads of other things.

Nic Cage said...

It was fun Mr. Man. Just relax and enjoy a film once and a while...geez.

Maybe then you would enjoy one of my films :)

Fletch said...

The Incredible Hulk starring Nic Cage would be awesome!!

Nick said...

Fletch: Didn't they already try something like that? I think it was a little movie called 'Ghost Rider' :P .

Chivid said...

@ Nick and Fletch: The problem with Iron Man has always been, outside of The Avengers, he has jack squat for a decent rogue's gallery.

The Hulk at least has some good bruisers to throw in from sequel to sequel. Plus we also saw the start of The Leader (aka Samuel Sterns, Mr Blue).

Nick said...

The most memorable villains, to me, have always belonged to Spider-Man and Batman.

Otherwise, all I really know are the 'big names' like Dr. Doom (F4), Galactus (Silver Surfer), Red Skull (Captain America), Magneto (X-Men), and Lex Luther (Superman). I'm probably missing one or two, but you get my point. I never really knew any big villain names for Iron Man or Hulk... but then again, I never paid much attention to the lore of either one...er... either.

Fletch said...

@ Nick - yeah, I really need to get out there and rent Ghost Rider. If there's one movie about a dead motorcyclist I see this year, that's gonna be it!

@ chivid - knowing nothing of Hulk lore, we were wondering what was up with Mr. Blue when his head started growing. Glad to learn it was foreshadowing. Tim Blake Nelson makes such a great nutjob.

DCMovieGirl said...

Sorry, your opinion on this?

Null and void.

Especially, since you think The Illusionist is better than The Prestige. :D

Nope. You're never gonna live that down.

K. Bowen said...

Trying to decide if I want to make this one up. I'm leaning strongly to no. Or maybe to the dollar theater.

Fletch said...

DC Girl - I do want to see The Prestige again. I've since watched The Illusionist again and wasn't nearly as impressed as the first viewing. I'm not above admitting I was wrong, but I know I wasn't terribly impressed with The Prestige the first time around (and I desperately wanted to be).