The Incredible Hulk
The Incredible Hulk-Elevates The Dark Knight to the Sublime
Movies like The Incredible Hulk and Iron Man are part of the reason that people wet themselves for a slightly above average, blockbuster script such as The Dark Knight. Silly films such as The Incredible Hulk, or increasingly anything with George Lucas’s name on it, are part of the reason that any molecule of quality is instantly jumped upon as a gift from the God’s of "Hollowood" (yes, for the slower members of the class, I am referencing Hollywood). I liked Hulk better than The Incredible Hulk, but that is not to say The Incredible Hulk is a masterpiece by any stretch of the imagination.
Truthfully, my friends, and I don’t mean that in the creepy, insincere, “I will drink your milkshake” McCain way, I am sick to death of outlining plot points for these superhero movies that could give a rat’s ass about you the audience. More and more often these scripts that pander to ten year olds seem like twelve year olds wrote them. “Screenwriter” Zak Penn has once again committed a crime against his real employers, the global movie audience, with The Incredible Hulk. This guy is responsible for cranking out turd after turd after turd and still gets work! It never ends. Last Action Hero-his. Elektra-his. Oh, there are other films that could be sited and sadly he is not the worst offender. Regardless, you know the story Bruce Banner, accident with gamma radiation, has to go on the run, becomes a giant green monster, destroys stuff, boss battle at the end, and so forth, you get it. Sadly, the first 30-40 minutes of the film teases you with a bit of promise, then just falls apart much like watching a skier bouncing, like a tortured ragdoll, from rock to rock, on their way to the bottom of the mountain.
Now, my friends, we will proceed to something more interesting. The budget. Watching this film you may be forgiven if shocked to learn that the budget of the The Incredible Hulk was over $140 million dollars. Yes, that is the only Incredible part about the film. $140 million for a bunch of fight scenes that looked like video game cut scenes done in the dark. Yes, they pulled the “in the dark” trick for much of the film so that they could have less detail and thus spend less money. This is becoming a rather frequently employed tactic in the entertainment industry these days.
I am digging here to find some nice things to say. Hummm…. Well, Edward Norton is not as ridiculous in the role as one might expect, Liv Tyler, to her great credit, treats this incredibly poor script with much more respect than it deserves, as does William Hurt and Tim Roth. Other than a paycheck, I have no real idea what any of these four actors are doing in this horrible film. More nice things? Well, the fight scene on the college campus is well-done, and depending upon your perspective having Bruce Banner/Ed Norton use Norton Anti-Virus during one scene is cute-sort of, unless Ed Norton is related to the Norton Anti-Virus people at which point the scene takes on a totally different meaning.
Rent it on video if you must, but The Incredible Hulk has incredibly little new or original to offer. Just skip it, at some point one has to protect what goes into one’s brain.
Story D (Really dumb stuff I am afraid.)
Acting C+ (How did all these good actors get talked into this thing?)
Visuals B- (The visuals, increasingly the only thing Hollowood cares about in it’s blockbusters, are okay at times.)
Originality/Innovation F (The Incredible Hulk is rather unoriginal even by the standards of the genre.)
Enjoyability Grade D (Hey, I saw 10 year old kids yawning during some of the fight sequences, maybe because they were too dark or maybe just because X-Box 360 graphic are more interesting. Did you catch that statement? 10 year olds yawning during the fight sequences.)
Home Theater/HD Factor C+ (This is not a blu-ray homerun as too many of the film’s highlights, that would look good in HD, are in the dark.)
Overall Grade D+ (Even though this monstrosity made a ton of money, it is still clear that Hollowood is ever so slowly going down the drain. Oh good, Zak Penn will be let loose on us once more with a The Incredible Hulk sequel. I don’t know how much more I can take-in fact I am a bit green right now myself. A final thought, the final scene with Bruce Banner makes no sense whatsoever.)