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i'm sure most comic book fans will disagree with me, but when a comic
is adapted to a movie changes must be made, and only what will work as
a FILM must be kept. Ang Lee did this very well. his mistake was that
he aimed this movie at adults and not the younger audience. But as far
as character depth is concerned, it doesn't get much deeper than this!
Yes the parts that people had problems with the comic-film transition; the fathers' connection with injecting a serum into him bruce as a child. This only heightened his anger towards the father. The other reason for adding this change was due to the fact that the popularity of RADIATION-MUTANTS is not there anymore. Ang Lee did his research right; in the 40s-50s most movies, comics, cartoons had the themes of radiated creatures ranging from ants to earthworms(yes there was an old B&W movie that i saw). That is such a primitive idea, the audience of today is far more intelligent of general knowledge that it would not have been accepted. This is why he added a more complex twist.
Others have been angered that his father becomes ABSORBING MAN. This too was done for a story reason. it would have been difficult to bring a character out of the blue and connect it to the way the story was moving. I do agree that there should have been more action, and the Dogs were Definitely a bad idea, should have scrapped that Lee. The camera-work with the panels, very appropriate.
it was brilliant, and i can't wait for the sequel.
I had the pleasure of seeing 'Hulk' in San Francisco, the city in which the
film takes place. Now, many people thought the movie is slow, which it is,
and boring, which it's not, and ultimately too brainy for average movie
viewers to comprehend. The plot revolves around Bruce Banner (Eric Bana)
who's character in this movie seems to go undefined, and his on/off gal pal
Betty Ross (Jennifer Connelly). In a freak lab accident (or so it seems),
Banner is pelted with radioactive gamma rays that, when triggered by anger,
transforms Banner into a giant green behemoth. The plot then unravels to
show the involvement of Bruce's estranged father David (Nick Nolte). Also,
Betty's father, General 'Thunderbolt' Ross (Sam Elliot) and Major Talbot
(the sleek Josh Lucas), trying to find and contain Banner's destructive
alter ego in hopes to replicate the formula to breed an army of
Hulk-Soldiers to fight for Uncle Sam. I can't tell you much more then that
without spoiling the rest of the movie. But, unlike the comic, this movie
does not dwell on the exploits of the Hulk, but rather Banner's destructive
and haunted past. And mostly on how the genesis of his power began. This
movie is overly long at about 2 and a half hours, but the movie has merit as
a movie unto it self. Bana's and especially Nolte's performances were
extraordinary. Most notably in one of their final confrontations toward the
end of the film. The Hulk looks very good, the CGI was wonderful. And the
way the that director Ang Lee uses multi-angle sequences to pay homage to
the multi-panel look of comic books was very refreshing. But in the quest to
deliver a 'Greek Tragedy' of sorts, he forgot his target audience. The
action movie junkies. The kids who watch cartoons on Saturday morning. This
movie is too grown up for them to understand, or care about. That being
said, the movie would have suffered alot less if it hadn't tried to be a
thinking man's film. Finishing on a lighter note, I loved the cameo
appearance of 'Hulk' creator Stan Lee and 'Incredible Hulk' TV star Lou
Ferrigno as Security Guards. One hopes they will make a spin off film or TV
series of their exploits
RATING: *** out of ****
I highly recommend this movie. I found the time to delve into the Bruce's
origin worthwhile, as it was inventive (it deviates from the comic books)
Yes, it's not frame to frame mayhem and destruction. But, the action is well placed and thoroughly in tune with the rest of the movie. In other words, the action does not overwhelm the narrative.
I saw the mini features for The Hulk on the SciFi channel and formed a negative impression of the CGI effects. But after seeing the effects in the context of the entire film, I say BRAVO. The Hulks facial expressions makes it really easy for the viewer to have empathy for his confusion and rage.
What a story! Again the critics have it wrong. This a mature person's action film.
Roger Ebert said the Hulk was a comic book movie for people who wouldn't be
caught dead watching a comic book movie. Well, I'm one of the people who
wouldn't be caught dead watching not only a comic book movie but any summer
blockbusters. I'm much more an arthouse and foreign film fan. The last comic
book movie I remember seeing was the first Batman. I thought that's
lightweight fun. I don't remember much from that movie, but I do remember it
didn't touch me emotionally in any way. Hey, it's a comic book movie! The
Hulk is a completely different film. It's a suspense drama based on a comic
book and what a brilliant filmmaking this is!
The way the filmmaker told us the story made us emotionally feel for the Hulk. He withheld the Hulk's source of rage until close to the end. When it's revealed, it's so powerful that it made me burst into tears. Sorry, US Army. Love you guys, but I was rooting for the Hulk all the way because of the emotional investment I put in the Bruce Banner character as the story unfolded.
And what a stunning visual style Ang Lee adapted to tell the story! He made scientific experiments look cool! All the shots of blood, DNA, eyes, atomic bomb explosions were amazing. I was awe struck by all the inventive transitions and all the morphings from one image to another. The style is not like the classical beauty of Crouching Tiger, rather, it's more like an edgy, abstract contemporary art. Yes, Ang Lee proved a comic book movie CAN be art. And I love the opening credit segment! It laid out the framework of the story in such a visually stunning way!
The acting was good all around. I thought Eric Bana and Sam Elliot were excellent in their respective role. Nick Nolte was a bit over the top, but the role seems to require it. The father-and-son confrontation toward the end was almost like dramatic stage play. Great performances by Nolte and Bana. The fact that Bana held his own on that stage versus a theme-stealing Nolte proves to me that he's not just a pretty face. He can act. Jennifer Connelly's performance was restraint but good. Her face while holding Bruce after the mayhem in SF was heartbreaking. I wish Lee would show her face after hearing the news of the bomb rather than Elliot's. Her character was the emotion center of the Hulk, not her father.
This is a film that doesn't spell out everything. It requires the audience to think. The psychological battles waging in Bruce Banner's head were revealed in dreams and images. After I saw it for the first time last week, I wasn't clear on some of the points of the story and thought the film had a few flaws. I just saw the film for the second time and I thought everything was brilliantly done. In its core, the Hulk is an arthouse comic book movie. It's made for adults who appreciate their entertainment with a brain and a heart, even in summertime.
the incredible hulk in my youth was my favourite superhero, so i was
looking forward to this film hugely - oh dear what a disappointment it
was! getting an arty director to make an action movie was just too much
for him. the result was a complete mess, which is a shame because i
thought eric bana was really good under the circumstances. jennifer
connely is a talented actress but was a bit wasted in this film, Nick
Nolte was severely miscast and his character still has myself
scratching my had as to what was going on. in fact most people you
speak to, will say that the ending is the worst (or best if you get my
meaning!) thing about the film.
stick to art-house films ang lee!
hulk 2 will be an improvement - i guarantee it!
When I read the reviews for this film all I heard were criticism which made me skip it when it was in theaters but when i rented this film I realized what idiots some of the critics were for calling this film crap or awful or what ever word they used to insult it. Because of their reviews not very many people went to see it which made it very unpopular. If your reading this i urge you to rent this film and make up your own opinion of the film. I thought this film was fantastic they really explain the hulk very well in this film and the way it's shown on the screen, with different scenes that are happening at the same time displayed at once made it look a bit like a digital comic book which i enjoyed about the film even though you may focus on one of the shots and miss the others. This isn't as good as x-men or spider-man but you shouldn't really compare because its completely different in its own way. If you love the hulk comics or your just love action films then see this film without listening to any one else and you will see that its in fact very good, very well made film by Ang Lee and terrific acting by Eric Bana, Jennifer Connelly and many others.
Not necessarily the lowbrow bubblegum movie you'd expect, the Hulk is
instead a movie with substance and content. Hulk is not rampaging across
city in the first ten minutes, and any whiny child expecting that is going
to disappoint themselves. The pacing is more similar to that of the
original Superman movie.
Hulk has a message, and is not a movie I felt like I had seen before.
Of particular note, this movie sets a benchmark in scene transitions. Combining these with multi-panel images (similar but developed from those of '24'), any viewer is in for a visual feast.
This is the best movie released by Marvel so far. The action and drama incredible but you want to see something incredible you watch the phenomonal directing by Ang Lee. he makes such an attempt to make this movie into a masterpiece and he almost succeeds with electric performances from a stellar cast and Eric Bana is perfect as Banner. I loved it.
Why did they not leave this on the cutting room floor? Garbage in,
Garbage out !!! After hearing how bad this movie was from a friend, I
decided that I would take the chance and see it anyway.
My friends comments were that he had actually seen it twice but, about 3 mins into the second time he thought he would have to start making balloon animals. My comments are that I have not walked out of a theater in my life so I am glad this came on a free channel on Time Warner Cable or I would have walked out on this and asked for my money back.
Garbage in, Garbage out !!!
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
You can always tell when a movie takes itself far too seriously. Not
only does Taiwanese director Ang Lee stretch "Hulk" to the breaking
point over an overwhelming two-hour plus running time, but also he
violates the cardinal rule: 'if it ain't broke, don't fix it.' First,
Lee and Universal have omitted the adjective "Incredible" from the
Marvel Comics title. Instead of "The Incredible Hulk," it's simply
"Hulk." No big deal,unless you are a hardcore "Hulk" fan. Second,
whenever Hollywood feels self-conscious about how absurd some of its
summer sagas seem, they endeavor to dignify them. Lee and Universal
have gone to drastic lengths to turn "Hulk" into a tragedy of
Shakespearean proportions. While this bombastic revision of Jack Kirby
& Stan Lee's tragic mutant hero may enhance the literary status of
"Hulk," audiences impatient for action rather than angst may chafe at
these changes, especially when they have to wait about 40 minutes for
their first glimpse of the "Hulk." Furthermore, they have changed Bruce
Banner's back story with the introduction of Bruce's dad David, who
emerges as a child molester and a wife-killer. Imagine how that is
going to play to the under-20 audience? Beware of dad, he might tamper
with your genetic make-up. Third, Lee and his writers have given us
three villains who barely register with the strength of one, and only
one decent but drawn-out daylight scene of the jade green giant having
a tantrum. Essentially, "Hulk" qualifies as nothing more than a "Hulk"
of a movie. Mind you, everything admirable that Lee and company have
done to upgrade the story backfires. "Hulk" is too long, too
complicated, and too tame. Although the Hulk himself looks formidable
up close (they based his expressions on the director's face more than
Eric Bana's visage), he looks ridiculous in the long shots, especially
when he bounces along the desert like a giant green jackrabbit.
Anybody who knows anything about "The Hulk" knows Jack Kirby and Stan Lee created this gargantuan galoot back in 1962 in a series of six Marvel Comics. According to Lee, "Hulk" was not green at first but gray. Unfortunately, gray didn't translate as a consistent color scheme, so Lee changed him when they revived "Hulk." No, I'm not a "Hulk" fan, but I know "Hulk" fans. Moreover, I've seen the Bill Bixby/Lou Ferrigno TV pilot episode of "The Incredible Hulk" as well as the three NBC-TV movies that followed after CBS-TV canceled the series. "The Incredible Hulk," which lasted from 1977 to 1982, remains the longest-running super-hero TV show. Originally, in the Marvel Comics, a bomb explosion transformed Bruce Banner into "The Hulk." When the TV show premiered, Bruce (whose name got changed to David because CBS-TV felt Bruce sounded too wimpy) absorbed too much radiation in a lab experiment he conducted on himself. You can see where Lee and his three scenarists, long-time collaborator James Schamus of "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon," Michael France of "Cliffhanger" & "GoldenEye," and newcomer John Turner of the 1998 TV movie "The Crow: Stairway to Heaven," drew their inspiration for Bruce's deviously degenerate dad. In "Hulk," David (Nick Nolte of "48 HRS") behaves like Dr. Frankenstein by monkeying around with his own DNA against the orders of project supervisor General "Thunderbolt' Ross (Sam Elliot of "We Were Soldiers") who threatens to pull the plug on the project. Seems that dear old dad not only conducted tests on himself, but also he had conducted genetic experiments on his innocent son. Eventually, Ross banishes David Banner from his research lab and imprisons for homicide. Meanwhile, Bruce grows up with foster parents. Ironically, he becomes a scientist, too, following in his father's footsteps. Bruce (Aussie actor Eric Bana of "Black Hawk Down") and Betty Ross (Oscar-winning actress Jennifer Connelly of "A Beautiful Mind") are working on a way to regenerate damaged cells when sleazy corporate headhunter Glenn Talbot (Josh Lucas of "Glory Road") shows up to takeover the project. During a lab snafu, Bruce exposes himself accidentally to gamma rays and develops an anger management problem. When he gets really ticked off, he turns into a 15-foot monster who looks an overgrown Hobbit. Things sour even more when he learns that the lab janitor is none other than daddy, back with a vengeance to wreck havoc on him as well as everybody else.
Director Ang Lee, whose impressive credits include "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon," "Sense and Sensibility," and "Ride with the Devil," treats the superhero subject matter with respect than you'd imagine and evokes strong performances from his gifted cast. Finally, when Lee shows the Hulk in all of his great green glory, Lee conceals him in darkness during a life and death fight with three mutant dogs, one of them a clipped white French poodle, dispatched by dad to kill Bruce's ex-flame Betty. This harrowing nocturnal fight is the best thing about "Hulk," even though it resembles a homage to Stephen King's "Cujo." Of course, "King Kong" fans will recognize the resemblance between this ruckus and Kong's fight with the dinosaurs in the 1933 classic. All of the villains live up to their villainy, but some more than others. Glenn Talbot goads Bruce with a cattle-prod in one scene, but he exits far too early for us to free anything more than relief. Meanwhile, David Banner undergoes his own mutation, never adequately explained, and turns into a Magneto/T-2 Terminator monster. Through it all, Lee directs this misfire of a movie with a heavy-hand. They talk, talk, and talk. Sometimes, they snarl. Sam Elliot mainly snarls as Gen. Ross. Then we get the big finale where the "Hulk" goes toe to toe with helicopters, jet fighters, and tanks. Reluctantly, I'd give this sequence the only star that this misbegotten movie deserves, but if you've seen the remake of "King Kong" (1976) it's painfully obvious where they got their ideas. Worst, "The Hulk" lacks any semblance of humor.
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