The Incredible Hulk: A Quick Review

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Lou Ferrigno in the episode Image via Wikipedia

So, I just got back from seeing a sneak peek of The Incredible Hulk, starring Edward Norton, Tim Roth, and Liv Tyler, among others. I want to preface this review by making two things clear: A) I never have read any of the comic books, so I can’t speak to the movie’s accuracy; B) I never saw the Ang Lee Hulk, I can only go off of my sister’s statement that this movie was much better, or at the very least, not painfully long like the first…

…in all seriousness, she really did seem to enjoy it, and I did as well, but it wasn’t without it’s flaws:

The movie picks up where the second one left off. Rumors that the first movie would be retold through flashbacks are true, but it’s much in the same vein as the Spider-Man movies: it’s all in the opening credits and told through pictures and newspaper clippings, just enough for you to get the general idea of it if you hadn’t seen the first. The movie is light on dialogue overall, which is probably a good thing, as some, though certainly not all, of the dialogue was stiffly delivered in my opinion. None of that really takes you out of the experience though, which is good. Unfortunately, there are things that took me out of it:

The effects in the movie are generally well done, and I commend the CG artists. There are, however, a few times when humans are interacting with CG characters that they still just didn’t quite hit the mark. One particular scene takes place on a cliff between Hulk and Betty, and is reminiscent of King Kong with Ann Darrow, but unlike Peter Jackson’s ape, the Hulk just ends up feeling green screened in. It’s not quite Matrix Revolutions ‘virtual cinema’ bad, but it’s noticeable. That said, when they effects are good, they are great. The battle at the end is a blast to watch.

Beyond the few CG issues, a few other moments took me out of the experience: this Hulk exists in a world where one 5 minute chase scene takes you from dawn to day to night nearly instantly; where a cloudless day turns on a dime to heavy thunderstorms; where nearby untouched lights explode for no reason the instant two monsters collide; and where a fire can be put out by clapping your hands (if that is from the comic, than fine, but it seemed really far fetched). Minor stuff, to be sure, but it still was noticeable to me.

Alright, so I’m ragging on the movie quite a bit, which may give you the impression that I didn’t like it, which is not true. I enjoyed it. I was entertained by it. I would not have been disappointed had I paid to see it. It’s just no Iron Man. The cameos by Lou Ferrigno and Stan Lee were timely and well placed, Tony Stark’s brief appearance does exactly what you expect it to, and Nick Furry is mentioned, but never seen (no, not even post credits).

I’m not gonna stick a number/star/letter on this review; I don’t have the credentials to back something like that up. I can only say that I did enjoy it, but don’t expect miracles.

(Note: it’s almost 10:30pm, I’ve been up since 4:00am. I make no guarantees to the quality of this writing in terms of punctuation, spelling, or any other grammatical errors.)

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