Home | Reviews | Exclusive Writings | Great Links | Miscellaneous | FAQ | Contact Us

The Hulk /

Rated: PG-13

Starring: Eric Bana, Jennifer Connelly, Nick Nolte, Sam Elliott, Josh Lucas
Directed by: Ang Lee
Produced by: Avi Arad, Gale Anne Hurd, Larry J. Franco, James Schamus
Written by: David Hayter, James Schamus, Michael France, John Turman, Michael Tolkin
Distributor: Universal Pictures


Movie Image
Movie Image
Movie Image

     Now this is what a comic book movie should feel like. After struggling through the overrated Daredevil and X2: X-Men United, I reluctantly walked into The Hulk. Little did I know that I would not only be witnessing one of the best comic book adaptations of all time, but my favorite movie of the year so far, as well. The Hulk combines a psychologically dark premise with some big, booming action sequences and creates one of the most ingenious and inventive movies I’ve seen in a very long time. Director Ang Lee’s daringness and some pitch perfect performances are what help it skyrocket to the top of the heap. Oh, and the special effects? They’re comprised of brilliant CGI, which creates one of the most realistic looking characters in the history of film.

     The story is both intelligent and provoking; it attempts, and succeeds, to do much more than any previous comic book movie has ever done. The screenplay is extremely psychological, and likes to play mind-games with the audience something that a film of this genre has never dared to do before. This film has the qualities of a quiet, dialogue-based drama, but has a big budget and giant summer-movie advertising. This, alone, makes me very happy. For once, mainstream audiences will witness something more than just Jim Carey prancing around on a screen, pretending to be god. The Hulk is truly one of the brainiest movies I’ve seen in recent years. It’s just disguised as something else in crazy and misinterpreted ad campaigns.

     The acting is extremely strong, as well. Jennifer Connelly is as good here as she was in A Beautiful Mind. She plays Betty Ross, a woman devoted to two men, each in a different way. One by blood—her father. Another, through love—Bruce Banner a.k.a. “The Hulk." These two are not battling for her love, but against each other. One’s battle is offensive, the other's defensive. Connelly’s way of showing the conflictive feelings of Betty is remarkable. She is excellent in portraying the original character from the comic book, and is currently the beholder of the best performance of the year. Another excellent performance comes from Nick Nolte, who plays Bruce’s father. He hits all the right notes, and his character’s psychotic moments are the highlight of his role and portrayal. Nolte is finally getting back into acting and making decent films. I’m happy for him. But the man who I’m extraordinarily elated for is Eric Bana, who plays the lead—Mr. Banner, “The Hulk” himself. His dignified performance should land multiple career opportunities for him in the future. This was not an easy role to play, but Bana pulls it off, with flying colors.

     The teasers and trailers for The Hulk are much different from the actual film. I was considering not going and seeing this film at all, just because of them. The several clips that the studio released primarily featured a big green monster getting really, really angry and throwing giant pieces of rubble at helicopters. This only takes up about fifteen of the one-hundred thirty-eight minutes of the film. The end result, however, is a haunting, functioning, thinking masterpiece assembled by one of the greatest directors alive today. The character “The Hulk” looks a lot more real in the film than he does in the trailers, too. This picture showcases CGI at its very best. Viewing The Hulk is an extremely rewarding, and often incredible, experience.

     Few films lately have been able to blow my mind, but against all odds, I am able to say that The Hulk is one of these films. Don’t let it’s big-budget, comic book appearance fool you–this is an extremely psychological film that will make you think. It succeeds on all levels; the acting, special effects, direction, and script are all flawless. The Hulk is a great film, which currently takes the title for my favorite movie of the year. Let’s just hope that this isn’t the only fantastic flick so far this summer, and that many more releases follow in its footsteps.

-Danny, Bucket Reviews


Back to Home
The Bucket Review's Rating Scale