Thursday, March 13, 2008

Hulk, Incredible ?

True story: I was drunk when I saw Ang Lee's Hulk ...which might explain why I liked it. Apparently, you weren't supposed to.

I am very seldom inebriated at the movies! It was a fluke, really. There was this jumbo frozen margarita and then another one and before I knew it I was in the Empire 25, hugging some startled friends who happened to show at the same movie but probably weren't expecting wobbly manhugs at the opening night of a superhero blockbuster. And then I was gobbling popcorn like I had not just eaten way too much Mexican food at El Azteca while I waited for Bruce Banner to get really angry. The next thing I remember was thinking 'why isn't he getting angry?' Then I think there were some mutant dogs and some CGI nudity that was just as prudish as actual flesh nudity in the movies. I do remember that. And then the Hulk started hopping around in the desert and I was 10 years-old again reading comic books.

And thus concludes my tequila soaked memories of that evening!

I recognized even at the time that Hulk had some problems -- like way too much time dilly-dallying before the action and the casting of Jennifer Connelly as the weepy girlfriend (seriously. does any actress need to branch out more?) --but I basically enjoyed it. So now they're trying a reboot with The Incredible Hulk. Here's the new trailer.

It doesn't do anything for me. I might be the only one thinking: Do Ed Norton and Liv Tyler really want to be the poor man's Eric Bana and Jennifer Connelly? I mean look at Julianne Moore trying to be Clarice Starling after Jodie! It's not always wise to take over a role that someone else originated. Not that you couldn't improve on Bana & Connelly in that movie, mind you. Clarice Starling was perhaps a bad analogy. It's more like Christian Bale taking over for George Clooney. Or maybe even George Clooney taking over from Val Kilmer. We'll see.

Maybe it doesn't matter who plays it. In Batman movies, the pointy cowl hides the man in the suit real well and CGI disposes of the actor altogether in Hulk. It's a paycheck for Mr. Norton either way.



Anonymous said...

Julianne Moore was perfectly fine in Hannibal !Different, but fine. That black dress ! And the film is ok, it's enjoyable and camp and over-the-top but guilty fun as well.

Anonymous said...

Why, Edward, why ? You dropped out of State of play for this ? It's not you, those stupid mainstream action films, you not it's not YOU, You're better than this. Don't listen to your hole-licking, money-grabbing Hollywood agent !

Peter Chan said...

Don't let them tell you to hate, Nat. 'Hulk' was a perfectly fine movie. I personally loved it.

Scott Henderson said...

Edward Norton is no longer deserving of anyone's 'best actor of his generation' label. It's like he's been sleepwalking since 25th Hour in 2002. That said, he has barely bothered to show up in the 6 years that have passed with only 5 films released. Did he spend all that time getting into character for The Illusionist? I hope not – what a waste of time that would have been.

There are plenty of great roles every year, but I don't see a drop of imagination in Norton's choices anymore. I'm not happy saying that either, when Norton's on form he's amazing. Are his selections just bad choices or bad taste? The Italian Job remake? Come on...

Kamila said...

Alex, Edward Norton didn't drop "State of Play" for this. He actually dropped the movie to make a comedy called "Leaves of Grass".

By the way, Edward's agent is the same guy who represents Tilda Swinton.

And as a huge fan of his, I hope this whole Hulk experience works well for him!

Boyd said...

I love Hulk, but then again, I'm an Ang Lee junkie. I can understand why the whole Greek tragedy angle was way too cerebral for most, but it was just perfect for me.

I'm also a Norton junkie, but here, at least judging from the trailer, not so much. The whole thing just looks so generic... like a cheap Spider-man knock-off. Not good. Let's hope it's one of those cases where the trailer can't do justice to a great film...

Kamila said...

Scott Henderson, Edward didn't want to make "The Italian Job". He was forced by Paramount to be involved in the picture.

Anonymous said...

actually, Norton appeared in The Italian Job only because of contractual obligations. The certainly explains his performance.


Anonymous said...

Couldn't be less interested in this project. I found the last Hulk movie an admirable failure (hey, it tried, which is more than can be said for most of the genre output). This one looks less inventive on every level (and I'm including the casting).

But wait... there's bigger news here: Kermit's FICTIONAL?

[sobs uncontrollably for hours]


Glenn Dunks said...

Completely agreed with Rob. I wanted to like Hulk, but it was just soooo boring and I fell asleep. And I really couldn't give a damn at all about this new one. Yawn.

One of my friends went to see Ocean's 12 after she had taken ecstacy (don't ask why, not even I can figure it out) and she was so confused during the "Julia Roberts is playing someone playing Julia Roberts" sequence.

Robert said...

I think the problem may be in the concept, not in the execution. In this day and age, can anyone make a movie about a man who turns into a green monster when he gets angry work?

Furthermore as a former comic book junkie, I can't say I ever knew The Incredible Hulk comics to have a large following. Spider-Man, Batman, and X-Men yes were widely read. But I never met anyone who read The Hulk. I mean there's not much room for unique stories.

Villain attacks city.
Hulk get mad.
Hulk smash.
The end.

Joe Baker said...

I wonder- in how many theaters and how many Hulk screenings across the country- did someone (like the buddy I saw the movie with) bellow out "when Hulk get mad?" in a low grumbling voice throughout the first hour of this movie?

Beau said...

'The Hulk' was fair. I remember being astounded at Nick Nolte's ability to overact and Josh Lucas' smile.

Some things never change.

Only time I've ever been inebriated during a film was, ironically, the first time I ever drank alchohol.
Eighteen. My hometown cinema where I worked. Boss and employees are drinking after closing, I took a few swigs of Smirnoff and had a co-worker make me a green-apple Smirnoff/cherry slushie.

We saw 'Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy'. I swear, I don't remember ever having laughed harder than when the newly conjured whale plummets to his death. I about cried.

Anonymous said...

My vote goes to the Mask, I can't believe it was left out :(

Pfangirl said...

I found this trailer to be pretty dull and generic. And nothing annoys me more than a trailer that spells out the plot point by point. Blergh.

Then again, I've always been indifferent to the Hulk character in whatever medium he appears. Hulk Smash... and that's about it.

Anonymous said...

There's another Hulk movie...why? Why is this necessary in life? It's not like the last one was a smash hit (on, say, the Spiderman films level, and I think those have worn out their welcome, unfortunately.)

As a young girl I hated Hulk - both the animated and live action versions (it was the same damn story over and over), but I didn't understand why until a few years ago - the Hulk reminded me, in rage and in physicality - of my ex-step-father. So I avoided the last film and will certainly avoid this one, thank you.

On a lighter note, glad to see all the Kermit love - he certainly got my vote. Kermit was always one of my favorite "men" - I cried uncontrollably when Henson died. *sigh*


Anonymous said...


your ex-ste-pfather must be pretty... big.

Michael Parsons said...


Anonymous said...

I had the same reaction to Lee's Hulk and totally agree that it was an admirable failure.

This one'll probably be awful, but Norton would certainly be more interesting to watch than Bana was. And Tim Roth as the baddie? Oh dear, I had hoped he was over that.