The Incredible Hulk: Review

3 min read

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Kuro13's avatar
When you walk into a super-hero movie, you're expecting to be entertained. The genre's not primarily about drama or sadness or deep navel-gazing introspection regarding the human condition (although you can certainly find examples of those themes), it's about well-toned people in spandex beating the snot out of each other. If you were to compare comics as a medium to movies as a medium, super-hero comics are like summer blockbusters — they bring in the cash but aren't exactly nuanced.
On that score, "The Incredible Hulk" qualifies as a good super-hero movie. We were entertained in a Hollywood summer blockbuster kind of way, with lots of exploding cars, the enchanting hum of gunfire providing a lovely background musical theme, and a thin plot that involved lots of running and hitting things. It's definitely an improvement over Ang Lee's "Hulk", which was much more a brooding family psycho-drama than a super-hero film (albeit with stuff exploding, which would have helped, say, "Ordinary People" be a much better movie).
No, this version stayed much truer to the basic theme of the character from the comics, which can be boiled down to "Hulk smash". And smash he does, over and over and over again. This is not a Batman-style brooding dark knight, or a shining, Christ-like Superman. Hulk is a primal character — rage, power, and unthinking brute force. Which is a pretty good way to describe the movie, as well. It's a straight-forward, unabashed muscle-car of an outing, with no apologies made or necessary.
For staying true to the character and for giving me an entertaining two hours or so,  I both gave it a solid "B". Not as good as the very best super-hero movies, but still pretty damn good. If you were to consider it not in terms of how it relates to other genre films but rather against movies in general, I'd probably give it a C or a C+.
I keep it out of the top tier for several reasons. One, the ending is unsatisfying to anyone but a super-hero fan. I don't want to spoil anything here but basically after it's over you are left thinking "Well then what was the point of all that?" It very much comes across as one issue in an ongoing saga rather than a complete and satisfying self-contained story arc.
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muckwad's avatar
It seemed like it was just a set-up for the avengers movie in 2011.

I thought that it was great at the begining, him fighting the military and crap, but the abomination bit should have been longer. The other version was better.
The avengers movie is probably going to be better, but first they're making an Ant Man movie.

Ant Man doesn't look to promising.

I thought Iron Man set the bar pretty high for super hero movies, so the Hulk was bound to be crappy.