Wednesday, July 9th, 2003
All The Rage
First off, I should say that I never liked The Hulk. As a lifelong comic book geek and long time Marvel zombie, I read pretty much everything and yet I never liked the Hulk. I could never understand how such a ridiculous character lasted more than a handful of issues or avoided being relegated to the scrap heap behind Stan and Jack’s House Of Ideas. But someone out there must have liked him, cause he’s endured for well over three decades now. So if anyone besides Ang Lee had been in charge of the film version of this dreadfully dull comic book, I wouldn’t have even given it a second thought and just kept walking. But it was Ang Lee, and thus my curiousity was piqued.
And… I really enjoyed it. Yes it was long, yes it was slow in parts, but necessarily so. Would it have been better if Banner got turned into the Hulk in the first fifteen minutes, with no reason beyond “oh, freak accident! Shit happens” and then proceeded to tear shit up for the next ninety minutes? Nonsense. You want stupid mindless pyrotechnics, Bad Boys II opens in a few weeks. Instead, we got a story with remarkable depth, especially considering the source material, and when shit got blown up, it was ferocious and necessary. On the technical side, the CGI was far more convincing than I’d expected, particularly the Hulk’s facial expressions. At almost no point did I think, “man – look at those effects!” – I just accepted it. This is of equal credit to the effects wizards and the director for making a film that was strong enough to not rely on the CGI to make or break it. And the editing and wipes really were as cool as everyone has said.
And I missed the Lou Ferrigno cameo, but caught the Stan Lee one. Which is odd, since they were the same cameo.