Viewed on 20 Jun 03   When you go to see THE HULK, you know you are going to see a 'cartoon'- it was, and is, a cartoon in every sense.    So we don't need to talk about suspending disbelief - you are going to a wild, rocking science fiction fantasy.    If you saw the previews to THE HULK (and who didn't?) you will quickly realize that they were inadequate to the extent of being an extreme disservice.   So sit back and enjoy - and you will enjoy.
Despite its Marvel Comics origins, THE HULK is darker and deeper than the other 'cartoon' films recently brought to the silver screen (Superman,  Batman,  Spiderman,  X-Men).   The story and characterizations are complex and absorbing.   Just when we'd almost forgotten him, Sam Elliott, as Gen. Thunderbolt, comes from nowhere with another memorable performance.    Nick Nolte, as Dr.Banner, likewise turns in his finest performance in a decade.   Eric Bana is perfectly cast as the moody, distant Bruce Banner, THE HULK's alter-ego.   Even Lou Ferrigno, the original Incredible Hulk has a walk-on - to the delight of 'cameo spotters'.
Each of the 'Super Hero' films evokes similar and universal fantasies within us.  In the case of THE HULK, it evokes the fantasy of being able to become enraged and smash things we don't like - and not be held responsible.   This is why THE HULK will prove to be far and away the most popular of all the 'Super Hero' films ... ...
THE HULK is an expensive, well-made, highly entertaining film.    How do we know whether or not a film is 'expensive'?    It's simple - if you see a lot of helicopter time, its expensive and THE HULK has every helicopter in the US arsenal in it, from Cobras to Hueys to Jolly Greens.    The photography is sensational - Frederick Elmes' use of split screens to emulate comic book pages is real eye-candy.    Having done nothing of worth since Blue Velvet (1986), we hope this is also Elmes' 'comeback'.    The musical score is real music - AND it suits the movie.
Enduring Line or Phrase:  "Incoming !"
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