Saturday, June 28, 2008

Hulk Smash! Pt. 2

Photo copyright Universal Studios 2008

Okay, so I finally got to see "The Incredible Hulk" and my head is still buzzing. The movie is, indeed, incredible. From the opening credits telegraphing the Hulk's back-story, to Edward Norton's Bruce Banner struggling to do research to cure himself in a Brazilian favela, to the beautiful CGI rendering of the Hulk and seamless integration into the live action, this was totally worth seeing on the big screen. It's obvious the writers, Zak Penn and an uncredited Edward Norton, have a love for the source material and there are many references to other parts of the Marvel Universe that kept a fan-boy like me interested.

And the action! Holy Moly! These are some of the best choreographed action sequences I've seen in awhile. Louis Leterrier's direction is controlled chaos. He's taken the over-the-top ballet of human acrobatics and things blowing up that made his "Transporter" films so enjoyable and amped them up a notch or two without making a confusing "who's fighting who" mess (like big chunks of "Transformers" was). The Hulk vs. the Army, the Hulk vs. super soldier Blonsky, and the Hulk vs. the Abomination are jaw-dropping. Kudos to the production designers for the Hulk more realistic coloring and physical look. This Hulk is the closest to the comic book version without being too "comic book". And, finally, he talks! The one thing that bugged me about my other fave Hulk, the Bill Bixby version, was that, unlike the comic books, the Hulk never uttered a word. Oh, how I yearned for for Lou Ferrigno to say "Puny humans!" just once. In this film I was pleased with the Hulk's limited vocabulary and his uttering of my favorite Hulk-ism: "HULK SMASH!".

As for references to other parts of the Marvel Universe, which are many, I'll have to save those for a later blog after the DVD release, maybe, so as not to throw any more spoilers into the blog-o-sphere...

Today's vinyl on the wheels of steel:
Mother's Finest - Another Mother Further

Dr John - Gris-Gris
Blondie - Plastic Letters
The Plastics - Welcome Back
Thievery Corporation - The Mirror Conspiracy
Matisyahu - King Without A Crown (Mike D remixes) 12"

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