Thursday, June 19, 2008

Incredible Hulk

Barely two months since "Iron Man" and we already have a quick follow-up from Marvel studios in "The Incredible Hulk."

Now, "The Incredible Hulk" may not have gotten as much press as "Iron Man," but in both story, pace, and atmosphere, it's very much a close kin. A brief cameo by Robert Downey, Jr. as Tony Stark is both a nod to the relationship as well as a possible sign of a much bigger story to come.

"The Incredible Hulk" captures the feel of the original TV series. There's the opening sequence, which tells briefly of the origin of the Hulk, clearly reminiscent of the introduction in the series (and a good way to retcon the tepid Ang Lee "Hulk"); and there's also the transformation scenes, with the focus on Bruce Banner's eyes glowing green. More than these nods is the lonesome fugitive life that Bruce Banner leads; this is what it picks up from the TV series.

Though I was initially ambivalent about Edward Norton, he did pull off the trick. Tim Roth, whose performances I usually enjoy, was just so-so. Liv Tyler is always pleasant to see. But the breakout peformance was William Hurt's, in the role of General "Thunderbolt" Ross: the transformation was so complete it was impossible to see Hurt underneath the moustache.

Two green thumbs up, and looking for more!