Hulk (2003)

<strong class="MovieTitle">Hulk</strong> (2003)

(In theaters, June 2003) It seems unusual to praise a movie for its editing, but Hulk‘s most memorable feature is the way some scenes are cut, with fancy wipes, angles-as-boxes, overlapping moving pictures and other fancy stuff like that. It’s the closest thing yet to re-interpreting the comic book grammar on-screen. It sure makes some dull scenes interesting, which is fortunate given the number of boring moments in Hulk, a comic book adaptation by way of Oedipal tragedy. Director Ang Lee ends up directing a very Ang Lee movie indeed: Male rage symbolism is mixed with deep family trauma to end up with something that’s not far from the dismissive “The Ice Storm starring Shrek” rumour heard just before the film’s release. There are a few nice moments in the second hour (it’s pretty cool to see F-22s and Comanche helicopters properly presented on-screen) but the film is still marred by a structure that takes to much time to deliver, and a superfluous ending that feels more like an afterthought than a climax. Too bad that the film chose to resolve a family drama through an overuse of special effects… Otherwise, well, Jennifer Connelly is too thin, Eric Bana will be a star soon enough, Nick Nolte is his usual gruff self and some of the special effects are iffy. Have I forgotten something? Probably the same thing that the filmmakers forgot: Even though this is a comic superhero movie, it’s just not a lot of fun. Maybe we’ll have to wait for the sequel for that, now that the pesky family/origin story is out of the way.

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