The Hulk

release year: 2003
genre: action/drama
viewing setting: theater, 6/21/03

synopsis: A young scientist finds that a bad childhood, coupled with a lab accident, has given him the power (and curse) to change into a gigantic, mindless monster.

impressions: This was pretty damn good. You could make a case that the family-trouble aspects (including some really crappy examples of fatherhood) dragged things down - they were quite depressing. However, the action and fight scenes in this movie were top-notch, as was the Hulk CGI. It just ruled to see him smashing things all to hell. It kind of made me want to smash one of my fellow theater patrons to hell, since he carried on a running conversation with his buddy behind him, or else on his cell phone. But I behaved. Anyway, I digress. The direction and acting were great; they used an interesting multi-box effect to show several things going on at once, and it was neat. And the action scenes just made you want to root for more smashing and thrashing. My only gripe (and it's minor) was that the ending was somewhat confusing. Oh well, no matter. You should see this movie.

things to watch for: Any of the Hulk transformation scenes. Also, early on there's a cameo by Lou Ferrigno (the Hulk from the 1980s TV series) as a rather big security guard.

something this movie has that no other movie has: A genetically-mutated killer poodle! (and fight with same)

acting: Eric Bana did pretty good as Bruce Banner, and Jennifer Connelly was excellent as his love interest, Betty Ross. It was the bad guys, however, who stole the show: Josh Lucas as a downright nasty scientist/corporate bastard, and Nick Nolte as Banner's father, who was very, very unlikeable. Sam Elliott made a serious, convincing Army general.

final word: Good action with a lot of character development and angst as well - worth seeing.

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