I finally got a chance to see Marvel’s new Incredible Hulk movie. It was great. Finally we can all forget about the mediocre at best Ang Lee Hulk movie from 2003. This one stars Edward Norton as Banner and the always delightful Liv Tyler as Betty Ross. Edward Norton is quite convincing in a restrained but intense performance that does remind me a bit of the Bill Bixby TV version (and that’s NOT a bad thing).
Liv Tyler is fantastic in pretty much everything I’ve ever seen her in and this is no exception.
The Hulk himself is all CGI…and it WORKS. Early trailers had a lot of folks (myself included) a little worried that it looked too much like CGI. It appears the rumors about them going back over it all and subtly altering the skin tones and such were correct as the final footage is fabulous. They even got the Hulk’s size correct. Just look at this:
PERFECT! Now THAT’s the Hulk! The Hulk is NOT a 20 foot Mighty Joe Young as the Ang Lee version seemed to suggest in some scenes.
And YES you DO finally get to hear the Hulk say: “HULK SMASH!”
As great as the Hulk footage and battles are the love story aspect of Betty and Bruce is not neglected either. The scene where they embrace in the rain is particularly touching and memorable.
This Hulk movie has it all and I really couldn’t be happier with it. There are even a few unexpected nods to the Hulk TV series:
-the piano refrain bits in the soundtrack
-Bill Bixby in footage from Eddie’s Father
–Lou Ferrigno as a security guard (didn’t he do that in the Ang Lee one too?)
There is a bit at the end just before the credits roll (which I won’t reveal here for the few unspoiled) that further builds upon the Marvel Film Universe connecting this movie with another Marvel hit (not too vague am ?). Love it.
Lastly I should mention that bit at the very beginning of all these Marvel Movies where the animation flips through some comic book pages –for a lifelong Marvel fanatic like me that is very nearly a religious experience. This is a GREAT time to be a Marvel fan!