It goes without saying that Edward Norton’s Bruce Banner is more charming than Eric Bana’s. And well, this version of The Incredible Hulk works on more levels than the previous one.But then the poster to the left suggests as if Norton just walked out of the Ass gates of the Hulk…anyway.. Coming back to the Hulk, I am personally not a big fan of this comic character( I have my reasons for not calling IT a SUPERHERO) and to me, the HULK is just a complex character woven by Stan Lee ,inspired by probably Frankestein and Dr.Jekyll and Mr.Hyde. And well, what makes it cool is that Banner’s body is the host to Gamma Ray radiation -‘mean green’ in color and ignited by RAGE. That is so Testosterone more than Adrenaline. And that is why, Hulk remains one of my least favorite. But having said that, nothing is more cool than to see the green monster go berserk bashing around any damn thing lying around and do the Devil’s Dance. Ang Lee’s version was an attempt to keep the dance low key and project more of the workings of the monstrous mind. It worked for some, and didn’t for others (including me). Norton, Writer Zak Penn and Director Louis Letterier (Transporter 2, Unleashed) however has plan otherwise. Since the trailers unveiled months back, we all knew this was here to undo the harm of the predecessor, and not only revive the Hulk franchise, but also in a way try to start it from a clean slate and show more Bam and KaPOWs per frame. And yes, it is more interesting when the Hulk is not challenged by the petty US Army, but by his equally strong radioactive nemesis.
The Incredible Hulk begins with a quick recap of the origin. The experiment which went wrong, the gamma ray radiation which turned the scientist into Mr.Green Frankie and injures every one in the goddamn lab including the general whose secret mission is to upscale the biological experiment to a superhuman weapon, and whose daughter is two timing between a college prof and Banner. Banner on the other hand is on the run, hiding in Brazil and keeping a low profile working in a fruit juice bottling plant. Thank God, the Hulk has finally entered international territory. He travels through the jungles of Brazil to the waterfalls of Guatemala. Oh yeah!! And then Mr.Banner also gets to sport a hoodie with a baseball cap. And the chase with the US army is very ‘bourne like’. And yes, probably Norton himself is quite disturbed by the biggest question facing HULK- Why don’t his pants tear open? Norton tries to convince the viewers with his shopping choice of stretchy pants shown on the borders of Mexico. And yeah, after every ‘Incident’ we see Banner holding on to his pants in the waist region trying to hold em from falling off. I am convinced. Now don’t overdo it.
Next best thing: The sexual tension between Banner and his lady love finally gets to explode. Ms Liv Tyler has no problem getting a taste of the radioactive ahem ahem. But then Bruce Banner is a self righteous man. And he doesn’t want to risk having Hulk juniors and also has questions on the durability of Durex. And so when the beeper beeps its time to take retreat.But yes, as the climax suggests, Mr.Banner has mastered the techniques of Baba Ramdev’s Kapal Bharati and hence can do things at will. As in he can be Hulk when he wants to save the day and back to Banner when its time to save the Night.
Third Best thing: Hulk has an affection for Metal. Now the Hulk bashing Metal Plates (Huge Ones) like the Monkey Toy with Bangs Bangs is gonna be the next rage in the merchandise world. Gone are the days of the Monkey. It is such a sight to see Hulk bang the metal plates and even try to repel the Sonic Booms. Even shows, that behind the Green Brute is a Scientist who knows how to fight Physics with Physics. Not only that, he applies laws of Vibration to extinguish Fire, uses centripetal force of revolving bodies for his advantage, and yes finally propagation of energy waves in crests and troughs (I am done with my keywords of Laws of Vibration, now can I have my degree?) And yes, while the Nemesis didn’t think it essential considering the fabric material of his pants before entering the operating room, who’s laughing now?
Only bad thing: The action is all good, the scenes are nicely written, but somehow, the Hulk still looks too CGI for me. I mean, ok we still can’t replicate the exact facial human expressions, and yes, they have done a pretty good job. But still, the closeup on the monster is UNREAL. And yeah, what’s with the suspense in the Opening Scene. Is the Hulk a bit of camera shy that he has to be enveloped in smoke until he gets really pissed to growwl? And no, the rumors are wrong. No Captain America.
Last Best Thing: “We are forming a Team”-Tony Stark