Bootler"s Yearly Random (But Interesting) Fact

7-Up was origanally named Bib-Label Lithiated Lemon-Lime Soda.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Hancock : The Review (May Contain Spoilers)

Looked at my kingdom, I was finally there! Sit on my throne, as the Prince of Bel Air...

I love Will Smith, for the most part, I've enjoyed pretty much all of his post Fresh Prince exploits, except maybe Wild Wild West, and I love comic books and superheroes a great deal, so, in theory, this should be a match made in heaven?

As You can probably guess from that, Hancock tells the story of a washed up, alcoholic and all round bum of a Superhero (Will Smith). His attempts at rescues and crime fighting usually cause more in damages than the criminals he's apprehended. The worst part of it all? He just doesn't care. He either enjoys the random destruction he causes, or he has some kind of major beef with humanity. Eventually, Hancock sides with PR executive Ray Embrey, in an attempt to clean up his act, become more of a respected figure in general and be a loved hero of the people. His first act is to go to prison for his crimes to the world thus far. Despite being able to break out at any time, owing to his powers of flight and super strength, Hancock adheres to the regime, and a MONTAGE appears to show his passage of time within prison. On the outside, crime figures are on the increase, and eventually Hancock is pulled off his prison sentence to help combat the crime on the streets, with a new attitude, appearance and tight rubber outfit. Eventually, Hancock is beloved by the public again, but things start to turn sour as the reformed super powered Smith begins to fall for his saviour Ray's wife, Mary Embrey, and one of his previously defeated petty criminals begins massing a plot to take out the new American darling...

So, Hancock is presented as a comedy film, but it really lacks that much serious humour. Any one who's seen the trailer (such as myself, which was my major qualm with the film), will have seen about 80% of the jokes and gags that the film has to offer. This kinda makes them a loss for me, but they were still amusing. Without the humour, it has to pull out a great Superhero movie to justify itself, and it still falls short of the mark. It's an average superhero movie, made better by Will Smith, but still not great or unique. Hancock does however, manage to escape, for quite some time, the dreaded "Origin Story Syndrome" that plagues most comic book films: Either we make one film to explain the character, then the sequel to be the action blockbuster, OR we make the film longer to include both; The former of course, being the preferable option, painfully. Hancock emerges into the film with amnesia and an attitude, and the action roles from there, which is refreshing. When the origin finally has to be addressed, it's actually done halfway through the film, and in a pretty unexpected twist, which I personally enjoyed, and didn't see coming. The action sequences in the film are also fairly exemplary, with brilliantly believable use of CGI and live action blending. The film falls down in the second half, bringing in the idea of Hancock loosing his powers, which is a bit of a staple in Superherodom, and the dramatic tension kind of weighing so hard as to almost snap the film in half from it's opening comedic tone. The "Bad Guy" is also a tad pathetic. Given little to no back story, and barely more screen time, with some badly written "epic" sounding insightful bad guy lines which would be more convincing spouted from Gary Oldman or at least from a Character with the development to be cool enough to pull it off, rather than sounding like a pretentious prick. Ok, I've lost my train of thought now, so I think I'll stop it there.


Oz Rembrandt

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