Saturday, July 5, 2008

What I'm Watching - Hancock

What would a Fourth of July weekend be without a big movie from Will Smith? So, like many others (the film is set to gross at least $100 million in the United States this long weekend and will top its $150 million-plus budget with its worldwide take) I ventured out to see Hancock yesterday, Smith's newest film where he plays a Superhero who, well, doesn't understand or know how to act like a superhero.

I'll be the first to admit I am not a superhero or comic-book movie person. So it is without regret that I readily admit to never having seen any of the Spiderman movies which have made so much money in recent years, or any of the X-Men or Iron Man or Incredible Hulk films. A few years back, when Batman Begins was all the rage, I went to the movies with some buddies, but while they saw Batman, I instead bought tickets for the well-done and vastly underrated boxing movie Cinderella Man.

But Hancock looked (and was) different. While most superhero movies are pure fantasy (with a good deal of special effects, cool as they are, added in) and Hancock certainly has a good amount of that (it is, after all, a movie about a man with superhuman strength who can fly) what I enjoyed most about it was how grounded the movie is. What if a superhero, instead of constantly coming to victims' rescue, didn't understand or know how to use his or her powers, struggled with the psychology of being a superhero, and caused more harm than good, no matter the intent? That's how Hancock begins, and it's a fascinating concept and character study.

I didn't find the laughs in Hancock as plentiful as some, but that's not why I wanted to see the movie. I went to see it for the dramatic story of a superhero struggling to be super, and for most of the movie that's what we got. And the big twist in the movie (which I won't reveal here) was well-done, and one I did not see coming (though, looking back, made sense and was subtly foreshadowed).

Certainly a film well worth seeing, and much better than the poor reviews the movie seems to have been tagged with make it sound. And with Smith, the always funny Jason Bateman, and Charlize Theron (who makes just about anything worthwhile, and as an aside, I just realized this is the second Theron-Smith movie to be panned by critics, but which I actually enjoyed, with The Legend of Bagger Vance being the first) what more do you need?. And while I don't know if I need to see a sequel to the film (there's some talk into making the movie a franchise, a common idea in Hollywood these days anytime any movie does even remotely well at the box office) I recommend Hancock.

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2 comments:

delly said...

I am a big fan of Will Smiths work, and trust me I still am. However, this movie started off great and I was loving every second of it. It was funny, had a lot of action, and also sometimes had some parts that touched your heart. Its full of fun & also entertaining you. So wanna watch this great superhero movie then go ahead and Download Free Hancock Movie

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