Friday, June 27, 2008

Fox News Reviews 'Hancock'

Best. Review. Ever.

Unlike Smith’s cocky, smiling heroes of the past, Hancock is just offensive and stupid. His favorite warning to those he’s about to pulverize is an admonition that at least one of his villains will wind up with their head relocated in Hancock’s derriere. True enough, one time we get to see this and it’s not pretty. It’s not funny, either.

The screenplay, which is underdeveloped to the point of amazement for a Hollywood summer blockbuster, is credited to Vince Gilligan and Vincent Ngo. That they’ve done Smith a disservice is an understatement, but their other victims are Charlize Theron, Jason Bateman and a little boy named Jae Head. Their characters literally are abandoned to incoherence.
Read the whole thing. It is amazing.

14 comments:

_J_ said...

There’s some idea out there in the world that Will Smith "owns" the July 4 holiday weekend in terms of box office. I guess this is because of "Independence Day," one of my favorite movies, and "Men in Black," also quite good, released, respectively, in 1996 and 1997 on that weekend.

Alas, all good hype must come to an end. "Hancock," with which Sony is hoping to have a merry July 4, 2008, may not duplicate Smith’s previous successes. It is one of the worst family holiday weekend releases of recent memory — and jaw-droppingly so. And that’s hard to do, since it clocks in at a mere wisp of one hour and 20 minutes.

In such brevity there should be a reward. After all, "Hancock," directed by Peter Berg, is shorter than most Woody Allen comedies. There’s nothing funny here, however, or witty or clever or even developed beyond an idea that should never have been executed in this way.

Imagine that the word "a-hole" — fully spoken out — is repeated over and over, and that its first appearance, in the movie’s first scene, is delivered by a child. Thus, the vulgarity begins. But unlike other crass films of this month, such as "Zohan" and "Love Guru," the coarseness of "Hancock" is a wildly under-calculated mistake.

Hancock, preposterously, is an unwilling superhero. He’s a drunk, a hobo and — to be frank — an "a-hole" so lacking in charisma, charm or even bravado that there’s nowhere for him to go but down from a low rung on the ladder.

Unlike Smith’s cocky, smiling heroes of the past, Hancock is just offensive and stupid. His favorite warning to those he’s about to pulverize is an admonition that at least one of his villains will wind up with their head relocated in Hancock’s derriere. True enough, one time we get to see this and it’s not pretty. It’s not funny, either.

The screenplay, which is underdeveloped to the point of amazement for a Hollywood summer blockbuster, is credited to Vince Gilligan and Vincent Ngo. That they’ve done Smith a disservice is an understatement, but their other victims are Charlize Theron, Jason Bateman and a little boy named Jae Head. Their characters literally are abandoned to incoherence.

An hour and 20 minutes later, here are things you will not know: who Hancock is, where he and Theron came from (it’s telegraphed with the subtlety of a mallet that she has a past with him) and who the persons fighting them are (I have no idea).

This much we know: Hancock, whom we meet as he awakens on a park bench from a drinking binge, has powers of flight and super strength. He either can’t or doesn’t want to control them. He’s belligerent and obnoxious, a sort of anti-hero who in comic books usually is defeated by a good guy.

The latter is something he doesn’t want to be. When Bateman’s PR guy shows Hancock a bunch of comics featuring superheroes, Hancock’s response to each one is "Homo." Charming.

It is said the legion of writers and directors who came and went before "Hancock" was initiated had a "black" comedy in mind — something that sent up the idea of superheroes. But a mess has been made in the process and $150 million wasted.

These people all forgot some truisms: In the end, a Will Smith movie with special effects released on July 4 weekend has to be family- and early teen-accessible. "Hancock" is neither. It’s often violent in realistic ways, the plot hinges on an extramarital affair and the main character lacks swagger, confidence and manners.

Columbia says "Hancock" is tracking well, and I’ll bet it's right. The first couple of days — next Wednesday and Thursday — should be big. The fear, I’m sure, though, is that by Friday, July 4, the word will be out. By Sunday they’ll know exactly who’s head is up whose you know what.

kylebrown said...

going to just gripe as i read it, so the comments may grow quickly...

kylebrown said...

who the fuck calls hancock a family holiday weekend release?

kylebrown said...

"Hancock, preposterously, is an unwilling superhero."

why is it so fucking absurd for a super hero to have character flaws? If anything it is a more realistic look at what a modern superhero would be like.

kylebrown said...

"He’s belligerent and obnoxious, a sort of anti-hero who in comic books usually is defeated by a good guy."

Don't fucking pretend to know comics, as you have made it abso-fucking-lutely apparent you don't.

kylebrown said...

"These people all forgot some truisms: In the end, a Will Smith movie with special effects released on July 4 weekend has to be family- and early teen-accessible. "Hancock" is neither. It’s often violent in realistic ways, the plot hinges on an extramarital affair and the main character lacks swagger, confidence and manners."

Is it at all possible that Will Smith decided he wanted to branch out? Perhaps he got sick and tired of being pigeon holed a la Jim Carrey. It was apparent from day one Will Smith wanted to do an edgier action movie. If anything he should be applauded for trying something new, something targeting a mostly adult crowd.

kylebrown said...

And who the fuck are you to decide what a July 4th weekend Will Smith film HAS to be to be successful, you narcissistic pile of filth?

kylebrown said...

Yet another reminder I don't read professional movie reviews. It is pretty arrogant to call a movie a disaster before it even hits theatres.

_J_ said...

See? Best Review Ever!

And I like how they refused to say "ass"...and how he was basically yelling at a cupcake for not being a cake.

Best Review Ever!

kylebrown said...

I love the concept behind the metaphor, but cupcake->cake doesn't work to me. It implies that Hancock is something less than his previous family friendly movies. I would say he was, instead, yelling at a daiquiri for not being juice.

Roscoe said...

man, where I come from a daquiri IS a juice.

As much of a juice as all the ones sold in stores, anyways. a bit of fruit squeezin', a bit of other flavorin', and an assload of sugar.

Daquiri Sugar just comes in two forms. Classic syrup and Distilled Cane.

Bam. Juice.

_J_ said...

"cupcake->cake" is not about the qualities of cupcakes and cakes or even the comparison of cupcakes to cakes. "cupcake->cake" is about faulting something for its not being something else.

Sort of like how I hate the Wii for not being a gaming platform. My critiques do not primarily concern qualities of the Wii within the context of Wiiness but rather my critiques are founded on the Wii not being a quality gaming platform which supports titles I desire to play.

The Wii is not meant to be a quality gaming platform which supports titles I desire to play, so criticizing it for not being that is senseless.

Roscoe said...

Quoth-
"My critiques do not primarily concern qualities of the Wii within the context of Wiiness but rather my critiques are founded on the Wii not being a quality gaming platform which supports titles I desire to play."

Emphasis mine.

Herein is the root of most of your arguments. They are based upon personal definitions, not objective ones.

kylebrown said...

After having now seen Hancock, I can tell you this reviewer is completely incorrect and only watched the first half of the movie. The plot became a little tenuous in the middle, but saved itself in the later scenes.