Monday, December 01, 2008


There are benefits and costs for everything in life. In exchange for privacy, celebrities get to be rich and famous. In exchange for more free time and a social life, high ranking executives have power. In exchange for normalcy, super heros have super power. And us normal people wonder why they complain when they've been given a gift, but we fail to realize we have the gift.

John Hancock is a down-and-out, alcoholic bum, who also happens to have super powers. He is the only one of his kind, and because of this, he squanders his powers but often saves lives in unconventional, sometimes humiliating, and inconsiderate ways. His low-life personality and actions make him unfavorable with the public. Yet he somehow manages to garner the pity of the city's Public Relations Representative, Ray Embrey. With his help, Hancock is helped back on his feet, but it becomes apparent that there is more to Hancock's past than even Hancock thought.

A super-powered cast including Will Smith and Academy Award winning actress, Charlize Theron, Hancock had some high points. It had great special effects, exciting action scenes, a good leading actor, and it's just kind of an out-of-the-box concept.

But Hancock was a strange mixture of pathos and comedy. Thankfully, it was more serious than comedic, but this particular combination made aspects of this film feel seem childish and out of place; almost like a Spy Kids movie gone wrong. Yes, it is funny when Hancock throws the whale out into the ocean, and hits the sailboat by mistake. Yes, its funny that Hancock drunk flies. However, poking fun at his difficienceies but to try and simulteanously show that Hancock is a deeply tragic, lonely, and pathetic man gave me an 'off' kind of feeling - almost like I was being chastised for laughing at him in the first place. Plus, it jumped the shark when we found out the real foundations of Hancock's power. It was that point that I officially changed the label for this movie from "action comedy" to "low ranking family flick."

So, in summary, I had some problems with the overall plot strategy; however, everything else was okay. Hancock was great to watch over the Thanksgiving weekend, and it's perfect for a multi-generalition audience, so its both Grandparent and kid friendly. But I still like my super heros tragic and bad-ass. If they're going to be comedians, they need to been in a cartoon.

SPOILER ALERT~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I must digress here to rant a little bit about the whole Will Smith and Charlize Theron relationship.
1.) They have no on-screen chemistry.
2.) If they were suppose to be together since the beginning of time, how were they able to overcome the time of slavery and racist oppresion?
3.) What gives Mary (Theron) the right to give Hancock crap for the way he handles his super hero role, when she hides her powers and leaves the world to rot?

Movie Review by Jenn Bollish at 12:59 PM  

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