Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Movie review: Hancock

Hancock is a very cool movie. I got more then I expected. From the trailer, we get that Hancock, played by Will Smith, has superhero powers, such as flight and great strength & speed, but he doesn't care much about it. He does help by stopping bad guys, but causes a lot of damage along the way, not caring about how much it will cost the city to repair it all, when he could easily perform the same tasks with minimal damage.

After a chance encounter with Ray Embrey, a PR person played by Jason Bateman, he is offered a new way of living with his powers. He talks to him, invites him home for dinner, introduce him to his young son Aaron, played by Jae Head and his wife Mary, played by the beautiful Charlize Theron. Embrey convince him, after much encouragements, that he would feel much better about himself if he was considerate to other people's properties and in return, they wouldn't consider him like such a jerk. He even convince him to surrender to the police as a sign of good faith, after he received yet another warrant for arrest. Of course, the police can't force him to do anything if he doesn't want to. The hope is also that once Hancock is in prison, the crime rate will rise and the authorities will realize that they need him back on their side. That's what happens, of course.

I pretty much much expected the above, but not much more. I was wrong. There is more to this story and I just didn't see it coming. I won't say any more on that subject, but it's makes the movie much more interesting. Hints of it can be seen in the trailer, however...

There is some violence and strong language, but apparently it was toned down because they were facing an R rating in the U.S., which would greatly diminish the audience, so they edited it to get a PG-13 instead. I wonder if they will make the original version available on DVD... Also, this being a superhero movie, physics takes a backseat to reality. Even if we accept that someone could fly and be super strong and fast, there are obvious impossibilities in this movie. For example, like we have seen in other similar movies, when he trows a kid in the air, the kid stays in the air for a very long time, which means he goes really high and fast. If that didn't kill him, then he certainly would when Hancock catches him just before he hits the ground. At the speed the kid was going at that point, it wouldn't make a difference if he lands on Hancock's arm or on solid ground. The sudden deceleration is what kills someone, not the fall itself. Anyway, if you can look past these details, it's a really well made movie and fun to watch.

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