View Single Post
Old 05-05-2012, 10:05 PM   #5  
Peter Marlowe
HDF's Resident Reviewer

Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 2,845

Originally Posted by airickess View Post
I couldn't disagree with you more about Mark Ruffalo's portrayal of Bruce Banner. I thought him easily the best of the bunch of actors who have portrayed him.
Well, we will just have to agree to disagree there -- from all my global friends who are diehard Hulk comic fanatics and who communicated with me after they saw the film (international locations got it prior to the U.S.), I was actually the only one NOT so passionate compared to them regarding just how god-awful Ruffalo was in this role. Taking his odd manerisms out of the equation for a minute and the fact that I think he's an awful actor to begin with -- his performance simply doesn't mimic, in the least bit, any of the character's "language" throughout the classic run of the book. Further, as far as comparing him to other actors to play this character, I am of the firm belief that Norton simply filled this role better -- from the gawky, gangly look with the glasses to the way his eyes glowed during the transformation sequences. That's not to say I thought Norton was RIGHT for it -- but just slightly better. At the end of the day, I've said this before, and I'll say it again: NO ONE has gotten this character right yet, from Eric Bana to Ed Norton and now to Mark Ruffalo.

There's NO WAY I would ever consider Ruffalo right for this role.

As for your questions about Thor's showing up on Earth - Loki answered that one when he questioned Thor, asking him, "How much power did Odin use up to send you here?"
I could be mistaken, but I believe I did mention that this exchange of dialogue was hinted at in the film within my body copy; regardless, I appreciate your explanation of some of the areas which I didn't quite "get" in the realm of the Marvel world -- still, in an overall sense, I don't think any of these areas were fleshed out or explained in good enough detail. It feels like Joss simply slapped the storyline, in certain places, together to rush the plot along and get it going to fit within the 2:40 time frame. I understand there are length and budget restraints from the studios, but this was a major undertaking for a studio and filmmaker -- something that should have been given more screen time.

Also, the Tesseract of Odin was the only way Thor could get back. This was also addressed by Loki, when, following up on his question, he said something to the effect of, "Probably so much power that you now need the Tesseract to get back." I, for one, completely believe that Thor can possess the means to subdue Loki - they are from the same realm, after all.
I totally get that your aforementioned explanation of how these characters traveled to Earth in this film from their home planet justifies their presence -- I just think this should have been better fleshed out with imagery connecting from the end of the Thor film. As I have always said, I understand and accept that filmmakers have budgetary and length restraints from the studios, but in an undertaking such as this, where so much is at stake plot-wise, it's vital to get all the ends tied up and right -- if need be, I'd go to a studio and lay this all out of them, and even ask for a running time of four hours if necessary to explain the entire thing correctly; it was done for films like Gods and Generals, and Avengers could have definitely benefitted from much more detailed sequences.

Further, with regard to the "Thor subduing Loki" aspect you delve into, I had a big problem with the way Loki was merely "dealt with" at the end -- are we to believe this major global threat, a master of magic who is dangerous beyond definition of the term, is merely going to "go quietly into the night" with Thor where he'll be "dealt with"? What's to stop him from "throwing his holographic image around" once again to trick him?

I simply didn't buy it.

I do agree with your point about the Hulk's inconsistent behavior in the film. It was a bit confusing to see him attempting to kill the Black Widow and then later reveal that he can, indeed, control his changes.
Indeed; I was passionately disappointed with that. But, it's been hinted at before that Banner may in fact tap into ways to control the alter ego -- even Norton's portrayal of Banner in Leterrier's film when he's about to jump out of the plane to confront Abomination hints at this.

To make a correction to your review, Black Widow asked Banner a few times about his ability to control his anger.
Yes, that's true; so much so it got annoying at times (the banter between them about him controlling "the other guy" and such); but where did you find a need to correct me on that? I don't think I even mentioned it in the original piece...

In the scene referenced in your review, Banner is responding to Black Widow, stating, "You really want to know my secret? You want to know how I control my anger? I'm always angry!"
You mean when he arrives on the scooter in New York, and is about to transform into Hulk? If so, I wasn't exactly sure that my quote was verbatim; you're more than likely right about that line spoken by Ruffalo -- however, I thought it ridiculous how he transforms almost instantly without shredding any clothes in that scene, and furthermore, find it a bit strange that he claims he "controls his anger" by "being angry all the time."

That ties in really well with the last shots of The Incredible Hulk film, when Edward Norton is in some isolated cabin in a remote northern location and appears to be working on controlling the changes. (The rain forest scene you mention happened at the end of Hulk, with Eric Bana).
I may have gotten the conclusions of the two films mixed up -- I recall Norton's character sitting in the isolated cabin, Indian style, doing his breathing exercises to control the changes, but I didn't recall that being in a northern wilderness. You're more than likely right; at any rate, I just didn't buy the way they introduced Banner in this film, in that it seemed excessively rushed and hurried to the point they simply "located" him and ignored the entire U.S. government searches that came before it (the whole General Ross angle).

As to the science of Stark and Banner working together, they were not attempting to close the portal while in the SHIELD helicarrier, they were attempting to locate the Tesseract while Stark was also hacking into the SHIELD computers. Banner was brought to SHIELD in part because of his expertise in Gamma radiation, which does help to track down the Tesseract.
My point about the Tesseract and Loki's portal was that the essence of the Avengers initiative in the film was to close that thing and get rid of the attacking army; I was merely pointing out that the science at certain points became too thick and heady to enjoy or follow. The sequences aboard the hellicarrier came to mind when all the characters begin to argue with one another -- also, I pointed out that Banner's experience with gamma radiation was a reason he was tapped, in that the Tesseract emitted this in certain areas...

Oh, and the scene after the credits is of the same alien leader informing a supreme leader about the failed attempt. Long-time fans of the Avengers and of Jim Starlin's work will recognize the supreme leader. I won't mention names, but suffice to say that this being is really enamored with death.
Okay, so, did it set up a sequel to this in your opinion? If so, is the same alien race going to come for a conquest of Earth? Why would they even bother, based on how the Avengers kicked their asses, so to speak?

Last edited by Peter Marlowe; 05-05-2012 at 10:10 PM..
Peter Marlowe is offline   Reply With Quote