I waited to see this movie, because I’m getting more pessimistic about Hollywood products as time goes on. I finally broke down and watched it Wednesday night on a friend’s recommendation. I must admit, despite a few plot holes (if they turn into regular people when they’re together, and they’ve been getting together since forever, why aren’t they older? Why didn’t Mary ever tell Hancock his real name?) I enjoyed the movie immensely. As my friend says, it was worth the admission just to see Will Smith flying drunk.
I’d like to say up front that I completely agree with my friend’s assessment that the reason this movie isn’t sitting well with the critics is because it isn’t “hippie-liberal” enough. I put “hippie-liberal” in quotes because it’s the term my friend used; when reading it, please keep in mind that my friend is a moderate (“blue-dog Democrat”) and that I was, until the age of 26, as “hippie-liberal” as one can get without doing drugs. At any rate, Hancock teaches a lesson of self-reliance and self-improvement, which is completely at odds with state-dependant message of liberal America.
My friend also thought that the character Hancock was an analogy for the world opinion of America. Trying to do the right thing, but without regard for people’s opinion or damage caused; nonetheless, with the potential to be better. I admit, I did not walk away with that interpretation–but I don’t think it’s an invalid analysis, and I thought it was interesting enough to be worth mentioning here.
As an exit thought: each of the super-characters in the movie had their own trigger-word. Hancock’s was ‘asshole’ (“Call me ‘asshole’ one more time!”); Mary’s was ‘crazy.’ Hancock also threatened–and in one case, managed–to stick his opponent’s heads up each other’s asses. Was the Hancock character intended to be anal-fixated, or was this a peek into the director’s subconscious? If deliberate–why? will it be part of a sequel?
Hellboy II opened today… it looks like I’ll be at the cinema again soon!