HANCOCK DELIVERS THE GOODS
By Ace Antonio Hall
Ace’s Movie-Meter Rating ********* (9 stars-Excellent)
There have been many mixed reviews regarding Will Smith's new film, Hancock. It's a story about an alcoholic superhero named John Hancock (Will Smith). According to my sources, the movie is a result of a stripped down script and editing job and as a consequence, like so many films, the audience gets to play "here's a clue, figure it out" with plot devices that may seem vague. This is only speculation, but I believe the confusion that so many viewers have (don't worry, this is not a spoiler) may be clarified if I referenced a popular Science Fiction television show's concept of particle physics and quantum chemistry: Star Trek-The Original Series episode #27 "The Alternative Factor". The episode was written by Don Ingalls and directed by Gerd Oswald in the first season of Star Trek. That episode dealt with the concept of how anti-matter and matter would cancel each other out if they were ever to be joined. I believed that plot device is used in the film, with a bit of a twist to it.
Will Smith's performance in the film proves that he can fill seats for any audience, whether it be in a drama (The Pursuit of Happyness) or a sci-fi thriller (I Am Legend) making him the only actor in history to have eight consecutive films gross over $100 million in the domestic box office. In Hancock, from the beginning of the film he delivers the goods as a misunderstood, self-pitying alcoholic superhero that saves the day but destroys the city in the process. It's a slightly different take of a Bad Boy hero (no pun intended) that finds a way to win the hearts of his viewers. The film begins light-hearted, spunky and fun and turns into more of a serious sci-fi drama, which in my opinion takes the film to a higher level; giving the film substance. The film stars Jason Bateman as Ray Embry, (a PR man that helps Hancock change his image) and Charlize Theron as Ray's wife. As usual, Charlize Theron electrifies the screen and compliments the film's edgy tone.
Will Smith rose to fame as a rapper under the name the Fresh Prince in the 1980s and 90s as the MC of the hip-hop duo DJ Jazzy Jeff & the Fresh Prince performing humorous, radio-friendly songs such as "Parents Just Don't Understand", "Summertime” and my favorite, “Brand New Funk” and on the television show The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. The group gained critical acclaim for winning the first ever Grammy in the Rap category (1988). Smith received Oscar nominations for Best Actor in Ali, for his portrayal of the boxer Muhammad Ali and The Pursuit of Happyness, where he played Chris Gardner in a true -life rags to riches story. Newsweek has called him the most powerful actor on the planet as he leads the pack of Hollywood's best-paid actors, banking an estimated $80 million over the course of the past year. You can bank on Hancock. It is well worth the trip to the movies. Happy ticket stubs and popcorn flubs.
Batman: The Dark Knight – 9.5 (MOVIE OF THE SUMMER)
Invisible Target – 9 (DVD FAVORITE OF THE SUMMER)
Iron Man – 8.5
The Incredible Hulk – 8
Wanted – 7
National Treasure: The Book of Secrets – 7
Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull – 3
Movie-Meter Ratings: 10-Instant Classic, 9-Excellent, 8-Good,