Countdown to INFINITY… The Incredible Hulk


Related Content from And There Came A Day


ONE A WEEK UNTIL Avengers Infinity War opens in May!

Captain America: The First Avenger | Iron Man | THE INCREDIBLE HULK | Iron Man 2 |Thor | The Avengers | Iron Man 3 | Thor: The Dark World | Captain America: The Winter Soldier | Guardians of the Galaxy \ Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 | Avengers: Age of Ultron | Ant-Man | Captain America: Civil War | Doctor Strange |            Spider-Man: Homecoming | Thor: Ragnarok | Black Panther

Week Three: THE INCREDIBLE HULK

Hulk

I really liked Edward Norton as Bruce Banner. He fit the part incredibly (pun intended) well and he makes both the character’s angst and heroism believable. He is, however, no Mark Ruffalo and it is a bit disappointing to not have Ruffalo in the film as he has so completely come to inhabit the character.

Disappointing is, in fact, the right word here. The Incredible Hulk is not a great Marvel Movie (when you’re approaching 20 movies, you get to be your own genre right?) and, as a follow up to Iron Man, it misses the mark and squanders a bunch of good will. Perhaps this is why there are SO MANY plot lines from the movie that remain unresolved: Samuel Sterns’ gamma dosing, whatever happened to the Abomination or Betty Ross or Leonard Sampson and how did General Ross recover from this disaster to become Secretary of Defense? We will, likely, never know…

This is a sub-par film with some good performances (does anyone remember that Ty Burrell of Modern Family is in a major role here?). It pushes the Marvel narrative forward a bit but it is mostly a misfire. And the CGI is remarkably poor.

As it came out before I began blogging, I do not have a full review, but The Incredible Hulk receives THREE BOTTLES OF BRAZILIAN SODA out of a possible FIVE. 

Entertainment Weekly is also counting down to Avengers: Infinity War. Here is their take on The Incredible Hulk.


KEY INTRODUCTIONS:

  • Bruce Banner/Hulk
  • Betty Ross
  • Leonard Sampson
  • General “Thunderbolt” Ross
  • Gamma Radiation

CONNECTION(S) TO INFINITY WAR:

  • Most of the movie is forgotten by Marvel (see above comments on dangling plot threads), but General Ross goes on to become the Secretary of Defense in Captain America: Civil War, which is this movie’s most critical connection to the Marvel Movie Universe.
  • In Civil War, Ross mentions the Hulk and the destruction of Harlem.
  • The idea that Bruce Banner is trying to be free of the Hulk is as important here as it is in the Avengers movies.
  • When Betty and Bruce think about engaging in romantic activities, Bruce stops them because “I can’t get too excited.” Thematically, this foreshadows the problems he will see with an engagement with The Black Widow.
  • Tony Stark discusses putting together “a team” with a broken and defeated General Ross in what should have been the traditional stinger scene, but one that actually takes place before the credits. This is the ONLY movie on this list without at least one mid or post-credit scene.

Avengers Infinity War is coming…

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Filed under Avengers: Infinity War, Comic Book Movies, Hulk, Marvel Movies, Movies, Uncategorized

Link’n’Blogs – 1.19.18: The Best Journalism Movies


Related Content from And There Came A Day


I loved Lincoln Logs when I was a kid. Though I never entertained the idea that I would be a designer, engineer or architect, something about putting together these wooden and plastic pieces was simply simple fun. Connecting to ideas through the blogosphere seems similar to this pursuit, hence the title of this weekly post. Each Friday, I intend to post something interesting I’ve read out there on the internets. Hopefully others will find these posts as thought provoking as I have.

Have you noted that journalism is a little under siege in the United States and, by “a little” I mean completely? It seems to me that journalism has never been more important than it is right now. If you feel the same, you might like this list of the best movies about journalism USAToday compiled. Click below…

all the presidents men

Image from imd.com.

Leave a comment

Filed under Link'n'Blog

Dad In Photos – His Birthday: January 18, 2018


Related Content from And There Came A Day


Today is my father’s birthday and while he is not still with us in life, he is always going to be with us. A few years ago I said I choose to think of Dad as being “away” and that remains the way I consider him. He is simply away, but never too far.

I was fortunate this year to come across a collection of photos I had not laid eyes on in quite a long time and, for Dad today, I share some of them.

Happy Birthday, Dad. Many of the things you missed this past year would have surprised you… many would not. But all of things that have gone on are just a little less sweet because I could not share them readily with you.

Leave a comment

Filed under Birthday, Dad, Family, Fathers and Daughters, Fathers and Sons

The Best Sequential Art I Read Last Week: January 10 – 16, 2018


Related Content from And There Came A Day:


I am a comic book collector and happy to be one. I might say “proud” if I hadn’t, over a year ago, switched to reading digital as opposed to print comics. I feel a bit robbed of the tactile sensations of the hobby – of the turn of the page, the sneaking look to the panel a page over, the bagging and shorting and stacking and filing. Though I read my comics in a different medium than I used to, I still treat each Wednesday (comic book delivery day to specialty shops around the country) as different from the other days of the week. I subscribe and now, rather than go to the comic store to be handed the books pulled for my “Hold Slot,” I click a button on my iPad and watch them download.

Then I read them.

Rare is the week that I don’t read them all between Wednesdays and some weeks I have, well… let’s just say more comic books in my digital downloads than a grown man should. Comic book legend Will Eisner (creator of The Spirit) is one of the most influential men even to put pencil to drawing board in the pursuit of making comics. So influential was he that the industry awards (think the Oscars or the Emmys or the Grammys) are named The Eisner Awards. He called comic books “sequential art,” perhaps because he became embarrassed by his profession when he had to admit what he did for a living. This is my weekly reaction to the comics I read.

Comics I Read Last Week:

One

 

The best comic I read last week was Titans #19

Writer: Dan Abnett

Artist: Paul Pelletier 

(Okay, the BEST comic book I read was actually Mister Miracle #6, but even I am tired of picking it every month!)

I love the Titans and have since I was a younger – much younger – comic book collector. I have read every incarnation of the book, including those that were published prior to my birth. I am a sucker for the team and the characters who comprise it.

And I have really enjoyed the latest Titans title. Dan Abnett has done a terrific job since he began with the soft-reboot of the characters (and the DC Universe) in Titans Hunt a few years back. Now he is really hitting his stride on the title and #19 is one of the best issues yet.

Abnett takes a fairly tired trope (the team is DISBANDED!) and makes it feel fresh, new and in keeping with what has been happening in the book. The Titans have screwed up in recent adventures and the Justice League have problems with how they have handled their work. Abnett does not let this story – which could be incredibly note-by-note predictable, become cliched. Rather he creates another in a solid line of character studies of the Titans and handles, as he typically does, Nightwing remarkably well.

This is a great read with solid art by the ever-improving Paul Pelletier. His line work evokes the art of Alan Davis and that is surely not a bad thing. Pelletier has been drawing comics for a long time and it seems he is poised to break big.

Leave a comment

Filed under Comic Book Pick of the Week, Comic Book Review, Comic Books, DC Comics, Marvel Comics, Uncategorized, Weekly Comic Book Review

Countdown to INFINITY… Iron Man


Related Content from And There Came A Day


ONE A WEEK UNTIL Avengers Infinity War opens in May!

Captain America: The First Avenger | Iron Man | The Incredible Hulk | Iron Man 2 |Thor | The Avengers | Iron Man 3 | Thor: The Dark World | Captain America: The Winter Soldier | Guardians of the Galaxy \ Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 | Avengers: Age of Ultron | Ant-Man | Captain America: Civil War | Doctor Strange |            Spider-Man: Homecoming | Thor: Ragnarok | Black Panther

WEEK TWO: Iron Man

Iron Man DVD

 

Though Captain America: The First Avenger is the “first” Marvel movie in terms of the timeline of the Marvel Universe, the first movie released was Iron Man. Perfectly cast, wonderfully written, inventive and fun, Iron Man is almost flawless. And it succeeded beyond anyone’s wildest dreams, launching an interlocking series of movies each seemingly more popular than the last.

It can also be blamed for establishing the Marvel “house style” and more than one of the Marvel films has suffered from trying to be Iron Man. They have suffered from villains – like Obidiah Stane – who are too derivative of the hero they face.

But, despite that, Iron Man in-and-of-itself is more enjoyable and more original than most of the other Marvel movies put together. It is, perhaps, the funniest of the Marvel movies (excepting Guardians of the Galaxy and Thor | Ragnarok. As it came out before I began blogging, I do not have a full review, but Iron Man receives FIVE DUMMIES out of a possible FIVE. 


KEY INTRODUCTIONS:

  • Tony Stark/Iron Man
  • Pepper Potts
  • James “Rhodey” Rhodes
  • J.A.R.V.I.S.
  • Nick Fury
  • Agent Colson
  • Stark Industries
  • S.H.I.E.L.D.
  • The Avengers Initiative

CONNECTION(S) TO INFINITY WAR:

  • S.H.I.E.L.D. is a critical connective tissue in many of the Marvel films (not to mention the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. television show).
  • Without the clever inclusion of Nick Fury and the “Avengers Initiative” scene, one wonders if all that we know as the Marvel Cinematic Universe would even exist.
  • The background, though limited, provided on Howard Stark lays much groundwork for plotlines throughout the films.
  • The Pepper Potts/Tony Stark romance seems as though it may be a very important plot point in Infinity War

Avengers Infinity War is coming…

Leave a comment

Filed under Avengers: Infinity War, Iron Man, Marvel, Marvel Cinematic Universe, Marvel Comics, Marvel Films, Marvel Movies, Marvel Studios, Robert Downey jr.

The Post – A Movie Review


Related Content from And There Came A Day


The PostIt is difficult to imagine a director other than Stephen Spielberg wringing as much tension and excitement out of the kind of story on display in The Post as he manages here. The film begins at a simmer and rises to the heat of a pot boiling over in a matter of moments and does so without the aid of action sequences or car chases, pyrotechnics or physical confrontations. It does so by conveying that the highest stakes we face, both personal and political, call us to action in ways we cannot imagine and at times we cannot anticipate. The characters in the movie may not have their lives on the line, but they risk the integrity of their souls with each decision they make. It is a fascinating journey to watch. The Post wildly succeeds and does so for three reasons: it has a critical and timely message, it has a director at the top of his skills and it has a cast that is simply brilliant.

The audience receives its marching orders at the conclusion of The Post. They received them from Stephen Spielberg himself. The brilliant director (his amazing skills on full display in this movie) urges as immediate follow up to viewing this film with its sequel-of-sorts All the President’s Men in a most obvious and visceral way. Spielberg directs his audience to leave the theater but not the themes and message of The Post. He wants the audience to consider what was going on in the 1970s as warning, to recognize the immense power of and unchecked government and the critical responsibility of a noble press.

He wants the audience to be patriots, no matter the personal cost.

And all of this is delivered to the audience through a series of conversations, each more compelling than the last – conversations about the nature of the press and democracy, of personal risk and personal sacrifice, of what it truly means to be an American. This is very, very heady stuff and no other director could pull it off as well.

But it does help Spielberg that his cast is spectacular. The supporting actors deliver exceptional and understated work in perfect pitch with the subject matter and in perfect service to their leads. And having leads the caliber of Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks would serve any movie well.

Hanks is wonderful as Ben Bradlee, editor of The Washington Post and this is not the most comfortable character to assay. Hanks’ Bradlee is not the older sage, all-around good guy audiences have come to expect from the actor and the dynamic between his Bradlee and Streep’s Katharine Graham is far more fraught with tension than the previews of the movie may have led the audience to expect. Hanks’ Bradlee confronts demons personal and professional throughout the movie and the actor, perhaps in line to receive another Oscar nomination, conveys all of this engagingly and realistically. He brings the character to vivid life.

The movie, though, belongs to Streep.

If Hanks performs as Bradlee, Streep becomes Katharine Graham. Her portrayal of a woman realizing her potential and her power, of dealing with her history and of seizing the most critical moment of her life feels effortless. Surely it is not. Surely Streep must work at what she does, work at becoming the best actor – certainly – of her generation. Surely it cannot be easy for her. Streep carries the movie and carries each-and-every theme within it. She allows the audience to live her struggle to come to the right decision about whether to publish the so-called “Pentagon Papers” or not. She illustrates the challenge of being a woman in a world still dominated by men. She embodies a person allowing herself to come to terms with her past and to become a fully realized individual. She shows what it means to be a patriot. It is impossible to imagine anyone else in this role.

What is Spielberg not talking about in The Post? He is challenging an isolationist, male-dominated, secrecy-embracing society that seems all too real in 2018. He is underscoring the power of women at a time when we need to hear this message again. He champions the free press, the superiority of morality over law, the importance checks and balances. He has made a movie about protecting what it means to be America in the first place.

It may be too early to put The Post on the list of the best movies about journalism of all time… but let’s go ahead and do it. The Post is not only in the conversation, one could argue the conversation, now, starts and ends with Stephen Spielberg’s The Post.

 

THE POST receives FIVE PULITZER PRIZES out of a possible FIVE.

Leave a comment

Filed under Meryl Streep, Movie Review, Movies, Steven Spielberg, Tom Hanks

Link’n’Blogs – 1.12.18: All The West Wing Men


Related Content from And There Came A Day


I loved Lincoln Logs when I was a kid. Though I never entertained the idea that I would be a designer, engineer or architect, something about putting together these wooden and plastic pieces was simply simple fun. Connecting to ideas through the blogosphere seems similar to this pursuit, hence the title of this weekly post. Each Friday, I intend to post something interesting I’ve read out there on the internets. Hopefully others will find these posts as thought provoking as I have.

Sometimes I want to move to Los Angeles… there are simply events that take place there that do not happen anywhere else. Take upcoming the scheduled live read of All the President’s Men featuring Bradley Whitford, Joshua Molina and Richard Schiff of The West Wing. What I would not give to be a part of that free event! Click the photo for further information and, if you do not live in Los Angeles, be sad like me.

Presidents Men

Leave a comment

Filed under Link'n'Blog