The Incredible Hulk (2008)

8.0 Overall Score
Story: 7/10
Acting: 8/10
Visuals: 9/10

A better Hulk, fun homages to the TV series

Sets up a sequel with no plans for a sequel

Movie Info

Movie Name:  The Incredible Hulk

Studio:  Marvel Studios

Genre(s):  Comic Book/Action/Adventure

Release Date(s):  June 13, 2008

MPAA Rating:  PG-13


Oh yeah, you wouldn’t be so tough if you weren’t holding a giant metal shield!

Dr. Bruce Banner (Edward Norton) is on the run after an experiment goes wrong transforming him into a ranging monster.  Hunted by General Thaddeus “Thunderbolt” Ross (William Hurt), Bruce hides in Rio de Janeiro trying to maintain a low profile while working with a mysterious Mr. Blue.  When Banner is discovered and the Hulk is unleashed again, Ross turns to a British soldier named Emil Blonsky (Tim Roth) to undergo a similar experiment that created the Hulk and capture Banner.  As Banner tries to kill the beast inside of him, he still wishes to return to his love Betty Ross (Liv Tyler) and regain his life.  When Blonsky is transformed into the Abomination, Banner might have to give in to the beast inside of him.

Directed by Louis Leterrier, The Incredible Hulk represented one of the fastest major motion picture remakes of all time.  When Ang Lee released Hulk in 2003 to mixed reviews a big budget remake was not expected (or a sequel).  The Incredible Hulk was met with better reviews and a stronger reaction from fans, but still suffered smaller numbers than hoped.  This film does however tie in with the 2012 The Avengers (a cameo by Robert Downey, Jr. as Tony Stark in the credits was a big surprise since Iron Man had just been released the same summer), but for The Avengers film, Bruce Banner has been recast as Mark Ruffalo.


Yo Hulk! I’m going to kick your ass!

I felt The Incredible Hulk got kind of a bum-rap and actually was a pretty entertaining film.  Instead of trying to be artsy like the Ang Lee film, it went for all out comic book…with the Hulk even talking a few times (and voiced ’70s Hulk Lou Ferrigno who also cameos).  The action is strong and the Abomination has always been one of my favorite villains though I wish that the design had been closer to the original comic book design.

What is nice about The Incredible Hulk is that there was a lot of homage and nostalgia toward the original series which did work and still is highly regarded by fans and even others who aren’t into the genre.  With music, TV cameos by Bill Bixby, and just the general opening feel of Bruce Banner trying to help the common man, the movie felt like a real throwback to the series.


Let’s get ready to rumble!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

With the advantages of special FX, the Hulk felt much more real than even the Hulk of the Ang Lee film which was too green.  The Ang Lee film’s best part was the destruction of the tanks in the desert, and this movie had a lot more of that going for it than the artsy style.  It was a shame that the movie didn’t take off and no sequel developed.

With the release of The Avengers in 2012, there has been renewed interest in actually continuing the film.  With positive reviews of the character in the new movie and more fan reaction to this film, hopefully, The Incredible Hulk will finally get a sequel so we can possibly see the Leader (played by Tim Blake Nelson in this film) or even the return of Doc Samson (played by Modern Familys Ty Burrell) with some super-powers.  I would look forward to more “Hulk Smash!”

Related Links:

Hulk (2003)

Planet Hulk (2010)

The Avengers (2012)

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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