HULK SMASH: A NOTE TO THEATER OWNERSHIP/MOVIE-GOERS CONCERNING THE EFFECT OF SOUND

IGNORANCE IS BLISS.

NOTE: WARNING FOR THE LITERAL MINDED, IGNORANCE IS NOT ACTUALLY BLISS. IN FACT, IGNORANCE IS ACTUALLY BAD WHEN COMES TO THE FOLLOWING: KNOWING IF YOU HAVE EARLY STAGE CANCER, VOTING, ATTEMPTING HOME REPAIR, KNOWING IF THAT MILK IS PAST-DUE, ENGAGING IN ANY SORT OF COHERENT DISCUSSION, THE EXISTENCE OF [INSERT TOTALLY AWESOME BAND HERE], AND WHICH OF THOSE SPIDERS ARE POISONOUS, YES THE ONES RIGHT FREAKING THERE!

BUT WHEN IT COMES TO GOING TO THE MOVIES AND ASSUMING EVERYTHING IS ALL FINE AND DANDY WITH THE PROJECTION SO THAT YOU CAN JUST SIT BACK, RELAX, AND ENJOY A MOVIE, THEN YES…

IGNORANCE IS TOTALLY BLISS.

WHEN YOU KNOW A BUNCH ABOUT THEATER PROJECTION (HULK NEVER ACTUALLY WORKED IN ONE. HULK IS JUST, YOU KNOW, A NERD) YOU WILL LIKELY BE ASSAULTED WITH A BEVY OF VERY STUPID TECHNICAL ISSUES. THESE DAYS, HULK PRETTY GOOD ABOUT STAYING OUT OF THEATERS THAT ARE CARELESS WITH THIS STUFF, BUT EVEN THE BEST WILL HAVE THEIR MINOR ISSUES.

EXAMPLE OF HULK’S INNER DIALOGUE: “THE FRAME LOOKS AN INCH TOO HIGH ON THE SCREEN… SHOULD HULK SAY SOMETHING? THAT NOT THAT BIG A DEAL. BESIDES, HULK’S IN THE MIDDLE, GETTING OUT COULD BE AWKWARD. GOD HULK CAN’T WAIT TO STOP THINKING ABOUT THE FRAME BEING AN INCH TOO HIGH [GRUMBLE, GRUMBLE] WHOA, THAT GUY IN THE 3RD ROW LOOKS LIKE MANDY PATINKIN.”

… THIS HAPPENS A BUNCH. SOMETIMES YOU SAY THINGS TO THE THEATER MANAGEMENT. SOMETIMES YOU DON’T. IT LARGELY DEPENDS ON YOUR ENERGY LEVEL/NOT WANTING TO SEEM LIKE A PRICK/YOUR SIZING UP OF THE COMPETENCY OF THE USHER.

PLEASE UNDERSTAND THAT HULK IS NOT LOOKING TO FIND PROBLEMS WITH THINGS. THERE IS NOTHING MORE IN THE ENTIRE WORLD HULK WANTS THAN TO JUST GO TO THE MOVIES AND EVERYTHING BE AWESOME, SO THAT HULK CAN SIT BACK AND HAVE A WHOLLY VISCERAL AND THRILLING EXPERIENCE. THE LAST THING HULK WANTS TO THINK IS “I’M IN A THEATER RIGHT NOW.” REALLY, HULK WANTS WHAT WE ALL WANT.

SO ANYWHO, HULK SAW DRIVE THIS PAST WEEKEND AND DIDN’T MENTION THE FOLLOWING:

THE THEATER HAD A BLOWN SPEAKER.

THE MOVIE THEATER SUPPOSEDLY PRIDES ITSELF ON PROJECTION AND THESE SORTS OF TECHNICAL ISSUES, AND THIS IS, FOR ALL INTENTS AND PURPOSES, A BIG ONE.

MEANING IT WAS A FRONT SPEAKER, ON THE LEFT SIDE OF THE SCREEN, SO THE DIALOGUE WAS WAY, WAY LOW. NORMALLY HULK WOULD JUST LEAVE IF THIS THE CASE AND SEE THE FILM IN DIFFERENT SHOWING (THIS SADLY, THE EASIEST OPTION IN MOST CASES), BUT GIVEN HULK’S SCHEDULE RIGHT NOW THERE WAS SIMPLY NO OTHER TIME OR WAY HULK WOULD HAVE BEEN ABLE TO SEE THE DARN MOVIE. THEREFORE, HULK WENT TO TELL AN USHER, WHICH AGAIN, AT THIS THEATER YOU ARE TOTALLY ENCOURAGED TO DO.

CONVERSATION GO LIKE THIS:

HULK: “HI. SORRY. I’M PRETTY YOU HAVE A BLOWN SPEAKER, THE FRONT SCREEN-SIDE LEFT. THE DIALOGUE IS WAY, WAY TOO LOW.”

USHER: “Oh no sometimes trailers have different volumes.”

HULK: “NO. SORRY, THAT NOT WHAT HULK SAYING. HULK PRETTY SURE THE SPEAKER’S BLOWN.”

USHER: “Um. Well… let’s see… [LONG SILENCE].”

HULK: MOST THEATERS HAVE REPLACEMENT SPEAKERS CAUSE IT HAPPENS LOT. YOU SHOULD TELL THE PROJECTIONIST. A LOT OF TIMES THEY CAN EVEN BE REPLACED MID-MOVIE.” (NOTE: THIS LARGELY DEPENDS ON YOUR ELECTRICAL RIGGING AND WHETHER YOU CAN ISOLATE CURRENT TO A SPEAKER TO SHUT IT DOWN FOR REPAIR. MOST OF THE TIME YOU CAN. SOMETIMES YOU CAN’T. AND DEPENDING ON SPEAKER SIZE THEY HAVE TO CALL IN TECHNICIANS SO THAT COULD DELAY TOO.)

USHER: “Sounds okay to me though.”

HULK: “HULK THINK IT’S JUST CAUSE YOU’RE STANDING ON THE EDGE BY THE WALL SPEAKERS, IF YOU COME 10 FEET OVER TO WHERE PEOPLE SITTING IT COMPLETELY DIFFERENT. HULK CAN POINT TO SPEAKER THAT BROKEN.”

SHITTY DIAGRAM FOR HOME AUDIENCE! (SERIOUSLY THERE'S A PROBLEM WHEN YOU TRY TO FIND MOVIE THEATER SCHEMATICS ONLINE AND THEY GIVE YOU NOTHING BUT STUFF FOR HOME THEATER SPEAKERS. UGH)

USHER: “Okay, Thank you sir I’ll tell the projectionist.”

NEEDLESS TO SAY IT NOT REPLACED AND HULK PRETTY SURE, LIKE A GAME OF TELEPHONE, THE MESSAGE WAS GARBLED (OR EVEN CONVEYED).

BUT AGAIN, HULK JUST MADE DUE AND LUCKILY DRIVE IS THE KIND OF MOVIE WHERE THERE’S BARELY A WORD SAID AND ALL THE OTHER AMBIENT SOUND TELLS THE STORY. AFTER FIVE MINUTES HULK WAS EVEN ABLE TO TRICK HULK’S BRAIN INTO THINKING IT A DELIBERATE CHOICE TO MAKE AN UBER QUIET MOVIE. AGAIN, HULK USUALLY OKAY AT CREATING THESE SORTS OF MIND GAMES, BECAUSE, WELL MOVIES ARE PROJECTED INCORRECTLY A FUCK TON.

THE KEY IS JUST TO UNDERSTAND HOW THEY AFFECT WHAT YOU SEEING.

SO ANYCRAP, AFTER THE MOVIE HULK WENT TO GUEST SERVICES (WHO HULK SHOULD HAVE GONE TO RIGHT AWAY BUT HULK DIDN’T WANT TO MISS A FRAME) AND THE PERSON THERE TOTALLY UNDERSTOOD THE PROBLEM IMMEDIATELY. THEY SAID THEY DIDN’T HEAR ABOUT IT AND WERE VERY SORRY AND WENT TO GO FIX IT.

SO WHY DOES THIS MATTER SO MUCH? BESIDES ESTABLISHING THAT HULK IS EITHER SUPER ANAL ABOUT MOVIE WATCHING OR JUST LOOKS FOR ANY OPPORTUNITY TO TALK ABOUT PROJECTION NUANCE ON THIS BLOG?

BECAUSE SOUND DIRECTLY AFFECTS YOUR EXPERIENCE.

CUT TO A FEW MINUTES EARLIER, AS PEOPLE AS THEY WERE LEAVING SOME GUY IN A IRON MAN T-SHIRT SAID: “The movie was too fucking quiet. Seriously it was shit. How could anyone make a movie like that? I couldn’t hear him talk. Ryan Gosling fucking sucks.”

TO PEOPLE WHO CARE ABOUT PROJECTION, THE STATEMENT IS BOTH HILARIOUS AND SOUL-CRUSHING. THERE IS A WHOLE CREW OF AMAZINGLY TALENTED PEOPLE WHO SPEND MONTHS OF THEIR LIVES TRYING TO ORCHESTRATE EVERY SINGLE DETAIL IN TERMS OF PICTURE AND SOUND AND THEN THEY HAND THEM OFF TO THE THEATERS THAT PRESENT THEM AND ANYTHING CAN HAPPEN.

HULK KNOW THERE A HUGE MOVEMENT OF LATE TO CORRECT PROJECTION WHETHER IT IN REGARDS TO HIGH-VALUE/HIGH COST THEATER CHAINS LIKE THE ALAMO DRAFT HOUSE OFFERING HIGHER STANDARDS, THE APPROPRIATE BULB BRIGHTNESS FOR 3D, OR TERRENCE MALICK WRITING LETTERS, BUT IT JUST ANOTHER ONE OF THOSE IMPORTANT CONVERSATIONS IN MOVIES.

SHOULD THE THEATER TRIED TO DO MORE? (MAYBE) COULD THEY HAVE DONE MORE? (MAYBE) SHOULD THEY HAVE STOPPED THE SCREENING AND REFUNDED EVERYONE? (PROBABLY NOT) SHOULD THE USHERS HAVE REALIZED THE OBVIOUS PROBLEM BEFOREHAND AND FIXED PRE-SCREEENING? (PROBABLY THE BEST SOLUTION?)

HULK KNOW HULK SAID THIS A “HULK SMASH” COLUMN BUT IT NOT REALLY LIKE THAT. HULK JUST LOOKING TO RAISE THE PROFILE OF A CONVERSATION ABOUT NERDY TECHNICAL ISSUES.

IT’S NOT JUST FOR NICOLAS WINDING REFN AND THE HOST OF FILMMAKERS, CINEMATOGRAPHERS, SOUND EDITORS, AND PRODUCTION PEOPLE WHO POURED YEARS OF THEIR LIVES INTO IT AND WOULD HATE TO HEAR STORIES LIKE THIS.

IT’S ABOUT YOU. BECAUSE EVEN IF IT’S A HUGE PAIN IN THE ASS TO BE AWARE OF THIS KIND OF STUFF,  BECAUSE WHETHER WE ARE IGNORANT OF IT OR NOT, IT DIRECTLY AFFECTS OUR EXPERIENCE.

HULK REVIEWS DRIVE: WHY “NOT WHAT YOU THOUGHT” IS OKAY

HULK SAW DRIVE.

HULK LOVED DRIVE.

GOING INTO THE FILM, THE ONLY THING  HULK HAD SEEN WAS THIS CLIP: http://www.festival-cannes.com/en/mediaPlayer/10934.html AND FOR HULK THAT WAS ENOUGH, HULK WAS NOW “IN.” AND GOING OFF THAT CLIP ALONE, HULK WAS READY FOR SOME SERIOUS TAUT FILMMAKING, A WALL-TO-WALL EXHIBITION OF WHAT WE SAW RIGHT THERE. THUS, HULK DIDN’T WATCH THE OTHER TRAILERS. HULK DIDN’T READ ANY REVIEWS. HULK ONLY HEARD THAT GENERAL CONSENSUS WAS THAT PEOPLE EITHER LIKED IT OR LOVED IT. GIVEN THAT LACK OF MEDIA AWARENESS, HULK CAN’T NECESSARILY SPEAK AS TO WHAT OTHERS WERE EXPECTING, BUT IT FAIR TO SAY THAT MOST PEOPLE WERE EXPECTING A WELL-MADE ACTION/CHASE FILM.

THAT’S NOT NECESSARILY WHAT WE GOT.

OH, IT WAS WELL-MADE ALL RIGHT, BUT IT WAS ALSO SOMETHING FAR MORE STRANGE, SILLY, HYPER-VIOLENT, CAUTIOUS, AND OFTEN COUNTER-INTUITIVE.

IN OTHER WORDS, WE GOT SOMETHING WONDERFUL.

PERHAPS HULK WAS A LITTLE FOOLISH. GIVEN THAT NICOLAS WINDING REFN HAD PREVIOUSLY MADE BRONSON AND THAT FILM IS BAT-SHIT INSANE (IN THE BEST POSSIBLE WAY), HULK DEFINITELY SHOULD HAVE EXPECTED SOMETHING… YOU KNOW… WEIRDER.

BUT FOR WHOEVER THE PEOPLE WHO WERE SITTING BEHIND HULK, IT WAS APPARENTLY NOT SO OKAY. UPON TURNING AROUND TO LEAVE HULK OVERHEARD A GROUP OF CONFUSED ADOLESCENT MALES SITTING ABOUT, LOOKING AT EACH OTHER IN A POST-CREDIT MALAISE…

GUY: “Um… What did you think man?”

OTHER GUY: “I dunno. Not what I expected it was weird. I mean… guh… Lame. I thought it would be different.”

HULK KEPT WALKING PAST EAR SHOT, BUT THE BRIEF EXCHANGE STUCK WITH HULK.

IT BEGS AN IMPORTANT QUESTION FOR MOVIE-GOERS: WHY IS GETTING EXACTLY WHAT YOU EXPECT SO IMPORTANT?

ONE ONE HAND, THERE IS THE SIMPLE MATTER OF SEEING THE BASIC GENRE OF FILM THAT YOU INTEND TO. ONE DOES NOT WALK INTO A KATE HUDSON ROMANTIC COMEDY AND EXPECT DECAPITATION-LEVEL HORROR (WHILE HULK WOULD ENJOY THAT KIND OF SURPRISE, MANY WOULD OBVIOUSLY… NOT). BUT IN TERMS OF THOSE MOST BASIC GENRE EXPECTATIONS, HULK WOULD ARGUE THAT A DIFFERENT CONCERN ALL TOGETHER BECAUSE LET’S FACE IT, THE EXAMPLES OF FILMS THAT HAVE OUTRIGHT LIED ABOUT THEIR CORE IDENTITY ARE FEW AND FAR BETWEEN.

SO WHAT ARE WE REALLY TALKING ABOUT? WE ARE REALLY TALKING ABOUT THE TINIEST OF SUBVERSION: A SCENE HERE OR THERE THAT MAY SKEW WILDER, FUNNIER, DARKER, OR SADDER THAN YOU IMAGINED THE ENTIRE MOVIE TO BE.

THIS SEEMS TO MATTER FOR SOME REASON. PEOPLE GET MAD AT ROMANTIC COMEDIES WITH A SAD SCENE IN THEM. PEOPLE GET MAD WHEN ACTION MOVIES HAVE A SILLY SCENE IN THEM. PEOPLE GET MAD WHEN FAMILY FILMS TRY TO TEACH THEIR KIDS LIFE LESSONS OR SHOW DEATH INSTEAD OF JUST BABY SIT THEM. WHY DO WE GO SO FAR WITH GENRE EXPECTATION TO NOT EXPECT A HINT OF DEVIATION FROM MONOGAMOUS TONE?

IS THAT WHY WE LOVE NOLAN? BECAUSE WE KNOW THAT WE GOING TO GET SUPER-SERIOUS MOVIES THROUGH AND THROUGH? IS THAT WHY SOME PEOPLE CAN’T GET BEHIND RAIMI’S SPIDERMAN MOVIES BECAUSE THEY EMBRACE TOO MUCH CAMP? WHY DO SOME PEOPLE REQUIRE MOVIES TO BE SO DAMN SINGULAR?

BECAUSE IF YOU ASK HULK, EVERY GENRE SHOULD HAVE A LITTLE LEEWAY TO PLAY WITH THE RULES.

AND THAT’S ALL THAT DRIVE DOES. IT PLAYS WITH RULES. IT STILL SATISFIES THE BASIC PROMISE OF AN ACTION/CHASE FILM, NO DOUBT ABOUT IT, BUT IT GOES TO SO MANY OTHER MORE INTERESTING PLACES ALONG THE WAY.

PLAYING WITH THE RULES SHOULD BE MORE THAN OKAY. SOME FILMS BRING THEIR SUBVERSION RIGHT INTO THE TEXT OF THE FILM (THE ORIGINAL SCREAM, TV’S COMMUNITY), SOME INVERT AND ASSIMILATE GENRES CONSTANTLY TO CREATE THEIR OWN VIVID WORLDS (TARANTINO, WRIGHT, WHEDON) AND SOME DO ALL THIS IN LESS OBVIOUS WAYS (EVERYTHING COEN BROTHERS). BUT IN ONE GENERAL BROAD STROKE OF MOVIE FANDOM, WE SHOULD BE MORE APT TO EMBRACE IT BECAUSE IT OFFERS US ONE OF THOSE ALL TOO RARE THINGS:

SURPRISE.

SURPRISE IS ONE OF THE MORE RARE THINGS WE HAVE LEFT AS A MOVIE GOING CULTURE. IT’S ONE OF THOSE THINGS THAT GETS US TO RESPOND. FOR BETTER, WORSE, WHATEVER. ISN’T THAT WHY WE GO TO MOVIES? TO HAVE EMOTIONAL REACTIONS TO THINGS?

MAYBE SURPRISE HAS BEEN BEAT OUT OF US BY A POOR, CYNICAL THINKING, BEST SUMMED UP BY MATT GROENING OF ALL PEOPLE: “SMART THINGS MAKE PEOPLE FEEL STUPID, AND SURPRISING THINGS MAKE PEOPLE FEEL SCARED.” PLEASE NOTE THAT HULK NOT SURE HOW ENTIRELY SERIOUS HE IS ABOUT THAT STATEMENT, GIVEN THAT HE CREATED ONE OF THE SMARTEST, SURPRISING SHOWS IN THE HISTORY OF TELEVISION (HULK TALKING GOLDEN AGE HERE), BUT HOLLYWOOD EXECS HAVE CERTAINLY RUN WITH IT HOOK LINE AND SINKER.

PERHAPS HULK COMING OFF A LITTLE MORALIZING WITH ALL THIS, BUT SHOULDN’T THAT NOT BE THE CASE? SHOULDN’T WE CELEBRATE THE PLAYFUL DEVIATION FROM OVERT-TRADITION AS LONG AS WE SET IT UP WITH APPROPRIATE GRACE AND FORETHOUGHT?

SHOULDN’T WE BE HAPPY WHEN WE GO TO THE MOVIES EXPECTING A GOOD,  STANDARD ACTION MOVIE AND GET SOMETHING THAT OFFERS YOU A REAL ALTERNATIVE. AN ACTION MOVIE WITH:  STRANGE PINK FONTS, 80’S-EURO-STYLE POP SONGS, SCORPION JACKETS, A DOWNRIGHT-SCARY ALBERT BROOKS, A QUIETLY OBSERVED ROMANCE, SPLATTER-LEVEL VIOLENCE, AND RYAN GOSLING’S BLUE GOOGLY-EYES THAT MAKE HIM SEEM EXTRA-STOOPID….

WHEN WE GET SOMETHING LIKE THAT, SHOULDN’T WE CHERISH IT?

❤ HULK

BETTY’S REVIEW: “Fucking loved it. But really it should have been called ‘Stare.'”

*******UPDATE:

HULK HAD A PASSING THOUGHT THAT IT IMPORTANT TO MENTION. AN AMENDMENT IF YOU WILL.

SOMETIMES IT IS IMPORTANT FOR CRITICS/ENTHUSIASTS TO RECOGNIZE THAT WE ARE, IN TERMS OF OUR MASSIVE AMOUNT OF CONSUMPTION, A MINORITY. WE CAN RECOGNIZE TROPES, TONES, DEVICES, WHATEVER-THE-HELL THUS TONAL “SURPRISE” IS ACTUALLY MUCH MORE OF A RARE COMMODITY TO US THAN FOR THE AVERAGE MOVIE GOER. IN OTHER WORDS, WE VALUE DIFFERENT THINGS. WHICH PERHAPS RENDERS HULK’S ARGUMENT ABOUT “NOT WHAT YOU THOUGHT” A LITTLE ESOTERIC.

HULK ADMITS THIS.

NOW HULK ABSOLUTELY STANDS BY IDEOLOGY THAT A MOVIE THAT IS HYPER IN TUNE TO HOW AN AUDIENCE WATCHES IT, WILL LIKELY GO OVER GREAT. BUT THE NATURE OF “SURPRISE” MIGHT BE A LITTLE DIFFERENT.

HULK JUST THINKS IT IS IMPORTANT TO MENTION THAT MOVIES IN GENERAL AREN’T NECESSARILY “BUILT” FOR EITHER ONE OF US OVER THE OTHER (THOUGH IN CERTAIN CASES, THEY ARE). GOING OFF THAT, HULK STILL BELIEVES THAT ANYONE WHO WATCHES A SHIT-TON OF MOVIES IS HONESTLY IN A BETTER PLACE TO COME AT A MOVIE IN TERMS OF CRITICISM THAN SOMEONE WHO DOESN’T (GOING BACK TO HULK’S THEORY ON THE MEANING OF EXPERTISE AND HOW IT SHIFTS THE DIALOGUE).

THUS, THE GOAL OF THIS ARTICLE SHIFTS A LITTLE IN TERMS OF MESSAGE. HULK URGES YOU NOT TO HAVE AN OPEN MIND ABOUT YOUR EXPECTATIONS NOT BECAUSE IT’S THE “RIGHT” WAY, BUT BECAUSE IT SIMPLY OPENS YOU UP TO THE POSSIBILITIES OF EVERYTHING CINEMA CAN BE. BECAUSE IT’S LIKE ANY LEARNING PROCESS.:IF YOU WANT TO ENJOY MORE MOVIES YOU HAVE TO SEE MORE MOVIES.

IT SOUNDS WAY TOO SIMPLE, BUT REALLY IT GOES BACK TO HULK’S IDEA THAT THE CRUX OF ALL FILM ARGUMENTS BASICALLY COME DOWN TO THE ISSUE OF “SEE MORE MOVIES.”

WHY HULK LIKE MACGRUBER BETTER THAN BLUE VALENTINE

THIS GREAT POSTER THOUGH.

HULK KNOW, HULK KNOW. THAT SOUND ASININE. BUT HULK SAW BOTH THIS WEEKEND AND SO IT INVITE THE ODD COMPARISON.

AND HULK UNDERSTAND WHY SOME FOLK MIGHT BE MAD AT HULK . MANY HULK FOLLOWERS LOVE BLUE VALENTINE AND HULK UNDERSTAND WHY. HULK ACTUALLY LIKE ASPECTS OF IT VERY MUCH. FOR ONE, IT HAVE INCREDIBLE CENTRAL PERFORMANCE FROM RYAN GOSLING.

HE ALSO HANDSOME.

HULK ALSO RECOGNIZE HOW SUBJECT MATTER SEEM BE DEEPLY PERSONAL FOR MANY. PERSONAL FILMS HAVE STRONG ABILITY TO REGISTER AND AGAIN, HULK UNDERSTAND.

AND TO JUST AS MANY, MACGRUBER MAY BE CONSIDERED INANE; A DUMB MOVIE BASED ON SNL SKIT THAT BARELY ROSE ABOUT THAT TRUNCATED LEVEL OF THOUGHT. THAT FINE TOO. HULK KNOW HULK CAN’T CONVINCE SOME PEOPLE BEYOND THE “APPARENT TONE” OF MOVIE. AND IT MAKE THIS ARTICLE SEEM CRAZY BECAUSE A FILM LIKE BLUE VALENTINE SIMPLY IN DIFFERENT “CLASS” THAN FILM LIKE MACGRUBER. HULK UNDERSTAND THIS.

BUT WHY ONE FILM INHERENTLY “BETTER” BECAUSE OF THE SERIOUSNESS OF SUBJECT MATTER?

IT SHOULD BE SAY NEITHER ONE OF THESE FILM ON HULK’S TOP 15. WORSE, THESE FILMS ACTUALLY NECK AND NECK ON HULKS RUNNING LIST, WHICH JUST MEAN THAT IN MANY WAYS DEBATING THE RELATIVE “GOODNESS’ OF THESE TWO SORT OF POINTLESS. BUT HULK THINK IT BEAR MENTION BECAUSE IT GET AT ESSENCE OF HULK PHILOSOPHY ON MOVIES IN GENERAL.

WHY MACGRUBER “BETTER” TO HULK? BECAUSE MACGRUBER SHOW HULK SOMETHING HULK NEVER REALLY SEEN BEFORE.

IN END, BLUE VALENTINE A MOVIE THAT GET TO HEART OF WHAT MIGHT BE A VERY BANAL TRUTH. MANY PEOPLE CALLING IT A FILM ABOUT HOW PEOPLE “FALL OUT OF LOVE” BUT HULK DISAGREE STRONGLY. WHY? BECAUSE WE NEVER SEE HOW THAT HAPPEN, JUST THAT IT DID. WE SEE THEM FALL IN LOVE. THEN WE SEE THEM NOT IN LOVE. THAT IT. IT NOT LIKE IT UNJUSTIFIED THOUGH. REALLY WE SEE HOW THE SEED OF DESTRUCTION  PLANTED FROM ONSET. A COUPLE CAN BE HELPLESS AGAINST FATE AND THIS SEEM LIKE COUPLE TOTALLY (OR WILLFULLY) NAIVE OF THEIR INHERENT PROBLEMS AT BEGINNING. AND IF THAT THE POINT OF MOVIE? THAT TOTALLY FINE. GOOD EVEN. BUT HULK NOT SURE THAT INTENTION AND REALLY NOT SURE IF THAT AUDIENCE’S REACTION.

STRUCTURALLY BLUE VALENTINE FILM HAVE SOME PROBLEM TOO. HULK THINK IT MAYBE BENEFIT BY SHYING AWAY FROM “500 DAYS OF SUMMER” ALTERNATION MODEL OF GOOD TIMES/BADD TIMES. HONESTLY, IT SEEM BLUE VALENTINE WOULD WORK BETTER AS CLEAN BREAK WITH 1ST-HALF-HAPPY, 2ND-HALF-SAD STRUCTURE. MAYBE THEY AFRAID OF “CARNAL KNOWLEDGE” COMPARISON? OKAY, BUT STILL IT HAVE OWN UNIQUE STORY TO TELL, SO HULK WONDERING WHY SHY AWAY FROM SOMETHING THAT OBVIOUSLY WORK BETTER ON DRAMATIC LEVEL? THAT MAKE 2ND PART SADNESS TO THEIR LIVES ALL MORE DEVASTATING. INSTEAD, THE MISMATCH OF GOOD TIMES WITH BAD MAKE FOR A CONFUSING TONE (NOT THAT HULK LITERALLY CONFUSED, WE TALKING EMOTIONAL CONNECTION HERE). IN END, “BLUE VALENTINE” NOT FEEL LIKE A STORY TO HULK. IT MERELY PRESENT SITUATION. AND WORSE IT MAKE ESPECIALLY WEIRD DECISION BY PUTTING “GOOD TIMES” SEQUENCES AFTER “BAD TIMES” SEQUENCE… THIS MAKE NARRATIVE WORK AS  “REMINDERS” INSTEAD OF AN EMOTIONAL LET DOWN. YES, IT CAN BE INTERESTING, BUT IT NOT DRAMA.

HULK DON'T REMEMBER A CAMERA IN THIS MOVIE

 

IT NOT LIKE A FRACTURED NARRATIVE RUIN CAPACITY FOR DRAMA EITHER. IT JUST A FRACTURED NARRATIVE MUST REGISTER IN COMPELLING WAY TO AUDIENCE. WHAT MAKE DFW’S “INFINITE JEST” SO EMOTIONALLY INTERESTING THAT IT THE STUNNINGLY-FRACTURED NARRATIVE REVEAL AND CLARIFY THE DENSITY AND INTENTION OF ITS CHARACTERS. AND YES, THERE SOME OF THAT IN BLUE VALENTINE (LIKE THE REVEALING HOSPITAL QUESTIONNAIRE SCENE), BUT NOT NEARLY ENOUGH JUSTIFY EDITING CHOICE IN HULK’S MIND.

A LOT BEEN MADE OF “RAWNESS” OF BLUE VALENTINE. AND THAT PROBABLY APT. THE SUBJECT MATTER OF MOVIE PAINFULLY PRESENT TO MANY. IT HAVE SAME CONVERSATIONS MANY A BREAKING-UP COUPLE HAVE IN REAL LIFE. BUT ONCE AGAIN WE GET TO THE ISSUE OF “DRAMATIZATION” VS. “PRESENTING TRUTH.” HULK CALL THIS THE “TELL ME YOU LOVE ME” SYNDROME, A TV SERIES SOME LAUDED AS PAINFUL LOOK AT REALISTIC RELATIONSHIPS. INSTEAD, HULK JUST FOUND IT OBVIOUS. JUST CAUSE IT REALISTIC NOT NECESSARILY MAKE IT GOOD, OR BETTER YET, COMPELLING. IT ONE OF MANY THING HULK LIKE ABOUT “THE WIRE”, WHICH WAS CONCERNED WITH REALISM ONLY TO A POINT. EVERY SCENE IN THAT SHOW HAVE REAL DELIBERATE FOCUS EITHER ON PLOT, CHARACTERIZATION, OR ESPECIALLY THEME AT GIVEN MOMENT. ALWAYS. AND IT DID SO WITH GREAT ECONOMY. THIS PART OF WHY DAVID SIMON VERY CAREFUL TO REMIND FOLKS IT FICTIONAL NARRATIVE AND NOT “REALISM/JOURNALISM/OR DOCU-STYLE.” MEANWHILE, HULK WORRY BLUE VALENTINE SOMETIMES TO CONCERNED WITH ACCURACY.

INDEEEED.

AN EVEN BETTER COMPARISON IS THIS YEAR’S CRITICAL DARLING “THE SOCIAL NETWORK” THAT SHED NOTION OF REALISM CONSTANTLY IN FAVOR OF CREATING SOMETHING INTERESTING TO SAY, OR GET AT LARGER TRUTH. IT A NOBLE GOAL AND ONE PEOPLE SEEM RESPOND TO. YEST THEY BOTH HAVE DIFFERENT GOALS, BUT HULK REALLY NOT ALL THAT SURE THE “LARGER TRUTH” OF BLUE VALENTINE EVEN CLEAR.

IT ALL GET BACK TO NATURE OF “DRAMA.” A FILM NOT HAVE GO THROUGH HIT SAME EXACT BEATS, BUT CONVENTIONS OF DRAMA MUST BE UNDERSTOOD IN ORDER BE ACHIEVED. WHICH NOT SAY BLUE VALENTINE TOTALLY UNFOCUSED (HULK NOT WANT  SEEM LIKE TRASHING MOVIE) AND THE PERFORMANCES ARE STELLAR (ESPECIALLY GOSLING’S), BUT HANGUPS OF MOVIE UNFORTUNATELY MAKE IT HARD FOR HULK TO TRULY EMBRACE THOSE SHORTCOMINGS.

ON OTHER HAND, MACGRUBER IS ABSOLUTELY NUTS IN THE BEST POSSIBLE WAY.

IT RAUNCHY. IT ABSURD. IT SOMETIMES INSIPID. BUT IT NEVER, EVER AFRAID. IT SMART ENOUGH TO KNOW IT CAN ONLY GET A TINY BIT OF MILEAGE SENDING UP MACGUYVER AND THE SNL SKIT IT BASED ON, SO IT WISELY SEND UP 80’S MOVIES INSTEAD. IT NEVER REFERENCE TOO DIRECTLY (THE CLOSEST IT COME IS RAMBO), BUT INSTEAD REFERENCE THE MOOD AND CULTURE OF TIME. IT HAVE GREAT MUSIC CUES THAT STRADDLE LINE BETWEEN RIDICULOUS AND COMPLETELY AWESOME (PARTICULARLY THE GENUINELY THRILLING SCENE WHERE MACGRUBER CRASHES THE PARTY SET TO EDDIE MONEY’S “TAKE ME HOME TONIGHT”… TRUST HULK. IT GREAT.)

SHUT UP, IT'S AWESOME

BUT BEST OF ALL, MACGRUBER EXIST IN IT OWN WEIRD MOVIE WORLD. IT KNOW EXACTLY HOW BUILD UP THE WEIRDEST CHARACTER CONVENTIONS ONLY TO THEN RIP THEM DOWN. IT PLAY THE MACGRUBER-LESS OPENING AS COMPLETELY STRAIGHT ACTION MOVIE. IT ADMIRABLE ALONG WITH FACT THE MOVIE SEEM LIKE HAVE ACTUAL BIG-ASS BUDGET (WHICH TOTALLY RISKY AND KUDOS TO WHOEVER GREEN-LIT). AND VAL KILMER LEGITIMATELY GREAT, TOWING LINE BETWEEN STRAIGHT FORWARD AND SILLY (AT LEAST TIL END).

TRY IGNORE THE CHEEKS

BUT MOST STRIKING THING ABOUT THE MOVIE’S SINGULAR WORLD, THAT MACGRUBER AS CHARACTER IS COMPLETELY AND TOTALLY INSANE.

HE A FILTHY, INCOMPETENT ASSHOLE. BUT RATHER THAN BE PURE SMARM (SOMETHING OUT OF TODD PHILLIPS MOVIE?) THE CARTOONISH BRAVADO IS TURNED UP TO 11. AND IT HELPED BY HOW THEY  UNDERCUT HIS MACHISMO AT EVERY MOMENT THEY CAN. THE BEST EXAMPLE THE REOCCURRING BIT WHERE IT SMASH-CUT TO THIS “LADY’S MAN” BEING ABSOLUTELY MEEK/DETESTABLE IN BED. IT CAN BARELY BE DESCRIBED BUT YOU HAVE SEE IT.  SERIOUSLY (AND YES, SOME GUYS APPARENTLY DO IT LIKE THAT… LIKE CAPTAIN AMERICA… BUT YOU NOT HEAR THAT FROM HULK).

THE FILM IMPRESSIVELY DIRTY. ANY MOVIE THAT HAVE BETTY QUOTING THE GREAT LINE ALL WEEK: “[WITH ULTRA-SERIOUS-CONVICTION] I WILL SUCK YOUR DICK… I WILL LET YOU FUCK ME…” MUST HAVE A GREAT EFFECT. AND THERE A TON QUOTABLE LINES.

HULK COULD GO ON AND ON, BUT HULK SHOULD MENTION HE NOT IN LOVE WITH MOVIE EITHER. CHIEF PROBLEM IS THAT SOMETIME IT TOO OVER-DEPENDENT ON IT’S WEIRD TONE TO POINT WHERE FEEL SLIGHTLY ONE NOTE. HULK KNOW THAT WEIRD STATEMENT, ESPECIALLY CONSIDERING IT PRETTY DAMN GOOD NOTE (FILMMAKERS LIKE ADAM MCKAY BETTER UNDERSTAND HOW GET MILEAGE OUT OF ABSURDITY). DID HULK ADORE MACGRUBER? NOT EXACTLY. BUT HULK APPRECIATE THE SHIT OUT OF IT.

SO GIVEN WHAT HULK EXPLAIN ABOUT THESE TWO MOVIE, WHY MACGRUBER HAVE BE AUTOMATICALLY INFERIOR? ONLY COMEDIES THAT TEND GET LOVE ARE ONES WITH SERIOUS UNDERTONE (LIKE SIDEWAYS OR SOMETHING). HULK NEVER UNDERSTAND THIS.

MACGRUBER ABOUT DUMB STUFF, BUT IT SMART ABOUT ITS DUMB STUFF. A FEW MEMBERS OF CRITICAL COMMUNITY NOTED VALUE OF THIS, BUT NOT ENOUGH.

FOR HULK’S FINAL POINT:

DREW MCWEENEY OVER AT HITFIX DO GREAT GAME IN HIS PODCAST CALLED “MOVIE GOD”. IN IT, YOU PRESENTED WITH TWO MOVIES AND YOU HAVE DECIDE WHICH ONE NEVER EXISTED. IT TERRIBLY UNFAIR BUT THAT THE POINT. IT MAKE YOU CHOOSE WHAT YOU VALUE IN A MOVIE.

AND HULK KNOW THIS DOUBLY UNFAIR AFTER SPENDING TIME ONLY BASHING BLUE VALENTINE AND ONLY BUILDING UP MACGRUBER, AND TO MAKE REALLY CLEAR I’D RATHER KEEP BOTH…

… BUT MACGRUBER DO SOMETHING HULK NEVER REALLY SEEN BEFORE (SPECIFICALLY THE EXACT WAY IT DO IT). AND BLUE VALENTINE DO THINGS HULK SEEN MANY TIME BEFORE AND NOT AS WELL AS HULK HOPED.

WHEN HULK PUT IN THOSE TERMS, IT NOT OBVIOUS?

CAN YOU HANDLE IT?

FEEL FREE TO AGREE OR TELL HULK THAT HULK IDIOT BELOW.

… THOUGH HULK WARN YOU. YOU KNOW LIKE HULK WHEN HULK ANGRY.