Thursday, July 4, 2013

Hulk vs. Man of Steel

I don't usually have time to read all the lengthy film essays that pop up on the web, but there's one particular writer -- who pumps out among the longest -- I'm happy to devote a few hours to. Going solely by the name of "Hulk", he's a regular contributor to Badass Digest, where he publishes extremely wordy but thoughtful pieces on film and film criticism, with the added novelty of writing entirely with the CAPS LOCK on. I'm sure the fact that it seems like he's always shouting adds to the persuasiveness of his arguments, but really, this guy knows what he's talking about and how to lay down the law in the most cogent, perceptive yet accessible fashion possible.

His latest piece takes down the abysmal storytelling of Zack Snyder's Superman reboot Man of Steel and should be read by anyone interested in how dramatisation and characterisation are important tools in telling effective cinematic stories. Where Snyder's film might excel in its VFX department, it practically fails in every other regard, most glaringly, getting us to care for any of the characters amidst the destruction. If you fall into the "critics should relax, just enjoy the damn action" camp*, Hulk's writing probably isn't for you, but for a deeper understanding of movies and how certain elements affect us while we watch them, it's a thoroughly engaging and thought-provoking, if slightly exhausting read.

*Actually if you're one of these, I recommend you read it anyway, you might learn something :)

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