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Planet Hulk Animated Film Review

Is "Hulk Smash" on another planet really worth your dollars?


Another Marvel Animated Feature film came out yesterday, based off of Greg Pak's Planet Hulk. There's already been some debate over whether or not this film sucks or is awesome. I'm going to tell you flat-out, right away, this film was awesome. 
 
Story: 
We start with Iron Man, Reed Richards... ah screw it, The Illuminati has already captured Hulk, put him in a space ship and Iron Man explains to him he's just too darn dangerous to have on Earth, so they send Hulk to a peaceful planet full of vegetation and game. Hulk has a hissy fit and destroys the navigation on the ship and the ship jumps through a wormhole to the planet Sakaar. He's made into a slave and forced to fight in gladiator battles. Red King is the leader of the planet, and he has a personal bodyguard named Caiera. Hulk wins a few battles and wants to take out the Red King, but has to get through Caiera first. They fight, then more fighting and more fighting.
 
My thoughts on the story:
 This film is consistently violent. I approve.
As I do going into every adapted film, I turned my brain off to the source material so I could enjoy the film for what it was, almost like I was watching this film without ever reading the Planet Hulk story arc. The film runs 81 minutes, and the amount of actual story they put into that time was amazing. It flowed very well and never felt jumpy, even if someone was explaining their back story. I understand that many people are angry about the ending, but I feel if they added any more of the original source material to the film, it would have been a little too much. Yes the ending is a little cheesy. I know that they're missing some major things, which transitions nicely over to World War Hulk, but I really like where it left off. That way, if this film does poorly, (i hope not) it's no big deal because nothing is really set up. However, if they want to do another film, it's easy as pie. 
 

 
Animation:
 Dude, where's my car 2.
I watched this film on Blu-Ray and the cells themselves seemed very sharp and crisp. The colors used were lifted right out of the book and Hulk, being the only thing green on the planet, really popped out. A+ on that. Downside? At times the animation seemed a little choppy, and stylistically, I was unimpressed. It was pretty basic to me and a little clunky. It wasn't something that hindered my opinion of the film by any means though. Any problems I had with animation were completely forgotten about while Hulk was smashing Beta Ray Bill's head into the ground.... repeatedly. 
 
 
Sound:
 Ceci n'est pas une Hulk
I had some bigger problems in this area. The majority of the voice acting sounded like it was in a recording studio. Hulk, after destroying all his enemies in the arena, lets out a curdling scream... no reverb. Sounds like he's screaming in a sound proofed room. The majority of the voices sounded like that. Extremely disappointing to me. However, (there's always a however) there were certain times where the 5.1 Surround sound made giggle in excitement, like when Beta Ray Bill's hammer charged up, and the sound came from behind me. Minor things like this made up for the larger problems I had when it came to the sound in the film. 
 

 
Special Features:
One of the special features was on making the actual film, which I didn't watch. The second one was on the comic, featuring Greg Pak. It was incredibly interesting to see how it came together, including the art work. Then.... the next Marvel animated film... Kiddie Thor. I wasn't interested. It also comes with two audio commentaries, which I will be watching tonight, so look for an update.
 
 
Verdict:
I understand that quite a few of the hardcore Hulk fans will be disappointed with aspects of this film. I think Marvel did they best they could with the source material, in the amount of time they had in order to please the Hulk fans and the general public, who may not know too much about the character other than his origin story. One thing I'm really not understanding is the choice to replace Silver Savage with Beta Ray Bill. You take what you get I guess. Overall, this is on par with what DC has been doing...actual interesting story arcs. I loved this film in every aspect, even though I not only had my doubts, but there were some minor problems that got me angry. 
 
Planet Hulk  4/5
 
Place your vote HERE

  ~ Mat Elfring (InferiorEgo) is a comedian, teacher, comic store employee, comic book writer, and ready to smash. ~
24 Comments
Posted by G-Man

I still have to watch this!!!

Staff
Edited by Captainess Boricua

Admittedly I'm part of the camp that found the film to be awesome. I've been praising it to whoever listens and will keep doing so because I feel this is the one Marvel Animated movie that should not be missed. It was near perfection. 
 
And much like you I'm still scratching my head about the whole Beta Ray Bill and Silver Surfer swap. I was watching it last night with my brother where he decided to question me on Beta Ray Bill and where he came from and how much of a bada$$ mofo he was and yadda yadda yadda and I had to flat out tell him that BRB was not a part of the original arc. 
 
Overall, even with the minor flaws, the movie was awesome and Marvel should definitely follow this same formula in the future.

Posted by Tyler Starke

It wasss sooo bad, I'll give you one thing I liked the animation but the rest of it was just plain awful ( in my opinion ). The ending was the worst, Caiera and Hulk had no chemistry throughout the entire movie, but TRUE to the story they managed to awkwardly just kinda decide that they were in Love two minutes before the credits were about to roll.I mean come on they left out the Story and gave us a movie where hulk is beating people up in a gladiator ring then a town and palace. Don't get me wrong I love hulk smashing as much as the next guy, but this movie barely covers any of the major points of the story and changes everything else they decided was movie worthy enough to include in this failed attempt at animating Planet Hulk
0.5 out of 5

Posted by bingbangboom
@inferiorego: Why put spoilers in the review? Basically said the ending of the movie which is a no-no to me. A review should be to help people decide on purchasing/renting it, not just your complete thoughts on the story. 
 
Saw the movie and it is really good and suprised at some of the changes. There are also cameos in the crowd for many of the "cosmic" marvel fans. It also is good for people that have no idea about comics or Hulk because they don't need it. Just goes along with the story and pulls you along.
Edited by Captainess Boricua
@bingbangboom said:

".  Saw the movie and it is really good and suprised at some of the changes. There are also cameos in the crowd for many of the "cosmic" marvel fans.

 So then my eyes didn't deceive me when I thought I saw Gamora in the crowd then! I knew I wasn't crazy. 
Posted by inferiorego
@Tyler Starke said:
" It wasss sooo bad, I'll give you one thing I liked the animation but the rest of it was just plain awful ( in my opinion ). The ending was the worst, Caiera and Hulk had no chemistry throughout the entire movie, but TRUE to the story they managed to awkwardly just kinda decide that they were in Love two minutes before the credits were about to roll.I mean come on they left out the Story and gave us a movie where hulk is beating people up in a gladiator ring then a town and palace. Don't get me wrong I love hulk smashing as much as the next guy, but this movie barely covers any of the major points of the story and changes everything else they decided was movie worthy enough to include in this failed attempt at animating Planet Hulk 0.5 out of 5 "
As I alluded to in the review, there's no way to make hardcore fans happy. The source material is too long to adapt into roughly 1 1/2 hours. They took the most important pieces of the original and put that onto the screen. I saw the relationship between Caiera and Hulk as two things. For Hulk, it was convenience with a little bit of emotional attachment. Caiera was one of the very few people in his life who didn't see him as a monster. If I was called a dork my whole life and one good looking woman said I was cool. I'd ask her to marry me right then. For Caiera, Hulk avenged the death of her people, her family, and saved the world from a corrupt king. Hulk is the most powerful man on the planet. She is obviously a star-f#$ker. J/K. He's done everything right in her eyes.  Their chemistry didn't really evolve until the last act of the film, and that's why it may seemed forced.
Posted by bingbangboom
@Captainess Boricua: Nope, noticed that too. I also think I saw Quasar, Skrulls, and one of the guys from that one main cosmic book. Sorry forgot the name completly. Was pretty cool and I like those touches. 
Posted by Captainess Boricua
@bingbangboom: I didn't actually notice the other people. *Lol.* I'm going to have to re-watch it to see who I can find. Either way just seeing Gamora was a nice little easter egg.
Posted by inferiorego
@bingbangboom said:
" @inferiorego: Why put spoilers in the review?
good point... fixed... Most of the time, many people on here want to know all the spoilers from the get go.
Posted by bingbangboom
@inferiorego: Thanks :)
Posted by They Killed Cap!

I thought it was good, it could have been great if they followed the story but thats how its been with comics to movies. The Beta Ray Bill thing could have been better if it was Silver Surfer. But yeah I will enjoy multiple times. It is worth getting.
Posted by sora_thekey

I'm going to enjoy this movie since I never read Planet Hulk.... 
Although I might read the TP when I watxh this if it get me intrested enough!
Posted by danhimself

I just said this on IE's facebook but I'll say it here too
 
I didn't really care for the film....In all the other Marvel animated movies featuring the Hulk there was always that moment where I was like "whoa, the Hulk is a badass"  in Ultimate Avengers it was when he took on the other Avengers, in the Next Avengers it was his fight with Ultron, in Hulk Vs. it was when he made Sabretooth piss himself,  but there was no "whoa" moment in this film....at no point was I impressed with Hulk's strength or durability....I felt like all the villains in the movie could have been taken down by Spider-man...there was no suspense

Posted by greenenvy

Getting it today and did not read the book even and as a hulk fan this is a catch up treat. I Do own WWH thou.

Posted by Omega Ray Jay

Ive got to wait untill the 15th here boo!

Posted by Bergquist

 i loved this movie
Posted by Theodore

I'll check it out.

Posted by venom32708

i saw it a week ago :) i thought it was good but the whole beta ray bill thing messed it up and i didnt like how they left the ending all happy and cute when in the books its not even close
Posted by FoxxFireArt

I was surprised how serious they actually took this in the animation. I thought they were going to pull back on the violence. I'm really looking forward to checking this out.

Posted by Nova`Prime`
@inferiorego: Loved the review, I just got done watching it and I wanted to know what others thought and how faithful it was to the comic. I am not a very big Hulk fan, but after watching this and if it is half as good as Planet Hulk I might just have to pick up that trade.
 
I was also wondering why they used Beta Ray Bill, and if you watch the making of it explains due to legal issues (ain't that always the case) they couldn't use Surfer and instead the director is a fan of Bill and put him in Surfer's place which I don't see as a big problem. I also liked the few other characters I caught a glimpse of. I saw Gamora, Pip the Troll, and Starlord. I am gonna be watch the gladiator scenes to see if I can pick up any others.
Posted by StrongestOneThereIs

I just watched it again
And did anyone else notice one of the The Elders of the Universe
 
The Grand Master was standing behind the curtain 
When the Red King was applauding the Hulk after killing the first monster
 
Wonder what was the significance

Posted by Argentino_18

There were a lot of cameos, in the public were Starlord and Adam Warlock, behind the throne the Grandmaster

Posted by firstedition

I just read the series and it is quite honestly... amazing.  The movie on the other hand is the biggest pile of crap ever.  They took out everything that made the story amazing, including ended it in a happy little moment instead of following the story through to it's heartbreaking ending!  They took out Silver Surfer, they staged ALL the fights in the arena instead of all the many locations they take place in the book.  My apologies to those who enjoyed this film, but I can't think of one reason to go see this film.  You're better off going and re-watching Superman Returns like five times in a row (and yes I'm implying that that film was a pile of crap too). 
 
1st Ed -

Posted by DeadLegion

Please excuse my hostility I don't mean anything by it, I am just expressing my general anger with the way they pretty much raped Hulks true character.

This was the worst raping of the Hulk franchise that ever took place. Where do I begin, first off this is an ABSOLUTE 100% rip off of Spartacus, down to the fucking tunics, the phrasing & language, the layout, PRIMUS? LMAO. PATHETIC. These writers couldn't come up with something original they had to steal one of the oldest & most known stories of all time. The animation style is like a cheap Saturday morning cartoon, nothing like Hulk VS Thor or Hulk VS Wolverine, which I consider the epitome of all that is HULK.

The Little Mermaid has better animation, this was just one of the biggest let downs of Hulk I have had the misfortune to witness. They drew Hulk like a little pussy, he's extremely weak compared to anything I've seen Hulk do in the past, he never once rages out like he does in Hulk vs 2009. He fucking talks like a man & never turns into Banner once. I can't say enough crap about this, if you want to maintain the image of HULK as truly HULK, DO NOT WATCH OR READ THIS BOOK.

They even dressed him up as Spartacus, I mean come on really? You fuckin writers couldn't come up with an original story? Hulk is wearing the same Subligaria(cloth underwear) that Spartacus wore in Rome, & even more of an insult THE SAME FUCKING ARMOR ON THE SAME SIDE OF HIS SHOULDER. EVEN THE FUCKING SHIELDS ARE EXACT COPIES OF SPARTACUS. This is just an insult to any intelligent person who has any concept of history. I suppose they were relying on people being stupid & not knowing anything about history to think they could get away with this.

Oh & I love when all these douche bags come up with little cop outs like... oh it's an alternative universe, or oh yeah he learned to talk, yes he did, but never that fluently, & another favorite of mine, he keeps banners mind that's why he's such a pussy. By now you know I'm being sarcastic, for one, he ALWAYS keeps banners mind, ALWAYS, Hulk regularly communicates with banner in his head, his rage still causes him to speak like a child.

Anyone who disagrees is just not a hardcore Hulk fan.

I am so angry that these douche bags ruined the image of THE HULK for me. The best thing I can do is pretend I never saw it & hope it slips from my mind.