A friend and I had planned to watch ‘The Dark Knight’ today. But our plan didn’t turn out quite the way we wanted it to. The multiplex we went to had sold out tickets for a 1010 morning show at 0940. So other options were ‘Hancock’ and ‘Kung Fu Panda’. But the latter was only at 1145 up to which we didn’t want to prolong. How much of window shopping can a person take? Definitely not more than an hour for me. And thankfully we got the tickets. So Hancock it was.

I have been a fervent fan of Will Smith ever since I saw ‘Independence Day’ [ 1996 I think, not sure]. His immaculate portrayal of Captain Miller stays fresh in my memory to this day. I have missed some of his movies though, but have watched the best ones. The love doc Alex Hitchkins in ‘Hitch’, the robot-despising detective Spooner in ‘I-Robot’, the man with big dreams struggling to make ends meet , Chris Gardner in ‘The pursuit of happyness’ are best examples of his versatility as an actor.

Speaking of Hancock, it is an experiment by Will Smith in the superhero genre, and he carries it off with great élan. Hancock is a stubble sporting, drunk superhero who is more of an abomination to LA than a help. The result of a badly marketed product. Obviously the locals pooh-pooh him as and when possible. Be it in his slapdash flying while guzzling a bottle of liquor, rough take-offs and landings on the streets, or while threatening a poor old lady he catches staring at him as a news channel speaks of his misdeeds, saying “call me ass-hole one more time”, struggling to be courteous while saying “good job” to the police at the scene of the crime; Smith exudes style and charisma throughout.

Enter Ray, [portrayed by Jason Bateman, I should confess I haven’t seen any of his movies before], a public relations executive, Hancock gets a new image as a likeable superhero. The first half is very comical inducing many a laugh as Will abuses kids, smashes buildings and cars, hits on women, throws a whale into the sea sinking a yacht in the process etc. The movie gets a little slow towards the end. Charlize Theron looks somewhat aged, though fine-looking , and does justice to her small part.

To sum up, Hancock is definitely worth a watch, purely for Will Smith’s antics and the special effects. “Good Job” Will..!


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