Hancock

  • Film
  • Action and adventure
If you can remember the seismic upheaval in the superhero order that was ‘Superman III’, during which the square-jawed one grew stubble, hit the whisky bottle and flicked peanuts at barmen, you may get flashbacks when watching Will Smith’s Hancock. But the big difference between Christopher Reeve’s trad hero and this latest lazy, drunken member of the caped fraternity is that Hancock was never a Samaritan in the first place. He looks like a tramp, he kips on benches, and he leaves behind him a trail of destruction wherever he tries to lend a hand. He doesn’t even
own a cape.

He’s a selfish layabout in need of some old-fashioned movie redemption. Which is exactly what we get. Oddly, it takes a suburban PR executive called Ray – played with charm by Jason Bateman – to correct Hancock’s behaviour, even if Ray’s wife Mary (Charlize Theron) is strangely wary of their friendship. As Ray gets to work on Hancock’s image, the film offers some humour and Smith, as ever, is fairly charismatic.

For the first half, there’s a laidback, knowing vibe to the script and Smith has some fun with the whole bizarre idea while director Peter Berg swings his camera about as he did for ‘The Kingdom’. It’s a very modern conceit: that behind every successful man lies an even better publicist. And it’s no coincidence that Hollywood, with its reliance on a well-oiled PR machine, has come up with a fictional publicist who’s more angel than svengali. But then the rest of the film – after an hour – flops spectacularly.

The big problem is that the script tries to have its cake and eat it, first ribbing us with nods and winks emanating from this sideways view of a superhero and then abandoning this detachment in favour of a traditional comic-book showdown that feels out of place, rushed and squeezed into the film’s remaining minutes. Put simply, the filmmakers bottle it.

Hancock’s reinvention as a good guy coincides with the emergence of a super-criminal played by Brit actor Eddie Marsan, who in the facial hair department looks like he’s stepped off the set of ‘Happy-Go-Lucky’. He’s a lame villain. There’s an unexpected twist that throws some weird, distracting logic into the mix, followed by a crisis, a fight, a spurt of apocalyptic digital larks – and it’s over. The film bows out not as a wink-wink pastiche but as a straightforward superhero movie – and a bad one at that.

Release details

Rated: 12A
Release date: Thursday February 7 2008
Duration: 92 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Peter Berg
Screenwriter: Vincent Ngo, Vince Gilligan
Cast: Will Smith
Jason Bateman
Charlize Theron

Average User Rating

4.2 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:58
  • 4 star:15
  • 3 star:5
  • 2 star:12
  • 1 star:0
LiveReviews|208
1 person listening
shannon

i have to wite a review of Hancock for homework, thought it was a good film, bit confusing in parts but understood it in the end

shannon

i have to wite a review of Hancock for homework, thought it was a good film, bit confusing in parts but understood it in the end

abby

He's fast, He's strong. He's brave. He's certainly bad tempered. He is Hancock! If you watch this film, you will be hooked from start to finish. You will sit on edge, wondering what is going to happen next. My first impression of Hancock (Will Smith) was that he is an evil person, however, I start to notice that he only wants to save the world. This film is packed with exitement, entertainment and extaordinary action! Hancock is alone and has got nobody, until he meets a man name Rey (Jason Bateman). He understands what Hancock wants and knows that he only wants to save the world. They come up with a plan to get everybody to like him... The village people think that Hancock is an evil man because of his bad temper and unusual powers. It turns out that Hancock is actually made to save everyone from evil. He's not just loving, he is also brave! For example, when he helps an old man who's shop is getting robbed. Hancock chases the two robbers. The special effects they use are fantastic! Especially when Hancock flies through the night sky at the very end. My favourite character would have to be Mary (Charlize Theron). She seems like a normal human being, however, there might be a twist in store! Hancock, Rey and Aaron (Jae Head) find out a really big secret about Mary. So does the world... I think the moral of the story is to show people that not all superheroes are the same and not all superheroes wear costumes! Even though Hancock has got superpowers, is a superhero and everybody hates him, I like the fact that Rey stays by his side and sticks up for him. You might think you know what's going to happen next... But you actually don't! I think the best part of the film would have to be the romantic ending, with the heart on the moon. This is because, the film is all action, then it turns to romance. This film is much better than any other superhero film I've watched, by far! I would have to give it a star rating of 4. I don't think that I am the only one who thinks this film is great. For example, Holly Braque from Liverpool says, "I can't stop watching, for the first time, a superhero has heart, soul and realism!". This film is truly amazing and I advise you to watch it!

abby

He's fast, He's strong. He's brave. He's certainly bad tempered. He is Hancock! If you watch this film, you will be hooked from start to finish. You will sit on edge, wondering what is going to happen next. My first impression of Hancock (Will Smith) was that he is an evil person, however, I start to notice that he only wants to save the world. This film is packed with exitement, entertainment and extaordinary action! Hancock is alone and has got nobody, until he meets a man name Rey (Jason Bateman). He understands what Hancock wants and knows that he only wants to save the world. They come up with a plan to get everybody to like him... The village people think that Hancock is an evil man because of his bad temper and unusual powers. It turns out that Hancock is actually made to save everyone from evil. He's not just loving, he is also brave! For example, when he helps an old man who's shop is getting robbed. Hancock chases the two robbers. The special effects they use are fantastic! Especially when Hancock flies through the night sky at the very end. My favourite character would have to be Mary (Charlize Theron). She seems like a normal human being, however, there might be a twist in store! Hancock, Rey and Aaron (Jae Head) find out a really big secret about Mary. So does the world... I think the moral of the story is to show people that not all superheroes are the same and not all superheroes wear costumes! Even though Hancock has got superpowers, is a superhero and everybody hates him, I like the fact that Rey stays by his side and sticks up for him. You might think you know what's going to happen next... But you actually don't! I think the best part of the film would have to be the romantic ending, with the heart on the moon. This is because, the film is all action, then it turns to romance. This film is much better than any other superhero film I've watched, by far! I would have to give it a star rating of 4. I don't think that I am the only one who thinks this film is great. For example, Holly Braque from Liverpool says, "I can't stop watching, for the first time, a superhero has heart, soul and realism!". This film is truly amazing and I advise you to watch it!

MKeyes

I can't stop watching, for the first time, a Superhero, has heart, soul and realism! The story for the first time, has a hmmm, could be explanation for everything. The fact that Hancock and Mary had at once been husband and wife, built as a pair, made it ALL THAT MORE incredible, I loved them together - I loved her eventual explanation to him, that they were Gods, Angels and now, in this culture, Superhero's - fantastic! The ending, has the be the best of all - the hospital scene - simply purely first rate! The bad reviews are haters - and wrong as they can be, shallow as they are! Hancock is MY favorite Will Smith movie - and I hope, they do another one! Please!

MKeyes

I can't stop watching, for the first time, a Superhero, has heart, soul and realism! The story for the first time, has a hmmm, could be explanation for everything. The fact that Hancock and Mary had at once been husband and wife, built as a pair, made it ALL THAT MORE incredible, I loved them together - I loved her eventual explanation to him, that they were Gods, Angels and now, in this culture, Superhero's - fantastic! The ending, has the be the best of all - the hospital scene - simply purely first rate! The bad reviews are haters - and wrong as they can be, shallow as they are! Hancock is MY favorite Will Smith movie - and I hope, they do another one! Please!

Hollie

I was persuaded into watching this film and it was a big mistake. I'm not one for superhero films but this was the worst one i've ever seen. The beginning was very long and the end was very short and the overall storyline was terrible. Learn from my mistakes and don't give in to this rubbish.

Hollie

I was persuaded into watching this film and it was a big mistake. I'm not one for superhero films but this was the worst one i've ever seen. The beginning was very long and the end was very short and the overall storyline was terrible. Learn from my mistakes and don't give in to this rubbish.

Harry

Thought it was a good movie and finally a movie in which a superhero has real life problems. Did get a bit weary in the middle but thought it ended well.

Harry

Thought it was a good movie and finally a movie in which a superhero has real life problems. Did get a bit weary in the middle but thought it ended well.

Rachh x

This film has both it's up and down moments. Will Smith is good as the lead, but it all just seems a bit strained. There are a few genuinly funny moments in the movie though i wouldn't really call it a comedy.

Rachh x

This film has both it's up and down moments. Will Smith is good as the lead, but it all just seems a bit strained. There are a few genuinly funny moments in the movie though i wouldn't really call it a comedy.

Sophia

i think everyone thought this movie would be amazing and then they went to the cinema and it was a big let down. that is certainly what happened to me, but now i ma growing on it and i am writing a review on this as a piece of coursework

Sophia

i think everyone thought this movie would be amazing and then they went to the cinema and it was a big let down. that is certainly what happened to me, but now i ma growing on it and i am writing a review on this as a piece of coursework

ben

this is a great film with a unexpected twist. Ignor the negative comment cuz this movie is well acted by smith and bateman

ben

this is a great film with a unexpected twist. Ignor the negative comment cuz this movie is well acted by smith and bateman

Elio

This has to be one of the greatest films i have ever seen it is amazing i have watched it in the cinema and thought it was so good i now have doanloaded it onto my ipod touch even thought it took up nearly 1gb of my space simply great movie will smith is a awsome actor.

Elio

This has to be one of the greatest films i have ever seen it is amazing i have watched it in the cinema and thought it was so good i now have doanloaded it onto my ipod touch even thought it took up nearly 1gb of my space simply great movie will smith is a awsome actor.

i like 2 pwn noobs

teh moovie r wuz gud so evry1 shud watch it i rate it 349823076528735327095724876666623085702478597982735874832057483720348572/10 good moovie lulz kthx bai

i like 2 pwn noobs

teh moovie r wuz gud so evry1 shud watch it i rate it 349823076528735327095724876666623085702478597982735874832057483720348572/10 good moovie lulz kthx bai

chris

Watched it on a plane so luckily I didn't have to pay for it. The worst Will Smith movie, & one of the worst films I've seen in a long time...it's boring.

chris

Watched it on a plane so luckily I didn't have to pay for it. The worst Will Smith movie, & one of the worst films I've seen in a long time...it's boring.

simon

DO NOT LISTEN TO NEGATIVE REVIEWS THIS IS A GREAT FILM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

simon

DO NOT LISTEN TO NEGATIVE REVIEWS THIS IS A GREAT FILM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Maya

I delayed seeing this movie because of the bad reviews. One week when there was nothing on, I decided to see it anyway. I'm glad I did. I was pleasantly surprised and really enjoyed it. It's a mix of action and romance. A feel good movie. One thing though, the film could do with a little more explanation of the history between Will's & Charlize's characters. Go and see it, don't listen to the negative press & just form your own opinion.

Maya

I delayed seeing this movie because of the bad reviews. One week when there was nothing on, I decided to see it anyway. I'm glad I did. I was pleasantly surprised and really enjoyed it. It's a mix of action and romance. A feel good movie. One thing though, the film could do with a little more explanation of the history between Will's & Charlize's characters. Go and see it, don't listen to the negative press & just form your own opinion.

brianey

this film was great i really enjoyed and i shalll be buying the dvd so i can enjoy it again

brianey

this film was great i really enjoyed and i shalll be buying the dvd so i can enjoy it again

Gr8yxx

I read all the negatie reviews on here before visiting the cinema and almost didn't go to see the film because of them. I'm so glad i decided to see for myself what it was like because it was an excellent movie. Very funny and also almost heartbreaking. I enjoyed this film immensly and to think i almost didn't see it because a lot of reviews were negative. Each to their own i suppose, but the 5 of us that went to see it all loved it. Not a boring moment, it didn't fizzle out after 40 minutes. Go find out for yourself.

Gr8yxx

I read all the negatie reviews on here before visiting the cinema and almost didn't go to see the film because of them. I'm so glad i decided to see for myself what it was like because it was an excellent movie. Very funny and also almost heartbreaking. I enjoyed this film immensly and to think i almost didn't see it because a lot of reviews were negative. Each to their own i suppose, but the 5 of us that went to see it all loved it. Not a boring moment, it didn't fizzle out after 40 minutes. Go find out for yourself.

ROB

i have to say this, and i havent said it many times, but this is the worst film i have ever see. awful, awful, awful plot........i cant believe people enjoyed this film, i was cringeing throughout! dont know how the people who made this film sleep at night i advise everyone DO NOT EVER WATCH THIS FILM! 2 hours i will never get back!

ROB

i have to say this, and i havent said it many times, but this is the worst film i have ever see. awful, awful, awful plot........i cant believe people enjoyed this film, i was cringeing throughout! dont know how the people who made this film sleep at night i advise everyone DO NOT EVER WATCH THIS FILM! 2 hours i will never get back!

TRUTH TELLER

This film was obviously made during the writers strike in Hollywood. It really is boring. The plot is just plain ridiculous and the direction of the film defies belief. Very old jokes and the stunts have been done before and much better. Will's last film was excellent, this one is a waste of your money. The Dark Knight and Ironman were, like this, films centered on special effects but were great entertainment. This is just absurd and boring.

TRUTH TELLER

This film was obviously made during the writers strike in Hollywood. It really is boring. The plot is just plain ridiculous and the direction of the film defies belief. Very old jokes and the stunts have been done before and much better. Will's last film was excellent, this one is a waste of your money. The Dark Knight and Ironman were, like this, films centered on special effects but were great entertainment. This is just absurd and boring.

timtom

Saw the movie last week, its not bad but neither is it great. Worth going to see it in the cinema? No, would rather get the DVD.

timtom

Saw the movie last week, its not bad but neither is it great. Worth going to see it in the cinema? No, would rather get the DVD.

Karen

We all really enjoyed this film, especially my son. Wasn't what we expected, but action packed and a good story. Would recommend

Karen

We all really enjoyed this film, especially my son. Wasn't what we expected, but action packed and a good story. Would recommend

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