Movie Review: Marvel Animation's PLANET HULK

Ever since I saw the trailer for Marvel Animation's new film, Planet Hulk, I was just as excited to see it as any other Marvel film coming out whether it’s live action or animation. Planet Hulk is a great story, one of the best Hulk stories ever told, and to see that it was getting an animated film based on it got my geek blood boiling. Abe Froman and I had the privilege of being invited to a early screening of the film, and holy hell it was awesome!

Planet Hulk is by far the best comicbook adapted animated film ever made. This beats out all Marvels previous animated films, all of DC Warner Bros. animated films and personally, I think it is the best Hulk movie made so far, that includes both live action films that have been made. The movie is completely solid in every way possible.

The story and script written by Greg Johnson and Craig Kyle is iron clad, everything flows so well together and the pacing is great. There’s never a dull moment. The Hulk wakes up locked in a space craft only to find that his fellow friends and earths mightiest heros have betrayed him and exiled him to outer space. The reason; he became extremely dangerous and impossible to control.

The spacecraft crash lands on a distant planet called Sakaar, which is ruled over by the tyrant, Red King. From here it become like the movies Spartacus and Gladiator. The Hulk is sold into slavery and forced to fight for his life in a Gladiator arena against some pretty insane looking creatures. He becomes the Green Scar, and the planets most powerful gladiator. As the story unravels he slowly bonds with those that he fights with; the crafty insectoid Miek, a bad-ass rock-man named Korg, a ex-shadow priest named Hiroim, and the nobel-born rebel, Elloe. It becomes evident that the people of Sakaar believe Hulk is their savior. It’s in this environment that The Hulk must decide what he will do with his new life.

We get to see Hulk in a way that we have never seen him before, and it’s extremely cool and effective. The Hulk isn’t just a mindless yelling monster. Sure, when he gets pissed off and fights, he unleashes the fury in every way possible, including some nice monstrous roars. But his mind is capable of rational thoughts and he can talk like everyone else.

Because this film is based around gladiator games you can bet your ass that there is some great violence. The fights scenes in this film are unbelievably insane! I don’t want to go into the details of what I saw because you need to see it for yourself. Just know that the choreography and direction was great, the animation was breathtaking, and there was a good amount devastation. I’ve gotta say there are also some pretty frightening scenes in the movie.

The whole film is animated beautifully, some of the best 2D traditional animation I’ve seen in a long time. It’s better that Marvel’s previous animated films. If you liked what you saw in the Hulk Vs. double feature, then you're gonna love what you see in Planet Hulk.

Supervising director, Frank Paur, did an extraordinary job bringing this story to life for us. He’s accomplished things in this movie that we have never seen in any previous Marvel or DC animated movies. There are so many great little details to keep an eye out for when watching the movie, and again the fight sequences are incredibly awesome.

There are a few changes that were made when adapting the comic-book for the movie, but it’s nothing to make a fuss over, even though I’m sure several fans out there will complain. Just know some of the changes had to be made because other studios own the rights to certain Marvel characters that Marvel can’t use. But those characters are replaced with some even better characters in my opinion. Again, I don’t want to spoil anything for you so I will leave the cameos as a surprise.

I enjoyed the hell out of this movie. It’s a direct to DVD feature, but it should be released on the big screen. I think it’s better than many of the films Hollywood has thrown at us this year. I highly recommend Planet Hulk, it’s a must watch for any comic-book fan!

For the DVD/Blu-Ray specs Click Here. Planet Hulk hits shelves February 2nd.

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