I attempted to see this film with no idea of the reviews, so that I could form my own opinion. Sadly this was not too be, and I am aware of the kicking this film has received from critics. They hated it. At first I argued with them. But they were right.
This movie is made up of two short films. Not literally, but that is the way it plays out. The first arc, the one shown in the trailers, lasts about 40 minutes, and I should say now that it is amazing. The opening half of this film is exactly what I wanted to see. Will Smith played the character perfectly, his abilities were powerful but not overly so, and his personal problems made him an endearing character. I thoroughly enjoyed myself.
Then that plot ends. Will Smith has superpowers, but he is a drunk. He is not a traditional superhero. Everyone hates him, and he goes to prison to reform himself. He goes through personal changes, and comes out a hero. This takes half an hour. This is great. This, if fleshed out a bit and with a strong ending, is the film I wanted to see.
But this is not Hancock. Everything after this point goes downhill. And amazingly so. There is a twist that creates a bull-shit mythology, and destroys almost all of the character relations. I felt my enjoyment slip, as Hancock, as a movie, fell apart. And then it end, for this is a very short film. A very short film, that booth looses it message and any resemblance of entertainment.
The humour was quite funny, but not enough to make this a comedy. The action was brilliant, but based upon the same premise. Super-Will Smith beats up idiotic criminals. The plot holes are immense, and just get bigger. There are no real bad guys, and way they act defies all logic.
I cannot stress how much fun I had at the beginning of this film. I had avoided reviews, and I loved it. Then it skipped everything I wanted to see in one montage, and destroyed all enjoyment I had. The dénouement came after a half-hour, and the film that emerged after that was cringingly bad.
But I will watch this again. No matter what comes after, the opening of this film is wroth going to see. When it is cheap on DVD, or shown on T, I will tune in. But I will only watch the first half. This could have been amazing, but the film they chose to make was not the one I wanted to see. What I wanted, they skipped. So much promise. Shame.