Bad Movie Club: The Amazing Bulk
2012 superhero movie
Bad Movie Rating: 5/5 (Josh: 4/5; Fred: 3/5)
Plot: After accidentally transforming himself into a raging purple CGI beast, Henry has to save the world from the evil Dr. Werner von Kantlove and try to win the heart of his beloved Hannah.
This was a bit of a bad movie white whale for me. After all, how could a movie shot entirely on a stage in front of a green screen and then utilizing really bad CGI and stock backgrounds fail to impress? This might be the most absurd thing I've ever seen in my time writing bad entries on this movie blog, and that's saying quite a bit since I watch a lot of absurd things. I'm still not sure about the filmmaker's intentions. Lewis Schoenbrung, who hasn't made another movie since this but made another Bad Movie Club venture called Aliens vs. Avatars, swears he didn't intend to make a bad film, but it's hard to believe when watching the purple Bulk fleeing from the military at the end of this movie. He passes a variety of stock footage cartoon characters which have no business being there, "kitchen sink" imagery as Josh put it, and it just has to be a joke. He runs past a leprechaun at one point, a weird troll guy, a plethora of cartoon animals, a golfer who looks like he stepped out of an Atari 2600 game. It's more than bad--it's ridiculously bad. I mean, just look at this thing:
There's no way somebody made that and thought it would pass as a serious attempt at filmmaking, right?
Part of me thinks Schoenbrun thought he was making something revolutionary here, a sort of low-budget superhero version of Sin City. He did reference Who Framed Roger Rabbit? in a response to criticism of his film, and that lends some credence to the theory. My guess is that he was putting this all together chronologically, decided that it was going to be one of the worst things ever made, and then went nuts at the end and threw in everything and the proverbial kitchen sink that Josh was talking about.
And you have to see how the characters run in this movie. The Bulk itself sort of shimmies along with the same repetitive movements, but the human characters all run in place while the background changes behind them, like they're in a Flintstones cartoon. It's hilarious.
The movie doesn't just look bad. It's poorly written, all superhero cliches and hammy jokes. The acting, likely not aided by the already unpolished performers being forced to act in front of a green screen, is among the worst you'll ever see. The music is mostly classical pieces that you've heard in movies before, including a nod to 2001: A Space Odyssey that inspired me to make a "Thus Puked Zarathustra" joke that neither of my Bad Movie Club friends seemed to enjoy as much as me. I mean, I had to "like" my own comment. Somebody had to.
Yes, the Bulk does have nipples. Because why not?
My God! If a child made this movie, he or she would be embarrassed with how it turned out. Lewis Schoenbrun has done something truly remarkable here, and the uniqueness of this piece of trash makes it a good-bad movie you should endure if you get the chance and enjoy that sort of thing.
"Thus Puked Zarathustra"? That's funny, right?