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On The Great Debate thread about superpowers (specifically the superpower of flight), a comment by Carey J reminded me of the not-so-great superhero movie Hancock. I thought Hancock had real potential. The basic premise is an alcoholic superhero — but not a mostly functional alcoholic like Tony Stark; a real Skid Row-type alcoholic with Superman-like powers, who can’t fly straight because he’s blind drunk. He causes damage just taking off to fly, not to mention all the havoc he creates while flying, stopping crime, or saving people. Then a PR guy comes along who wants to reform Hancock and rehabilitate his image. The publicist is a loser and schmuck who is also unsuccessfully trying to get a charity campaign off the ground. If you haven’t seen Hancock, what follows is a spoiler alert.
The PR guy’s wife is actually another super-powered immortal like Hancock and is really Hancock’s wife.When the two of them are together, they start to lose their powers and become vulnerable (she is his Kryptonite and vice versa). she left him back in 1931 after he had suffered serious brain trauma so that he would be invulnerable again and could recover and serve the world. The movie just sort of falls apart from there. It’s a mess. The story has more loose ends than knots that come together.
But it could have been a great movie. It’s like they had this one great image in the beginning, and couldn’t figure out what to do with it. They had the start of the story and a general them (redemption), but had no idea where to take it. Maybe it was the editing of the movie, the rewrites, or a thousand other things besides the original script, but the movie that should have been made did not come together. It’s a terrific example of a film that could have been great but wound up mediocre.
Are there movies that you think were unnecessary misses? Movies with great premises, but poor execution? What’s your favorite movie that could have been?Published in