The Incredible Hulk: Two-Disc Special Edition

Marvel's not-so-jolly green giant smashes his way onto DVD again

The Incredible Hulk is a film made for those who felt cheated by Ang Lee’s cerebral (not to mention underrated) take on Marvel’s not-so-jolly green giant.

There’s no time for introspection here as director Louis Leterrier crafts an action-packed chase movie with Bruce Banner (Edward Norton) on the run from military forces that want to harness the power of the Hulk. Along the way there are plenty of cameos and throwbacks to the comic to please fans, and it all culminates in a massive CG scrap as old ‘green genes’ goes toe-to-toe with the similarly gamma-powered Abomination. It’s fast, frantic, fun and about as good a Hulk flick as anybody could reasonably expect.

Picture: The Incredible Hulk’s anamorphic 2.35:1 DVD transfer is generally impressive, with the excellent colour reproduction and fine detailing standing up to close inspection. However, like many other recent movies, the cinematography makes use of deliberately crushed blacks, completely lacking in fine detail. While not too big a problem, when it comes to the final night time showdown between Hulk and Abomination in Chapter 18 the DVD transfer struggles to struggles to pick out the necessary detail making some shots rather difficult to make out.
Picture rating: 4/5

Audio: Like its title character, this film’s Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack is big, explosive and extremely aggressive. Sure, the quieter, character moments are very well handled with precise dialogue placement and subtle atmospheric effects. But it’s those moments when the Hulk is onscreen that really satisfy on a purely visceral level – whether he’s fighting the army (Chapter 10) or shouting at lightning (Chapter 11) it always results in room-rumbling sonics that makes full use of your speaker array.
Audio rating: 5/5

Extras: Given the rumours surrounding the film’s troubled post-production, it’s no surprise that Ed Norton isn’t involved in the film’s commentary track. Instead, director Leterrier is joined by actor Tim Roth for an engaging chat-track discussing the technicalities of the production.

Despite Leterrier’s original promises of around 70mins of excised material, the second disc gets underway with a short alternate opening scene and a still pretty impressive 43mins of deleted/extended scenes. Also on offer are a 30min Making of… documentary, a pair of 10min featurettes dedicated to the creation of the Hulk and Abomination, three ‘Hulk-Out’ scene deconstructions and a look at a scene from the Hulk: Gray comic miniseries that inspired a scene in the film.
Extras: 3/5

We say: Big dumb fun of the best kind, given Special Edition treatment that smashes the competition.

Universal Pictures, R2 DVD, £23 Approx, On sale October 13