The Amazing Bulk
The Amazing Bulk 2013
When I look at lists that talk about the “Worst Movies of the Year” or even the “Worst Movies of All Time” and when I read those lists, they include generally well made films that have some plot element or character that the list-maker didn’t like at all. But then I see a movie like the Amazing Bulk and know that it has to be up there quite literally for some of the worst movies of all time. It was filmed 100% on a green screen, but unlike movies like Sin City or 300 where it was combined with top level special effects, make up, and costumes, it was a horrid mess of low level actors and extremely amateurish CGI backgrounds. And yet, even though it was extremely poor, it was absolutely hilarious to watch this train wreck of a film unfold before my eyes.
Looking at the poster and going off of the name, it’s probably pretty easy to tell that this film is essentially a parody/mockbuster of the Incredible Hulk. Instead of Bruce Banner, we have Henry “Hank” Howard who injects himself with an experimental serum which turns him into a giant purple creature whenever he is overcome by “the rage”. He is even dating the daughter of a military general. But that’s where the similarities end. The plot is somehow both nonsensical and simple. Hank becomes this creature, goes off on an accidental rampage where he kills a cop, gets captured by his girlfriend’s father and exposed to experiments before being let loose on a mad scientist before he destroys the moon. And to add a twist ending, the general turns on him after the mad scientist is destroyed.
The biggest part of this movie that makes it both the worst and the best thing to watch are the backgrounds. There is literally not a single background that was filmed on location, it’s all either CGI or stock footage from Nasa. But the most baffling thing is that there is zero consistency between the backgrounds. Some scenes look almost passable, like the various cityscapes of brick buildings. But then it cuts to the inside of their lab with their tests on a lab rat that look like it was made before the first Toy Story. And after that, it shows them “driving” home in a car and background that look like they were drawn with Microsoft Paint for a pre-school educational software program. It would be slightly more forgivable if they were all bad, but they all looked like they were made by the same person. Instead, it looks more like it was a school project for an introductory course in video game animation. There’s a castle, a forest, an army base, a living room, and a bizarre looking mansion with a fountain spraying out what looks like the T-1000. And when it comes to the end, there were a bunch of segments that didn’t fit anywhere else in the narrative of the story so they were all thrown together in a final chase scene where he runs past: a leprechaun next to a rainbow, an old western saloon, an animated girl bouncing a soccer ball, the 18th hole of a golf course, and at least a half dozen more. Even the Bulk himself looked horribly deformed with only a single walk cycle that was incredibly overused, and a poor skeletal frame that bent his belly out of shame whenever he leaned down.
If the look of the film wasn’t bad enough, it’s topped off with a cast who are far from being actors. The lead who plays Hank has long hair that looks nothing like a scientist, and has a constant frown to show his emotional struggle. Meanwhile, the general comes off sounding like he had to have his dialogue replaced as it doesn’t exactly match up while he mugs for the camera. And the comic relief of the mad scientist Dr. Kontlove (often mispronounced “Can’t love”) and his young blonde wife are way over the top with their accents. Kontlove has his vaguely foreign accent and monocle while his wife just goes for the shrill idiot voice. She even literally points out at one point that she can’t read. And all of the cast have several moments where they are supposed to be walking from one place to another, but since they are filming in what must be a very small room they have to very awkwardly (and hilariously) walk in place as the animated background vaguely attempts to match their movements.
There are plenty more potshots that could be taken at this film, like the extra-long space sequence that seems to be taken from an instructional video showing how the space station segments attach to each other in space, and yet it decides to focus on each of the times two pieces attach to each other and repeats the action several times to supposedly create the impression of intercourse. It’s even more obvious since the rotation of the Earth can be seen in the background which backs up and goes forward along with the motion of the space station parts. Or the scene where the mad scientist’s wife thinks she has gone blind with her sleep mask on, is wondering down a hallway of velvet ropes, mistakes the Bulk for her husband, and feels up on shadowy space in the CGI model where his crotch is. This was still a hilarious movie to watch, but the laughs were a little too few and far between, and while the Bulk’s walk cycle is hilarious the first time, it’s the kind of joke that can quickly wear out its welcome. It is a film that’s quite like the Room, or Birdemic, and is much more enjoyable if you’re watching it with a group of like minded friends having some drinks and laughs at the filmmaker’s expense. Until next time, this has been Bubbawheat for Flights, Tights, and Movie Nights.