Hollywood Reporter critic Stehpen Farber gives a mixed response to the Will Smith superhero comedy HANCOCK, summed up as: “Great concept, shaky execution.” Farber writes:
Will Smith’s powers are even more extraordinary than those of a caped crusader who can leap way beyond the tallest buildings in a single bound. Smith has salvaged many vehicles more threadbare than “Hancock,” and though his latest venture is decidedly uneven, he seems poised to score yet another supervictory at the boxoffice. The movie is a good showcase for him — and for co-stars Charlize Theron and Jason Bateman. Imagine the heights they all could have scaled if the picture had been really good.
UPDATE: In Variety, Todd McCarty offers a similar reaction:
An intriguing high concept is undermined by low-grade dramaturgy in “Hancock.” This misguided attempt to wring a novel twist on the superhero genre has a certain whiff of “The Last Action Hero” about it, with Will Smith playing an indestructible crime-buster in a pointedly real-world context. Although it will inevitably open very large, this odd and perplexing aspiring tentpole will provide a real test of Smith’s box office invincibility.
Noting that McCarthy’s negative review wiill likely be one of many, Anne Thompson calls HANCOCK “critic proof” because star Will Smith is in what she calls “TheFluke Zone” (meaning he can do no wrong with audiences. However, she believes the film will fade fast after a strong opening and might find it difficult to recoup its investment, which is in excess of $150-million.