Everyone wants to like Hancock. The idea of a slovenly, booze-swilling superhero screwup is undeniably priceless. But “the finished product is so poorly conceived and misguided that even Will Smith… can't save it,” writes Claudia Puig of USA Today. The movie starts out irreverent and fun, then veers sharply into a melodrama “trying to be a heavier, larger-than-life romance with historical, spiritual, and sci-fi implications."
Director Peter Berg (The Kingdom) lacks “the subtle touch that this material needs,” writes Salon’s Stephanie Zacharek, while Smith looks “truly lost,” struggling mightily to be unlikeable. “It's a strange feeling to see the summer's most promising premise self-destruct into something bizarre and unsatisfying,” writes Kenneth Turan of the LA Times, “but that is the Hancock experience.”