Also known as (in my head, anyway) the "forgotten" Marvel Cinematic Universe film. One couldn't be blamed for forgetting its connection to the franchise, with more subtle references to S.H.I.E.L.D., Stark Industries, and the super-solider program (though the cameo at the end by a certain high-profile MCU actor should serve as a reminder). It wouldn't be another eight years until a non-Hulk character (William Hurt's Thunderbolt Ross) reappeared in the franchise. However, none of that is the fault of the movie, as the MCU was still fledgling at the time. While the film is entertaining, there is nothing special about it per se. Edward Norton gives a good performance in his only go-around as Bruce Banner, but not necessarily a memorable one. His rekindled relationship with Liv Tyler's Betty Ross, however, occurs almost abruptly. This is obviously not the fault of the actors, as it is more of an odd plot point. Though released just over a month after its MCU predecessor Iron Man, the CGI, though not awful by any means, almost seems like a step down. A positive should go to the choice to cover the Hulk's origin quickly during the opening credits, as fans and the audience were well familiar with the story from Ang Lee's Hulk, the 1970s/80s Incredible Hulk TV series, and numerous cartoons. Despite the aforementioned flaws, the film remains entertaining as a comic book movie and a modern-day monster movie. I would still undoubtedly recommend it to anyone wishing to dive headlong into the MCU. However, should a person wish to only hit the major points/the best of the franchise, they should probably skip The Incredible Hulk.