JOBLO'S MOVIE REVIEWS

SEARCH BY TITLE # A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
Hellboy 2: The Golden Army (2008)
star Printer-Friendly version
Review Date: September 02, 2008
Director: Guillermo del Toro
Writer: Guillermo del Toro
Producers: Lawrence Gordon, Lloyd Levin, Joe Roth
Actors:
Ron Perlman as Hellboy
Selma Blair as Liz
Doug Jones as Abe Sapien
Plot:
Hellboy and his gang of extraordinary friends return to the big screen as an ancient Prince is prepping to jumpstart an unstoppable “Golden Army” in order to kill all humans and take over the world. Natch! Of course, the Prince has to jump through a few hoops first, including Red and his buddies, whom now have an added member to boot (and he’s German!!). Plenty of fucked-up-looking creatures abound and plenty of fun…ensues.
Critique:
I have to admit, even though the great Guillermo del Toro was behind this production, I wasn’t expecting all too much in this follow-up to the original HELLBOY film, mostly because I’d heard that this one was gonna be concentrating more on monsters and the fantasy angle, two elements that don’t really crank my woody, but once again Mr. del Toro schooled my fanboy ass, as the film not only surpassed the original Hell-flick, but it entertained the shit out of me, dazzled my stoner-eyes as would a groovy piece of art, and even tossed some realistic relationship stuff in there to boot? Wow! It just sucks that not enough people got to experience this superior comic book movie as THE DARK KNIGHT was released one weekend after its opening, and well…you know the rest. But if you’re a fan of the original HELLBOY, I think you’ll really love this follow-up, as it takes the basic premise and characters from the first film, and tosses them directly into a whole new adventure of their own, along with greater character development (yeah, in a comic book movie!), a ton of new monsters, creatures, trolls and fairies, plenty of engrossing action and yes, even humor and some romantic touches.

I also liked the fact that they got rid of the one element from the first film that I didn’t think worked so well, which was rookie agent Myers. He’s been 86’d from this movie, and in his place, we are given another fun BPRD member named Dr. Johann Krauss, a man without a head who looks an awful lot like the cover of the “BioShock” videogame. He’s voiced by the great Seth MacFarlane here (the man behind “The Family Guy”) and adds yet another fun layer of antagonism to Hellboy’s life, as the two immediately do not get along (Krauss is very anal-retentive, while Hellboy, well…isn’t). We’re also provided with further insight into the ongoing relationship between Hellboy and Selma Blair’s Liz Sherman, and like most regular relationships, the two have started bickering over miniscule things, as they are now living together. One of the things that truly separates the HELLBOY movies from any other comic book movie, is that it’s able to present a bunch of fantastical elements, creatures and circumstances (many of which are reminiscent of similar components from del Toro’s own PAN’S LABYRINTH), but at the same time, is able to insert plenty of day-to-day jokes and petty jealousies into the mix…as per regular human beings. Hellboy is the key to most of that down-home feel, and you gotta continue to give credit to Ron Perlman for truly inhabiting this not-too-smart but relatable and brawny character.

But you can’t discuss this film without stressing the awesome visuals, which despite the use of CGI through most of its scenes, really worked extremely well within this environment. The conclusion to the “giant plant-man” sequence in the streets of New York City alone is “one for the books”. I’m not a big fan of CGI in films, but it totally works in this movie, and I don’t think there was more than a few seconds that I really even noticed it. The world created by del Toro is a wonderful amalgamation between humans and monsters, and even though many of the creatures are grotesque and over-the-top, the dark and plush visuals in this film make it all gel together, and when you mix that into the film’s great use of score and songs, as well as its creative directing and scene transitions, you really have a “comic book movie” that delivers on a variety of levels. Yes, the bad guy isn’t the baddest of them all, and most of the monsters are taken care off pretty easily, but I absolutely loved the Troll Market (imagine the good folks from the Mos Eisley Cantina all living in one fucked up town), want to purchase my own Tooth Fairies for kicks, was amazed watching many of the awesome creatures kick ass on the big screen – including the metallic golden army – and on top of all that, had a vested interest in the lives of the protagonists, namely Hellboy and crew.

Heck, del Toro even managed to conclude the film on a poignant note when all the action was said and done (you go, Abe!), and closed it all on a sure-to-be-classic close-up on Hellboy’s face. Surprise!! I dug it all and feel bad only because I know that del Toro will be in New Zealand for the next 4 years shooting a couple of HOBBIT flicks, so we might have to wait another 5-6 years before another HELLBOY from him…if we see one at all. This movie was created for all those who love Hellboy, anyone who digs on monsters or things that go “thump” in the night, or anyone who wants to be truly entertained by a master director who is at the top of his game. Yes, THE DARK KNIGHT might’ve been the biggest money-making movie of the summer, but HELLBOY 2 deserved a lot more than what it got, so if you haven’t seen it yet, make an effort to check it out as this movie kicks major ass!!! “I’m not a baby, I’m a tumor”. Nice.
(c) 2015 Berge Garabedian
Strikeback
Not registered? Sign-up!
Or

4:29AM on 06/11/2010

Amazing

The cinematics are simply amazing with a beautiful story. Well done GdT
The cinematics are simply amazing with a beautiful story. Well done GdT
Your Reply:



2:28PM on 11/05/2008

Great film!

I thoroughly despised the first Hellboy, which is shocking to me because it LOOKS like the kind of movie i would love.

Hellboy 2 was such a great improvement over the original, and in many ways i liked Hellboy 2 better than The Dark Knight.

Just my opinion of course, but i think that everyone should give HB2 a chance. Awesome monster flick.
I thoroughly despised the first Hellboy, which is shocking to me because it LOOKS like the kind of movie i would love.

Hellboy 2 was such a great improvement over the original, and in many ways i liked Hellboy 2 better than The Dark Knight.

Just my opinion of course, but i think that everyone should give HB2 a chance. Awesome monster flick.
Your Reply:



12:29AM on 10/06/2008

better than the first

so many cool monsters and effects and such great story telling.My favorite movie of the summer.
so many cool monsters and effects and such great story telling.My favorite movie of the summer.
Your Reply:



9:24PM on 10/04/2008

truly incredible

in my opinion this was the best superhero movie of the summer but the dark knight is not to far behind it.
in my opinion this was the best superhero movie of the summer but the dark knight is not to far behind it.
Your Reply:



1:46PM on 09/02/2008

great movie

I actually give it an 8.5, but I rounded up.

I loved this movie. Few movies really capture my imagination like this one did. I became a huge fan of del Toro after only seeing Pan's Labyrinth and even after hating almost the entirety of Hellboy, I still looked forward to this sequel. When I started watching it, I got nervous at first because of the first scene with Hellboy as a kid (and I still don't like it - it just seems like a poor opening and I didn't like the kid's acting. And yeah, I
I actually give it an 8.5, but I rounded up.

I loved this movie. Few movies really capture my imagination like this one did. I became a huge fan of del Toro after only seeing Pan's Labyrinth and even after hating almost the entirety of Hellboy, I still looked forward to this sequel. When I started watching it, I got nervous at first because of the first scene with Hellboy as a kid (and I still don't like it - it just seems like a poor opening and I didn't like the kid's acting. And yeah, I know, he's just a kid, but these are supposed to be top-notch movies, guys, he should be able to act better. Or maybe he was doing exactly what del Toro wanted him to do, but either way, I didn't buy it. Anyway...) but everything after that was bliss. The story flowed, the characters were interesting, it's funny, the action is superb, and the visuals are amazing. And of course, the creatures. What really kicked the film into the stratosphere for me was the last 25 minutes to half an hour, beginning with the Angel of Death. That dude alone made the movie worth it for me. And then, it was all topped off with the awesome action with the Golden Army.

One thing that didn't quite gel with me was the troll market. I can't wait to see the movie again, or own it myself, so that I can check out all the different creatures, as there are too many to see in one viewing, but the animatronics didn't all look very realistic. You can only make so much move with animatronics, making the rest of the body stiff. I can't wait to see what del Toro does with The Hobbit, though, with a bigger budget and a better CGI team to work with. I can't wait to see what his 1/2animatronic, 1/2 CGI creatures will look like. But anyway...

Hellboy II is an awesome and wonderful movie, filled with imagination, making you feel like a kid, but dealing with adult issues and themes. See it. Even if you didn't like the first one. Because I didn't; I hated it. But this one rocks.
Your Reply:



12:00PM on 09/02/2008

Going to disagree here...

I give it a 5... and the only reason it scores that high for me was the Troll Market sequence... Del Toro's use of animatronic effects is admirable, and most of the design elements were pretty great (though, like Tim Burton, you are always aware you are watching a Del Toro film based on the creature design... which I don't personally care for).

Anyway. I thought the movie was pretty disappointing. I guess I should also mention that I didn't like the first film - I thought the set-up was
I give it a 5... and the only reason it scores that high for me was the Troll Market sequence... Del Toro's use of animatronic effects is admirable, and most of the design elements were pretty great (though, like Tim Burton, you are always aware you are watching a Del Toro film based on the creature design... which I don't personally care for).

Anyway. I thought the movie was pretty disappointing. I guess I should also mention that I didn't like the first film - I thought the set-up was great, but the last thirty or so minutes felt like a Playstation game I wasn't getting to play.

Though I never felt that on this film, I still left unhappy that I'd spent $14 for my ticket. This movie was flat. ...But I still love Ron Perlman.
Your Reply:



JoBlo's T-Shirt Shoppe | support our site... Wear Our Gear!