Hellboy II (2008)

  The Golden Army

In this continuation to the adventure of the demon superhero, an evil elf breaks an ancient pact between humans and creatures, as he declares war against humanity. He is on a mission to release The Golden Army, a deadly group of fighting machines that can destroy the human race. As Hell on Earth is ready to erupt, Hellboy and his crew set out to defeat the evil prince before The Golden Army can destroy humanity's existence. - synopsis from IMDB

 Cast  - full listing

 Genres

fantasy, comedy, action

 Facts & Figures

Directed by Guillermo del Toro.

Rated 7.0 on IMDB from 215635 votes.

Runtime: 120 min.

 Review

To be honest, I never bothered with the original Hellboy movie. The trailer for The golden army was very promising, especially because it seemed we would finally see some good fantasy material return to theaters. Notice how I said “seemed” because apparently, even the likes of Guillermo del Toro couldn’t turn it on for this one. The biggest failure of Hellboy II? Trying to be too much at once.

I’ve never seen a Hellboy comic so I can’t judge the original style, but this movie would have to be classified as Comedy/Romantic Comedy/Drama/Fantasy/Action. That’s a stretch for any movie, but this one fails to shine across the board. As it is, the jokes aren’t funny enough, the romance is ridiculous, the drama never really cuts it, the fantasy can’t be taken seriously andthe action is just not riveting enough. Not once did I feel excited. As a result, we are forced to watch boring interludes between action scenes trying to piece together a story that never gets going featuring characters that never speak to the imagination because there are too many of them.

So much for complaining about the unfolding of some promising material. Is there nothing to take away from almost two hours of superhero feature film? Not exactly.

The special effects are good; I especially liked the forest god scenes. Martial arts: cool, particularly the prince - he really has his act together. Fortunately he’s in a lot of the action scenes so we get to see plenty. I suppose it’s a reasonable performance by Ron Perlman, who gets the “let me just light my cigar while you stand there roaring, sir” image across quite convincingly. The scenery is great, showcasing some more of the style we became familiar with in the excellent Pan’s Labyrinth.

Seen: 22 Aug 2008

Hellboy II

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