Friday, July 11, 2008

Hellboy II: The Golden Army (2008) Review

Stats from IMDB
Director: Guillermo del Toro
Writer: Guillermo del Toro (Story and Screenplay), Mike Mignola (Story and Source Material - Comic)
Original Music: Danny Elfman
Genre: Action/Adventure/Drama/Comedy/Fantasy/Sci-fi
Runtime: 110 min
  • Demon
  • Federal Bureau Of Investigation
  • Good Versus Evil
  • Paranormal
  • Pyrokinesis
  • Second Part
  • Secret Government Organisation
  • Sequel
  • Anti Hero
  • Apocalypse
  • Based On Comic
  • Cigar Smoking
  • Dark Horse Comics
  • Hell
  • Nazi Experiment
  • Nazi
  • Soul
  • Superhero
  • Character Name In Title

Opinion Time!

What I Expected
There's not much to say really. I expected everything I saw in the trailers and from what I saw of the first movie - a fun, action-filled movie, heavy on the visuals, but still sharp on the writing.

What I Hoped
I loved Hellboy I. Not as much as I love Heroes or the Iron Man movie, but it has a nice little niche in my heart. Mainly because of Ron Perlman and the script. It looked great and the action was fun to watch and exciting. The script was fantastic and funny so you'd laugh the whole way without it being too corny or falling back onto slapstick or dirty humor. It's an honest to goodness clean, fun, action film so I had the same expectation for the sequel especially since it was the same director and writer.

Yes, the man behind Pan's Labyrinth did Hellboy I too. Go scramble and watch Hellboy again just to make sure if you had any doubts.

What It Is
In my opinion, a good sequel should be able to stand fine on its own so that literally anyone can watch it and enjoy it whether or not they saw the first movie. In addition, for fans of the first movie, a sequel should be a treat rather than a looming axe of dream demolishing doom that ruins everything forever. As anyone who has ever loved anything that was made into a sequel, there is both a feeling anticipation and dread because either it will tarnish the memory of something perfectly enjoyable or enhance it and give you further evidence to rub in people's faces to prove that you were right all along.

Hellboy II does everything I expect out of a good sequel.

Now, reread the hope and expectation sections since I hate to repeat myself. It's fun. It's funny. It's everything it's put up to be in the trailers.

There. Done with praises. Now to muckrake to my black heart-that-was-formed-by-the-remnants-of-a-dead-star's content without guilt.

It does a have a couple issues. Granted, my movie experience wasn't 100% fantastic. The theater wasn't cleaned for the midnight showing. People behind my friends and myself were loud and were kicking my chair. The ones directly behind me had his knee almost meeting my head the entire time and I have a sneaking suspicion that they snuck in beer when I heard the cans clatter against the floor. To top it all off, the screen was a little darker than usual and my eyes started to hurt from either the size of the Imax screen or due to the possibility that the staff didn't fix the projector correctly so it was still slightly out of focus, but clear enough to suffice. All in all, I'd say all of this does a credit to the movie because I still loved it and Ron Perlman.

Here's where I thought it was lacking. There was a few pacing issues. Unlike most mediums, film has the tragic misfortune of being a slave to timing who is a cruel mistress that will bend you over and make you call her "Daddy" if you don't know how to tickle her just right to give your viewers constant orgasms of awesome. If a film is too slow, it gets boring, but if it goes too fast, people might miss things and get confused or worse, find it utterly unsatisfying. I've found that most films nowadays err on the side of caution by making movies as fast-paced as possible, blurring the lines between "exciting" and "dangerously little story" since making a plot is like cooking a roux. It's not that hard to make, but it takes time to cook, yet can be spoiled by too little or too much time.

Well, that paragraph got away from me. I'll probably edit it later. Maybe.

Back to the point, without giving away spoilers, all I can say is that they took a little too long with the first half of the film that was mostly "world of man" stuff and could have put in an extra ten minutes for the second half since the trailers were emphasizing the Pan's Labyrinth aspect of it so much. It was a little jagged at times with the changing tempos of the plot and action and could have been executed better since they had the same people with a bigger budget, which should spell out success. And it did, but it still had room for improvement.

Oh, and don't sit through the credits. They didn't put in any goodies.

My Rating: B

1 comment:

anonymous person said...

Sounds like a good movie.

I'll probably see it. But I may need to save up to I can watch "The Dark Knight"