Thursday, July 24, 2008

A Silver Medal For The Golden Army

Hellboy 2: The Golden Army Directed by Guilermo Del Torro(2008)

Hellboy 2: The Golden Army is yet another film with summer fever, the symptoms of which consist of adrenaline pumping and jaw dropping special effects, imaginative designs, snappy dialogue, and plots and characterizations not worth the ink that wrote them.I don't mean to sound too crass, here, because though a flawed, this is an enjoyable movie, but none the less... Like "Iron Man", "The Incredible Hulk", "Indiania Jones 4", etc, it's a fun ride, and like them as well, at the end theres' not much to think about, and the more you may think back the less and less satisfied you may become with all the non "super" portions of the movie. I will say this of all the summer fodder, so far, Hellboy was the one I found the most entertaining.Hellboy, was never the most well written comic in the world, it's charms lie largely with the artwork and the way relatively unknown mythologies from all around the globe get blended into the classic troupes of pulp comicdom. In the film this translates into talking psychic mermen named after Abraham Lincoln, Ghostly non corporeal German doctors bound in their fishbowl suits (and voiced by Seth Mcfarlan (creator of Family Guy)...the same voice used for the evil German Dr. in the body of the goldfish from American Dad), Liz a grown up version of Stepehen King' s "Firestarter" and Hellboy's girlfriend, forest elemental, cannibalistic tooth-fairies, and the Hellboy himself as anti-Christ acting more like "The Thing" from "The Fantastic Four". Helllboy was never that great of a story in and of itself, and here is no exception.The villain is particularly non threatening or sympathetic (the characters of Shrek and Neverending Story make better claims for there fairly lands).Good combination of CGI and traditional special effects.

Good characters in a stale melodrama, which doesnt mix well with the action adventure portion of the story.

Its worth seeing for the sheer spectacle, a good combo of the images of Pans and Hellboy 1, but not too much of the brains or heart of either.Which is not to say I didn't like it, though stiff in places it does perfectly capture the super-adventure in it's bizarre and ridiculous glory.And there's some stunning images and creatures, that are just a "joy" to watch, the weaker moments aren't the impression that lefts in your memory. Hellboy is a comic book carnival, it's not as "hip" as "Iron-Man", and not as sophistacted as "The Dark Knight", but it what it looses in dialogue and characterization it makes up for in excitement, humor, and a genuine sense of wonderment, imagination, and awe.

A world of bizarre beauties and grotesqueiries, which also transform at times in stunningly human forms (perhaps that's why the "sing-along" portion feels so odd at first, the last thing you expect these characters to do is be awkard and real).

Though a bit of a forced moment, it made me smile more than wince, like in "Spiderman" and "Fantastic Four".I think Ive re-sold myself on this film, because when all is said and seen, "Hellboy 2: The Golden Army" is a visual delight to look at, and the most fun I've had watching a modern "Weird Tale", as I can remember.Though summer fever, can reduce a film to ashes often quickly enough, with Hellboy it's produced a conventional, but still dazzling fever dream.It's "Pans Labyrinth" Jack Kirby style

1 comment:

arvillah said...

I should have seen Hellboy 2 but instead I saw Wanted. I thought it would involve more car chases. There was too much story and too many twists. Hellboy looks really good. I'll try to see that next weekend if I don't see the X-files, since that movie probably won't be in theaters very long.