Thursday, July 17, 2008

Hellboy II: the Golden Army

On our last day in North Carolina, my mom watched Ben so Renee and I could go to the movies. When we got back, she asked us how it was. I replied, "If you like Hellboy I..."

Guillermo Del Toro's new movie has everything the first movie had and everything the comic delivers. Where the first movie covered the pulpy Lovecraft/Indiana Jones feel of the larger stories, this one goes straight for the anceint folklore and myth that fills most of Mignola's shorter books. It looks as if Del Toro spent his entire budget on monsters, since there are more varied and interesting creatures in this film than the last Star Wars.

The cast all delivers, if in the same notes as the first film. However, Johann Strauss is introduced and shines. Del Toro had originally conceived him as a cg character before his budget was slashed. The suit with its moving gears and clunky boots is an upgrade, not a comprimise.

The script advances the relationships but the tone doesn't feel like the stakes have been raised. I never felt like this was a bigger story than the first, just a bigger movie. It's just as good as the first movie and completly satisfying. But with Del Toro coming off Pan's Labrynth and planning to take on The Hobbit, I expected even better.

Let's let the other critics weigh in.

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