Guillermo Del Toro's love for the character of HellBoy has brought the obscure Dark Horse comic book character into the main stream. Can you imagine the pitch meeting for the first HellBoy. "He looks like the devil, he has a fish as a sidekick, and he's in love with a fire starter; oh and one day he will destroy the earth." Thankfully the experiment paid off and we now have a great sequel.
The best way I can describe HellBoy 2 is that it feels like the second episode to a really good TV show. It's all about character, in fact there are no major action sequence until 30 minutes into the movie. The amount of art and unique looking characters is staggering, some on screen for only seconds yet fully designed and realized. There is a sequence with puppets at the beginning of the film thats really... cool - interesting - different... a bed time story that turns out to be real
Abe Sapien takes more of a central role in the story. Getting to know this intelligent, brave, and insecure character who really becomes more likable thorough the film especially after he meets Princess Nuala.
The domestic life of Liz and Hellboy make for some easy humor, especial around the secret that seems to divide them. The introduction of a new character Johann Krauss voiced by Seth Mcfarlane has some interesting scenes, we will obviously see the origin of this character in a sequel to come.
The action is really great especially the battle with The Golden Army, Johann Krauss shows what he is capable of. The fight between Mr. Wink(The Troll) and Hellboy is the only fight I really didn't care for. It was shot practically and lacked some dynamic elements. I would fault no one making the film, its just hard making a fight between a guy in a big suit and the other in heavy makeup look realistic without damaging the suit or makeup at every take.
Prince Nuada the villain aka Tyrant, is a strong character thats quick and a general bad-ass and has acrobatic moves that make Neo look like the Tin-Man. Prince Nuada has many generally satisfying fights with HellBoy.
HellBoy aka Big Red just feels more vulnerable this film emotionally and physically. There is one scene in particular when HellBoy is getting patched up by Abe, Liz says something true in her heart and HellBoy's reaction gave me the deepest insight into his every action, when you see it you will know what I mean.
The movie delivers on my HellBoy expectations, it's not revolutionary, but solid and defiantly worth seeing. I really hope Guillermo Del Toro makes the third.
- Root Mazer