Automotive Holiday Deals Books Gift Guide Books Gift Guide Shop Women's Cyber Monday Deals Week Learn more nav_sap_SWP_6M_fly_beacon Indie for the Holidays egg_2015 Fire TV Stick Grocery Gifts for Her Amazon Gift Card Offer mithc mithc mithc  Amazon Echo Starting at $49.99 Kindle Voyage Cyber Monday Video Game Deals Outdoor Deals on bgg
Customer Review

10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars All hail the new king of fantasy filmmaking., July 12, 2008
Director Guillermo Del Toro just keeps getting better and better. He seems to have given up making genre-straddling childhood-based horror/dramas for now and has officially supplanted Peter Jackson as THE director to look out for in the realm of fantasy film. This is a man who is redefining the genre as we know it one great film at a time. "Hellboy 2" is the perfect sequel to a solid comic book adaptation and a great way to spend two hours of your life. The visuals are amazing, the humor works well, and the characters are much more fully fleshed-out than they were in the first film. Every aspect of the first Hellboy movie has been improved upon and nearly every flaw buffed out. As a superhero flick it may not hit the heights of Iron Man, but it does lord over the impressive The Incredible Hulk.

You know the story: Nazis raise a demon during WWII, American troops intercept and adopt the little red bugger and raise him as one of the good guys, demon fights monsters as part of a top-secret task force, falls in love with pyrokinetic hottie, discovers he's destined to destroy the world, lots of a$zkicking ensues. The first film was a nice introduction to the characters with some really great visuals and cool ideas. But the fact that big red demons don't work so well in a live action medium hurt it. In fact, I'd venture to say that without the amazing Ron Perlman, the whole project would have been an exercise in futility. But Perlman IS Hellboy and he brings a lot of believability and gruff charm to a character that simply shouldn't work on the big screen. On the other hand, the two animated features suffer from no such translation issues and still benefit from Perlman's distinctive delivery so check those out for sure. Okay, round two. So here we are introduced to the story of The Golden Army, an unstoppable mechanized force used to subdue mankind during a war with the elves and other magical denizens of the world. The wise elf king ceased the slaughter and agreed that humanity may have the cities and the magical denizens take the wilds. But now mankind has left them nothing and the king's son seeks to renew the war and crush the world's population by resurrecting the legendary Golden Army. Meanwhile, Hellboy continues his passive-aggressive attempts to expose the covert Bureau of Paranormal Research and Defense to the world (his handler has to bribe him with Cuban cigars), but at least he's got the girl...or does he?

Freed from the annoyance of the unnecessary human protagonist of the first film, we're now totally focused on the characters we the fans care about: Abe Sapien the Atlantean empath, Liz Sherman the unbalanced firestarter, Hellboy himself (obviously), and a new addition to the team in the form of a German poltergeist that can inhabit and animate inanimate objects, Johann Krauss, who arrives to serve as the team's field commander. This guy adds so much to the film I don't know if it would have been above average without him. Great, great character.

Fairly early on Del Toro begins throwing everything he's got at the audience. The menagerie of creatures in this film is astonishing. Do not try to count the varieties or you will miss the film. George Lucas is kicking himself somewhere as we speak; Del Toro manages to infest "Hellboy 2" with enough bizarre and imaginative creatures to fill dozens of Star Wars cantinas but I never once stopped and thought "that is totally computer generated". That's the difference between a filmmaker who truly loves his work and one who just wants to throw a bunch of cool stuff to make the audience go "wow!" before getting annoyed by it 15 minutes in. Guillermo Del Toro has built a career encompassing simple horror, supernatural coming of age drama, comic book films, and politically-tinged fantasy and has continually innovated and improved on each genre he has touched. "Hellboy 2" feels like a culmination of those styles coupled with a massive budget. The film has incredible visuals, but never forgoes character development; it has clever humor, but also genuine emotion. Perfectly balanced.

I've tried to think of a specific flaw in this film and I've come up empty. "Hellboy II: The Golden Army" is a brilliant fantasy film that delivers everything one could hope for and easily tops it's predecessor. Don't get me wrong, if the idea of a big red demon with an oversized gun in one hand and a cigar in the other strikes you as unconscionably silly then this film will still not work for you. This is not "Pan's Labyrinth", this is not an art film, this is a pure goofy over-the-top comic book romp. But it's one of the best out there and there is only one man who could have made it so. Next stop for Guillermo Del Toro: Middle Earth. I absolutely cannot wait to see what he has in store for "The Hobbit".

4 1/2 stars rounded up for degree of difficulty.
Seriously, YOU try to make something like this into a believable film!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No

[Add comment]
Post a comment
To insert a product link use the format: [[ASIN:ASIN product-title]] (What's this?)
Amazon will display this name with all your submissions, including reviews and discussion posts. (Learn more)
This badge will be assigned to you and will appear along with your name.
There was an error. Please try again.
Please see the full guidelines here.

Official Comment

As a representative of this product you can post one Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.   Learn more
The following name and badge will be shown with this comment:
 (edit name)
After clicking the Post button you will be asked to create your public name, which will be shown with all your contributions.

Is this your product?

If you are the author, artist, manufacturer or an official representative of this product, you can post an Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.  Learn more
Otherwise, you can still post a regular comment on this review.

Is this your product?

If you are the author, artist, manufacturer or an official representative of this product, you can post an Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.   Learn more
System timed out

We were unable to verify whether you represent the product. Please try again later, or retry now. Otherwise you can post a regular comment.

Since you previously posted an Official Comment, this comment will appear in the comment section below. You also have the option to edit your Official Comment.   Learn more
The maximum number of Official Comments have been posted. This comment will appear in the comment section below.   Learn more
Prompts for sign-in


Sort: Oldest first | Newest first
Showing 1-10 of 22 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Jul 12, 2008 6:13:30 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jul 12, 2008 6:13:45 PM PDT
Woopak says:
Hey, T-man, I was going to see this today but I ended up cleaning my place instead. :( But I will see this tomorrow. I just glanced at your review because I don't want to expect anything. I loved the 1st film (director's cut rocked!)so I'm pretty sure I'll like this one.
Hooked you up with a vote though.

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 13, 2008 1:21:06 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jul 13, 2008 1:21:29 AM PDT
trashcanman says:
Yeah, the 3-disc edition is sweet. If you loved the first film then this one will blow you way. Thanks for stopping, by, 'Pak. Enjoy.

Posted on Jul 13, 2008 7:50:20 AM PDT
No stuff? It's that good eh? I gotta see this ASAP. Way to break it down T...

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 13, 2008 10:49:27 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jul 13, 2008 10:08:04 PM PDT
Woopak says:
T-man, I couldn't stay away and decided to see it last was really great! Would you believe I almost liked it as much as the original? I agree wholeheartedly with your review. Expect a review for Hellboy from me...but I don't know when LOL!
who am I kidding?! I'll be typing it up real soon!!

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 14, 2008 2:10:56 AM PDT
trashcanman says:
See, Blackshere? No stuff. I think this one kicked the hell out of the first (which I mucho enjoyed) in every possible way. I'm still trying to think of a flaw.......
Del Toro is a BEAST!

Posted on Jul 14, 2008 2:12:41 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jul 14, 2008 2:13:16 PM PDT
TANTRUM!!!! says:
I agree: this is not the Art side of Guillermo del Toro (wich is in mexican/spanish titles like the cult classic vampire tale Cronos, or his absolute masterpiece "Pan´s Labyrynth), this is his more commercial side, but the guy is so talented, precise and devoted to details, one can expect less than a great spectacle. He breathes comic book paraphernalia and exhales awesome screen versions of classics like Blade 2 (the best one) Mimic, or Hellboy.

I can see that you absolutely liked it. Good for me, i´m on the right path. Cool review, see ya!

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 15, 2008 2:07:46 AM PDT
trashcanman says:
You know what I love about Amazon? Seeing that somebody not only clicks "no" on a review but goes down the entire line of comments to click "no" on every single one of them as well (except for Blackshere's 'cause everybody loves that guy). So funny. Oh YEAH! Well, I'm going to go vote "yes" on all of the comments so there! At least have the cojones to flame me properly! If you didn't like the movie, I sincerely and respectfully would like to know why, and if you don't like me personally....well, that's even more fun!

Thanks for the comment, madame. Always a pleasure to see Miss Tantrum stop by for some analysis.

Posted on Jul 16, 2008 4:22:15 PM PDT
Karen Shaub says:
I love Del Toro, I love everything he does and the way he does it.

Of course my daughter has already made plans to take the 7 year olds to see HELLBOY, but in her defense they are almost 8 now. I'm not one of those people who is so concerned about sex . I'm more concerned about the violence and the scare factor. Now its got to be fairly violent, and scary. Language is also something she never thinks about. People are already complaining about the way Benji talks. He could teach a Teamster a few new words.

Great review though. I'm looking forward to seeing this on the big screen, kids or no kids.

Posted on Jul 16, 2008 7:44:51 PM PDT
Just like I told Pak. I'm not even going to bother with this one. I didn't like the first at all.

Posted on Jul 17, 2008 2:00:47 AM PDT
trashcanman says:
That's funny, Ms. Shaub, because I don't really mind my kid seeing violence, but sex really bothers me. This movie's got almost zero sexual content and the violence is pretty cartoonish. I didn't find it scary at all either so I'm sure the kids will have a blast.

Sorry this isn't your thing MM; you always do hate the funny ones.
‹ Previous 1 2 3 Next ›

Review Details

Item not available

Location: Hanford, CA United States

Top Reviewer Ranking: 6,785