Hellboy II: The Golden Army (2008) Poster

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Very good
ametaphysicalshark11 July 2008
You know you're not watching a formulaic comic book film when one of the highlights is a drunken rendition of "Can't Smile Without You" by Hellboy and Abe Sapien. "Hellboy II: The Golden Army" is a more confident, assured outing than the first film and while it does not draw from Mignola's comics for its plot it is perhaps better off for it, lacking the usual burden of comparison and expectations. "The Golden Army" is more fantastical than the first film and is less sci-fi oriented but this is the sort of thing Del Toro does exceptionally well as a writer. He never lets the fantasy become the focus of the film, instead concentrating on characters and delivering action scenes that can only be described as, forgive the crass immaturity, kickass.

As entertaining as many comic book-to-film adaptations are it is a rare event when one can call one of these films a true artistic achievement. I am convinced without a shadow of a doubt that Guillermo Del Toro's entire career has been leading up to this film, particularly regarding his work as screenwriter here. The comedy feels less forced and is worked incredibly well into the script here, so much so that it doesn't feel remotely unnatural when the scene of comic drunken singing leads directly without a break into one of the film's most intensely dramatic sequences. Del Toro's handling of character has never been better, not even with "The Devil's Backbone", which is still my favorite of his films, and his sheer skill and ability when it comes to telling a fairytale-esquire fantasy is astonishing, as proved in the prologue to this film. In short this is Del Toro at the top of his game and providing artistry the likes of which we rarely if ever see in summer blockbusters. It's only fair that an astonishingly brilliant comic like "Hellboy" by an astonishingly brilliant artist like Mike Mignola is adapted this well and by someone as talented at what they do as he is.

How refreshing it is, a week after the release of "Hancock", which to me epitomizes everything wrong with action film-making today, that we get "The Golden Army" which features hands down some of the finest action scenes we have ever seen in this sort of film. Just stunningly beautiful, well-shot, well-crafted, the sort of thing that leaves one wondering how much time and effort went into it and endlessly thankful that some really talented people went to the trouble of making the film.

The film is generally just superb on a technical level. Why am I even saying this? Of course it is. Danny Elfman composing, Guillermo Navarro serving as cinematographer, top-notch editors, fantastic special effects wizards. It's a world-class crew that made this film. I shouldn't be surprised at its quality but "The Golden Army" really just floored and astonished me with how good it is. The cast is also excellent, proving once again that you don't need 'big names' to carry a movie. Just about everyone here is excellent, particularly Perlman with another excellent turn as Hellboy and the underrated Selma Blair as Liz Sherman.

"Hellboy II: The Golden Army" provides essentially everything a Del Toro or Mignola fan would want. I imagine it will entertain and charm many outside those circles as well with its fantastic action sequences, engaging characters, and wonderful sense of humor. I would personally go as far as calling "Hellboy II: The Golden Army" one of the top five or so comic book movies ever made.
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Can't Smile Without You
FosterBreadford11 July 2008
okay, I'll start out simple. This movie is not Gone With the Wind. It isn't Ben Hur, not even Pan's Labyrinth. it is no fantastic achievement in film that will go down in the history books. But really, it's Hellboy - does it really need to be a classic? Honestly, I loved this movie. It was pure fun. I found the first Hellboy movie to be a fun movie. . .but it lacked that certain something that was keeping it from being a great movie. This one introduces all new mythology into the series, which allows director Guillermo Del Toro to invent all sorts of new creatures that all look amazing. The visual aspect of this film is classic, nothing short of amazing. The movie has some flaws, a few strange possible plot holes, but by the end of the day, the humor rules the day, and the humor hit spot on, to make a very funny film. I can't get the song "I can't Smile Without You" now after seeing this film. That segment was hilarious. Hellboy succeeds in being a film with a decent story, good visual work, and great characters with great humor, all to make just an overall FUN movie where Indiana Jones couldn't. (I only mean Kingdom of the Crystal Skull) For someone who believes any film that doesn't win 11 Oscars isn't worth watching, I'll be honest, you'll hate Hellboy 2. For someone who goes in expecting only to be entertained, just to have a fun time, I 100% recommend this film to that kind of person. Go see it, it's very worth it.
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9/10
Del Toro cements his place as a contemporary visionary. Brilliant, stylish, hilarious, and great.
The_Amazing_Spy_Rises11 July 2008
I have long felt that the first Hellboy installment is one of the most underrated films of the 2000's. The first thing you notice about both the first film and this more than worthy successor is the passion. Everything is simply beautiful (not in the typical beautiful sense, but in that you appreciate the art that it is), and it should come as no surprise as the film's director, Guillermo Del Toro, is a long time fan of the comic stories on which the movie is based. Del Toro turned down multiple high profile projects, including multiple Harry Potter films, so he could work on the Hellboy series, which we all know will not gross as much money. Del Toro's passion for excellence is evident in this wonderful sequel, which is better than the first, and cements Del Toro's place as one of the top filmmakers of today.

The first thing I liked about the movie: the easy transition from the first to the second movie. Though I don't remember exact plot details, it was very easy for me to get back into the story, world, and especially our three main characters. I'd reckon that you could watch this movie without having seen the first and still have a great time (though, it helps). A great cast with great chemistry more than sets the tone and makes this one very watchable.

First, you've got Ron Perlman. For those of you who don't know this terribly underrated actor, he's one you can't afford to miss as Hellboy. Even though he's covered in make-up and prosthetics, Perlman does a great job of making us love him as a hero, and a man. This is something most of the superhero performers do not (or perhaps cannot) do. The just-as-passionate-as-Del-Toro Doug Jones leaves a HUGE mark on the viewer here, not just for his performance as Abe Sapien, but for his remarkable range as a couple of other characters in the movie. Luke Goss is the film's villain, and I really saw the dedication in his performance as well, something required for his character, who is of course a dedicated man. He's not necessarily the typical 'evil' character, but a somewhat misguided one, and I think Goss got that across to me very well. A fact often ignored by critics in the comic book/superhero realm of films is the supporting heroine. Most times, without the audience knowing it, this character makes or breaks the movie. Selma Blair, boy does she make it. Not only does she look absolutely stunning as Liz Sherman, she takes the final act into her hands and does wonders with it. Definitely the best performance I've ever seen from Ms. Blair. Add in a hilarious and great performance from Seth MacFarlane (yes, the voice of multiple Family Guy characters) as Johann Kraus's voice, and Anna Walton as Princess Nuala, and you've got the best ensemble of the year thusfar. Yes, this cast is better than Iron Man.

As for the action, it's stunning. Hellboy has a LOT more to work with than the traditional superhero film, and Del Toro more than takes advantage of it. With action ranging from lighting fast and well shot sword fighting and hand to hand combat to Hellboy versus a giant plant, it's a sight to behold as we watch a legendary director in the making perfect his craft. There were multiple times where I found myself saying "holy crap", or "wow". Del Toro also keeps some humor in there to balance the much darker tone of the film. This includes one of the most hilarious scenes I've ever seen about being lovesick.

I sadly feel that many will not see this movie and it will become a diamond in the rough, much like its predecessor. Hopefully that doesn't happen, and it becomes the blockbuster it deserves to be. Though the ending is a tad predictable (not too much, but it is the one thing that keeps it from a 10), I found Hellboy to be one of the most pleasing adventures at the movies I've had this year. It's a shame that it comes out between Will Smith and Batman, because this film deserves its own day in the spotlight. You know what they say...Every demon has his day...

P.S. I can't wait to see a third one.
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10/10
Hellboy II - Back And Better Than Ever!
brechtbug30 June 2008
I just got back from a preview screening of "Hellboy II And The Golden Army" and of all the films I've seen so far this summer Hellboy is the ONLY one to exceed my expectations. I love the second films of a super hero franchise (Superman II, Spiderman II, The Incredible Hulk) because the heroes have been introduced and the origins are out of the way so the story can begin from the start unfettered. This film is not just about Action, Action, Action but about character development and their interaction. I liked "Pan's Labrynth" but felt a little bit let down when the creature's personalities were not explored enough. This film takes the time to establish who Abe Sapien is beyond being defined as a fish man. Johann Krauss is a great uptight Teutonic addition to the old team with a few tricks up his sleeve and Hellboy & Liz's professional and personal relationship get more play in this film. The detail in the troll market is amazing and the story rings true to the Mike Mignola comics without having to lift a story arc from any one specific past issue. Bravo! Guillermo del Toro! I can't wait for Hellboy III.
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7/10
Visually it's outstanding, Mentally it's mediocre
DarthVoorhees12 July 2008
Del Torro's imagination is a beautiful thing. He has created some of the most fascinating creatures that traditional Hollywood doesn't have the guts or inclination to ever assemble. I would take Guillmero Del Torro in the director's chair any time any place, but Hellboy II shows that he is not without his flaws. Ron Perlman who is terrific as Hellboy doesn't have anything truly interesting to say or do, the world around him is magical but the plot isn't.

Hellboy is the most unique character to appear in your comic book shop. The mythology and the character are such the opposite of the main stream and to Hellboy II's credit so is this movie. Ron Perlman doesn't deliver catch phrases or gun down bad guys for the sake of doing so. He is an interesting character but he is overshadowed by this lackluster plot and the world around it. I felt as if we didn't see enough of Big Red or maybe we did we just didn't get to see the most of the talents. Del Torro constantly wants to remind you that he directed Pan's Labyrinth because visually the creatures look like they were leftovers from that film. I don't mind this per say but these characters just don't have much to do, they are there really to look at rather than them having significance. Visually I can't complain about them because they are amazing but they serve little purpose to the story.

The plot is really the weakest thing this movie has going for it. I felt it took too many liberties against the original concepts of Hellboy. Hellboy is a creature alive in our world, Del Torro tries to tell us that our world is nothing more than a division of fantasy and reality. Well we spend too much time in the fantasy that we forget the fact that this Golden Army is a threat to reality. The villain Prince Nuada is weak, we don't see any method to his madness other than the fact that the plot dictates that he be the antagonist. In the first film and to a lesser degree this one we were given details about why Hellboy has faith in humanity and would chose not to serve his purpose. It's interesting because we are given glimpses of what could have been something that could have added real teeth and tension to the story, for the first time Hellboy is tempted by evil, weakly tempted but tempted nonetheless. This mental struggle could have given our actors the chance to show their talent but instead the filler between the action scenes is just okay at best.

I didn't hate Hellboy II I just think it needed some beef in it's story. Del Torro has shown us he is a master storyteller but this time he didn't focus on the story it's self. I would recommend this film but I know Del Torro can and has done much better.
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10/10
As Good as the First Hellboy!
Foolish1 July 2008
I took this in at the L.A. Film Festival closing night gala and really had a great time. I'm a HUGE fan of the comics and thought that the first movie was done just right.

I think Hellboy II: the Golden Army is as good as the first movie. It takes awhile to get used to Doug Jones' voice as Abe, but once you do, you see why it's better to have the guy in the suit doing his own dialog. And Seth McFarlane does a fine job voicing Johann (although not as I had imagined him).

The design work is superior to the first movie and the humor is ratcheted up a notch. The fights are better and more thrilling and the monsters are way cool. Great use of costumes and CGI working together (something Lucas should have done more of in the Star Wars prequels) to make everything feel REAL.

I expect many won't like it as much as the first movie because the newness will be lost. This was in fact my immediate reaction as well; but after a few days I realized I was just as excited to see it again as I was the first one.

The story isn't as grandiose as the first Hellboy, and the overall pace and build have a few problems.

*POSSIBLE SPOILER* There is also a tad too much time spent with the many love stories (one of which works better than the others - Liz and Hellboy), but they all play out well. And an AWESOME flashback that had me grinning from ear to ear.

PLEEEEEASE let there be at least one more Hellboy movie!!!
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8/10
Visually stunning and surpasses the first Hellboy by far
Smells_Like_Cheese30 July 2008
Warning: Spoilers
When I saw the trailer for Hellboy II: The Golden Army, I hadn't seen the first Hellboy, so before I saw the sequel, I wanted to see the first movie, so I rented it and when I watched it, I wasn't really thrilled with it. I mean, it was a decent movie, but it wasn't something I would watch again, so I was thinking that the sequel was going to be a bust and probably not do much for the story, for what they had at least. Another thing was that the people that I talked to who had seen this movie before I saw it said that it was horrible and a waste of time, but I still did want to see this movie, so I decided to go ahead and just judge for myself. After all, I do admire Guillermo del Toro's style, his visions are eye candy and his stories can be incredible, so Hellboy II: The Golden Army? It seriously was so awesome! It was a whole lot better and stronger than the first Hellboy.

Hellboy is becoming quite the star in town, which isn't making the government very happy and they are becoming more and more angry with him since his growing popularity, but they're not the only one who's unhappy with his behavior, Liz is getting upset with his behavior as well. But things are more worse than Hellboy's youtube popularity, Prince Nuada wishes to raise the undefeatable golden army that can destroy the human race. Princess Nuala, his twin sister, is the only link that can stop him as well as Hellboy and his friends, but the strong link between Nuala and Nauda is scary, if he dies, she dies as well since she helps out Hellboy and becomes Abe Sapien's new love.

Hellboy II: The Golden Army is a great action movie and I'm really glad I gave it a chance. I'm telling you right now, the creatures in this movie are so visually stunning, the work that was put into this film was absolutely incredible and I have a whole lot more respect for Guillermo del Toro for his work, he really knows how to keep the audience's eyes on the screen. He made Hellboy into a solid comic book film. I love the character, Hellboy, I think more so in this one because he acts more human and you can't help but feel for him when the world turns on him after him saving it. Hellboy II: The Golden Army is a recommendation from me, it's a good movie and is guaranteed fun to watch.

8/10
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9/10
Surprisingly on par with Hellboy
Dragoneyed36316 November 2008
This is something special; when a second film in a series is able to surpass or equal to it's predecessor. It's not just because the first Hellboy was so excellent, which it was, but they handled this second film with such care and pizazz, it's almost better, in ways, than the first.

It's very rare in a saga that the second films rises over the first, which is why when I say that Hellboy II: The Golden Army was almost in every way better than Hellboy, I mean it, and for me to love Hellboy like I do, that's saying a lot. Hellboy II had everything the first had, but with bigger and better qualities. The action was superb, story line was great, and acting, directing, etc. was just as perfect.

I was entertained through the entire film and I enjoyed every minute and in the end I was left with a big smile on my face for how great this sequel turned out to be, but here again, I still think it is on par with the first because of how the first was so perfect at setting up the story from the comics and how amazingly entertaining it was as well, with all the great performances that the second had and just when I put the two films together, I honestly can not decide which is better. All I have left to say is that if you loved Hellboy, this is no disappointment whatsoever, and you need to see it right away!
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10/10
The Second is Always Best
Imrak7 July 2008
What is it about super-hero films (X-Men 2, Spiderman 2, Superman II, and likely The Dark Knight) that the best of them are always the middle chapter; the second episode? I personally have no clue, but Hellboy II is not the exception.

It's got bigger action; more heavily stylized and expansive. It has a ton more amazing creatures. It's got an even wittier script, and a much better story. It's like the director was allowed to make everything as he saw fit; his vision is much fuller this time around.

Surprisingly, this movie rocks, and was actually the first film this year I was all around satisfied by.
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5/10
Pan's Labyrinth feat. Hellboy
orangejuliusevola11 July 2008
Warning: Spoilers
While not the worst movie you'll spend your money to see, Hellboy 2 completely lacks the charm, grit, and vitality that made the original such a success.

Personally, my major gripe is with the poorly conceived script and ham-fisted direction of all but the action sequences and creature shots. Now, I know that this is not a study of deep human drama, but I DO ask any movie, no matter how ridiculous the premise, to at least attempt to establish an environment conducive to immersion. Unlike the first, this movie abandons any attempt at consistency and believable interactions between characters, a problem compounded by some bad voice-work (Doug Jones, Seth MacFarlane), strained performances (Jeffrey Tambor ... damn, he was great in the first, what happened here?), and, most importantly, a terrible, terrible script.

The movie starts out by shoving this glaring problem right into your face. The relationship between Liz and Hellboy is muddled and unconvincing. "Yes, yes, I know you're wandering the mythical and never-before-witnessed Troll Market, but you know, I have something really important to tell you about our relationship that is exceptionally private but is best shared over an open radio frequency" or "Hey, I know, let's have a gigantic fight that results in me blowing a reinforced vault door off it's hinges with sheer pyrokinetic force, but then play it off as me just needing my space." It's ridiculous, distracting, and cheapens what could have been a viable subplot.

Tied to this is the fact that Liz Sherman, although she can literally obliterate just about anything, spends much of the movie shooting with a sidearm on those rare occasions she chooses to engage in non-relationship babble and actually hurt an evil faerie monster/robot/whatever. When it suits the plot she is capable of focusing and controlling her powers to the necessary end, but for the most part she just stands around on fire, then pulls out a gun to deal with the bad guys. Part of what made her character so interesting in the first movie was the sheer destructive force she commands; in this, she is virtually neutered unless something very very important and seemingly indestructible (hint hint) needs to be somehow done away with. How convenient, and yet how disappointing.

The overall feeling of the movie is best summed up by the nausea-inducing tagline running on various banners and prefacing every trailer: "BROUGHT TO YOU BY THE VISIONARY DIRECTOR OF PAN'S LABYRINTH". The whole movie is an excuse for Del Toro to show you how wonderfully creative he is, to make you forget about the cheesy dialog, giant plot holes, and some less-than-credible performances. That's fine - it's what made Pan's Labyrinth successful and worthwhile. Unfortunately, I didn't pay to see Pan's Labyrinth 2 - I wanted to see the sequel to Hellboy.

More importantly, unlike Pan's Labyrinth, the movie keeps yanking you away from the visual splendor and makes you focus on other, more unsavory elements. The movie cannot stand alone as either a fantasy, a superhero/action movie, or a comedy, but rather tries to bridge all three genres. This schizophrenic, inconsistent approach ruins those things the film does well - action, one-liners, and mind- boggling special effects. One of many examples: watching Johann Krauss flow around and take control of objects and creatures is a really cool premise and leads to some great scenes; unfortunately, Seth McFarlane's voice work is far too over the top. As soon as you think to yourself "damn, this is pretty cool", the scene/fight ends and you get to hear a voice-over that sounds like the Germanophile orphan of a mating between Stewie from Family Guy and C3PO from Star Wars.

In short, every time you begin to feel immersed in this fantasy/occult setting, you're unnecessarily distracted by poor voice-work, bad writing, or yawning chasms in continuity (Spoiler: The Golden Army is indestructible, but the crown controlling it is really THAT easy to destroy??? Why not just melt the damn thing in the first 15 minutes and be done with it?). Watching the movie, I couldn't help but feel that Del Toro jumped the shark - that he was so enraptured with the size of his budget and the scope of the film that he completely forgot all the great things that made the original so enjoyable.

If you, like me, enjoy sci-fi, fantasy, superhero/action summer popcorn movies ... eh, it's OK. The visuals are impressive, the action is consistent, and the creatures are mostly interesting. Unfortunately, all of those elements are undermined by the complete lack of immersion, with the film being ridiculously over-the-top, plagued by horrific consistency and plot holes you could throw a tractor through. The sad thing is that I really wanted to like this movie, but even I - an apologist who can overlook the warts in just about any film of the genre - just couldn't hang in there with Hellboy 2.
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8/10
A labour of love, and it shows
Leofwine_draca2 September 2012
HELLBOY II threatens to be nothing more than your latest CGI-laden braindead Hollywood action movie, and yet it's not, thanks to the presence of director Guillermo del Toro. Del Toro has to possess one of the most imaginative minds in Hollywood and he brings a level of creativity to the movie that's sorely lacking in most genre fare getting released these days. Del Toro's imagination comes to the fore in the myriad creatures he creates for this movie, bringing to life monster upon monster with no end to the creativity in sight.

Even better, the producers have the budget to match the vivid creations coming out of the minds of this film's makers, and the special effects do not disappoint. The CGI in this movie is phenomenal, with not a single effect out of place. Having just sat through the dodgy, odd-looking chimpanzees of RISE OF THE PLANET OF THE APES, I'm doubly impressed by the quality of the CGI in this movie (which was made with a lower budget than the ape film, it has to be said). It's an entirely visual film, one which never disappoints.

The plot, of course, is secondary to the effects, but that doesn't matter so much this time around. As usual, there's a bad guy (Luke Goss, returning as a del Toro villain after BLADE II) who wants to take over the world and who has all manner of mean and wild creations to help him in the process. Up against him is Hellboy and his companions. The return of welcome old faces is great (and kudos to the writers for giving the excellent Abe Sapien a bigger part this time around) and the new character of Johann Krauss is similarly a work of genius. Hellboy is his usual wisecracking self and Perlman brings plenty of laconic humour to the part.

The narrative pretty much leads from one wild set-piece to the next, with some more effective than others. Hellboy's encounter with the nature god is my favourite part of the film, although the run-in with the titular army at the movie's climax is also fairly exhilarating. Okay, so this isn't a great movie – the story doesn't hold up to a great deal of scrutiny, after all is told – but it looks the part and I can't dislike any movie with this level of sheer inventiveness behind it.
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6/10
The demon superhero fights dark forces, monsters and an evil prince who wants to free the golden army to rule the Earth
ma-cortes26 July 2019
Thrilling sequel based on Mike Mignola favorite cult comic book creation in which Hellboy has to face again dark forces and weird creatures. Hellboy works for the US military at the Bureau Parnormal Research whose chief is John Hurt alonside the sympathetic Agente Jeffrey Tambor, the fish-monster Abe Sapien, Doug Jones, and Hellboy's love interest, Selma Blair, and other courageous agents . And he was crawled into this world in Nazi time from another dimension and battling eternally evil monsters , and chilling cyborgs. Here he takes on a nasty Elf with extraordinary power , a prince called Nuada, Luke Goss, who in order to rule the Earth breaks an ancient spell and a covenant between humans and creatures, it results in releasing the Golden Army by opening a sinister portal . The prince kills his king father, Roy Dotrice, while his twin sister Nuala, Anna Walton, flees and joins the strange and valiant team.Then Hellboy and his brave squad set out to defeat the heinous prince Nuada.

Again the central figure Hellboy, a wise-cracking, gun-toting, cigar-chomping, trenchcoated half-human with a giant right arm alongside his pregnant lover, an aquatic being and other bizarre creatures. Heartfelt horror vision by Del Toro's stock in trade. But it is really a Ron Perlman film giving panache, sympathy and bravura to his peculiar role . All in red and larger than life, he burns up the screen along with his sweetheart, Selma Blair, as the firing heroine. This action-packed, nail-biting, high-octane movie being well starred by Ron Perlman who results to be a crossover between Humphrey Bogart, A team's Hannibal Smith and Clint Eastwood's Dirty Harry. Relishing these absurdities, Del Toro gets on with the business of furious amusement, fast entertainment, racking up a sequence of coruscating set pieces against elaborate, occult backdrops.

The motion picture was well directed by Guillermo del Toro, he brings nicely to life the notorious comic book, though it is inferior than the previous entry and it has excessive and overwhelming digital effects by 3D computer generator. Guillermo is a very good director who has written, produced and made a lot of films, most of them in Fantastic genre such as the Oscarized : The shape of water, Pacific Rim, Crimson peak, Blade 2 , Pan labyrinth, Mimic, Devil'S backbone, Cronos. He also has directed some episodes from successful teleseries as Troll hunters, The strain and Arcadia tales.This movie is specially appointed for comic books aficionados, being extremely necessary to see it for Guillermo del Toro enthusiasts.

The first rendition by Guillermo del Toro was made in 2004 with Perlman, Selma Blair, Doug Jones, Rupert Evans, Jeffrey Tambor, John Hurt, Brian Steele. And another recent version in 2018 with David Harbour and Milla Jovovich
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10/10
Excellent
adiemeyer9 July 2008
I had the pleasure of seeing this last night at the Alamo Draft House screening with not only Guillermo del Toro but Mike Mignola and Doug Jones attending as well. I was a fan of del Toro's work before I got into Hellboy but that was several years before the first movie. This is quite honestly one of the best marriages of both source and original material I could've hoped for. I felt the movie far surpassed the original. It was smarter, funnier, and as visually stunning as anything you can expect from either del Toro or Mignola. The sheer number and variety of fully realized monsters, with the stronger emphasis being on puppetry and make-up as opposed to an over reliance on CGI, is almost astounding in this day and age. The performances were also top notch. It was a little weird to hear Doug Jones's voice actually coming out of Abe Sapien at first but I think it added to the character and Seth McFarlane as the voice of Johann Krauss was a rather inspired gamble that paid off. All in all the best thing I can say that will probably make the strongest impact on the largest number of people is that I would gladly pay to see this movie again and I would recommend it to any of my friends, regardless of how familiar they are or aren't with Hellboy. Hope you enjoy it as much as I did.
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10/10
A Christmas Fantasy/Action Movie
Angelus27 December 2008
Warning: Spoilers
Its Christmas and we find Hellboy with his dad as they wait for Father Christmas and then Hellboy is captivated by a story about a long lost empire, a hidden army and a exiled prince.

Years later Hellboy is fighting the creatures of darkness and finally the story from his childhood is about to become a reality.

This film was surprisingly better then the first and was more funnier and much more action packed; I watched it yesterday and as its December the Christmas spirit lurks in my heart and this film for some reasons feels perfect at this time of the year. I loved the scenes with Abe and the princess....And I was glad Abe was given more screen time...Krauss was a brilliant bonus, he made you laugh out loud at his miss-pronunciation. However I think the strength lies in the dark world that Torro brings to life, it beautiful and like something out of your wildest dreams... you can see the magic that lies within this mysterious world.

Prince Nauda is an amazing villain he balances the innocence and evil with brilliance and his fighting skills are just outstanding. Hellboy is funnier in this film.......Lastly the fighting choreography is amazing, simply put.
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3/10
Deeply disappointed
barbertj2314 July 2008
Warning: Spoilers
This is my first comment on IMDb and I'm sad it has to be a harsh criticism of this movie. I wanted this movie to be good so much, and I can only say that from the opening sequence with young hell boy that I was shocked and the poor directing and slapstick that was used throughout the entire movie. I felt like I was watching men in black for most of the movie, the cheesy way that we are introduced to characters, the outrageous overacting and the severe lack of funny of the jokes. Did anyone laugh when hell boy is beat up by the mist guy with lockers? did you not feel uncomfortable and like you went to the wrong movie with the stupid love stories involved? For instance Abe falls the princess in .01 seconds and we are expected to just let it slide because the have a psychic connection. When Liz is pregnant and she has to tell hell boy to bring him back to life I decided I would never see this movie again. I waited that long in to get to that point, because I just wanted it to be good so much. outside of the plot holes and cliché beyond cliché twists the characters are just unlikeable in this one and the music score is an abomination, compared to the score of the first. I felt embarrassed taking my friends to see this and felt like I should apologize to them after it.
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9/10
Much Better than the First, IMHO...
brando64724 November 2008
I honestly didn't expect much when I first saw this movie. I was a fan of the first film, though it wasn't anything spectacular and I figured this would be more of the same. Wow, no. This movie was SO much better than the first, in my opinion; it was easily one of my favorite movies from 2008. I'm not saying the first was bad, I just found myself bored a lot easier at times. But this film was just flat-out more entertaining. Hellboy and the Bureau for Paranormal Research and Defense find themselves caught up when an elven prince declares war on the human race and attempts to awaken the invincible Golden Army to aid him.

Whereas the first film delved into more occult themes, the sequel is full of fantasy and mythical elements. The film is full of some of the most imaginative creature creations I've seen in years, and most of it was done with animatronics and puppetry with very little reliance on CGI. Wink, the prince's monstrous bodyguard/henchman, was a full-size costume with animatronics and CGI used to enhance it and it was amazing. I was blown away by the Troll Market scene and how much detail went into creating that never-before-seen world of fantasy creatures. When you see some of the amazing creations of Del Toro and his crew, you'll be baffled as to how they managed to do most of it practically (the Angel of Death rocks, BTW).

Most of the key cast have returned from the first film...Ron Perlman, Selma Blair (HOT), Doug Jones, and Jeffrey Tambor. The writing was sharper in this film and the cast are better than they were before. I especially liked how Liz Sherman (Blair) was given more to do than sulk in this installment. In addition, the BPRD receive a new agent in the form of Johann Krauss, an ectoplasmic entity in a containment suit voiced by the awesome Seth MacFarlane. For me, Krauss stole every scene he was in and I really dug his introduction to the film series. I definitely hope he's brought back in any future sequels. Also a bit different this time around was the "villain", Prince Nuada (Luke Goss)...rather than the usual world domination motivation, he is jaded at how his people have been treated by the humans and is determined to retake their "rightful" place in the world. His intentions are noble in a sense but his methods are severely flawed and he presents Hellboy with views that cause the hero to question his place as a defender of humanity.

Seeing as how I've never read the comics, I can't say how faithful the film stays to the Hellboy canon but, as a film-goer, I loved this movie. It was a drastic improvement on the first in my opinion and I really hope Del Toro is given the chance to continue the series in the future with the seeds he planted in this film for ongoing plot-points.
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9/10
Saving the world is a hell of a job
moviewizguy19 November 2008
In this continuation to the adventure of the demon superhero, an evil elf breaks an ancient pact between humans and creatures, as he declares war against humanity. He is on a mission to release The Golden Army, a deadly group of fighting machines that can destroy the human race. As Hell on Earth is ready to erupt, Hellboy and his crew set out to defeat the evil prince before The Golden Army can destroy humanity's existence.

When the first scenes rolled through the film, my jaw dropped. I was already disappointed by the film. The first scene shows Hellboy being a little boy and John Hurt as his father making a cameo role. It seemed kinda childish and not funny at all. The next scene doesn't do any good either. It shows Hurt telling a Christmas story which is all in Lego-like form. Definitely cheesy.

But it's obvious I was taken aback by the shift in tone from this film. This felt like "Shrek 2," which is the best example I can give here. The first movie took itself very seriously, yet the sequel, although still serious, is very laid back. It took some time to get used to this but I eventually gave in and I came out having the time of my life! This film is immensely entertaining from beginning to end, I can tell you right now. For being not as serious and more laid back, the movie is more entertaining and better by a notch or two. I was kinda upset how they took out Rupert Evans (Myers) out of this movie but I understand that the movie is trying to have this movie about the creatures and not the humans, which is good, I guess.

The originality and variety of the creatures in here are fantastic. Guillermo del Toro's wide use of imagination is simply brilliant and can be seen as hard proof by seeing this movie. There's also one or two brilliant action sequences that absolutely blew me away in awe because of its ingenious thought. Many of the actors reprise their roles with one new added cast member, played by *gasp* Seth MacFarlane! He did, simply stated, a fantastic job as the voice of his character. Everyone else also did a great job with their 3-dimensional characters.

As I end this review, I'm going to say this film surprised me. Yeah, maybe the new tone of relaxation is going to be getting used to and some probably won't buy it at all but in the end, many people will enjoy it. The film is entertaining throughout, has a great use of imagination, some fantastic action sequences, great characters, and everything else you would wanted in a summer blockbuster!
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1/10
Fightining with a locker > Plot
clarkedwardobrien12 November 2009
Warning: Spoilers
I just don't get why this is considered to be better than the first movie. While the first one was understated this movie was just a load of weak jokes and elements ripped from other movies.

The drunk singing was amusing but, as no development had been put into Abe and the princesses attraction, was pointless. Why did The main antagonist have so little presence? Why did they suddenly get mad at Manning who had done nothing but try and pacify them? Why did Krauss turn around and insult Manning at the end for no reason? Why was the giant terrifying monster that was so feared get dispatched by a single shot to the head? Why did nobody question the dangers of Liz carrying Hellboys baby? If Nuala was willing to die to stop her brother why didn't she try to stop him in at the elrond council thing at the start (If the characters had more time to develop they could probably explained this but they didn't)? There's so many plot holes in this film that Im convinced that there is a better movie lying on the cutting room floor,but why keep in character or plot development in when you can have Hellboy get into a slapstick fight with a possessed locker?
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9/10
The Best Comic Book Movie of all Time
thegamergare6 May 2014
Warning: Spoilers
Yes, I know, I know. People will normally have something like Avengers, Dark Knight, Iron Man or one of the Spider-Man movies as their #1. And while I do like all those movies I mentioned, none can pass this powerhouse juggernaut of a comic book movie.

For starters, I must confess. I am a Guillermo Del Toro fan. The only movie of his I didn't give higher than a 7 to is mimic. And even then, I still didn't mind mimic and enjoyed my time watching it. But I can honestly say that this is his best work. It's not quite as serious as Pan's Labrynth, but it's also not as silly as Pacific Rim. It is everything I could want from a comic book movie.

Ron Perlman plays Hellboy, a demon that was raised by the US Government to be a hero, this cross makes for a very interesting anti-hero which often leaves you clueless to just what he will do. Selma Blair plays Liz Sherman, who at first glance just seems like your average, "I don't need anyone else's help," kind of character. But there's more to it than that. She is very original in the fact that the movie doesn't try to make her sexualized in the slightest. People may say this has been done before, but not like this. She doesn't strike you as a female character, she strikes you as a character. And even though I love Black Widow's character from the Marvel Universe movies, I'm constantly reminded that she is a female character. Seth MacFarlane voices Johann Krauss which is moved around by John Alexander and James Dodd. Not only is he an interesting character, but it's my favourite character that Seth MacFarlane has played. He fits so well in the universe that when you first see him, you're surprised for a second and then you think, "well, what do you expect from this universe?" Doug Jones plays Abe Sapien and it is an amazing role. Guillermo Del Toro uses Abe Sapien and another character, Prince Nuada (Luke Goss,) to really bring out his unique character designs. Both look stunning with the loads of make-up covered on them and yet you still believe that they're those creatures, not just actors.

The story is very interesting because it allows what seems like a straight forward, open-and-shut case, show that there's a lot that can be done to these stories within the visuals and experience that makes it unique. For example, there's a scene where Prince Nuada is fighting some guards and ends up killing his father. Now, that sounds straight forward and a bit clichéd, but for anyone who's seen it, if you ask them about it, they'll tell you how fast paced and colourful it appeared. How well the special effects were and just how realistic it was. Sure, you can say that about a lot of movies, but this one does it so well that anyone who hasn't seen it can listen to you and say something along the lines of, "that's how most good movies are," because they haven't lived it like you have.

Guillermo Del Toro does not waste any time, making only a few scenes about 60% way through the movie for comic relief, which is very welcoming as the movie is trying to push a lot on you at once, and the humour isn't only necessary, it's actually quite funny! Such examples as the Hellboy vs. Johann fight or the drunk singing. I also love just how interesting these character designs are. Some characters had so much make up on, I was mesmerized by the way the looked and they only got about 5 seconds of on screen time, which is a truly amazing piece of work. Most movies would only put that much effort into a main character and Guillermo Del Toro makes sure just as much effort is put into characters you could miss if you blink! The Troll Market especially, one of the best scenes in the movie. There's over 60 different looking creatures and you have to pause just to see them all, not even counting the ones that probably walked around and didn't end up walking where the camera was shooting, just there in case they did walk by the camera. It is an amazing amount of effort on Guillermo Del Toro's part and it really gets overlooked.

In conclusion, there are many amazing comic book movies and there are a lot that are very close to how much I like Hellboy 2. But Hellboy 2 stands above them, it is my favourite Guillermo Del Toro movie and my favourite comic book movie. If you haven't checked it out, you have to immediately. It is a must watch, and definitely work the $35 or so for the special edition Blu-Ray.

Score: 9.4
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3/10
Very Disappointing
i-c-d10 August 2008
Warning: Spoilers
When i went to see the original Hellboy i did not have very high expectations and was pleasantly surprised when it turned out to be extremely enjoyable, i was therefore looking forward to a similarly enjoyable experience when viewing this film. My expectations were most certainly not met. Aside from the visuals, which as you would expect from guillermo del toro were excellent, and Ron Pearlman's turn as hellboy, the film stank. Following the cringeworthy opening scene with young Hellboy (surely just an excuse to get John Hurt in the film) i was hoping the film would pick up with the introduction to our villain, yet the almost immediate revelation of his fatal weakness ensured that we already knew how he would ultimately be defeated. The plot was so utterly unengaging and dull that even the fantastical creatures could not reignite my interest in what was going on. On a side note, not being aware that Seth Macfarlane had voiced the character when i first viewed the film i spent half the time wondering why Krauss sounded exactly like Klaus the fish in American Dad.
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1/10
I don't understand how people enjoyed this?
tankeredbell16 November 2008
Warning: Spoilers
First off, I absolutely adored the first Hellboy. It had great action, comedy and great graphics. Now it's true, everything we came to know and love from the first movie are in fact there; however, they are overdone to the point of exhaustion. This movie was a disgrace to the name of Hellboy. The comedy was overdone and hardly funny, the only good scene was when Hellboy and Abe were drunk and that was the only thing they didn't do as much with as they could have done. The villain looked great and had lots of great fighting moves, but he was weak. He was hardly bad at all. His makeup and skills were the only thing that posed any threat of a villain. While the relationship between Hellboy and Liz has grown, it does nothing but bore the viewer. It was as if everything was slow. The fights were prolonged unnecessarily.

The only reason this movie MAY be acceptable is because it seems to be setting up a Hellboy 3 where Hellboy becomes evil and turns on mankind. But even that wasn't shown as much as it should have been.

This movie was trying too hard to be like Pan's Labyrinth that the magical world was so far out there than what most people could imagine.

Seriously painful movie. And I usually like everything.
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10/10
Better Than the Original!
g-bodyl15 November 2008
Hellboy 2 is such an exciting movie, visually and mentally. This is much better than the first Hellboy and I liked the first one a lot. Guillermo Del Toro is one of the better directors of our time. This movie is about an evil elf who wants to unlock the dormant golden army to dominate Earth and take back what he thinks is rightfully his. But, our favorite red action hero, Hellboy and the rest of his FBI gang including Abe Sapien, the German Johan Krauss, and Hellboy's girlfriend, Liz is not about to let that happen. The visuals are fantastic. This is one of the reasons Del Toro is a great director. He is creative designing these creatures in this movie. I really liked the Angel of Death. The acting is pretty good. Ron Perlman did a superb job playing the wisecracking Hellboy. The music is even better than the first film. I like Danny Elfman more than Marco Beltrami. This film may be a bit scary for younger children. I rate this film 10/10.
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5/10
Mildly entertaining
trezhamayn12 July 2008
Warning: Spoilers
I've seen bad movies and Hellboy II is not one of them, but it's close. If you are of the "there's no way in hell they can do that mentality" and wish to stab yourself in the head with a screwdriver whenever a movie pushes that envelope too far, then stay far far away. The movie is disjointed and lacks continuity from the original. The action scenes aren't bad, but there's a major lack of development on the part of the villain, Prince Nuada and his race of people that are slowly on the verge of extinction. What caused the war between his race and man? Also the "golden army" that is so prominently featured in the title makes only an appearance in the last scene. Touted as indestructible, Hellboy has very little problem dispatching them. I believe some more effort could have went into the final half-hour of the movie but the same could be said about the whole movie. The biggest problem I had with the movie is, why did Abe make a big deal about his breathing apparatus in the beginning, yet throughout the rest of the movie he doesn't wear one and is perfectly fine? Also, the twist at the end of the movie was super predictable. Visually, the movie was beautiful, but pretty scenery can only account for a small overall piece of a film's quality.

5.0/10
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5/10
A letdown, poorly written.
blisterpeanuts19 July 2008
Warning: Spoilers
OK, I've read some of the reviews and commentary on this movie, and I just don't get it. I did not enjoy this movie as much as the first one. Something was just missing. Hellboy 1 had more soul. #2 was just a bunch of action scenes tied together and with a thin veneer of "personal chemistry" thrown in to make the viewer feel drawn in emotionally. But it didn't work on me. I really, really wanted it to, and I waited breathlessly for this release. The trailers were great, but the movie did not deliver.

In Hellboy 1, we witness a creature from another world who is wallowing in his self-pity and conflicts borne of his differentness--he was raised as human by his human step-father, but he is too different to fit in. Forced to revert to a demon of destruction by the forces of evil, he comes to the brink of destroying the world. Then he is reminded of his humanity by John Meyers just in time to avert calamity. Thus we learn that all sentient creatures, whether human or wanna-be human, can take charge of their destiny; we can overcome our programming.

Then there was the romantic triangle that formed between Meyers, Liz, and Hellboy. Liz was a confused, troubled girl who sort of loved Hellboy but was so afraid of her power that she withdrew into a shell. Meyers drew her out of that shell, and in the process fell in love with her (or at least developed a bit of a crush). In the end, Liz herself realized her responsibilities and loyalties in time to save her buddy Hellboy and thus she came into her full power as a super hero and a woman.

Hoo boy. What a world they created. Now we come to Hellboy 2. Meyers is inexplicably gone, even though Dr. Broom specifically recruited him to continue HB's lessons in being human. Abe has changed, and oh, do I miss Michael Lindsay's voice! I have read that Lindsay wanted Doug Jones to recite his own lines, so I guess he got what he wanted, and as a result the delicate and humorous Abe we came to know in HB 1 is gone. Oh yes, and Abe was willing without hesitation to cravenly betray humanity because of his love for the Princess. Sorry, I don't buy that. This isn't the same Abe.

Tom Manning has also changed--he was a take-charge guy before, butting heads with Hellboy all through the first movie, but in the end he was won over and the two came to have a mutual respect. Now, suddenly he's reduced to bribing Hellboy with cigars to not show himself in public. What happened? Manning was useless and contemptible in this movie.

I don't see the point of Kraus except as more eye candy. Evidently they were hoping Kraus would add some humor and tension to the story, but it didn't really work. But he was an interesting creature, nonetheless.

The elves wore too much makeup and the princess behaved strangely. The prince, at least, had some motivation in this movie, unlike almost everyone else. But he was also either a psychopath who would unhesitatingly slaughter his father or else the elves are just different from us humans. Not very believable in either case.

Oh, and Hellboy became weaker in this movie. He was a powerful, kick-butt demon in the first one, and now he gets knocked on his ass by every monster that comes along. He gets a magical razor in his chest and almost dies. What happened to the Hellboy we knew from HB1?

Lastly, and sadly, was the ridiculous scene at the end where the agents quit. Huh? Since when had the Department become an evil big bad boss that deserved to be treated so shabbily? They took these freaks in, trained them, helped them to have a niche in a hostile world, and together they protected humanity from the "things that go bump in the night". This is Professor Broom's legacy. Now, as if to show how little they think of Prof. Broom, Hellboy and his gang just walked away from Manning, leaving him plaintively crying for them to come back. And where exactly were they going? To live on a commune of mutants and freaks somewhere in Ireland, where they happened to be stranded? Brilliant writing, guys, this really ties everything together--not!!!

I could go on and on. Well, it's only a movie. But I am really disappointed.
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8/10
Power, Love and Self-Sacrifice
claudio_carvalho20 October 2008
At the dawn of the time, men, beasts and magic beings lived together; however, the infinite greed of men made a hole in their hearts and possession, power and knowledge were not able to fill them and they fought against the magic beings. The King Balor (Roy Dotrice) of the elf, ogres and goblins accept the offer of a powerful and invincible golden mechanical army composed of 70 times 70 soldiers; a magic crown is forged and associated to the royal blood of King Balor, he commands the army and defeats men. A truce is negotiated with the cities belonging to men and the forests to the magic beings; the indestructible golden army is locked inside the earth and the crown is split in three parts. On the present days, the exiled Prince Nuada (Luke Goss) breaks in the Blackwood's auction house in Manhattan to retrieve one piece of the crown. He uses the evil tooth fairies to destroy the auctioneer and seventy guests, and then he attacks his father to get the second part of the crown. However, his twin sister Princess Nuala (Anna Walton) escapes with the third part. Meanwhile, in the Bureau of Paranormal Research and Defense in Trento, New Jersey, headed by Tom Manning (Jeffrey Tambor), Hellboy (Ron Perlman), Liz Sherman (Selma Blair) and Abe Sapien (Doug Jones) go to Blackwood to investigate the mystery. When Hellboy is exposed to the press, the specialist in ectoplasm Johann Krauss (James Dodd) is assigned the substitute for Manning in the Bureau. The group moves to Brooklyn Bridge wearing special glasses to find the troll market and get information about the tooth fairies; however they meet Princess Nuala and discover the evil intentions of her ambitious twin brother.

"Hellboy II: The Golden Army" is a great adventure, with an excellent story of power, love and self-sacrifice; magnificent screenplay, with witty lines and situations; and awesome special effects. The likable characters show great chemistry and are responsible for wonderful dialogs. If the viewer likes fantasy and blockbuster movies, he or she will love "Hellboy II"; if the viewer is not a fan of the genre, he or she may like it since there are really very funny situations and lots of action. My vote is eight.

Title (Brazil): "Hellboy 2 - O Exército Dourado ("Hellboy 2 - The Golden Army")
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