Sunday, 31 May 2009

Film Review: Hellboy - The Golden Army.

I'd wanted to watch Hellboy - The Golden Army (which is the second Hellboy film) when it first came out at the cinema last year, so I was really excited when LOVEFiLM sent it to me about 2 months ago... therefore, it isn't as fresh in my head to write a full, accurate account about it but overall I loved it!The first one was excellent, just because it is pure fantasy and Hellboy (Red) was such a really funny and unique character. Selma Blair plays his love interest, Liz Sherman, who is a pyrokinetic. Her character was quite boring in the first film and badly introduced, but she had completely evolved in the sequel. Her hair was cropped and she had so much more 'spark' compared to her role in the first. The chemistry between the two characters was also very funny and endearing. However, I noticed one fault... in the first film, Liz Sherman would address Hellboy as 'HB', but in the sequel, she addressed him as 'Red'. I think I prefer the latter ('HB' makes me think of HP Sauce!) but I also prefer consistency and I was quite surprised that I noticed such a minute error!The Hellboy films are both directed by Guillermo del Toro who I instantly know best as the director of Pan's Labyrinth, which was such a surreal and intelligent film... therefore I was really looking forward to seeing all the new monsters and creatures. So, when I saw Guillermo del Toro's imagining of a Tooth Fairy I was in such awe. They were the cutest things, but had an appetite for calcium and would feed on the teeth to get to the bone, I loved it!I won't get too much into the actual story but it is pretty much a humans VS magical creatures plot, magical creatures will win (obviously) but Hellboy prevents this from happening. Prince Nuada (played very well by Luke Goss) is the Prince of Elfland and is the perceived 'bad guy' of the film. He goes on to retrieve three pieces of a crown that controls The Golden Army, which is a mechanical army that was originally created for Prince Nuada's father, King Balor to help defeat humans (this ancient story is depicted through an animation). The army was so devastating to humans, that a truce was formed between King Balor and the humans and the crown controlling the army was split into three pieces, one piece was given to the humans and two kept with the elves. However, I really empathised with the Prince Nuada character and understood his intentions... this was further emphasized when he easily gains the piece kept by humans at an auction (present day) which I felt was a subtle display of typical human recklessness.One part of the film that I found very interesting is when Hellboy's life is threatened when Prince Nuada strikes him in the chest with his spear. Hellboy is taken to the Angel of Death to see if he can be saved. Liz is informed that if he is saved, he will bring chaos to the world and she will suffer most from it... she accepts this and Hellboy recovers. The Angel of Death was such a fascinating creature, and I think I missed most of the dialogue in this scene as I couldn't take my eyes away from it! After finishing the film, I had to watch the Special Features which showed many of the creatures and the ideas behind them, you also get to see brainstorming sessions which was incredible to watch. This Hellboy sequel was much better than the first but I think it was the creatures in it that did this. Hopefully there will be a third Hellboy as it is revealed that Liz is pregnant, with twins... and of course, Hellboy is still supposed to cause havoc to the world!
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