Hellboy II: The Golden Army is an awesome display of Guillermo del Toro’s creativity. Before del Toro was simply bringing the Dark Horse Comics character to life. Now he’s free to create any imaginative creature he wants. It helps that Pan’s Labyrinth made him an even more respected filmmaker. Much like Blade II, Hellboy II: The Golden Army is a superhero sequel that improves on its predecessor in every way. Yet I still didn’t see the movie in theaters. Despite already being a fan of the first Hellboy. The Golden Army refers to an ancient mechanical army created for the elves. Although Mike Mignola characters are present, the dark fantasy angle is mostly del Toro. Only he could come up with stone elves, metal fisted trolls, an angel of death with eyes on its wings, and tooth hungry tooth fairies. Hellboy was always a hero who fought any magical creature thrown at him.
Ron Perlman is Hellboy at this point. With a lighter tone, he’s free to crack as many jokes as he wants. Even singing “Can’t Smile Without You” while drunk. Selma Blair is now even more confident as Liz Sherman. Her flames are red instead of blue, but she’s just as formidable. Liz & Hellboy’s relationship is shown in greater detail with the added revelation of her pregnancy. Abe Sapien is similarly given better development with Doug Jones actually providing the voice this time. Abe has more comradery with Hellboy, Liz, and the rest of the B.P.R.D. John Myers is ditched since he’s no longer required. The organization faces a major headache when Hellboy reveals himself to the world. Giving Jeffrey Tambor a lot more to do. The most prominent new Mignola character is Johann Krauss. A fascinating containment suit wearing medium made of ectoplasm and voiced by Seth MacFarlane.
All the villains are original. Prince Nuada is a formidable elf with the intent to control the Golden Army. The problem is his physical link to his sister Princess Nuala. Made more complicated by Abe falling for her. The action is even more entertaining with fights at a Troll Market, baby juggling, big gun toting confrontations with a giant Forrest god, and a final battle with the indestructible army. Nuada’s martial arts skills make him a vastly different enemy for the more brute strength Hellboy. Even with the fun tone, Hellboy still faces difficult questions like if he really belongs among the humans? Too bad we may never know the answer. Hellboy II: The Golden Army brings light into the dark.
Preceded by: Hellboy