Hellboy II: The Golden Army is a classic example of getting it right the second time around. The original Hellboy movie was o.k. but it didn’t impress most fans that much. Ron Perlman played Hellboy in the first movie and was the best thing about the movie. Perlman reprises his role as the big red prince of Hell in this new release from Dark Horse Entertainment.
From a fan’s perspective there isn’t much to criticize about Hellboy II. Ron Perlman delivers his lines with absolute deadpan reliability and the story is strong and interesting. The core of The Golden Army is a children’s story about the battle between humans and the creatures of “myth” when humans tried to gain dominion over all the creatures on earth. After some back and forth a treaty was reached and humans got to keep the cities and the rest of the world got to keep, well the rest of the world: The underside of bridges, the woods, mountains, ocean shoreline. This deal did not sit well with the prince of the Elves who goes into self imposed exile.
To make a long story short the battle is about to start over again and it is Hellboy and this crew versus the rest of the “mythical” world to prevent the rise of the Golden Army. Hellboy II is a much better flick than the original installment of Hellboy but it is definitely a fan flick not a general audience movie. There is too much about Hellboy that is over the top and self referential for it to really make it as a general appeal movie. The CGI is amazing, the performances are strong and the script is pretty good but that is not enough to carry it over into the realm of being a movie that everyone will enjoy. If you enjoyed the comic books and the Sword of Storms and Blood and Iron animated movies you will definitely enjoy Hellboy II: The Golden Army.