Last night one of my many, many favorite films was played on television. I saw it three times on the big screen when it played in 2008. It is one of the most visually stunning films ever made in my opinion. The times I have seen it since on the small screen have robbed it of it visual impact.
Guillermo del Toro is one of my all time favorite film makers. His Pan's Labyrinth is certainly in my top five all time favorite films. It is, like Hellboy, visually stunning . Beautifully filmed, an original plot, and one of the best performances from a child actress you could ever hope to see, Pan's Labyrinth is as close to perfect as a film can get.
Hellboy is not in that sort of league. It is based on a comic book character, which was made into a cartoon series. del Toro made hellboy into a film several years ago and while not bad it is inferior to the second film. This is because del Toro's abilities and imagination have come further, and it shows in the second film.
It is a fantasy/action genre film and del Toro does fantasy extremely well. It is a pity that The Hobbit, which was to be filmed here in NZ, ran into troubles, as it is the type of subject matter that is perfect for his imagination and style. Hellboy 2 is certanily not remarkable for any originality in its plot. Sort of end of the world if a baddie isn't stopped type stuff. Its originality is in the visuals. And they are just stunning.
Peter Jackson gets alot of cudos for his use of CGI but for me del Toro is better. Del Toro uses colour in his film beautifully, you have to see his films to appreciate them. But it is imagination that has captured film goers attentions. His sets and the creatures he has devised are totally original and with his use of colour and film techniques leave the viewer in total awe. The fawn from Pan's Labyrinth is simply breath taking.
There are several fight scenes which have nothing new in them as far as moves go, but under del Toro's eye they become quite spectacular. It is a film that even a younger audience will enjoy and watch as it isn't riddled with swearing or graphic violence. My two nephews absolutely loved this film and even commented on how good it looked. It is one of those films that even if are not into the genre you should see for a master film maker at work.
Certainly Hellboy will never go down as one of the best films ever made. But it isn't meant to be. It is fantasy and solely for entertaiment. I highly recommend this film, for even if you are not into the genre, it is a film that must be seen to be believed. Del Toro for me is the cutting edge of CGI in the world today. I hear he is keen on making a third Hellboy. This is one viewer who awaits with abated breath, not just for a third Hellboy instalment, but for any film this genius produces from his fertile mind.
Not a great film but watch and be amazed, it is worth it!! Just pure, stylish entertaiment for the eyes! And if you haven't seen it yet, for goodness sake, do youself the favour and watch the brilliant Pan's Labyrinth.