Sunday, April 04, 2004

Hellboy


I spent money that I seriously don't have to go see Hellboy. It was a lot of fun!

Most of the obvious criticisms are pretty valid. There wasn't enough variety to the action. I'd have given him some baddies with a different tone somewhere in the middle somehow. I'd have stuck with the casualness of the comic, that's really part of what makes it such whimsical fun to read. The "urban legend" plotline had some amusing qualities, but wasn't what I would have enjoyed most. It felt like a shoehorn job to please mass audiences, who seem to have little taste for whimsy in this self-consciously cynical age.

But Ron Perlman just nails Mike Mignola's Hellboy! The completely upfront H.P. Lovecraft swipes are wonderful and some of the best Lovecraft I've seen. Why is Lovecraft so much easier to show cinematically when he's faced against superheroic heroes (see also: Ghostbusters) instead of the very ordinary bookish characters Lovecraft himself wrote?

Definitely worth seeing.

Also worth looking up Elvis Mitchell's review in the New York Times. Yes, even if it means registering with them.

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