"Hellboy" and "The Golden Army" both lament the loss of beautiful and strange creatures. Sounds familiar?
Guillermo del Toro's two "Hellboy" films were shot before a certain film universe had a name. The 21 Marvel films (soon to be 22) have standardized the assembly line approach to overlap original stories and stories, as well as comic book adaptations that preceded them by a few years Barely – like "X-Men" and "Spider-Man" – ignored much of the scraping of the throat and introduced their heroes as fully formed beings by the second act.
Del Toro and his team (especially Hellboy himself, Ron Perlman) have clearly expressed their willingness to continue this chthonic franchise, a wiped out dream against the rocky shores of Hollywood when Lionsgate escaped any trilogy project completing the decision in favor of a new start. This gave us the restart of Neil Marshall, which opened in cinemas on April 12 (and, according to reports, seems to be about to crumble during its opening weekend).
The diptych of Del Toro was full of hidden attractions and religious iconography, but it avoided gore for the benefit of mystical visuals and a familiar but effective message: it is not the circumstances of our birth that define us, but the choice we make. ("Batman Begins" repeated this sentiment almost verbatim a year later.) The real name of Hellboy is Anung a Rama, whose translation is objectively great – and on his forehead is a wreath of flames – but he is more sarcastic than satanic.
However, the restart of Marshall minimizes the most endearing aspects of Hellboy's personality (his affinity for cats and sweets is not mentioned once) while greatly increasing the blood quotient. The charm of previous projects has disappeared, replaced by an increase in violence that turns a once unique world into a new battlefield of CGI.
Another crucial difference between "Hellboy" and the unified universe movies that now dominate the space of superheroes: everyone and everything that dies in the films of del Toro remains dead, including a literal Resurrection Dog. It's rare nowadays: Agent Coulson died in "The Avengers" to be brought back to life in "Agents of SHIELD", Groot sacrifices himself at the end of "Guardians of the Galaxy" and is reborn quickly under adorable adorable Baby Groot. "Captain America: The Winter Soldier" reveals that neither Nick Fury nor Bucky Barnes have actually died, despite all appearances to the contrary, and does anyone believe that Gamora or the many heroes who have disintegrated into one snap in "Avengers: Infinity" War "are really dead?
What deserves to be remembered (and lacking) about Del Toro's "Hellboy" and "Hellboy II: The Golden Army", however, are his creations and his visuals. Created after "Pan's Labyrinth", while del Toro had probably the most creative freedom of his career before his Oscar triumph with "The Shape of Water", he is unlike any other comic film ever made. Everything from the Angel of Death and Chamberlain to Golden Army fairies is breathtaking in its own way, while Marshall's film focuses on the grotesque of beauty.
The best thing that can be said about Marshall's "Hellboy" is that it sometimes sounds more like the way people want than the precedent they received. "You should know that his fate is to bring about the destruction of the earth," says the Angel of Death at Hellboy towards the end of the second Toro movie. "Not now, not tomorrow, but soon enough." His total annihilation ability is widely suggested, generally recalling that Red is more than his jovial character and his clever attitude, but we have never seen this potential come true. Marshall's film is getting closer to showing this destruction on a global scale,
So it's good, and even a little sad, that so many "Hellboy II: The Golden Army" are talking about strange beautiful creatures disappearing forever. While Hellboy tries to stop a plant-like forest god that stretches the greenery to everything he touches in the middle of the film, Prince Nuada materializes to make him think about the implications of a film. such act. "Look at him: the last of his kind, like you and me," he says. "You destroy it, the world will never find it again." After hesitating longer than he usually does, Hellboy shoots the creature the size of a building and leads his species to a violent end.
It's at least a bittersweet moment, and this is not the first time our hero has questioned his role as a destructive agent of monsters to humans. Even the victory of Nuada, the antagonist of the film, inspires more melancholy than triumph. "If we die," he says, bleeding to death, "the world will be poorer for her."