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movie reviewmovie reviewvideo review out of 4 Movie Review: Hellboy

Starring: Ron Perlman, Selma Blair
Director: Guillermo Del Toro
Rated: PG-13
RunTime: 132 Minutes
Release Date: April 2004
Genres: Action, Horror, Sci-Fi/Fantasy

*Also starring: Doug Jones, John Hurt, Rupert Evans, Corey Johnson, Karel Roden, Brian Caspe, James Babson, Biddy Hodson, Jeffrey Tambor, Santiago Segura

Review by Steve Rhodes
2 stars out of 4

HELLBOY, by director Guillermo del Toro (BLADE II), is a long, violent, cigar commercial that's for Hellboy comic book fans only. Although better than DAREDEVIL, it is not anywhere near in the X-MEN league, the movie it tries most to mimic. A long and tiresome slugfest, it features Ron Perlman in a charisma-free performance as Hellboy, the stogie-smoking fighter of the forces of evil. He works for an officially non-existent, secret branch of the FBI, lead by a doofus bureaucrat named Dr. Tom Manning (Jeffrey Tambor), who shares Hellboy's proclivity for cigars. This PG-13 movie is quite gory and way into R-rated territory. The MPAA is asleep at the switch again.

The overplotted story features Nazis, Christian relics, a Russian monk, a portal to the skies, paranormal phenomena, the end of the world and a woman (Selma Blair) who gets really hot when mistreated. The only satisfying parts of the movie are Hellboy's wisecracks ("I just fried Stinky," "Didn't I already kill you," and "I'm fireproof. You're not."), which Perlman delivers deadpan style. There isn't a character worth caring about in the entire story.

The special effects are good, but you expect that from a movie based on a comic book. Hidden inside this bloated production is probably a less than ninety minute movie that could soar. Instead of soaring, you'll be sagging in your seat as Hellboy stops one unstoppable monster after another. Eventually, you'll be crying, "Enough already. I get it."

HELLBOY runs a long 1:52. It is rated PG-13 for "sci-fi action violence and frightening images" and would be acceptable for most teenagers.

Copyright 2004 Steve Rhodes

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