Wow, two big movies in one weekend, where to begin. I guess I’ll begin at the beginning, and soon I’ll drop the repetitiveness. These are going to be fairly short and to the point, so buckle up.
First up was Hellboy – first time I’ve bothered going to a theater since Big Fish. First big action film for me in the theaters since The Matrix Reloaded (and you thought I was going to drop the repitition…). Great movie. Seriously, I loved it. It’s not your typical big fight kind of comic book so I wouldn’t even try to compare it to X-2. Then again, I won’t be so pretentious as to say it is a far more intelligent film. What it is, however, is a movie filled with darker tones that focuses more on the characters than the conflict. Ron Perlman is absolutely fantastic, and has made Hellboy one of my favorite characters simply for his consistent usage of “aw crap” everytime something went wrong (which was often). I honestly enjoyed the interaction between the characters beyond the usual slugfests and, of course, also enjoyed some really cool battles.
Hellboy is a very good film whose most telling sign is that Lisa thoroughly enjoyed it, and she certainly tends to shy away from comic book/action genres. Of course it helps that Guillermo del Toro also happened to direct The Devil’s Backbone, one of our more recent favorite viewings. This one doesn’t exactly have mass appeal, but I definitely recommend it for fans of the comics and those with a taste for the odd.
Yesterday saw the arrival of The Matrix Revolutions from Netflix and I was certainly primed to finally see the conclusion of such a blockbuster trilogy. And the final verdict – I liked it. More importantly, I found it to be an impressive ending to a set of sequels that I never fully understood how they could be made. The best way to look at the trilogy is as they were made – a single movie that stands on its own followed by a pair of movies that further explore the storyline.
The Wachowskis managed to create and develop a story across three movies that, while somewhat derivative, was still very much their own. The story is also a very interesting one, which really made me contemplate the subject matter during all three films. Revolutions is a daring journey through a world with few defined rules, which made the Wachowskis’ decisions even more difficult and impressive. While not as stunning as the first one, I think the second and third movies are visually stunning and intellectually stimulating enough to make them more than adequate successors. And to say the least, I found the rather unexpected ending (following yet another serious twist in the direction of the films) to be both enjoyable and satisfying.
One last comment on Reloaded and Revolutions – I don’t get how so many people bashed these two films yet praised the second 2 Lord of the Rings movies. The Two Towers was a rather silly film that in no way deserved a nomination for best film. And as for Return of the King… I truly believe (or maybe hope is a better word) that the backlash will begin in a few years and all of the awards it won will be regarded with the same disdain as those Titanic (a far more deserving film in my mind) won in 1997. I’ll write a full entry on that later, but as of now Lisa and I have watched the first 2 hours of Return and have no real drive to see the last hour of that yawn-fest.