By Dalton Ross
July 30, 2004 at 04:00 AM EDT
  • Movie

There’s been a lot of talk lately about ”Spider-Man 2” and whether it’s the best comic-book movie ever made. Many were enamored of the film’s ability to play Peter Parker’s interior moments as extensively as his alter ego’s action sequences. But for those of you who grew tired of sitting through his endless pity-me-because-I’m-a-reluctant- superhero speeches, might I suggest another quirky character decked out in red: Hellboy. The star of Mike Mignola’s graphic novels and Guillermo del Toro’s film adaptation just wants to kick evil’s ass and fire off a few snappy one-liners while he’s at it. Sure, the movie’s plot — which features the do-gooding demon battling baddie Rasputin — isn’t gonna set a new standard for screenwriting, but Hellboy never loses sight of what it’s there to do — make 15-year-old boys jump out of their seats and yell ”Cool!” (or ”Rad!” or whatever 15-year-old boys yell these days).

Although aspects of the characters have changed from the small pages to the big screen, much care was taken with ”Hellboy” to remain true to the main mood and message of the comic — a fact reinforced throughout the bonus materials. Included in the two-disc set are DVD comics that can be viewed at various points throughout the movie, Hellboy’s favorite cartoons (such as 1950 Oscar winner ”Gerald McBoing-Boing”), and an insanely comprehensive documentary that traces the process from inception all the way through the premiere. At two hours and 22 minutes, the doc is longer than the actual film itself! Now, THAT’S cool. Or rad. Or whatever…

  • Movie
  • PG-13
  • 120 minutes
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