Hellboy 2 tells the story about the mythical world starting a rebellion against humanity lead by prince Nuala in order to rule the Earth. His attempt to raise the mystic Golden Army is snagged thanks to a friendly humanity loving hell spawn by the name of Hellboy. Hellboy and his team must save the world from these rebellious creatures.
One of my favorite contemporary directors is Guillermo Del Toro. He has an amazing way of bringing our imaginations to life with the visual stimulus that he shows us on the screen. He uses a lot of special effect, either make-up and prosthetics, CGI, or elaborate props. His characters of are usually of some form of gothic descent like from the pits of hell, another dimension, and ever from folklore descent. All his creations are amazing and mind blowing sometimes but these wonders creatures require a special group of people to make them sound believable. I will be focusing this blog on the sound effect, dialogue, and score of the Hell Boy 2: The Golden Army.
Characters talking to one another in films, known as dialogue, is now so much a part of the movie experience that audiences take it for granted (Jacobs, 2011). In the film Hellboy 2 there is quite few levels of dialogue exchange from aggressive yelling during action sequences, to stern serious words due to the fact there is a discussion on tactical action of how to handle a new threat, and finally words about advice on how to handle love. A conversation between Hellboy (Ron Perlman) and Abe Sapien (Doug Jones) about love is interesting dialogue because Abe is an intelligent creature but is clueless about matters of the heart. Hellboy on the hand is somewhat knowledgeable due to his rocky relationship with Liz Sherman (Selma Blair). When Abe is describing his feels about Princess Nuala (Anna Walton) to Hellboy, Red’s (his nickname in the film) response is you need a beer. The way this scene played out was comical in my opinion. Although the dialogue is short and it’s to the point. I felt it did get it’s point across. Especially, with the singing.
Throughout the film there are dialogue that focus primary on the mood of the scene and also dialogue that lead to the action sequences. There are the typical one lines during the action sequences that aim to entertain or take the audiences out of the moment. As well as offer some comic relief.
One character whose dialogue I enjoyed hearing was that of Prince Nuada (Luke Goss). He is a determined character who only desires to return things back to the way they were. Where the fairies and other folklore creatures were feared by humans. He believes his father has made a mockery of their name by making a treaty with the humans. He hates humans and will destroy any person or creature (Hellboy) that gets in his way. His goal is to reawaken the indestructible Golden Army so that he can once again reclaim the very dignity that he and his kind once had. This scene focuses on his dialogue between his father and sister. Then he shows his rage. Ever his dialogue during his death scene kind tugs on the strings of the heart.
Hellboy 2 is a film that falls within the science fiction, fantasy, drama, and horror genres. These particular films require a specific types of sounds that will move you in ways that are pulse racing. There are a ton of explosions, booms and bangs without this film. Each time Hellboy battles a new opponent or encounters a new locations there is a change in the what we hear. In the film Del Toro like to use a lot of practical effects to enhances his storytelling but still they need sound to make everything seem believable.
Like for example, Hellboy and comrades visit this one locations fill with a lot of life and is busy. It’s called the Troll market.
Without the proper sound effect this beautifully designed location would not be able to showcase the many wonders and activities that are being carried about. It probably would just be a group of actors in costumes bumping into one another with very little dialogue being heard.
With the proper sound effects we can hear the life being presented to us and this will better enhance the mood of the film for us.
The soundtrack is a collection of songs used in the film (Jacob, 2011). Every film requires that special soundtrack that will set the mood and tone of the scenes. If you saw the clip about Hellboy and Abe you would see my point. The scene switch from being semi serious to funny due to the music of Barry Manilow. But not all scenes having sing involved with them. There is an actual score the follows. Thanks to the talented Danny Elfman we are able feel the emotions and structure of this dark but entertaining film. We can feel the loneliness of Abe, the rage of prince Nuala, and the intensity of the battle between Hellboy and the Elemential God.
Danny Elfman style of music is recognizable in it’s truest form.
Hellboy 2 The Golden Army is a unrated film by a true film genius.