tek's rating: ½

Hellboy Animated: Blood and Iron
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This is the second Hellboy Animated movie, after Sword of Storms. Although unlike the first movie (which I think might have aired on TV before being released on DVD), this one was definitely released on DVD before it played on TV. Still, the first time I saw it was on TV.

The present-day story is interspersed with flashbacks to a related mission Professor Broom was involved with back in the 30s. He, along with a young priest and some other guys were searching for a young woman named Anna, who had been abducted by a vampire named Erzsebet Ondrushko. Anna's fiancee was also among the search party. Unfortunately, they were too late to save her, but the Professor did manage to defeat Erzsebet. Interestingly, the flashbacks occur in reverse order throughout the film. I suppose that technique has been used fairly often in recent years, in films I haven't seen yet, so it may not be that innovative, but it was fairly fresh for me. The priest is clearly having a major of crisis of faith by the end of the mission (in the first flashback), so it's interesting to see him go from that state to one of confidence in his faith in the later flashbacks, which are set earlier. His deterioration will also become important in the present....

Anyway, in the present, the Professor, Hellboy, Liz, Abe, and a new BPRD recruit named Sydney Leach (who is a human metal detector) head off to investigate a reportedly haunted mansion which has recently been purchased by some rich guy named Oliver Trombolt, who's friends with a senator named Langsford, who is involved in the financing of the BPRD. Which was the only reason the organization was even going to get involved, though it was considered low priority, until the Professor spoke up and suggested they all go- including himself. But he didn't want to say why he thought it important. Trombolt wanted to turn the place into a sort of tourist attraction, exploit the ghosts. But the ghosts turned out to be victims of Erzsebet, whose possessions Trombolt had had shipped over from Europe. We learn that she had been a witch who bathed in the blood of young women to maintain her own youth and beauty, and later became a vampire. Now the two witches who originally trained her- who were very old, ugly, and creepy even back then- are trying to revive Erzsebet. So, the BPRD has to try to prevent the ceremony from being completed.

Well, there's also a subplot about the goddess Hecate, whom Erzsebet and the witches worshiped (Erzsebet had been her high priestess). Hecate has been watching Hellboy, and doesn't understand why he concerns himself with mortals, since he's a higher being like herself. Eventually, he'll have a confrontation with her. And... that's pretty much all I can say. It was a pretty cool movie, though. Especially Broom... though I still have no idea how he knew Erzsebet would have anything to do with the haunted mansion, in the first place.

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