The new Hellboy film charts a new path for the franchise, completely ignoring the films that preceded it. Any film remake is bound to draw comparison with the original, and this is something that Hellboy cannot avoid. So you would expect Lionsgate to have put more effort in this reboot of the Dark Horse franchise. Unfortunately, what we get in return with this updated take on the cult classic comic book.
To be fair, Guillermo del Toro and Ron Perlman did a stellar job with the first two films, however this new take by director Neil Marshall with David Harbour playing the titular character just pales in comparison. The new Hellboy film charts a new path for the franchise, completely ignoring the films that preceded it.
The new tale sees Hellboy thrust into the middle of the Apocalypse, brought forth by the Blood Queen (Milla Jovovich). That’s essentially the plotline of this new movie and although it sounds straightforward, it is anything but.
The film jumps from one action sequence to the next with battles with vampires, giants, monsters and evil humans. It turns up the volume on gore and violence coming across more like a video game than an action film.
The pace also rarely lets up and when it does it’s also to introduce new characters and more weird monsters. This is ultimately the main downfall of the film, and why it ends up so forgetful. In an effort to give audiences more, the new Hellboy winds up giving less to a point that it becomes a pure time waster.
By the time the film ends, most won’t be bothered where the direction of the story goes, which is why the end credits stinger is moot. It is almost a given that this is likely the end of the road for Hellboy for quite a while.
It’s a pity too because despite its modest budget of USD50 million, this rebooted franchise may struggle to even make that amount back. But the saddest part about this new Hellboy film is that it ultimately sacrificed a third film from del Toro and Perlman, which would have closed out that trilogy.
For what fans got in return, that is just a damn shame.
Popcorn Review: Stale