Hellboy (2019) is an absolute mess. As I sit here trying to write a review for this complete shit show of a movie, I have the original two Hellboy movies playing in the background. This review is a little bit more involved because of my love for the series in question. The reception of this new film (which if I’m being honest isn’t too far off from the truth), but when looking at Hellboy (2019) I can’t really come to hate it. In fact, the days after watching it I’ve come to really admire this train wreck of a movie.
Coming into this movie, judging it based on the other Hellboy’s I think is the wrong approach. This movie isn’t trying to be anything, but itself. This is a movie so edgy and stupid that I have no choice, but to love it. This is the kind of movie that I would grab a case of beer and watch with a bunch of buddies while we lose our shit at the complete fuck up that is this film. This remake has the sort of charm where it feels that everyone involved with the movie was enjoying themselves. They look like they’re having fun which comes through with almost everything in the movie. Some of the highlights of this is the almost laughable writing where every two seconds someone in the movie has to swear, or blood will gush out and shoot 20 feet into the air like a fountain.
All of the artistic aspects of the first two Hellboy movies that are just drenched in now Oscar winning director Guillermo del Toro sense of style and artistic vision is gone, and in its place is a sort of B-horror feel to the entire thing. Which for some parts of this feel like a natural fit, the creature designs and gore all fit this version of “Hellboy” despite the cheap looking CG (that at parts is worse than the first Hellboy that came out in 2004) and B-Horror pacing that feels like this should be a straight to DVD movie. The biggest thing about this is the titular character himself, Hellboy. Originally played by Ron Perlman and now played by David Harbour of “Stranger Things” I think the greatest sin David Harbour commits is acting too much like Perlman’s version, but you can’t really blame him. Perlman and Hellboy are now linked and there is nothing that can remove his performance from the collective unconscious. When I think of the character or read the comics Perlman’s performance is all that I see in my mind, but even with all that said I can see that Harbour is giving his all in this performance and it’s still absurdly charming.
Overall the narrative sucks, the performances across the board (David Harbour Excluded) are horrible. The directing is fun and honest, with a set and monster design that are inspiring. The score out of ten that feels suited to this movie would be a 2 out of 5 stars, but I would completely 100% recommend going to see this in theaters. Get wasted with your favorite friends who love to watch bad movies and you’ll have an amazing time with Hellboy.