I’ve never actually seen Guillermo Del Toro’s Hellboy movies. Sacrilege, I know. I’ve also never read the Hellboy comics. So when I say that the 2019 Hellboy is one of the worst comic book movies I’ve ever seen and the worst movie I’ve seen so far this year, I say this from the stance of somebody who just loves film. I’d hate to be somebody who’s actually read the comics because this would likely be the most painful thing you’ll ever watch.
The plotting for Hellboy is simply abysmal. It’s got an almost totally incoherent plot, something about an evil witch and the apocalypse I think. The film flits between plot strands and locations so quickly it feels more like a montage than an actual movie, a proof of concept for a video game. Oh yeah, there was an evil pig in the film. That was interesting, to say the least. The plot of Hellboy is too disjointed to properly explain so I’ll just state all you need to know. There’s an evil witch who wants Hellboy (a demon) to join her and be evil together. That’s the plot. And yet, they still stretch it over two hours.
Literally the only positive in this complete and utter disaster of a movie is David Harbour’s portrayal of the titular Hellboy. Sure, it’s not perfect but I’ll take whatever I can in a film as poor as this. He slots into the role of an angry half-demon perfectly. Of course, none of the jokes ever land, but that’s not the fault of the actor, it’s the fault of the script. However, I’m less enamoured with literally every other character in the film. Milla Jovovich is as bad here as she was in the Resident Evil films, as dull and lifeless as ever. She’s supposed to be the main villain and I couldn’t even muster the strength to care about her character. Sasha Lane’s portrayal of Hellboy’s friend Alice is completely and utterly flat, with her not showing any emotion in any of her lines whatsoever. At least it seems like Daniel Dae Kim (Ben Daimo) and Ian McShane (Professor Broom) tried to act, despite the end product. As it stands, the only actor from this mess I can even give the mildest props to is David Harbour.
You may have noticed earlier that I stated that Hellboy seemed like a proof of concept for a video game. This is due to how simply awful the effects are. Seriously, they’re high-end PS3 level. I understand that they had a fairly small budget, but if you’ve got a fairly small budget perhaps don’t try to create giants and the apocalypse, alright? Even the blood effects look incredibly fake, and you’ll definitely notice how fake they are due to the copious and unnecessary amount of gore in the film.
Hellboy is a failure in almost every single aspect, a mess that clearly had no passion or vision behind the project. An early candidate for the worst movie of the year, I’d recommend avoiding this movie if you want to keep your sanity.