Neil Marshall’s rendition of “Hellboy” takes full advantage of the MPAA’s R-rating in that he relishes the violence factor throughout.
This one does not have Ron Perlman, of director Guillermo del Toro’s original of 2004 and the sequel in 2008. David Harbour of Netflix’s Emmy-winning “Stranger Things” takes over as the short-horned title character. He lives in a place all his own.
Ian McShane, of TV’s awesome “Deadwood” as well as “John Wick,” is Hellboy’s father, Professor Broom. He essentially oversees the Bureau for Paranormal Research Defense of which Hellboy is involved in some capacity. Like the very inventive “Men in Black” franchise, it’s all just a fictional part of the federal government.
Early on in the movie, a giant indiscriminately rips off the lower jaw of one of the priests on the grounds of the church in the middle of the countryside.
Milla Jovovich of countless “Resident Evil” entries is the villain of the tale, an evil sorceress known as Nimue, aka The Blood Queen. Before long, she is dismembered and cut into pieces and spread across the land during the reign of King Arthur.
Mark Stanley provides the necessary support as King Arthur earlier in the tale. The same goes for Brian Gleeson as Merlin, who knows about the various tricks of the trade.
The Blood Queen thinks that being with Hellboy would be the perfect match, but Hellboy completely disagrees with that notion. He says that he is a “Capricorn,” and she is just freakin’ nuts.”
Also involved in the tale are various ghouls, ugly entities and disfigured witches galore. One scene also involves a witch eating parts of a child in a stew.
Her identity is that of a creepy disfigured peg-legged old woman who just lives for the moment.
Marshall has done some great films, notably his sophomore effort, 2005’s “The Descent.” Although that was a horror entry, it had some dynamic storytelling techniques involving a group of friends encountering some netherworld blind zombies. He was also Emmy-nominated for an episode of HBO’s “Game of Thrones” in 2014.
Mike Mingola, who created “Hellboy” many years ago in a Dark Horse comic book of the same name, captures the inventive fantasy dynamics that encapsulate the planet with this new incarnation of “Hellboy” and the world it currently inhabits.
The rest of the cast, including Daniel Dae Kim (“TV’s “Hawaii Five-O”) Penelope Mitchell, Sophie Okonedo an Oscar-nominee for “Hotel Rwanda”(2005) and Sasha Lane (“Hearts Beat Loud”), all fit the bill.
I had a good time watching these denizens fully embrace all of the characters. I smiled all the way through the last frame of this engaging story.
When it comes down to it, “Hellboy” does what it’s supposed to do. It just entertains the audience for a solid two-hour spell. The $50 million budget shows up on the big screen, since one witnesses giants storming down the River Thames.