Ok, I went from insanely excited about a reboot of Hellboy to now wishing that Guillermo del Toro and Ron Perlman were back again instead for a third installment. I loved the del Toro Hellboy movies but also recognized that they really didn’t capture the true tone of Mike Mignola’s visionary comic book series. Visually they were damn near perfect but I’d always hoped for a darker version of Hellboy to appear onscreen as a fan of the source material. I was positive that latest director Neil Marshall was finally gonna deliver the goods. I’m a huge fan of his debut werewolf flick ‘Dog Soldiers’ and his companion piece ‘The Descent’ was just as damn good. From the start, Marshall made many claims that this new version of Hellboy was going to have the feel of the comic books, much darker, gothic and less comedic than del Toro’s lighter take on the series. Well now after seeing both trailers for the movie at this point it seems the new incarnation of Hellboy is more or less the same take on the character we got from the previous films. At least from what the trailers reveal.
The only thing that feels different is the dropping of the ‘F-word’ and some shoddy CGI blood sprinkled about in the trailer. Heck it even seems as if David Harbour is doing a full on Ron Perlman impersonation and the wacky comedy seems just as prevalent (if not more so) here in the two trailers as it was in the del Toro movies. Why even replace Ron at this point if you’re just gonna do the same take on the character? Sure Harbour’s version appears to be not quite as cute visually but it still feels basically just like Ron. The trailer’s got a cheaper production quality as well in my opinion, dare I say a more generic vibe to it as well when you compare it del Toro’s perfect gothic style.
I was also a bit surprised to see just how CG heavy this footage was, Neil Marshall had originally boasted the movie was going to largely utilize practical effects over digital to give it a more real world feel. Instead I’m seeing a lot of truly subpar standard Hollywood digital effects at play here and it’s making me miss del Toro’s vision all the more. I’m gonna call it here, a prediction that Hellboy is going to flop. The one thing the first two movies had going for it were that they really stood out from the crowd, while this so far looks sadly like another bland Hollywood blockbuster.
I’d also heard that Mike Mignola, (the creator of the character/legendary artist), stated early on that this movie was much more in line with his vision of the character that the previous installments. I’m not sure as he’d stated that quite some time ago, if perhaps the production somewhat switched gears and now we’re getting a more standard “what you’d expect” from a big Hollywood production. The comic books are are truly incredible and anyone who’s only familiar with the movies might be quite surprised at how different the tone of them are from movies. I’m hoping I’m wrong and that there’s a real Hellboy movie here that hasn’t been presented in these two trailers. I’m still going to see it, but man am I disappointed with what I’ve seen so far. Any other fans of the comic book out there feel the same way or disagree? Let me know!
I’d have thought by now that we might have already gotten a teaser trailer for the upcoming Hellboy reboot film set to drop next year. However it’s now been moved back another 3 months for an April 12th, 2019 release date. But, we did just get this brand new Hellboy poster that seems to feature David Harbour as the legendary character, though it’s a bit hard to tell if this is indeed an actually photograph or perhaps a CGI enhanced image. Whatever the case it does indeed show some true promise and perhaps a closer adaptation to the comic book than what we saw with the lighter hearted more comedic take of Guillermo Del Toro.
Clearly Harbour like Ron Perlman is covered heavily with prosthetics and likely a muscle suit, which is far better than CG-ing the character. Interesting as well here is the portrayal of Hellboy with his full set of horns rather than the sawed off look. Word is also that this movie will be based on an actual Hellboy tale from the comics called ‘The Wild Hunt‘. I’m really liking what I’ve seen and heard so far with the reboot, I’m especially excited to see what they do with the BPRD members it will feature. Having Neil Marshall on board as well is super exciting, as he did a couple of the best, imo, 2000’s horror movies ‘Dog Soldiers’ and ‘The Descent’. I’m hoping for a teaser trailer soon, so we can really get the feel of what tone this one’s really aiming for.
Wow! So yesterday Mike Mignola made a stunning announcement that Hellboy will be returning to the big screen! BUT and there’s a big BUT here, without Ron Perlman & Guillermo del Toro’s involvement. This is a bit shocking to many as we’ve been waiting the third and final installment that’s been teased for years. I wish they’d have done it and I feel a bit bad for Ron Perlman as he gave the role his all and has been fighting for the fans for so long to complete the trilogy. With that being said, David Harbour, the cop from ‘Stranger Things’ will be stepping into the role of the big devil himself and he seems like an amazing choice for the role. I can already easily picture him as Hellboy just on his looks alone and the guy is a decent actor as well. So I think they’re off to a great start in terms of casting. I’m hoping that they’ll create Hellboy in the same way they did with Ron Perlman. His and the rest of the BPRD’s make up was incredible in del Toro’s movies and I’m hoping that they’re not going to simply CG Hellboy and the gang. One thing Guillermo did extremely well was the creation of incredible monsters using mainly practical fx and incorporating CGI only when truly necessary.
Also announced was director Neil Marshall, who I was immediately thrilled about, for the simple fact that he’s made easily two of the best horror movies of the last twenty years, Dog Soldiers & The Descent. Both of these movies are mind blowing-ly awesome and they’re 100% rock solid proof that this director just might bring us the best Hellboy movie possible. Heck, I go as far to put ‘Dog Soldiers’ right up there with ‘An American Werewolf in London’ and ‘The Howling’. As excited as I am at the possibility here I realized that ‘The Descent’ was released all the way back in 2005 and it got me thinking just what the hell has Neil Marshall really been up to the last twelve years? Lets find out as it may give us a better idea of exactly what we’re in store for with this new Hellboy flick.
After ‘The Descent’ Marshall went on to direct the lackluster ‘Mad Max’ influenced movie ‘Doomsday’ in 2008. The movie was a bit of a box office bomb and to me didn’t bring anything new or exciting to the table honestly in the post apocalyptic adventure genre. I guess I give him an ‘A’ for effort for giving it an honest shot but the movie was just too bland to make any real waves and has been largely forgotten for the most part.
After that he did ‘Centurion’ in 2010, with Michael Fassbender starring. It was a an ok attempt at a historical hack and slash war movie about the disappearance of the Roman empire’s ninth legion. This was also a bit of a bomb at the box office and largely went under the radar of movie goers. Once again this movie didn’t bring anything to the table that hadn’t really already been done before. One thing though I’ll say are that his movies look great and even Doomsday visually was at least effective in that area. Still ‘Centurion’ is one time viewing and it doesn’t have much to differentiate it from anything else that was being cranked out in the genre at the time.
After that Marshall disappeared from the movie scene directing 2 excellent episodes of ‘Game of Thrones’ as well as episodes of ‘Black Sails’, ‘Constantine’, ‘Hannibal’, ‘Timeless’ & ‘Westworld’. In 2015 he was one of the directors in the horror anthology movie ‘Tales of Halloween’ and directed the excellent installment “Bad Seed” about the killer GMO pumpkin! Loved it…
So what we’ve got here for Marshall is a big return to the silver screen on a big budget flick. I don’t have any reason to believe that he’s going to fuck it up, in fact with a great script which I’m certain Mignola will be part of and the supposed “R” rating the movie’s rumored to get we just might see a more true to the comic version of the character. I think it’ll be much darker, bloody and quite possibly a much bigger hit this time around. I’ve always thought cinematic Hellboy was ahead of it’s time and that the strange Mignola-verse would fare far better in today’s landscape than that of 2008 to movie goers. Hellboy & The BPRD are easily my favorites of the current comic book franchises out there, so this next movie means a lot to me.
If they lift the amazing feel of the del Toro movies and add a bit darker tone (don’t lose all the comedy though) we’ll be in for one helluva Hellboy flick. I’m also hoping that the movie might make a role for Ron Perlman, Doug Jones & Selma Blair (perhaps as villains?) because we all know how badly they wanted a third film. How cool would Ron & Doug be starring as some crazy creatures? Let’s let Neil Marshall return to his true roots and give the Hellboy movies the lethal does of horror they need today. The guy is super talented and his two incredible horror movies he made are proof that Marshall is exactly where he needs to be. I’m hoping this will begin many more Mignola-verse based movies or a BPRD tv series dammit!! So don’t fret I think Hellboy’s indeed in good hands…
Oh man, how many damn times do we have to go back an forth about ‘Hellboy 3’? The news came out recently that Guillermo del Toro was having a sit down with Mike Mignola, Ron Perlman and Co. about the serious possibility of finally getting started on the third and final chapter of the Hellboy movie franchise. I’ve gotta admit I was pretty excited. I really enjoyed the two Hellboy movies, not as much as I love the comic books as they’ve got two very different tones but still they were a totally solid attempt at bringing the Mignola-verse to life. Apparently though the general public wasn’t as taken with the movies, perhaps because of the truly bizarre nature of the characters or the occult horror undertones of a “superhero” movie. Whatever the case I’ve stated before that I simply think the movies were a bit ahead of their time and if released in the current climate they’d have fared far better.
Well it seems the whole ‘Hellboy 3’ thing fell completely apart in the last few days with Guillermo del Toro tweeting “Hellboy 3 Sorry to report: Spoke w all parties. Must report that 100% the sequel will not happen. And that is to be the final thing about it”. Damn. That’s pretty harsh coming from the usually jovial Guillermo. Soon after Ron Perlman tweeted “Superhero seeks employment. Likes, pizza, cats, and the Marx bros.” Sounds like a tragic end to the whole debacle doesn’t it? It makes me really wonder just what the hell (no pun intended) happened in this “meeting” and what led to such a dramatic end to the film’s future? Well amidst my disappointment on the whole thing I found Hellboy creator Mike Mignola’s response extremely interesting as he tweeted “No GDT Hellboy 3 does not mean there is no future to the Hellboy franchise…” Continue reading
Hellboy 3 has from nowhere, suddenly become a real possibility and I’m pretty damn excited about it! I’ve been ranting about getting a third movie made here for a long ass time and with Guillermo del Toro’s recent fan fueled poll bringing the movie back into the limelight it seems it now has a real chance of happening. The movie has been talked about now for almost a decade and because it didn’t make a killing at the box office, making a third movie has been a tough sell for those big greedy Hollywood Studios. Over the years however the popularity of the unique oddball superhero franchise and comic book have gained quite a bigger following than they had back in 2008. So it could it finally be time for Hellboy to get the praise he deserves? I’d certainly say so!
For me the comic book series and all of it’s offshoot titles that Mike Mignola has produced over the years remain to me the most solid superhero comics of the past decade. Though the movies and the Hellboy comic series differ in many ways, mainly in terms of comedy, I think the movies did a great job delivering the heroic demon to the masses. The characters look absolutely amazing and del Torro is likely the one responsible for that. Ron Perlman fits the part like no other could and the rest of the crew like Abe Sapien, Johann Krauss & Liz Sherman couldn’t be represented any better in my opinion. The movies perhaps give us a bit of a lighter side of things than what you will see in the comics and added some romance into the story (which I actually kind of like as the Mignola comics rarely touch on that aspect of things) while visually making the seemingly impossible come vibrantly to life. I don’t think there’s a director I would have trusted more with Hellboy. Continue reading
Rise of the Back Flame #1 is another totally solid debut straight from the Mignolaverse. This one traces the origins of the legendary villain, The black Flame from the pages of Hellboy/BPRD and gives us an excellent set up for an intriguing jungle horror adventure that I’m sure Indiana Jones would most certainly sign up for. The setting is Burma and there’s been a series of disappearances of young girls that the locals believe to be the devilish work of a near by cult.
On the case are two Brittish detectives who’re on the case searching for clues, quickly meet Sarah Jewell and Marie-Therese Lafleur who tell them they’ve got an expedition set up to find the Temple of the Black Flame. Sarah Jewell goes on to tell them of some of her incredible supernatural adventures she’s shared with The Witchfinder himself Sir Edward Grey. I’m getting the feeling we’ll be seeing much more of these characters in the future of the Mignolaverse….if they can survive this expedition that is.
Here we have again everything I love about reading comics, grand adventure set in exotic locales with a supernatural mystery brewing. Like I’ve said before Mignola’s books to me are the best on the scene, whether it be Hellboy, BPRD, Witchfinder or Lobster Johnson. They’re always a helluva great time to read and are all connected by a deep lore that’s been running strong for decades. So here we have the opening of another chapter in the saga and a true prequel for fans of the villain of the BPRD’s ‘Hell on Earth’. I’m certainly going to be back for issue #2 as it’s bound to be filled with some excellent storytelling and some creepy jungle adventure, for a good time check out this debut!
I read a cool little debut issue for Dark Horse’s new series Black Hammer by Jeff Lemire & Dean Ormstom. This comes at a good time for me personally as I’ve been seriously missing a good solid superhero comic book to read. I’ve more or less given up on the Marvel & DC universes at least for the time being as it feels a little too fan calculated these days. So here on the shelves was a new series featuring a weird story about a team of retired superheroes who for ten years have been forced to live in rural small town somewhere presumably in the USA (though they may be somewhere else entirely). The team disappeared and have been thought dead since their victory in a giant battle to save the planet.
So here they sit all reacting differently to their predicament as they share a house as a “family” on a farm. Some enjoy the quiet life while others are obviously feeling trapped. The interesting thing about the first issue is the mystery of where exactly they are, how they got there and why they for some reason are unable to leave. I highly doubt this quiet life will continue on this way for too long.
For the time being though this first issue delivers the intrigue as we realize one the children of the superheroes, working as a reporter, seems to be getting ready to try to figure out just what happened to them all. The comic is a solid first issue that brings along with it enough gusto to inspire me to drop another 4 bones on the second.
Artist Dean Ormstom also brings some serious character with his unique art that would fit in perfectly in books like Hellboy & BPRD. So if you’re looking for something different than what the “big two” are churning out these days this is a great first issue worth your hard earned cash.