Did anyone else see Hellboy? Based on the terrible reviews and trailers I was pessimistic, but dutifully turned up anyway. Judging by the film flopping so hard that it didn’t even make enough to cover its budget (let alone promotional costs), actually seeing it in cinemas puts me in a big minority. Well, if you’re an Amazon Prime subscriber, you’ll soon have the opportunity to check this unloved movie out for yourself, as it’ll be available on Prime Video for purchase on July 9th and for rental on July 23rd.
That’s also the date that Hellboy hits Blu-ray and digital release, which suggests that Lionsgate has no confidence whatsoever in the movie picking up a belated home video audience. My bet is that given the film’s financial losses to date, they were happy to take an offer from Amazon for a lump sum in order to at least get this thing squeaking into the black. So, if you have a burning curiosity to see how bad Hellboy really is, you can do so very soon.
Thing is, the movie isn’t some so-bad-it’s-good Batman & Robin or Jupiter Ascending style monstrosity where the film is so weird and bizarre you can’t work out how it ever got on screen. Instead, Hellboy is just kinda there. From minute one it’s in the considerable shadow of the Guillermo del Toro efforts and fails on every level to make a case for its own existence.
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Similarly, David Harbour’s take on Big Red isn’t that bad, but he’s no Ron Perlman. I’d categorize it alongside such comic book movie flops as Fantastic Four, Green Lantern and Jonah Hex. Like those titles, it’s a pic you’re forgetting about even before the credits roll.
The only silver lining is that the reboot has been such a failure there’s no argument for carrying on with this version of the character. We’ve heard word that Hellboy might be returning for a Netflix show though and if that’s the case, let’s hope they take their cues from Mike Mignola’s comics and del Toro’s movies rather than the crushing disappointment that this flick ended up being.