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Hellboy (2004)

tomatometer

81

Average Rating: 6.8/10
Reviews Counted: 197
Fresh: 159 | Rotten: 38

With wit, humor and Guillermo del Toro's fantastic visuals, the entertaining Hellboy transcends the derivative nature of the genre.

88

Average Rating: 7/10
Critic Reviews: 43
Fresh: 38 | Rotten: 5

With wit, humor and Guillermo del Toro's fantastic visuals, the entertaining Hellboy transcends the derivative nature of the genre.

audience

65

liked it
Average Rating: 3.2/5
User Ratings: 454,725

My Rating

Movie Info

Mike Mignola's acclaimed comic book series about a creature from Hades who joins the battle against evil arrives on the screen in vivid form in this adaptation directed by distinctive horror filmmaker Guillermo del Toro. During World War II, the Third Reich has joined forces with the evil Grigori Rasputin (Karel Roden), who has used his occult powers to summon up a young demon from the depth of Hell to be used as the ultimate Axis weapon. However, the demonic creature is captured by American

Jul 27, 2004

$59.0M

Sony Pictures - Official Site External Icon

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All Critics (197) | Top Critics (43) | Fresh (159) | Rotten (38) | DVD (49)

When the movie's story line concentrates on the character of Hellboy and his relationships with those important to him, the film becomes a unique romp, with an exciting yet vulnerable superhero at the center who just happens to be the spawn of Satan.

April 14, 2013 Full Review Source: New Yorker
New Yorker
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Played by Ron Perlman, he's the most magnetic action hero I've come across in a long while, though I couldn't make heads or tails of this story.

April 18, 2007 Full Review Source: Chicago Reader
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Unfortunately, after setting up this fresh blue-collar scenario in the movie's first hour, Del Toro wallows in pyrotechnics.

April 18, 2007 Full Review Source: Associated Press
Associated Press
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Del Toro, in love with his source but never overawed by it, keeps things moving; Perlman ties it together with some of the driest witticisms this side of Indiana Jones. Like we said: fun.

June 24, 2006 Full Review Source: Time Out
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

To his credit, del Toro does not flinch from the ridiculous. But he is equally sensitive to Hellboy's pulp poetry.

April 6, 2004 Full Review Source: Village Voice
Village Voice
Top Critic IconTop Critic

This is the kind of movie you watch for its aura, for its appealing characters, for its marvelously sustained seriocomic romantic mood.

April 3, 2004 Full Review Source: Salon.com
Salon.com
Top Critic IconTop Critic

It would be quite impossible to claim is that the filmmaker's love of his subject isn't apparent throughout every lovingly-crafted frame.

August 26, 2013 Full Review Source: Antagony & Ecstasy
Antagony & Ecstasy

Probably one of the coolest comic book movies to come around in years...

June 11, 2013 Full Review Source: Cinema Crazed
Cinema Crazed

The screenplay has flashes of real wit, and Perlman is perfect in the title role.

April 14, 2013 Full Review Source: Christian Science Monitor
Christian Science Monitor

Somewhat entertaining, but too scary for many.

December 24, 2010 Full Review Source: Common Sense Media | Comment (1)
Common Sense Media

Inventive but derivative, well performed yet slightly hokey, visually lush yet over-stylised.

July 7, 2010 Full Review Source: Dark Horizons
Dark Horizons

Anyone can send an immense, computer-generated vegetable monster rampaging at the base of the Brooklyn Bridge, but it takes a special kind of imagination to do it in a way that's thrilling, emotionally complex, and rapturously beautiful all at once.

October 18, 2008 Full Review Source: NPR.org | Comment (1)
NPR.org

High concept fantasy through the eyes of creative genius of Guillermo del Toro

August 25, 2008 Full Review Source: Urban Cinefile
Urban Cinefile

Hellboy both kicks butt and falls in love, in an adventure that is thrilling, funny and touching.

August 7, 2008 Full Review Source: Sacramento News & Review
Sacramento News & Review

A strong anti-superhero movie that turns the genre sideways.

July 22, 2008 Full Review Source: Cinema Sight
Cinema Sight

Del Toro and Perlman essentially make you forget that Hellboy's this bizarre creature because Perlman invests him with such humanity. And maybe what makes him most human are his flaws.

July 10, 2008 Full Review Source: KPBS.org
KPBS.org

Ron Perlman--the Lon Chaney of our time--plays Hellboy with grit, humor, and a depth of feeling which, barely, grounds the movie.

July 5, 2008 Full Review Source: Groucho Reviews
Groucho Reviews

They say the devil gets all the best tunes and, on the strength of this latest comicbook adaptation, he gets all the good one-liners, too.

June 13, 2008 Full Review Source: Eye for Film
Eye for Film

Artistically resonant even as it deliberately follows a contemporary narrative structure.

June 12, 2008 Full Review Source: Projection Booth
Projection Booth

Perlman, at age 53, strides in like a hungry young actor itching to prove something, only with 22 years of experience lending him charisma and confidence.

September 17, 2007 Full Review Source: eFilmCritic.com
eFilmCritic.com

As expertly played by Perlman, even with tons of make-up and prostheteics, our hero is a good 'monster' whose origin haunts him to the bone.

September 29, 2006 Full Review Source: Lawrence.com

Stylish sci-fi director Guillermo Del Toro brings Mike Mignola's stone-fisted, horny (literally!) cult comic book hero to life in this wry, glossy adventure.

August 31, 2006 Full Review Source: Hollywood.com
Hollywood.com

Audience Reviews for Hellboy

"In the absence of light, darkness prevails. There are things that go bump in the night, Agent Myers. Make no mistake about that. And we are the ones who bump back."

A demon, raised from infancy after being conjured by and rescued from the Nazis, grows up to become a defender against the forces of darkness.

REVIEW
Based on the works of Mike Mignola, "Hellboy," written and directed by Guillermo Del Toro, is a better-than-average comic book adaptation that boasts a refreshing sense of humor amid all the customary action sequences and first-rate special effects. The story begins in 1944, near the end of World War II, with the Nazis attempting to open a portal between earth and a hell-like dimension where seven evil deities have been lying in wait for just such an opportunity to come in and take over the world. One creature from the other side makes it through before the Nazis' scheme is thwarted, a young "boy" who is adopted by an American expert in the paranormal and groomed to become a superhero who can do battle with all the supernatural creatures who apparently exist in an abundance undreamed of by the vast majority of the human race.

The makers of the film have wisely chosen to keep Hellboy life-sized and believable in both his physical and psychological dimensions. Despite his red skin, stone right hand and ability to leap from rooftop to rooftop with gravity-defying ease, Hellboy is really just an Average Joe-type, with a bit of an ego, a sardonic sense of humor, a strong sense of loyalty, and a really good heart. Heck, he even has problems in the romance department not much different from what all the rest of us go through at one time or another in our lives. The movie is overlong and the screenplay probably includes one or two monsters more than it needs to in order to get the job done, but Ron Perlman, even under all the heavy makeup, makes Hellboy a three-dimensional, sympathetic character, while John Hurt brings warmth and authority to the role of Professor Bruttenholm, the "father figure" who raises him.
August 9, 2012
LorenzoVonMatterhorn
Lorenzo von Matterhorn

Super Reviewer

Hellboy is a memorable character that brings humour to the overdose of action sequences in the film. I dont like super hero films that make an overdose of explosions but it did have some witty moments that helped me enjoy the film.
February 25, 2012
Directors Cat
Directors Cat

Super Reviewer

Decent Superhero/action film, Hellboy is a flawed, but nonetheless thrilling ride. Starring Ron Perlman (Whom I don't like, Hellboy does deliver some decent action, but is never anything spectacular. I felt disappointed in this film, and the film had potential to really be a great superhero film, but it never really took off. I thought the film was decent, entertaining and fun, but I felt that this film could have been much better than it turned out to be. This film is disappointing, but it's also a pretty entertaining film. I'm just stating that the film could have been much better. For what it is, this is mindless entertainment and does deliver some entertaining moments. However I don't think it's the film that everyone claims it to be, and del Toro, though an excellent director could have done better. Luckily the sequel to this film was better, and the plot was much more elaborate. There is something missing to this film to really make it a stunning action film. All the necessary ingredients are here, but something doesn't quite fit. The visuals are terrific, and it's the films greatest strength. I just preferred the sequel and thought that this film was average and really I didn't see why the film has gotten so much praise. The film is average entertainment, and I was disappointed because I thought it was going to be phenomenal, unfortunately this is one of those films that I felt was overhyped a bit, and it lacked something to really make it great. Overall a decent action film, never great, but not bad either.
December 1, 2011
TheDudeLebowski65
Jeff "The Dude" Lebowski

Super Reviewer

This movie is one of the smarter superhero films around. In every sense of the word. Only, despite the name, it also has a very deep, moving and above all, creative story.

The hallmark of the film is Ron Perlman. He was the perfect fit to play the big red guy and played his role as Hellboy to a hilt. He brings all of the toughness from Sons of Anarchy, but also brings a lot of Hellboy's kindness. Hellboy is a complicated character, and you need a great actor to play someone like that.

The order of events was very well put too. At the start of the movie, the Professor raises Hellboy as a baby, and brings him up lovingly and unselfishly. By the time he is killed, we feel Hellboy's loss.

The plot was spectacular too, a real Del Toro product. It reminded me of a darker, more emotional X-Men. Hellboy, Abe Sapian and Liz are seen as outcasts by the public, who are mostly afraid of them and hate them because they are different.

But the best thing about the film is the message. "Stereotypes are wrong" It's a very good message, and to have it in a superhero film takes talent.

While it might not be as famous as Batman Begins or Spider-Man, this is definately up there alley as one of the best superhero movies ever.
November 4, 2011
Marc L.
Marc Lewis

Super Reviewer

    1. Agent John Myers: We like people for their qualities but love them by their defects.
    – Submitted by Victor M (8 months ago)
    1. Agent John Myers: What makes a man a man? A friend of mine once wondered. Is it his origins? The way he comes to life? I don't think so. It's the choices he makes. Not how he starts things, but how he decides to end them.
    – Submitted by Victor M (8 months ago)
    1. Prof. Trevor "Broom" Bruttenholm: In medieval stories, there is often a young knight who is inexperienced, but pure of heart.
    2. Agent John Myers: Oh, come on. I am not pure of heart.
    3. Abe Sapien: Yes, you are.
    – Submitted by Victor M (8 months ago)
    1. Agent John Myers: Hellboy. He's real!
    – Submitted by Victor M (8 months ago)
    1. Agent John Myers: Miss Sherman? Can I call you Liz? It's a beautiful name.
    2. Liz Sherman: 60 percent of the women in the world are named Liz.
    3. Agent John Myers: Well, it's impressive by my standards. My name's John. John T. Myers. Dr. Bruttenholm asked me to invite you back to the Bureau.
    – Submitted by Victor M (8 months ago)
    1. Von Krupt: Five years of research and construction, Grigori, five years! The Fuhrer does not look kindly on failure!
    2. Grigori Rasputin: There will be no failure, General. I promised Herr Hitler a miracle. I'll deliver one.
    – Submitted by Typhon Q (14 months ago)
View all quotes (11)

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