So many of us fondly remember the Guillermo del Toro Hellboy movies because of their whimsical design, dark story, and emotionally-packed dialogue. Director Neil Marshall very smartly decided not try and copy del Toro but go for his own vision of how everyone’s favorite red demon should look and feel. And boy, did we get one interesting picture.
In the trailer, we see Hellboy (played by Stranger Things star David Harbour) joining the Bureau for Paranormal Research and Defense to help fight against strange and dark creatures threatening to destroy the world. He is joined by his adopted father Trevor Bruttenholm (American God’s Ian McShane), magic-user Alice Monaghan (played by Sasha Lane), and ex-military man Ben Daimio (Hawaii 5-0’s Daniel Dae Kim). Together they must take down a new enemy: Nimue, aka the Blood Queen (played by Milla Jovovich), whose mission is to eradicate mankind.
The tone of the trailer is pretty light-hearted and going for that 1980s-soundtrack-fueled-fun vibe that is basically the new shorthand for “this is what the kids like, right?” I’m not saying it is a bad thing, but it does feel strange that a movie that did seem to be going its own way is also trying to piggyback a bit on a slowly-expiring trend. Still, the cast seems to work well together, McShane is always fun to see chewing the scenery and Harbour seems to have the mix of pissed off and sarcastic that really makes the character great.
You might have already heard of this movie’s arrival given the controversy over Daimio’s character. Originally, Ed Skrein was cast but fans complained that a white man should not be playing an Asian character. Skrein agreed and, in a move that likely saved his hide in more ways than one, dropped out of the film. Kim makes for a solid choice in the role, even if his British accent is…stilted. Either way, we won’t really know how it all works out til the final product hits screens.
Hellboy is set to premiere in theaters on April 12, 2019.