Hellboy 4K Blu-ray Review
By Chris Heinonen on
Hellboy is back, and he’s on fire. From the pages of Mike Mignola’s seminal work, this action-packed story sees the legendary half-demon superhero (David Harbour) called to the English countryside to battle a trio of rampaging giants. There he discovers The Blood Queen, Nimue (Milla Jovovich), a resurrected ancient sorceress thirsting to avenge a past betrayal. Suddenly caught in a clash between the supernatural and the human, Hellboy is now hell-bent on stopping Nimue without triggering the end of the world.
Hellboy Movie Review
I had no idea what to expect going into Hellboy. I’ve neither read the comics nor seen the previous film version and hadn’t even seen a trailer for the film before I started watching it. Overall Hellboy was fine but a fairly normal comic book introduction movie. We get an origin story for Hellboy and how he came to be. The story is fairly standard with predictable twists and turns but if somewhat enjoyable if you’re after a comic action film. The character of Hellboy just didn’t register with me after watching. Perhaps in the comics, his personality comes across better and you understand him more, but in the film, he just didn’t register a personality much beyond seeming annoyed. Maybe fans of the comic will like it more as they connect with Hellboy, but for me, he just was a character who I didn’t care about that much.
Hellboy Technical Review
Hellboy was shot on Arri cameras at 3.4K resolution and given a 4K digital intermediate, while the Blu-ray disc also features a Dolby Vision layer. Overall Hellboy looks very good on 4K Blu-ray. What stands out the most is actually how easy it is to distinguish the 2K visual effects from the rest of the content, as they offer a noticeable downtick in sharpness and detail by comparison. The use of HDR isn’t flashy at first, but once you have a flaming sword and a trip down into hell, the rich orange hues and bright highlights on the disc look fantastic. Much of the film is dark and shadow filled, but there aren’t any issues with crushing or lack of details here, and the overall transfer looks fantastic.
The soundtrack is done in Dolby Atmos and it also is superb overall. Voices are easy to understand, even when characters mumble or are otherwise harder to hear, and the Atmos channels come to life throughout the film to bring you into the action. The subwoofer could be utilized a bit more and you do notice when the Atmos channels are being engaged, so using them more frequently could put you into the movie more than it does now. However there is very little to complain about here, and the overall technical presentation of Hellboy is fantastic.
Hellboy Special Features
- “Tales of the Wild Hunt: Hellboy Reborn” (3-Part Documentary)
- Deleted Scenes
Hellboy Review System
Sony A1E OLED, Panasonic UB820 UltraHD Blu-ray Player, KEF Ci5160RL-THX Fronts, Ci3160RL-THX Center, 2x Ci200RR-THX Surrounds, 4x CI200RR-THX Atmos Speakers, Anthem MRX 1120 Receiver, Power Sound Audio Subwoofer.
Very good image and audio with Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos, 4K digital intermediate.
The character and story just didn't resonate with me, 4K DI means that the 2K visual effects are easy to spot.
Hellboy might appeal more to readers of the comics, but for me, it was a good looking and sounding film with a character that I just didn't care about much in the end.