October Faction

OctoberFaction

Starring: Tamara Taylor, J.C. MacKenzie, Aurora Burghart, Gabriel Darku, Maxim Roy, Stephen McHattie, Megan Follows, Praneet Akilla et.al.
Rating: TV-MA
Network: Netflix
Grade: B

Upon learning of his father’s death, semi-retired monster hunter Fred Allen brings his family home for the funeral and to sort out the estate. While there, his teenage twins inadvertently awaken their own magical powers, as well as unleashing an angry witch hellbent on revenge. As the witch hunting them down nears and their children’s powers grow, Fred and his wife, Deloris, find they are unable to maintain their facade of normalcy, and reveal to the kids that they are part of a secret group charged with hunting down werewolves, vampires, witches, and other creatures called “Octobers.”

Another TV show/movie based on a comic book I haven’t read (which, technically, is all of them). This is a fairly entertaining show, though the early episodes are stronger than the later ones. The plot is on the line between original and overused, though there are a couple of semi-decent reveals over the course of the show. The actors seem to do well with their roles, and they seem to have decent chemistry and work well together. As of this review, the show has been canceled, and will not air a second season, so any lingering plot threads are not likely to be resolved.

What few special effects are used are done well, and any background filler isn’t noticeable.

As I’ve never read the comics, I can’t say whether or not fans of them will enjoy this series, though those who enjoy gothic/supernatural stories likely will. It’s a fairly easy watch, though some attention should be paid so certain plot points aren’t lost. There is some language, gore, and intensity, so parents may want to check it out before letting younger children watch.

October Faction is currently available to stream on Netflix, with no word as to whether or not it will be made available for purchase/rental.
I’m always looking for new things to watch/read, so if you have a suggestion for me, just let me know!

Hellboy (2019)

Hellboy2019

Directed By: Neil Marshall
Starring: David Harbour, Milla Jovovich, Daniel Dae Kim, Ian McShane, Sasha Lane, Stephen Graham, Sophie Okonedo, Thomas Haden Church, et.al.
Rating: R
Grade: B

Brought to Earth during a Nazi occult ritual during World War II, Hellboy was taken in and raised by Trevor “Broom” Bruttenhold, who, along with several of the others who were present at his summoning, formed the Bureau of Paranormal Research and Defense, or DPRD. Decades later, a creature named Grugach makes a deal with Baba Yaga to raise sorceress named Nimue who had been defeated by Arthur and Merlin so that they can seek revenge on Hellboy for the slights they believe he has dealt them over the course of his time on Earth. Teaming up with Major Ben Daimio, a member of M11 and shapeshifter, and Alice Monaghan, a civilian and powerful medium, Hellboy hunts down Nimue to prevent her from destroying the Earth, as she had attempted in the past.

This reboot of the 2004 movie is a serviceable attempt at cashing in on making R-rated comic book movies. Aside from Hellboy, Broom, and a brief appearance by Rasputin, no other characters from the first two movies appear, though one is introduced in the last few minutes. The story itself is interesting, though it seems ill-suited to the time constraints of a two hour movie. Many of the characters and fictional organizations have their backstory glossed over, despite the actually decent running time, and the story itself lags in parts and is rushed in others. Harbour does a good job of taking over the Hellboy mantle from Ron Perlman, who played the character in the two previous theatrical releases, as well as a handful of animated movies. The actors all work well together, and McShane does a good job of acting like a paternal figure.

The special effects are for the most part decent, but some of the animation, particularly of blood and other liquids, are a little off. The background filler isn’t noticeable.

Hardcore fans of the Hellboy comics will likely enjoy this movie, as well as people looking for an atypical supernatural action movie. The movie itself manages to keep from being too comic book-y. It would probably be worth the money to rent, though depending on how you feel about violence and language, parents may want to view it before letting small children watch.

Hellboy (2019) is currently not available free to stream anywhere at the moment, but can be rented through Redbox or Netflix home delivery, or purchased at any participating store or on-line retailer.