Awfully Good: Hellbound

Hellbound (1994)

Director: Aaron Norris
Stars: Chuck Norris, Calvin Levels, Christopher Neame

Chuck Norris vs. Satan!

Okay, technically Chuck Norris doesn't fight the Devil himself in HELLBOUND. But that's one of the funnier things about this 1994 movie from Cannon Films (producers of Norris classics like MISSING IN ACTION and DELTA FORCE). Why they didn't just go for broke and have the Bearded One take on Ol' Scratch is beyond me. I'm sure plenty of fans of justice and punching would pay money to see that. Instead, poor Mr. Norris is stuck fighting Satan’s "emissary," which is a pretty big letdown when it's finally revealed. It's almost like saying, "Sorry, Satan couldn't make it. You'll be battling Satan's assistant instead."


Whatever, this movie still has Chuck Norris and throat elbowing, so it can't be that bad. HELLBOUND also provides Norris with the best character name ever—Frank Shatter. While I'm against the current trend of naming films after single characters (ROCKY BALBOA, JOHN CARTER, JACK REACHER, etc.), I would totally watch a movie called FRANK SHATTER. (I would also frame and hang up the poster in my bathroom.) And what villain could possibly oppose a hero with such a fantastic moniker? Meet Satan's emissary, Prosatanos! He may sound like an Italian restaurant that got shut down by the Department of Health, but Prosatanos is indeed a minion of evil who's waited centuries to open the gates of Hell. Though he does get the occasional heart rip, his powers mainly consist of grabbing people and smashing them in to windows and furniture. Played well over-the-top by the supremely mulleted Christopher Neame, the bad guy is one of the more enjoyably bad parts of HELLBOUND.


While the logline may promise an action-packed 90 minutes of Chuck Norris fighting pure evil, this is sadly not the case. HELLBOUND is actually a buddy cop movie, featuring Norris and his sassy African American partner. I'm not sure who decided the action star needed a sidekick, but the presence of Calvin and his horrible comic relief is unnecessary and constantly annoying. The only amusing thing is how much of a complete dick Norris' character is to his "friend." He gives him tickets to the NBA Finals and, when he gets excited, tells him they’re actually flying to Israel that night to hunt down Prosatanos. He sees some kid stealing Calvin's wallet but doesn’t say anything. Eventually he helps get it back (Chuck Norris chasing a child is one of the film's three action scenes), but keeps the money for himself. The movie's random love interest, played by "Walker, Texas Ranger" love interest Sheree Wilson, is also pretty superfluous but at least entertaining just for the awkward sexual tension between the two of them. Scenes completely stop just so Norris and Wilson can stare longingly in to each other's eyes.


Regardless of its faults, HELLBOUND should at least have an epic ending, right? It's Chuck Norris versus a freaking demon. Sadly, however, the final fight is also a ridiculous disappointment, entertaining as it is. Most of that stems from the fact that the bad guy is about as powerful and intimidating as a Girl Scout. [SPOILER] I mean, who knew you could beat up a Satan-fuelled villain with a few roundhouse kicks? The two men just kind of laughably punch at each other for a minute before Shatter discovers that Prosatonos' scepter (the one he's been trying to find the whole movie to unleash Hell) is ironically the only thing that can kill him. So Shatter' sassy partner grabs the dude's ankle like a clingy 2 year old, giving Shatter just enough time to yell "Eat this!" before stabbing him with his own rod.

Hehe, I said "rod."

Everyone assumes this position after hanging out with Chuck Norris.

Some truly horrible and hilarious line readings and reactions.

A guy makes the mistake of hitting Chuck Norris. Plus, the worst-acted scream ever, the final fight and more!


Buy this movie here…or there will be hell to pay!

Take a shot or drink every time:
  • Someone says "Shatter"
  • Over-dramatic music plays
  • Chuck Norris says "Shit"
  • There's awkward sexual tension
  • A random non-Chuck Norris bearded man watches someone like a creep
Double shot if:
  • Chuck Norris puts on or takes off sunglasses

Seen a movie that should be featured on this column? Shoot Jason an email or follow him on Twitter and give him an excuse to drink.

Source: JoBlo.com
Tags: awfully good



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