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Hellraiser

UK 1987
produced by
Christopher Figg, Mark Armstrong (executive), David Saunders (executive), Christopher Webster (executive) for Film Futures, Cinemarque Entertainment, New World
directed by Clive Barker
starring Andrew Robinson, Clare Higgins, Ashley Laurence, Sean Chapman, Oliver Smith, Robert Hines, Anthony Allen, Leon Davis, Michael Cassidy, Frank Baker, Kenneth Nelson, Gay Baynes, Niall Buggy, Dave Atkins, Oliver Parker, Pamela Sholto, Doug Bradley, Nicholas Vince, Simon Bamford, Grace Kirby, Sharon Bower, Raul Newney
screenplay by Clive Barker, based on his novel The Hellbound Heart, music by Christopher Young, special effects by Effects Associates, special makeup effects designed by Bob Keen

Hellraiser, Pinhead

review by
Mike Haberfelner


Available on DVD !

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Some time ago, Julia (Clare Higgins) had an affair with Frank (Sean Chapman), the brother of her husband Larry (Andrew Robinson), but now Frank has disappeared from the face of the earth, and Larry and Julia have decided to movie into his house.

Thing is, Frank hasn't just gone away, he has gone to hell - out of curiosity rather than anything else - but now he has found a way to escape hell again but needs a few human sacrifices to become fully human again. Thank God that Julia still loves him even if she finds him to look less than human, and is soon found all around town picking up men whom she brings to Frank to kill, who becomes more human with each sacrifice.

Of all people, only Kirsty (Ashley Laurence), Julia's teen stepdaughter whom she hates, suspects something's wrong. But when she finds out everything about Julia and Uncle Frank, he almost kills her like all the others. Fortunately though Kirsty doesn't only manage to escape - if just -, she even gets hold of uncle's puzzlebox, which is actually the key to the door of hell.

Rather by accident Kirsty opens the door to hell, and to save her own hide, she strikes a deal with Pinhead (Doug Bradley), the leader of the denizens of hell called the Cenobites: She promises to help her recapture Frank in exchange for her life ...

Uncle Frank though has meanwhile killed Kirsty's father and assumed his identity, and thus she almost walks into a trap and he would have killed her too if the Cenobites wouldn't have intervened in time

 - but while they might have saved her life for now, the Cenobites are the sort of allies not to be trusted ...

 

By the mid-1980's, Clive Barker has become a quite successful horror writer and 2 films were made based on his stories, Underworld (1985) and Rawhead Rex (1986), both directed by George Pavlou. But since both of these movies were very poorly done, Barker (who already had some background in directing) decided to direct the adaptation of his novel The Hellbound Heart himself - and what a fine decision that was: Hellraiser had upon its release almost instantly become a genre classic and over the roughly 30 years since its release it has lost none of its attraction: It's a film that combines very hard gore scenes with atmospheric filmmaking, gothic horrors with modern scare tactics, blunt shock scenes with a complex mythology (if a weird, perverted mythology at that), and besides all that, Barker has managed to make a modern, gory horror film with a intelligent storyline (if you can accept some genre-immanent suspension of disbelief of course). The resulting film is a horror masterpiece and a movie that seems to look fresh even on repeated viewing, and that is thus definitely recommended - even if the movie's many sequels (and counting) have marred the film's reputation a bit ...

 

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review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Thanks for watching !!!

 

 

Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
cuddly toys and
shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
-
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner

 

Out now from
Amazon!!!

 

 

 

On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD