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Hellraiser (1987)

R  |   |  Horror  |  18 September 1987 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 72,015 users  
Reviews: 315 user | 200 critic

An unfaithful wife encounters the zombie of her dead lover; demons are pursuing him after he escaped their sadomasochistic underworld.



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2 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Oliver Smith ...
Robert Hines ...
Anthony Allen ...
1st Victim
Leon Davis ...
2nd Victim
Michael Cassidy ...
3rd Victim
Frank Baker ...
Kenneth Nelson ...
Gay Baynes ...
Niall Buggy ...
Dinner Guest
Dave Atkins ...
Moving Man 1
Moving Man 2


Clive Barker's feature directing debut graphically depicts the tale of a man and wife who move into an old house and discover a hideous creature - the man's half-brother, who is also the woman's former lover - hiding upstairs. Having lost his earthly body to a trio of S&M demons, the Cenobites, he is brought back into existence by a drop of blood on the floor. He soon forces his former mistress to bring him his necessary human sacrifices to complete his body... but the Cenobites won't be happy about this. Written by Ary Luiz Dalazen Jr. <ajr@fortalnet.com.br>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


He'll tear your soul apart. See more »




R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

18 September 1987 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Sadomasochists from Beyond the Grave  »

Box Office


$1,000,000 (estimated)


$14,564,027 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (cut) | (cut)

Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Film debut of Ashley Laurence. See more »


When Kirsty opens the box while in the hospital, the walls begin to part and you see tons of cobwebs being stretched between the two walls. In the next shot, Kirsty is shown walking toward the opening but the cobwebs are gone. See more »


Frank (wearing Larry's skin): Stay with us. We can all be happy here.
Kirsty Cotton: No...
Frank (wearing Larry's skin): Come to daddy!
Kirsty Cotton: Oh my God!
Frank (wearing Larry's skin): Come... to daddy!
See more »


Referenced in Ban the Sadist Videos! Part 2 (2006) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

It ain't SUPPOSED to be Macbeth, here folks....
28 December 1998 | by (High Prairie, Canada) – See all my reviews

In a decade of cheap, exploitive slashers, we finally get this one. Relief.

Instead of some maniac ripped from Halloween, we get a simple wooden box. Simple, or so Frank thought.

What results is a cinematic masterpiece, a great mix of gore and violence, as well as a great musical score and some nice drama. The acting is fine, but there are imperfections. One common complaint: The characters are not pleasant enough we can latch onto them. Maybe that's because these seem more realistic than the characters we CAN latch onto. Just a thought, don't jump on this.

What really gets me, though, is the people calling it down, saying it's not quality entertainment. Come on guys, if it was SUPPOSED to be Shakespeare, it would not advertise as being able to "tear your soul apart."

The presence of the cenobites was originally intended not to carry the story but to emphasize it. As usual, the sequaes ignored it. Hey, merchandizing.

This is the only one of the series that depends on the story more than the demons. We hardly ever see the infamous Pinhead at all.

all in all, this was a fun movie. No Shakespeare, but it's not supposed to be. Just dramatic, gory, groundbreaking horror, delivered to us excellently by Mr. Barker.

102 of 139 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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