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Hellraiser (1987)

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

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2 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Robert Hines ...
Anthony Allen ...
Leon Davis ...
Michael Cassidy ...
Frank Baker ...
Derelict
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Gay Baynes ...
Niall Buggy ...
Dinner Guest
Dave Atkins ...
Moving Man 1
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Storyline

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

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Genres:

Horror | Thriller

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

18 September 1987 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Clive Barker's Hellraiser  »

Box Office

Budget:

$1,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£155,348 (UK) (13 September 1987)

Gross:

$14,564,027 (USA)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

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(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Andrew Robinson convinced Clive Barker to replace the scripted line, "Fuck you," with the line actually shot, "Jesus wept." See more »

Goofs

When Kirstie is trying to get out of the hospital room she says the door is locked. However, when she walks away from it we can see a push-plate on the door and no handle or lock mechanism. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Asian Merchant: [the Asian Merchant greets Frank] What's your pleasure, Mr. Cotton?
Frank Cotton: The box.
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Connections

Spin-off Hellraiser (1991) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Gothic, Gory, Romantic, Beautiful, Colorful, and Tasteful horror film. A Gem!
28 October 2007 | by (Sundance, Utah) – See all my reviews

Contrary to what one might conceive in their minds BEFORE watching this classic horror movie, it should be said that Clive Barker has delivered us a real gem of a horror story, packed with intensity, both emotionally, as well as physically. "Hellraiser" is about love, lust, pain, and pleasure. It's been called an "otherworldly tale of pain and torture". It's been referred to as a grim, Gothic romance. Needless to say, it's gore following is much more in numbers than that of the "Lord Of The Rings" trilogy. Truly, this film is everything one see's it to be, from a romance, to a gore show, to a good ol' fashioned scare show. Either way, it's a fine film regardless. I might add, however, that it may come as a surprise upon first viewing. What is surprising, is the way it plays out very dramatic. Our characters are very down to earth, each with their own personal idiosyncrasies and inner demons, not to mention personal strengths. Each of them stands like a look at the different human desires, fears, joys, and sorrows. It plays out like a grim, Shakespeare play. A man and woman, Larry and Julia Cotton, moving into a home where memories dwell upon like haunting spirits. Larry is a charismatic optimistic gentleman, full of love and compassion for his wife, and his daughter, Kirsty. Julia is a human relic of baggage and fallen dreams, because she bears so many dark secrets, one of which is an affair with Frank, her husband's younger brother. Frank is alive, and replenishing himself after a rather nasty encounter with a Pandora's Box. Larry's blood, spilled over a hardwood floor, brings Frank back to life from an excruciating death, in one of the finest special effects sequences in cinematic history. Once Julia and Frank reunite, their love is more dangerous, and powerful than imagined. Together they conspire in the grand tradition of "McBeth" and "Othello", to reign in pleasure once again. Enter Kirsty, Larry's daughter, and Frank's niece. A warm hearted, but determined soul who crosses paths with Julia and Frank before they can finish their diabolical plan. Kirsty eventually encounters the dark secret beheld Frank upon his death, a puzzle box. It brings pain, pleasure, and death. Creatures of darkness; the Cenobites, angels to some, demons to others, come to Kirsty when she accidentally calls upon their ghoulish powers. Once unleashed, they must take someone back, and Kirsty knows now, how Frank is back, and she intends to return him to his deathly justice, and save her family...

The writing is just remarkable. Clive Barker has given us people, humans, planted in their own desires, and determinations, and he tears them apart with fear, pain, death, destruction, and total degradation. The Cotton family are the perfect example of purity, torn to shreds by hate, lust, and anguish, and he takes great glee in showing us all the gory details.

The production is a real high! This is what the best type of films are made of. Real, gory, bloody human remains, connecting to each other in divine sequence, to create a 100% greedy man. The colors are plenty and gorgeous. The look of the blood, and the shine of the lights, and the way the actors are lit... It's just beautiful. The music of the film is brilliant. Composer Christopher Young chills the film, and drenches it with his dramatic variation of the main title, and the rest of the music contains harsh strings, brass horns, music box cues, and rhythmic cues that speed the pace up with action.

Clive Barker is such a great writer and director, and filmmaker altogether. He has given us a great thriller that crosses the line between reality and fiction, in great taste and color, literally. It's no wonder twenty years later, the film stands on it's own, aside from it's sequels, and remains an ultimate horror classic to end them all...well some of them anyway. It's not the only horror film to portray itself intellectually, and it certainly has it's gore effect to an all time high. Still, it's quite a dashing and artful film, and always a treat to watch every time.


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