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...as long as you keep in mind they tried to do something different with the
franchise. As such, the fifth installment is more of a supernatural morality
tale in the line of Angel Heart and Jacob's Ladder. Everything does make
sense, if you get all the way to the end.
Whether you like the inclusion of the Cenobites depends on whether you think they have to be center-stage or not. They basically do what they're supposed to here, and this movie does a better job of establishing how they torture people (as opposed to just ripping people apart in ugly ways) then the previous movies have done. The idea that they engage in psychological torture is one that none of the previous movies in the series have expanded upon in any great depth (although the fact they inflict pleasure as well as pain still needs to be touched upon a little more - the twin she-Cenobites kinda hint at this, though).
Basically this is perhaps the more subtle of the movies in the series, due to the apparent requirement that the Cenobites not play a large part. Rewatch it a time or two without the expectations that this will be a blood-oozing, skin-rippping "Pinhead movie" like the others, and you might be surprised.
Let me start by saying that recently I've been on a bit of a Hellraiser
trip. I read the "Hellbound Heart" book, and decided to re-watch the
movies. Originally I saw #2 first, then #1, both of which I love, and
re-watched. Recently I saw #'s 3 & 4. Three SUCKS. Four I thought was
interesting for the history of Lemarchand and the box, but it was kinda
Now for this. This movie, for lack of a better word, is perfect. After going to school for multimedia, I was first amazed by the cinematography. The acting is flawless. The story, while not quite the "traditional" Hellraiser movie, is so interesting... if you haven't seen this you need to watch it.
I was really impressed with a few of the things the movie incorporated. In the book, it mentions "The Engineer" which has never been worked into any movie previously, and it also gets the "flouresence" - that in the previous movies just looked like a crappy lighting effect - perfectly. As for the Cenobites, Pinhead is of course perfect, you can't go wrong with Mr. Bradley, and the others are original and creepy.
I'm a horror movie fan, but most movies don't really creep me out any more (especially after watching a bunch of Takashi Miike flicks), but there was one scene in particular that really got to me. Great.
I saw this film alone in a "house container" in the middle of the night,
during my 24H shift as the radio Duty Officer in a UN military camp in
Eastern Africa. Maybe that's why it made such an impression on me, partly,
Whatever the unusual setting for viewing it, it must be said I'm a long time fan of Clive Barker and his universe(s), and that that of course helped in gearing up my imagination. In my opinion, the special Barker trademark, namely a mood of overwhelming and insanity-inducing Biblical horror, translates well to the screen in this film. The protagonist, played by Sheffer, remembered from another Barker movie, Nightbreed, is caught in a web that seems impossible to escape. Even though he's a real dumb b*****d, you just can't help feel a little sorry for him; the way he is manipulated by gruesome, hellish powers is almost too much. No way he can experience what he does without loosing his mind!
The acting isn't anything special, but I tell you, if you are capable of living yourself just a bit into the story, you'll feel like I did: That movie has warped my fragile little mind!
Advice: see it alone, tired, just before you are going to sleep, and with your senses alert to begin with - and you'll be ready to continue the roller coaster ride in troubled dreams afterwards. Disturbing! 7 out of 10.
Hellraiser Inferno was a great movie. The acting could have been better,
it took a completely different turn than I expected it
Pinhead is what he was in the first two Hellraisers, A judge of Hell. If you notice Hellraiser 3 and Bloodline make him the bad guy, while in the first two movies it was the humans who were the evil ones.
This movie requires you to THINK. If you don't like having to think about a movie don't watch it, but if you liked the Blair Witch Project, You will like this movie.
This sequel brings back the style of the first two, but with enough difference to shock you in new ways. I believe this movie gets the point across that I think Clive Barker was trying to get across when he started this series, You create your own Hell, and you confront your own demons.
This movie is not like the rest of the series. It is more of a psychological terror than a slasher film. Give this movie a chance, and think about it.
The first "Hellraiser" movie I ever saw. "Inferno" left me scarred and
disturbed. The whole experience of watching the film was that of sheer
terror that grows with each passing minute. Now after having seen all
of the movies, read the novel and becoming accustomed the Hellraiser
mythos I recently got a chance to watch it again. To see if my opinion
on this fifth sequel changes. It didn't.
Yes "Inferno" does not follow the ideas established by Clive Barker in his novel "Hellbound Heart" which is the basis for the Hellraiser series. And yes it basically uses the status of Pinhead as a horror icon to draw an audience. But I'll be damned if I say that it is a bad film for just those reasons. "Inferno" is in fact a well constructed, technically superb sequel with an interesting plot and characters.
The film centers on Joseph Thorne played by Craig Sheffer. A brilliant but corrupt detective who during a homicide investigation comes into the possession Lemarchand Configuration. He opens the box and then it begins. Reality for Thorne soon turns into a nightmare that grows more and more powerful as his investigation leads him towards a mysterious figure known only as The Engineer.
"Inferno" explores the possibilities of redemption. Sheffer's character is certainly a very flawed individual and he knows it. But his determination to solve the case and hopefully save a human life is in his mind the path to redeeming himself, in front of his own eyes, his family, and those around him. Sheffer delivers a convincing performance which greatly helps in solidifying the idea. Other members of the cast include Nicholas Turturro playing Thorne's naive and honest partner Tony Nenonen, James Remar as a doctor Paul Gregory a psychiatrist and good old Doug Bradley once again playing his iconic role as the rational sadistic demon, Pinhead.
Visually speaking "Inferno" is as impressive as the first two "Hellraiser" movies. Gone are the b-movie quality effects and Cenobite designs which played part in the failure of the third and fourth films. Pinhead's image is not overused and he only appears during the final portion of the film when the nightmarish atmosphere is at it's highest. Delivering the final crucial blow to Thorne's broken psyche. The new cenobites are freakishly well done, and cleverly fit in to the movie's psychological character driven plot.
Severely underrated Scott Derrickson directed a great horror film that leaves strong a impression. Like a never-ending nightmare it keeps you constantly on the edge, expecting the unexpected.
Well i watched this film on Terrestrial TV having been a fan of the 1st
and 2nd in the saga but truly hating the 3rd and 4th. I must admit,
it's pretty good.
The film severely sidesteps from the 'all out gore' of the previous 4 and instead introduces an element of suspense which honestly kept me watching the film throughout without wanting to take a quick break away from the TV.
Acting is Solid, Bradley again as Pinhead is flawless even though his screen presence has been toned down. Sheffer is excellent as the main character, delivers his lines very well and was very convincing in the more dramatic scenes of the movie. James Remar is surprisingly good also in his supporting role as the Doctor.
The film's suspense really reminded me of the silent hill games and the films characters were all pretty dark and untrustworthy. Even Sheffers character was sleazy and a bad cop.
As for the gore, it is still there, but not quite as nasty as what we have come to expect from a hellraiser movie. It was introduced when it needed to be, though I have to say the cenobites were nowhere near as gruesome as they should be.
Overall the film is really worth watching. Credit to the Director and the Writer for being brave enough to change the whole element of the Hellraiser Saga......but then again.....the saga really needed to be saved.
7. out of 10.
HELLRAISER: INFERNO (2000)
cast: Craig Sheffer, Nicholas Turturro, James Remar, Doug Bradley, Noelle Evans.
plot: Crooked cop, Joseph Thorne (Craig Sheffer) lies cheats and steals. One night, he opens the lament configuration and is trapped in a world which forces him to wonder if he is after a serial killer or trapped in hell.
the good: This is a fresh sequel after HELL ON EARTH and BLOODLINE. While the last two was this good vs. evil thing, this one is the struggle between a man's good side and his bad side.
The idea of a man forcing to face all of the sins he has committed throughout his life and him wishing he did not make these mistakes sort of hit home, and there's some great gore and violence to go along with it.
Also, people complained that there was too much Pinhead in 3 and 4, and then that he has such a little part here. I think it makes his presence much better. He had just a little more screen time in 1 and 2.
I must admit to expressing a certain level of cynasism when I selected
Inferno from my local video store. While I had found the frist two
installments of the Hellraiser Series to be both disturbing and visually
breath taking I was in no way impressed with three and four and am usually
very sceptical about any direct to video horror movies. In this case I had
little need to be.
The production values throughout this film are far above it's direct to video peers. The lighting and set designs are of the same caliber as many theatrically released horror movies. I will admit that the production design doesn't compare to sureal atmosphere of Hellraiser 1 & 2, but the this film seems to be grounded in a more gritty realistic environment. Craig Sheffer gives an excellent performance as the film's flawed protagonist a corrupt cop. He gives a minimally emotional performance giving his vice riden character a hollow and feel reflecting his soul's depravity. Character actor Nicholas Turturro gives an excellent performances as Sheffer's partner. The special effects and gore are far above those of a B-Movie. I was especially impressed with the transformation of pinhead.
What really sets this sequel apart from it's preadecesors is the script. In an inspired move writer/director Scott Derrickson choose to vary his story drastically from 3 & 4 an focus on the seductive nature of evil and takes the form of a modern morality tale. It is essentially the story Sheffer's struggle to purify himself of his own corruption, and return to innocense. This is in many ways the movie The Bad Luetenant as interpreted through the horror genre. Yes, Pinhead and his demon companions on make short cameo appearances and this is bound to anger some fans. I must argue however that the dread of their presences is always felt in the films atmosphere, and their use in the "surprise" ending is very effective.
I do have some minors critasisms which prevent me from giving this film a ten rating. First of all the film as times does degrade to cliches from both horror films and police dramas. I also felt the use of the demons in cowboy hats performing martial arts border on being unbelievable. In order for a film to be entertaining the audience must be able to suspend disbelief moments like this are difficult to accept. Finally, there are several false ending to this film. While years ago this may have been seen as an inventive horror tactic in the eighties it has become static and predictable. In many ways it takes away from the viseral power of the films conclusion. I rate this film as an eight out of ten due to it's inventive interpretation of the Hellraiser Series, and I would recommend it to both fans and non-fans of the series.
I have seen all the hellraiser series and I must say, this one is excellent. In fact it is the best among the rest of the hellraiser part.I did a mistake by watching hellraiser hellworld before watching this one, and it gave me a great disappointment, hesistant to watch Inferno, but when I did I just loved it. for all horror movies fans, this one will give you a different taste and favor. the riddles, twists, backward senses and mystery just makes you want to watch it till the end. Not to mention that the actor who played the detective perfectly fits for his role. Go ahead and watch you will really enjoy your time, and won't repent of wasting it.
This was a very good movie. I'm a big fan of the Hellraiser series and I was very disappointed when I first saw Bloodlines. But this was a good one. The disturbing thing is the role of pinhead. In all other movies he is a messenger of ultimate pain an desperation, an active tormentor of souls, so in his role he is very disposable this time. This story doesn't need "Hellraiser" written on it's label to become a success. On the other hand it has more similarities with the book than Hellraiser 2, 3 and 4. Good actors, some good SFX, a dark, violent atmosphere and an entertaining story sum up to one of the best sequels for a long time.
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