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A mystical drama based on a story by V. Korotkevich. The film is set in out-of-the-way Belarusian woodlands at the end of the 19th century. A young ethnographer, Andrej Bielarecki, comes here to research local folk legends.
Having grown up with horror movies and been exposed to the numerous big horror franchises, I am no stranger to the "Hellraiser" movies, and must admit that I have been watching them ever since the first one came out. However, I am sad to say that since the third movie or so, the franchise has been on a steady declining spiral, and the stories have progressively strayed from the original idea.
This ninth movie was a bit of a surprise to me, as I came upon it by sheer luck. I hadn't even heard about it, and honestly, I thought they had finally put the franchise to rest after a number of disappointing movies. But I was wrong.
So I sat down to watch this movie, and I must admit that I was appalled to see that Doug Bradley wasn't in the role as Pinhead. That was an insult to us fans of the movies (or fans of the first handful of proper "Hellraiser" movies, at least). But still, I gave it a go.
That being said, I have got to be blunt honest. Doug Bradley was (and always will be) Pinhead. Stephan Smith Collins is a really bad substitute. I am not saying that he is a bad actor, as I am not familiar with his work outside this one movie, but he didn't have that diabolic charm and wit that Bradley brought to the Pinhead character. Nor did he have that iconic voice that we all have come to love (or fear, whichever you prefer). So the Pinhead portrayed in "Hellraiser: Revelations" was a mere cheap imitation of the original Pinhead.
As for the story in "Hellraiser: Revelations", one thing only has to be said: "are you kidding?" The story in this ninth installment was a rude insult and a downright copy of the storyline from the first movie. Sure the setting was changed and small adjustments made, but the overall storyline and plot was the exact same thing. Which leads me to ponder on whether or not this movie was necessary? Wouldn't it had been better to just let the franchise lie dormant? Surely this wasn't the best they could come up with. And also, just why did Doug Bradley pass on this? Leaves you with something to think about, doesn't it? And leaves you with a somewhat vile aftertaste in your mouth.
"Hellraiser: Revelations" dragged on forever, just retelling the story that we were introduced to in the first "Hellraiser" movie, so it was basically just pointless repetition. A way to introduce the franchise to new viewers? I don't know, but for us who have followed the growth and decline of the franchise, it was a rude slap on the face.
The movie leaves little room for the characters to develop and grow, despite the actors/actresses doing their best with their given parts. You just never really buy into the characters, and they are lacking depth and credibility.
Having seen every single "Hellraiser" movie since the very first, this one is without a doubt the most boring, pointless and far-strayed from the original plot. It is worth a watch if you want to see it just to have watched all of the movies, but that is about it. There is nothing new here; everything is just a re-write of old material. It is like brewing coffee on an old and already used coffee filter. It was horrible.
One of the things "Hellraiser: Revelations" had working for it, was the effects. There weren't a lot of special effects, though whatever little they did use worked out well enough. Personally, I could have used a lot more of the traditional wicked torture and torment that is associated with the Cenobytes and the "Hellraiser" series.
I have seen "Hellraiser: Revelations" now, and I can honestly say, despite being a "Hellraiser" fan, that I will not be making a second return to this movie ever!
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