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dio

Hellraiser movie series

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I've only seen the first three as a trrn. I preferred the second and third to the slow pace of the first. According to Netflix there are a lot of them. I'm going to attempt to watch them all.

So what's your opinion of the franchise and series? What are the best and worst movies?

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Don't bother after three, they just get worse after that.

The first two are the best of the series with the third was OK.

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I only watched the 2 first and that one with the guys in Mexico. The first one was great, Hellbound was great too until everyone was dragged to hell and started running around for 40 minutes (also, Pinhead becoming nice and human was ridiculous). The Mexico one was total shit.

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Hellraiser 1 was excellent, 2 was better and everything after that just progressively got worse.

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I didn't like any of them but Pinhead is awesome. My brother spent a small fortune on a Pinhead bust and the thing is just too creepy. Well, the first one was OK, I guess.

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Watching the first one again for the first time in 20 years it was much better than I remembered.

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dio said:

Watching the first one again for the first time in 20 years it was much better than I remembered.

This thread prompted me to do the same thing after ~20 years, except I fell asleep watching it. So much for my Halloween 2015 horror movie binge.

The practical effects have aged extremely well and look great, I must say. But the film itself was literally a snoozefest for me. I'm going to rewatch the second one, which is maybe better than I remember it to be.

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I like part 2 the best, but don't listen to those that said don't watch after 3. Actually Inferno is quite good in a Halloween III kinda way. It doesn't have much of Pinhead and the Cenobites, but is pretty good as a stand alone type story. The one in space is fairly good. Quite a bit of it is cheesy, but the containment chamber is quite brilliant with a robot opening the box.

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I'm gonna go against the grain and say that the ones after 3 are MORE than worth watching. In fact, they're my favorites! At least most of them.

The original one is pretty good, of course, as is Hellbound Heart (HRII). Not much to say about them that hasn't already been said.

Hell on Earth (HR3) is garbage tbh, and after the 8th one (I'll get to that) might be my least favorite—The cenobites are ridiculous and the over the top cheesy one-liners really kind of kill the horror vibe and put it more into slapstick dark comedy. It does have some really great lines in it though; especially the church scene.

Bloodline (HR4) is when it starts getting out of Clive Barker's hands, but personally I still think it's pretty good. It kind of jumps around a little too much, I'd say, and that might be why people don't like it as much as the first 3. However, I do really like the backstory it gives to the Toymaker and I love the creation of the Twin cenobites. It has one of my favorite lines in the whole series. :P

Inferno (HR5) I've heard criticized as more an entry to the Stir of Echoes series rather than a Hellraiser, but whatevs. I love it! I like the psychological aspect to it; I feel it takes the idea of "hell" and boils it down to a personal level rather than generic torture and abuse that most media attributes to the "place."

I haven't watched Hellseeker (HR6) in a while but I remember really liking it as well, for a lot of the same reasons I liked the Fifth installment. Plus, it features the return of Kristy Cotton!

Deader (HR7) is all right. The ending is kind of fucking dumb, but the rest of the movie is enjoyable.

Now, Hellworld (HR8) is where I draw the line. It's fucking terrible. It's like taking everything awful about Wes Craven's later movies and putting a Hellraiser skin on it. I once called it something like "I Know What Box You Opened Last Summer". The "videogame" premise is fucking stupid, the acting is horrible, and the plot is paper thin. The unexpected but fucking lazy twist at the end just infuriated rather than surprised me. If there's ONE single Hellraiser movie that NO ONE should watch, it's this one.

Finally, there's the most recent entry, Revelations (HR9). Which is also terrible, however... I kind of liked it. It's firmly in one of those "so bad it's good" movie categories. The lack of Doug Bradley is disheartening, and the plot and acting are dumb, but somehow it still has a charm that honestly I enjoyed. I'm totally comfortable with saying it's worth watching, just don't expect a good movie out of it.

So yeah, that's what I have to say on the Hellraiser movies. I love (most) of them and I think the later movies don't get as much credit as they deserve. Also, if you're into comics you should check out the Hellraiser series that Clive Barker started writing 3 or so years ago. It's really good!

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BombChel said:

I'm gonna go against the grain and say that the ones after 3 are MORE than worth watching.

I agree. Inferno was more like a stand alone movie and Bloodlines had some interesting shit. I loved the containment chamber with the robot opening the box.

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HR 1 and 2 are like Halloween 1 and 2 or Nightmare on Elm Street 1 and 2, though some people seem to not like the second Nightmare movie, the principle is the third entry is always going to be a spinoff and the franchise will get ridiculous from that point on.

Inferno was decent however as a standalone.

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So I finished the third one. I think the first two were glorified haunted houses, meaning 95% takes place in a house for the original and an asylum for the sequel. The second one is very surrealistic when it goes to the other realm.

Seeing the demons in the first two movies makes me think of Neo, Trinity and Morpheus. The glasses, the leather, the genders.

The third one just has a higher body count of douche bags that people want to die. I still think what I did when I first saw it... let's increase the horror by adding explosions!

Its interesting how by the end of the first two, Pinhead is the hero and well normal things seem to kill the demons just fine while the box sends them away. Something else that I noticed is that female protagonists. Even when the protagonist has a sidekick, its a female. Then there's always a sexual deviant villain that will fuck someone that is, was or will become skinless.

The practical effects are still incredible. I'd say the art of gore and horror are more of a reason to watch than anything. Even the cheesy late 80s electrical coloring special effects are pretty nice and unique.

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I wouldn't say everything past 3 is terrible. It's true, 1 and 2 are the best ones, the others just get more cheesy, as is common with horror sequels, so you have to keep that in mind(part 4 is specially crazier), although it becomes scary again somewhere down the line. The only thing I don't like in part 3 is how they changed pinhead from being this ominous entity, who is not explicitly good nor evil into a demon guy who just wants to kill everything in sight.

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Perhaps after all these sequels with 9 movies in total, its time to go back with the characters from the second and put them in a movie as if the rest didn't happen.

I keep thinking of a video game where you feed a statue, bed or floor blood enough to give a body flesh. You'd have to bait your victims into the location.

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Cyanosis said:

HR 1 and 2 are like Halloween 1 and 2 or Nightmare on Elm Street 1 and 2, though some people seem to not like the second Nightmare movie, the principle is the third entry is always going to be a spinoff and the franchise will get ridiculous from that point on.

i thought the general consensus was that Nightmare 3 was like the 2 of the franchise, with Nightmare 2 being the franchise's 3.

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hardcore_gamer said:

I honestly think they should just reboot the franchise. I know most reboots suck but I would not mind a Hellraiser reboot honestly.

You're probably going to get harassed for saying this, but I'll stand by you on this one. After rewatching the first three movies [decided to skip the others] I had the exact same thought. The ideas in these movies are cool, they just needed... something else. Maybe some fresh young minds in the movie business are what this franchise needs.

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1, 2, and 3 are sort of the "real" series.
4 is a weird "NOW IN SPACE" ending episode that they promptly ignore as having ended anything.
5, 6, and 7 were generic horror movies with Pinhead shoehorned in to bank on the Hellraiser name. 5 was particularly bad in this regard. 7 was "ok as a not-Hellraiser movie" I think.
8 was kind of ok, it felt a little bit tongue in cheek in terms of mocking people who were still fans of the series after all the previous ones, but pretty creepy anyway. Not the same experience but not awful.

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hardcore_gamer said:

I honestly think they should just reboot the franchise. I know most reboots suck but I would not mind a Hellraiser reboot honestly.

There has been one floating around for a while, but who knows if it will ever happen. It's the only reason the 9th movie exists - it's an ashcan copy that was rushed together in three weeks with a minimal budget and had precisely one theater screening. They succeeded in keeping the franchise in their hands for a bit longer; we'll see if they do anything with it.

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You know I honestly thought it was rebooted with the 7th or 8th one, but it must not have been. Its all just been straight to DVD.

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david_a said:

There has been one floating around for a while, but who knows if it will ever happen. It's the only reason the 9th movie exists - it's an ashcan copy that was rushed together in three weeks with a minimal budget and had precisely one theater screening. They succeeded in keeping the franchise in their hands for a bit longer; we'll see if they do anything with it.


I wonder if that's why I actually kind of liked it. It feels like a low budget college film, but in a good way. Definitely seen a lot worse.

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Am I only liked four? haha. Five and beyond was straight to DVD-movie-of-the-week quality.

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I just saw Bloodlines or as the rest of the world calls it Hellraiser: In Space. It seemed to kick off a 5 year span of horror movies not in space that went to space. Leprachaun in Space, Jason X in space and even Aliens: Resurrection.

The movie seemed like a trilogy of terror that spanned three generations.

I'm really trying to piece together some logic without going to wikipedia.

So the first one, someone gets pulled into the box by playing with it. They can be taken out of the box and given life through someone else's blood. Then to trap a demon you can use a box as a weapon. It doesn't kill them, just traps them. At some point I thought pinhead was the john that the woman picks up and murders with the hammer. Dude does have nails in his head after all.

Then in the second, they can die, mortal wounds and stuff where they return to normal dead. They can make new demons by choice.

In the third, the way to resurrect them is to get them out of a statue to which only pinhead returns. Then he just makes more demons, but the dead don't just don't become demons or else there would be a hundred.

For the fourth, uh boy. The female demon is called up through a pentagram. Then she and her man live two hundred years from the first story to the second. To cap off the second, they're trapped in a giant box? The third story opens the box, Pinhead and all the demons from the second story return. Pinhead claims he cannot die, he's forever, but the second he died to a paint he needed to be resurrected from a statue rather than come out of the box.

The skinless bodies are free to wear other people's skin as demonstrated in the first, second and fourth movies.

I still think the fourth is a fair movie. You watch it for uncomfortable sharp things near skin.

*edit* I just watched Hellraiser 5: Inferno and it can go fuck itself. I'm okay with movies trying something new, but this I just hated. The Hellraiser aspects felt tacked on. Pinhead was a cameo in maybe 3 spots. I understand there can be a logic where in the second movie it was pointed out you're in a hell of your own making. Well this is truly that.

Rather than destruction where everybody dies, the demons get tricked and the protagonist wins. Its like a hardcore Christmas Carol or Its a Wonderful Life. Well with an ending that pisses all over both.

The horror was gone, the gross moments, the tense moments of expecting something sharp were all relegated to one specific moment. The grand music was gone and replaced with typical cheap music that might fit in with any movie. Since when are shotguns okay to use in Hellraiser. Normally big macho badasses are just skinned.

Last but not least, its very subtle that Hellraiser has always been a New York City thing. Even Hellraiser in space was in New York at some point. Inferno was in Los Angeles and never made use of the city, so it could have been in any city really.

*edit* Well I thought #6 was better, but along the lines of #5. I think it could have been subtitled sex dream horror nightmare.

#7 is in the books for me. Its clear they're getting to be more mind fucks than horror. You're stabbed... no you're not. She's killed... no she's not. You don't know what's real and Pinhead is just a cameo in the past three or so movies. While these movies are at least fair, I have a feeling the past three movies wouldn't have been made without tacking on that Hellraiser name.

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