THE LAIR EXPERTS
Matt: Where do I begin with this one? Although this was clearly the first 'Hellraiser' film to feature Pinhead as a central figure, it was lacking in so many ways. Clive Barker's influence was definitely there, but from here on out, it drastically decreases. Gone are the artistic expressions of individualism we so enjoyed in the first two films. In its place is a more commercialized, studio production, and that really hurt this film. The acting was alright, with Doug Bradley playing the double role of Elliott Spencer/Pinhead. Aside from him and Joey, the characters were cookie-cutter from that era, and I found myself rooting for their demise. The kills went from stylized to just plain gory for the sake of gore. There was probably very little thought into it other than, 'let's throw in some more gore'. Above all, the main storyline just made no sense. Why would Pinhead want to come to earth, when hell is the domain he ruled? They really flip-flopped the story here, where instead of Pinhead taking people to hell, he was bringing hell to the people. It was just very confusing throughout as to why this was going on, although I did find Pinhead's back story (written by Clive Barker but not included in the first two films) to be very fascinating. And don't even get me started about the new Cenobites. They were a complete joke, a far cry from the evil minions that served with Pinhead in the first two films. The soundtrack, also very different from the first two movies, really hurt the overall tone of the film, and the rock music included, although helping to set the scene at the club, was way overused. In fact, aside from the title track and the couple songs they used in the club, the rest had no place in the 'Hellraiser' universe. Still, despite all its faults, the performance of Doug Bradley and the continuity it exhibited following 'Hellbound' earned this one a mid-level score from me. 5 out of 10.
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