HELLRAISER: THE SCARLET BOX
Clive Barker nailed it
released OUT NOW! 1987/1988/1992 | 18 | Blu-ray
Directors Clive Barker, Tony randel, anthony Hickox
Cast doug Bradley, ashley laurence, Claire Higgins, Kenneth Cranham
With most horror films making use of well-rehearsed templates, it’s rare one comes along which feels entirely fresh. For that you need an artist like Clive Barker, whose directorial debut introduced the Cenobites, other-dimensional demons summoned by opening an ornate puzzle box.
Hellraiser is no teen horror, but adult drama with dark undercurrents – sado-masochism, sexual obsession. As frustrated wife Julia resurrects dead lover Frank with the blood of butchered businessmen, there are queasy echoes of real-life killers. The effects still stand up, especially the make-up for the skinless Frank: an anatomical engraving brought to gooey, glistening life. And Doug Bradley’s performance as lead Cenobite Pinhead is regal in its understatement.
It’s a film with a rich, instantly convincing mythology – one Hellraiser II expands backwards and outwards, exploring Pinhead’s origins and sending final girl
“That’s the last time I let you do DIY.”