Tag Archives: Hellraiser

Hellraiser (1987)

31dayshalloweenhorror2015

Day 10 of 31

Hellraiser title

Hellraiser  (Horror,  1987) (18) D: Clive Barker W: Clive Barker P:  C: Andrew Robinson, Clare Higgins, Ashley Laurence, Oliver Parker, Doug Bradley. 1h 34m. UK.

Synopsis : An unfaithful wife encounters the zombie of her dead lover; demons are pursuing him after he escaped their sadomasochistic underworld.

TAGLINE : It will tear your soul apart.

Hell and it’s luscious playground of pain was once thought to be ruled by the devil and probably is, but what Hellraiser does is takes a sidestep to another dimension what is Hell on Meth and gives us a new dark lord of painful pleasures.
Created by the king of horror (or the runner up… ) Clive barker during this wild youth, we’re given a brand new hero and horror icon and his fellow cenobites, there have been lots of speculations on where Clive came up with his bizarre sadistic creatures clad in leather and bloody and akin to his other 1980’s creation RawHead Rex everyone assumes it comes from the bad boy gay clubs who play on the fringes of society, but none of this has been confirmed. Encapsulating man’s need to open the pandora’s box and to discover the unknown, this film wraps up the worst case scenario and wades through flesh and hooks to detail what could happen if you dance with the devil.

Hellraiser Frank

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Clive Barker VS Stephen King

clive-barker-vs-stephen-kin

Who is the king of horror!!?

I’m going to try and NOT be biased here.. and it’s going to be difficult.  I have read a great many of Clive Barker’s books and I struggle with Stephen King, I know it’s lame but apart from a few shorter stories I generally experience King through the Cinema rather than through pages of a book. Despite this I have been a long time fan of both directors but Clive always has an edge that I deeply appreciate.

Now that’s clear I’ll clarify one other thing,  I’m only judging films side of each creative writer here, I’m pretty sure King has written more books than Barker, and likewise Barker has probably had more art exhibitions than King. But both men have written and produced vast quantities of ideas that have fuelled  many exceptional films.

So what have they given us!?

Clive Barker W:31 P:16 D:6 A:10

Notable works: Hellraiser, Rawhead Rex, Nightbreed, Candyman, Lord of Illusions, Midnight Meat Train etc…

Stephen King W:200 P:13 D:0 A:20

Notable works: Carrie, Salem’s Lot, Creepshow, Cujo, Christine, Firestarter, Children of the Corn, Cats Eye, Silver Bullet, Running Man, Misery, IT, Sometimes they come back, Stand by me, Tommyknockers, Needful Things, The Stand, Mangler, Dolores Claiborne, Dreamcatcher etc…

Key: W: ritten P:Produced  D:Directed  A:Actor.

WOW okay.. now where do we take this! Yes King has produced a lot more work, but not all of it has been horror, oh wait hold on.. it falls within the horror category, okay, so because he’s produced more he wins hands down!?  Hell no, we’re going to give  him 0-1 and then investigate further.

hellraiser cenobites

Clive Barker has given us some cult classics in Hellraiser (1987) and the iconic PinHead character. He re-created a whole new brand of horror in a similar way that HP Lovecraft gave us a whole new horror universe to work with, Barker gave us a new hell and a whole new pain devil to show us the sights. On the other hand King tends to work with our oldest fears, reinventing them in new creepy ways. He gave us the playful Pennywise Clown from It (1990), Annie Wilks from Misery (1990) the classic haunted car Christine (1983) and many more. Obviously King had given us a lot more memorable characters as he’s produced more but who’s really the most iconic?

rawhead rex

Hate me all you like but I’m going to have to give this round to Clive, I give King full credits for making clowns scary again but honestly, they were always scary, Pennywise was a terrifying beast but only because most people fear clowns anyway, he was simply adding to the nightmare fuel, Annie Wilks creeps the bejesus out of any abled man, but she wasn’t anything new. While on the other hand, swinging out of the hell corner, Mr Barker introduces a pantheon of hellish new beasts to play with. Including the Cenobites and Whatever was in the Midnight Meat Train (2008) and the Book of Blood (2009) and the children of the moon who used to reside in Midian in the classic Nightbreed (1990),  have spawned on a range of spin offs and cosplay etc, while you can also argue that King has given us some pretty strange shapeshifting aliens in Dreamcatcher (2003), again they are just aliens, but I do admit they were somewhat distinctive. These are new characters at least for this reason I’m going to have to give him the round. But only the king of horror can dream up Rawhead Rex.. whatever he was!? *shudder* So that’s 1-1.

Misery

Clive Barker has directed before and is has more films in the pipeline while King had never taken the bull by the horns and given even a short movie a try. I think he would be amazing if he turned his mind to it. But sadly he’s not really branched out in that way and therefore 1-2.

King likes to work with people in making his dream come true and is invaluable on set with his creative ideas Barker gets in there as well. To be honest either would be an asset to any film set that is working on one of their productions. I’m tempted to call this a tie but if I had to pick a side I think Clive has done a few more and considering he’s got fewer titles under his belt this totally outdoes King. Soooo 2-2

Dreamcatcher-alienweasel

Appearances are everything. For me seeing a director on the big screen is pretty awesome, obviously Hitchcock and M Night Shyamalan have taken it to the limit (yeah I feel another list coming on), but now and again someone will crop up, when I was younger I couldn’t afford magazines and stuff so I didn’t always realise when I had seen someone from behind the scenes. When it comes to these two superheroes I have to admit that I had my wits about me and could recognise these dudes from an early age. Barker has made a lot of appearances and it’s great to see him but he can’t outdo Kings crazy performances in the Creepshow (1982) movies, especially as Jordy Verrill, let alone all of the other cameos. I think that might be the finishing blow 2-3

King is the King!

pennywise it

Please bear in mind this is just a bit of movie fun, both men are hero’s in what they do and no faults can be found in either really, Barker will always be that little bit closer to my heart but I couldn’t imagine horror cinema without either of them.

Opening the Gates of Hell

I think there has been a fascination and fear for thousands of years of this little place called Hell.. In most organised religions there is an underworld and generally it’s not the top holiday destination due to some less than 5 star accommodation and bad cuisine. Despite the warnings though, someone or something usually wants to swing those gates open wide and unleash horrid things on mankind.

Here’s a list of 10 films where the main purpose is to open the gates of hell, so in no particular order.


Event Horizon

01. Event Horizon (1997)

First up is literally the first film that popped into my head, now this one sticks with me for a few of the wrong reasons. Basically I had a lot of trouble seeing the end of this film (more details in the review) but basically a missing spaceship, designed to bend time/space goes missing but comes back with some disturbing secrets. I’ll try not to give away too much as i hope my lists help other people try and find new films to watch, but there is some Latin and some hellish flashbacks. The film could have a bigger dose of gore (although i hear there are “better”extended scenes in another version), it could have had a more in depth plot, which i feel it would have gotten if it was an indie film. For Hollywood it’s a good effort. 7/10

hellraiser cenobites02.Hellraiser (1997)

Clive Barkers first attempt to take back his stories and what a beautiful dreamscape of terror and pain he created. Unearthly  pleasures are promised to anyone who can solve the puzzle box, as with all legends of this nature there is always a price. The pleasures are delivered by angels from a hellish dimension where pain is seen as a delight. Fair enough this isn’t the hell the bibles of the world tell us about but it certainly does mimic the ideas we have of hell and a gateway is certainly there to be opened so this film easily makes it into my top 10, and I easily give it 9/10

legend03. Legend (1985)

Another slightly off key version of hell is on the cards here, it’s basically a family fantasy movie but a bit of a cult classic. Everyone refers to the big guy as the devil when in fact he’s Darkness and he is in servitude of the “father” but once you get past that, Darkness is trying to unleash something dark to blot out human happiness and the sun. So candidate for a hell opening here. Despite the light nature of the film, its filled with some dark fantasy elements and fairytale creatures, one of my favourites being Meg Mucklebones, portrayed perfectly by Richard Picardo. It has a heavy dose of folklore and great imagery that I have loved since I was a child and there for 8/10

i frankenstein
04.I Frankenstein (2014)

One of the better comic to movie translations, from the noted writer and actor Kevin Grevioux. I felt the film was a bit of a let down, it could have been longer rather than trying to cram an epic into a short flick, but instead it just turned into another Underworld. (its hard not to connect the two films) It still carries an interesting version of life after Frankenstein. Basically the monster lives on into modern day and becomes a pawn in fight between good and evil. I wont tell all but there is an interesting plot in using necromancy for demons to take over the world. Another good try but only receives 6/10.

9th gate05.Ninth Gate (1999)

This film is a total love hate affair for me. I love Polanski, but can’t stand Depp, I love Langella but can’t stand the lack of a decent OST, the list goes on tit for tat. Every time I find something I love about the film its twinned with something i really can’t bare, but overall I do enjoy watching it, I love books and mysteries about the devil but thought there could be a little extra in the end or even a follow on film. Still throughout the film there is a desperate need to connect with the devil and to rule in hell.7/10

spawn06.Spawn (1997)

I think this was a fun remake of the graphic novels/Comics, but really I enjoyed the animated series more. I think this film is on the cards for a remake and despite enjoying this version with three of my all time favourite actors I suppose it could do with some improvements. There are lots of hellish elements in this throughout the film. Topped off with mega power struggles over the earth by the realms of evi!! Bwahaaahaa…hell is depicted as a MTV program break, brief flashing colours and flames. The depictions are better in the next film in the list.6/10

Constantine07.Constantine (2005)

As promised a film with better hell scenes, John Constantine, or Hellblazer (comic) often visits hell to gain footing against the demons trying to take over the earth. A potential candidate for a semi decent remake, Constantine is a giant step in the right direction for bringing a comic to life, hell is an apocalyptic version of earth,  filled with swarms of demons, slow motion smoldering and a dreamlike ambiance between the ruined buildings. This film also has one of the best Satan performances from Peter Stormare. 7/10

TheBeyond (10)08.The Beyond (1981)

One the greatest zombie, occult, horrors EVER, I have the shirt to prove it. This film is packed full of a different horror aspects and it’s all leading up to the opening of the 7th gate of hell, situated beneath a haunted hotel. The previous occupier of room 36 was a warlock who was tortured and destroyed by the local residents who were afraid of his actions but he remains in the room and orchestrates the new owner into opening the gate to hell.There is a stunning painting and all the iconic makings of a retro nasty in this film, honestly it has it all, a well manufactured gem.10/10

Double Vision09.Double Vision (2002)

 When people start turning up dead due to mysterious and supernatural causes, the Thai police force entertain an FBI officer to join the force, bringing with him his years of FBI service and knowledge he teams up with a beat down Thai officer and despite the language barrier they manage to uncover the connection of the death to the Taoist levels of hell.6/10

Hellboy10.Hellboy (2004)

 A second comic book remake, this time reproduced by one of my favourite directors Del Toro and brought to life by the ever talented Perlman. Hellboy; whose real name and purpose is the unlock the prisons of old ones who are destined to rule this realm, pretty much a opening the gates of hell scenario but in a slightly more Lovecraft fashion, and for argument sake I could also chuck in other Lovecraft inspired films like From Beyond and The Mist too.. But I’ll leave that for another list.9/10

Also, I guess i have to mention…

Little NickyLittle Nicky (2000) a comedy so I was forced to watch it while babysitting my sister one day… It’s bearable I suppose. Nicky (Adam Sandler), one of the sons of Satan has to stop his brothers from opening up hell… Tarantino has a cameo as a priest, it’s a funny family thing but there are boobies, head boobies.. it was painful to watch, possibly my own personal hell.  3/10