Hellraiser (2022) Horror Movie Review


The 2022 reboot of the iconic horror franchise “Hellraiser” has been a topic of much discussion and anticipation among fans and newcomers alike. Directed by David Bruckner, known for his work on “The Night House” and “The Ritual,” this new installment aims to reinvigorate the series while paying homage to Clive Barker’s original creation.

The film introduces us to Riley, portrayed by Odessa A’zion, a former addict grappling with grief and her own demons. The narrative follows her harrowing journey as she encounters the infamous Cenobites after meddling with a mysterious puzzle box that her brother Matt, played by Brandon Flynn, had warned her against. The Cenobites, led by a new iteration of Pinhead, now played by Jamie Clayton, promise a world of unimaginable pleasure and pain, blurring the lines between the two.

Bruckner’s “Hellraiser” is a visually striking piece, with a dark and gothic aesthetic that captures the essence of the original while carving out its own identity. The film’s pacing, however, has been a point of contention. Critics have noted that while the movie pays a loving tribute to Barker’s work, it sometimes falls into a rhythm that can feel halting and unfocused. This is particularly evident in the character development and the interplay between the human drama and the supernatural horror.

The Cenobites, as always, are a highlight, with their grotesque designs and otherworldly presence. They remain a fascinating aspect of the “Hellraiser” lore, and Bruckner’s film does not shy away from showcasing their sadistic allure. The puzzle box, too, retains its status as a character in its own right, its intricate design and the lore surrounding it adding depth to the story.

The film’s reception has been mixed, with some praising it as a gift to long-suffering fans after numerous less impressive sequels, while others feel it doesn’t quite escape the shadow of the original’s visceral impact. It’s been described as a movie that doesn’t necessarily need to exist but can be enjoyable, especially for those who haven’t revisited the original in some time.

In the Nutshell

The 2022 “Hellraiser” stands as a stylish and respectful nod to its predecessors, offering enough visual flair and narrative twists to entertain. It may not surpass the groundbreaking nature of Barker’s original, but it adds a fresh chapter to the “Hellraiser” saga that will likely satisfy those looking for a dose of gothic horror. Whether it will stand the test of time as the original has remains to be seen, but for now, it provides a darkly intriguing experience for horror enthusiasts. [3 out of 5].

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Genre: Demon

You can watch on: 

  • Hulu


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