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HELLRAISER (2022, USA) – 6.5/10

Another cult horror film is due for a remake, reboot or whatever, but unlike many classics of the genre that have been butchered by various amateurs in recent years, Clive Barker’s story was received here by someone with sense and talent. David Bruckner has previously presented himself with good horror films such as “Ritual”, especially “The Night House”, and his “Hellraiser” is not a classic remake of the 1987 film or an equally good sequel, but the story is quite modernized and adapted to the times, but then again in the spirit of the classics. Of all the horror movies I used to watch as a kid, I think I was most afraid of Pinhead, that creepy demon with needles sticking out of his face and looking like he fell out of some sado-maso industrial video. That demon that enjoys suffering, pain, torture, primal evil that appears from another dimension when summoned by a mechanical device that this time will fall into the hands of those who didn’t need it.

Admittedly, we don’t have the classic Pinhead here, but the creatures called Cenobites have a new leader, and this time it’s the Priestess (Jamie Clayton), also recognizable by her needle face. In the prologue, we follow a hedonistic party organized by occultist and collector, millionaire Roland Voight (Goran Višnjić), where he will sacrifice one of the guests in order to earn an audience with Leviathan. We will find out how that audience went some six years later, when the mechanical puzzle will accidentally end up with ex-addict Riley (Odessa Azion). After she summons the Cenobites, that is, those lovable companions of deformed and grotesque humanoids who look like they fell out of a “Tool” video, they will ask her for a human sacrifice, and that human sacrifice will be her brother.

After her brother disappears, Riley and her company will realize that it must be related to the mechanical puzzle and will try to find the meanwhile missing Voight. And although the story of the new “Hellraiser” itself is not overly inventive, even a bit generic, it was quite solid. And quite scary and creepy, regardless of the fact that all of us who have seen movies from this franchise know very well what awaits us when those grotesque figures from hell appear. But Bruckner and the team pretty much redesigned not only the leader of the Cenobites, but also that whole infernal society that once again makes the blood run cold. Although we would probably survive without this reboot, it is a film that should satisfy the taste of fans of horror and evil designed in the mind of the genius Clive Barker, who was one of the producers of the film.