Hellraiser(2022) Review


When I was 13 or 14, I was over at my big sister’s house.

I’d always been into horror. I’d watched Halloween, Children of the Corn, and a number of movies I can’t remember. Most of those were on late at night and only on HBO.

She brought out a movie and said, “I just watched this, and you have to see it.” It was the original Hellraiser. I’d never seen anything close to it. All of the blood, gore, and Cenobites. It gave me a whole new perspective on horror.

I’ve watched up to Hellraiser: Bloodline since that movie. I’ve tried watching the ones which came after. Maybe I need to give them another shot.

Because I was fascinated with the first movie, I was apprehensive about the new movie. I grew to love the original more than just about any movie I’ve watched. It’s a comfort movie for me. Lost Boys is another comfort movie. I’ll watch either of those when I’m sick.

I wasn’t sure what to expect. As the promotional materials came out, the shot of the new Pinhead, as well as the other Cenobites, I grew more anxious and excited. The first publicity still of Jamie Clayton is amazing. The other stills of the Cenobites had me more excited.

When Friday rolled around, I could sit down and watch it. I did so with nervousness and anticipation. I’d watched remakes of beloved horror movies that let me down. I’m looking at you, Pet Semetary (2019). That one was good until the end. I’d hoped for a better ending.

Then Children of the Corn (2020), which I didn’t care for either. It’s rare for me to like a remake.

Hellraiser(2022) is not a remake. It’s taking the source work, Clive Barker’s original, as well as the book, The Hellbound Heart, and taking it in another direction.

This direction floored me. I loved every minute of it. Jamie Clayton is amazing. Selina Lo is incredible as another Cenobite, but it was Odessa A’Zion as Riley that is the star.

She was incredible. I loved every scene with her.

But let’s get to the heart of this review.

The direction of the movie, the talk of addiction, and the absolutely beautiful gayness of the movie left me breathless. I wanted to see more of Colin’s (Adam Faison) and Matt’s(Brandon Flynn) relationship. I would have liked to see more of that.

The twists and turns. Riley fighting with herself over what she should or shouldn’t do.

I hope there is more of this to come. I will be waiting for it.

Halloween Kills?


I follow horror Twitter pretty close. Being a horror writer it’s a necessity. Last week after the movie came out there was all sorts of stuff on there about the movie.

Some people liked it, others hated it. I didn’t see an in between.

I got Peacock the other day for the sole reason of watching the movie. I was able to get to it today and damn. I have some thoughts.

First, let’s talk about all of the blood. There is more blood in this movie than was used in the entire bloody bed scene in the first Nightmare on Elm Street.

I don’t have a problem with blood, so let’s get that out of the way. It was the gratuitousness of it. There was blood gushing at so many places that it started to feel comical. The opening with couple, neck wound, the kid at the end, neck wound. The kills weren’t very creative. I understand that Michael isn’t Jigsaw, and I’d never want him to be, but the kills were boring.

Neck wound, neck wound, neck wound, maybe a midsection, but the neck slicing felt like a fetish was being satisfied.

Second, let’s have a discussion about the mob.

I get it, it’s supposed to be a commentary on current events, but let’s not hit everyone over the head with it. That was so in your face that it felt comical.

I like Anthony Michael Hall, his portrayal in The Dead Zone TV show is one of my favorites, but I didn’t like his reasons for doing what he did. It felt forced, but so did the whole mob action.

There are better ways to do social commentary than beating us over the head with it.

Now let’s talk about the gore, because this stood out more than the neck wounds.

The gore was over the top. Yes, it’s needed in a horror movie, but having it overwhelm the narrative was off to me. The gore for gore sake was every where.

We didn’t need to see the man’s head split open. Sometimes it’s better for the viewer to assume what his head looks like, not to show it.

I won’t talk about Big John and Little John, that’s been covered by others.

As I’ve been away from this blog for the last couple of weeks writing stories, I’ve wanted to get back, but I haven’t read or watched anything that stood out. Not until today.

My wife and I are making our way through Midnight Mass, but I feel stuck on it, and a bit bored.

I’ll try and get through it, but it may be like when my wife and I attempted Bly Manor. We stopped at the fourth episode. It was boring.

Until next time…