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Hellraiser: Inferno

3.2 out of 5 stars 181 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

A spine-tingling thriller, HELLRAISER: INFERNO is the next inescapably terrifying chapter in the heart-stopping HELLRAISER series! It's the powerful story of a shady L.A. detective (Craig Sheffer -- THE PROGRAM, A RIVER RUNS THROUGH IT) who finds himself lost in a darkly nightmarish world of evil when he solves the mysterious puzzle box that releases the diabolical demon, Pinhead! As those around him begin to meet tragic fates, he sets out to conquer the horrifying Pinhead and escape eternal hell! Also starring popular Nicholas Turturro (TV's NYPD BLUE, EXCESS BAGGAGE), HELLRAISER: INFERNO combines great special effects and relentless thrills to deliver exciting, edge-of-your-seat entertainment!

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This is the first Hellraiser sequel that doesn't bear the imprimatur of creator Clive Barker, and that makes it a sequel that many Hellraiser fans will want to disown, but they shouldn't dismiss it altogether. Now under the control of Miramax producers Bob and Harvey Weinstein, the franchise takes an entirely new direction, and Inferno is primarily a detective thriller in which a corrupt cop (Craig Sheffer) takes on a case that will judge his soul and, ultimately, damn him forever. His judge and jury will be Pinhead (Doug Bradley) and his legion of twisted Cenobites, but before he can be tried and condemned, Sheffer's cop will watch as those around him are killed off one by one, leaving a trail of blood (and telltale severed fingers) that leads back to the torment of his own youth.

So, what you really have here is a variation on It's a Wonderful Life and A Christmas Carol, with all the themes reversed to hellish extremes. The plot doesn't hold together all that well, but you can't fault the film for establishing and maintaining a heavily somber tone. This is pretty dark stuff, after all, and although Hellraiser fans will lament that Pinhead's appearance is relatively brief, he's presented here in an intriguing new light--not merely an icon of pain and suffering, but a giver of counsel and justice to those (like Sheffer's cop) who arguably deserve the eternal anguish they will receive. Does that make Pinhead a good guy? If this otherwise lugubrious sequel achieves anything, it's that it raises that question and lets the viewer decide. --Jeff Shannon


Special Features

  • "Secrets of Hellraiser Revealed" A conversation with Doug Bradley (Pinhead)

Product Details

  • Actors: Craig Sheffer, Nicholas Turturro, James Remar, Doug Bradley, Nicholas Sadler
  • Directors: Scott Derrickson
  • Writers: Scott Derrickson, Clive Barker, Paul Harris Boardman
  • Producers: Bob Weinstein, David Matthew Jordan, Harvey Weinstein, Jesse Berdinka
  • Format: Anamorphic, Color, Dolby, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    R
    Restricted
  • Studio: Dimension
  • DVD Release Date: October 10, 2000
  • Run Time: 99 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (181 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00004Y634
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #108,218 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Hellraiser: Inferno" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By A Customer on October 26, 2000
Format: DVD
After having watched all four Hellraiser movies, I think Hellraiser Inferno is completely different. Well, I have got the feeling that a lot of true Hellraiser fans won't like this chapter. The protagonist of this movie isn't very sympathic and friendly: he takes drugs, sleeps with hookers(even though he has got a beautiful wife) and denounces his partner at the police station. A lot of people will despise this character and turn off the tv. However I stayed with this broken character and it is quite interesting to see how he unleashes the horrors of the box. His evil character traits are essential for the end of movie. Another flaw is that Pinhead only appears for two or three minutes on the screen. Nonetheless the movie deals with the desperate search of the protagonist for a mysterious person called the Engineer, who is connected with the box. If you accept the fact that this Hellraiser movie is completely different from the other parts, you'll enjoy a great and dark horror thriller.
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In 2000, the "Hellraiser" series made the transition to direct-to-video cinema, following the disappointing commercial performance of Bloodline. This may have been cause for many fans to grieve, and sure enough, "Inferno" here doesn't seem to be among the more popular additions to the series, but personally, I consider this entry to be a bit of a revival for the franchise. However briefly, "Inferno" returns the series to a pure horror standard, abandoning the sci-fi blending of the last two features. While the trademark gore has been toned down considerably, you're still looking at a violent, scary movie here.

The story: corrupt detective Joseph Thorne (Craig Sheffer, A River Runs Through It) sees the sleazy, cushy life he's carved out for himself turn into a nightmare when a brutal crime scene leads him to the Lament Configuration, opening the door to a mind-bending case regarding a mysterious "Engineer" and terrifying apparitions.

"Inferno" is a stand-alone story in the "Hellraiser" universe: it's the first movie which neither follows the plot thread laid in the original film nor attempts to significantly develop any existing character (i.e. Pinhead). The movie plays from the protagonist's perspective, hardly referencing any past canon and making every new discovery about the ways of the Cenobites scarier. What I love most about this is that it throws a new shroud of mystery over Pinhead and his fellows: after seeing the Cenobites thoroughly deconstructed during the last two movies, it's great to have them presented as enigmatic monsters again.
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Directed by Scott Derrickson (Sinister, Deliver Us from Evil), this fifth installment to the Hellraiser franchise continues to follow the pleasant trend of presenting a new infernal chapter in yet a different style from its predecessors; never does a sequel feel like a rehashed facsimile. Hellraiser was a dark chamber thriller fueled by lustful desire, Hellbound more of a curious exploration of Barker’s Hell-ish Labyrinth and his Cenobites, Hell on Earth was a troped-up action/horror movie chronicling Pinhead’s own escape from Hell, Bloodline an anthology story illustrating the creation and lineage of the Puzzle Box, and now we find a crime thriller neatly packaged in the dark trappings of the Puzzle Box. There may be an admittedly significant drop in quality in the third and fourth films from the original two, and yet another such drop for this fifth and direct-to-video installment, but it remains comforting that we never seem to find the same story recycled and retold with different victims.

Our latest story revolves around Detective Thorne (Craig Sheffer; Nightbreed), who is perhaps the least likable protagonist of the series so far as a drug-using adulterer who neglects his family and frames his partner. Thorne discovers the Puzzle Box and some macabre clues at a murder scene where the victim was apparently torn apart in his luxurious home, decorated and candlelit for an occult ritual. Thorne solves the Puzzle Box and encounters some Cenobites, but is neither shredded and taken to Hell nor forced to bargain for his soul. Instead he wakes up (as if from a dream) and is occasionally haunted by Cenobites. Well this is a strange and welcome change…

The franchise continues to expand the Hellraiser mythology, although with less impact here than before.
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I am a fan of the Hellraiser series, a movie series popular enough to spawn several sequels. I loved Hellraiser for the concept of pain and desire. I watched this film with no doubts. It was very enjoyable. Thorne, the main character seems to be the "bad" guy. It is in a noir style also. Thorne has a very dirty background, for doing many criminal activities such as drug snorting and cheating on his wife by spending nights with prostitues.

At the scene of his previous case. A familiar face turns up at the scene, barely recognizable, a acquaintance he has tortured plenty in school. Thorne is quickly interested at the several items found, a child's finger inside a candle and atop that, a puzzle box.

Eventually Thorne is overrun by his curiousity and steals the box and solves it. Then he finds himself in another world, leaving the room and encountered by cenobites and others. He runs into Pinhead and kills him, Thorne will think he is still alive, but he is not, he is in his own personal psychological Hell. From then on, he will experience the losses of people close to him, his snitch Nenonen and his family quickly get destroyed, and eventually he find out that he is trapped in that psycho Hell of his for the rest of eternity. He will have to experience the last few days of his life over and over.

A great storyline for a Hellraiser and recommended for not the fans of Pinhead, but the Hellraiser concept itself, it dosen't focus on the flesh and desire of people, it focuses on other stuff. A concept much dreadful and unholy then the mutilation of people. 5 out of 5 for a great Hellraiser.

~Kevin
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