Although the brand new “Hellraiser” is billed as “reimagining” Clive Barker’s 1987 horror movie, it’s not just like the title ever went away, elevating six direct-to-video productions (the final one in 2018) after the 4 theatrical films. If you one way or the other skipped, ballpark, 9 of these, this direct-to-Hulu model presents a credibly creepy retelling in an over-inflated package deal that will profit from a number of focused pinpricks.
The movie begins promisingly sufficient, introducing “ER” alum Goran Visnjic, taking part in the standard billionaire with unhealthy intentions who seeks to accumulate a mysterious puzzle field that may used to summon Cenobites, supernatural beings from one other dimension whose ugly appetites are the stuff “R” scores are product of.
The narrative then shifts to Riley (Odessa A’zion of Netflix’s “Grand Army”), a younger lady scuffling with habit who winds up stealing from the flawed storage facility, thrusting her and people round her (together with her brother) into peril and creating incentive for her to decipher what could be taking place.
First affected by eerie visions, she’s ultimately confronted by Pinhead, right here performed by Jamie Clayton (“Sense8”), who offers a way of menace below what has at all times gave the impression to be the world’s most laborious-to-apply make-up, nonetheless iconic it could be.
Reuniting the group behind “The Night House,” the movie was directed by David Bruckner, with veteran style author/producer David S. Goyer sharing credit score for the story with screenwriters Ben Collins and Luke Piotrowski. While the plot lastly hyperlinks Riley’s arc to the opening, at a full two hours, the narrative lags because it tries to construct some sense of connection to the supporting gamers, main as much as a protracted climactic sequence that’s characteristically bloody however lower than thrilling, together with what’s maybe greatest described as a slow-speed chase.
“Hellraiser” is clearly working inside pretty well-defined parameters, and leveraging 35 years of display screen historical past, delivers on probably the most fundamental stage when it comes to particular results and gore, with out – the “reimagining” declare however – bringing a lot freshness to the system. It additionally matches Hulu’s technique of premiering films culled from well-known franchises, with “Prey” – from the “Predator” universe – among the many current examples.
For these simply in search of one other repair of Pinhead and the Cenobites, that’s in all probability sufficient to get the job carried out. But as soon as “Hellraiser” has made that, er, level, the film feels extra like a snack – or ‘chunk – than a meal.
“Hellraiser” premieres October 7 on Hulu.