Hellraiser: Inferno (2000) Film Review

This morning I lost my Hellraiser virginity. I sat down to watch my first venture into this ‘critically acclaimed’ series. I say critically acclaimed… what I actually mean is ‘strange’. The only thing that majorly bugged me about Hellraiser: Inferno was the fact that the good solid story was ruined by the final 20 minutes, when it felt more like Willow than a horror movie. Anyway, without further ado, let’s get stuck in!

The acting in this film felt genuine. I generally felt sorry for the sleazy detective despite the fact he was set up to be a traitor and a cheat, this was partly down to the acting. The character made a few stupid choices but that’s not the actors fault. The actor who played our protagonist is Craig Sheffer, One Tree Hill’s Keith Scott. His acting was good and for the most part I was impressed. The other actors weren’t too bad either and generally, the acting was good. Acting Rating – 7/10.

The story was my greatest critique of this film. What started off with a generally entertaining hunt for a serial killer turned into a fantasy adventure film with zombies in it. This was not the ending I desired for a film like this as it ruined all the suspense built up over the film, the final scene was quite clever, I’ll give the writers that, but the final 20 minutes in general really let this film down. Story Rating – 5/10.

The cinematography in this film it was quite basic, as you would expect for a horror movie, so I will judge the film on the basis that it is not necessarily supposed to look beautiful in every way. There were some really nice shots in this film and some clever camerawork helped me suspend my disbelief in some cases however on the whole, it was fairly basic. Cinematography Rating – 6/10.

 I am a big fan of music in movies. I believe it helps create atmosphere, tension and even adrenaline in some cases. However, the music in Hellraiser: Inferno was a dull score and upon inspection of the composer of this music, I found it is the same man responsible for the score of 1995’s Mortal Kombat. This music really was average but I didn’t expect much in the first place. Music Rating – 5/10

The creativity of this film was pretty impressive, an original concept that took some aspects from ancient mythology and some from a episode of CSI – it was no groundbreaking idea but really did add to how much I enjoyed the film. Writer Scott Derrickson is famous for writing last years ‘Sinister‘ and I was impressed with his writing for this film, not so much for the story itself but for the whole creativeness and premise of the movie. Creativity Rating – 7/10.

The Special Effects in this film were good, for a film produced in 2000, I was impressed. It was no Jurassic Park but I liked them. The blood and gore looked realistic and the CGI/Costumed Demons were good looking (not in an attractiveness sense, style-wise), apart from Pinhead’s blatant CG look, I enjoyed the design and special effects in this film, perhaps more than I did any other element. Special Effects Rating – 8/10.

Finally, the suspense. It was quite suspenseful when our protagonist arrived at certain places and I found some scenes very tense – which I presume is what the director wanted to create an effect of. However, there was a real lack of these scenes and I was disappointed that there weren’t more of them. Suspense Rating – 7/10.

To conclude, Hellraiser: Inferno was an average movie by anyone’s standards. I enjoyed it, unlike the catastrophic Def-Con 4 which I reviewed last time. Hellraiser: Inferno has however not set a good standard in my mind for the series and I’m going to have to seriously consider whether or not it’s worth my time watching the rest. 

Overall Star Rating – 3 Stars

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