Wednesday, October 21, 2015

F This Movie! - Hellraiser

Patrick and Doug will tear your soul apart.

Download this episode here. (88.4 MB)

Subscribe to F This Movie! in iTunes.

Listen to F This Movie! on Stitcher.

Also discussed this episode: Housebound (2014), Teeth (2007), Tales of Halloween (2015), I Spit on Your Grave (2010), Knock Knock (2015)


  1. I would totally watch Doug's version of 'Hellraiser'.

  2. I've been a fthismovie fan for a little under a year now, and this is the second time you guys have taken a request from me (the first was for Patrick to write about his Italian Horror conversion). You guys are awesome! This didn't disappoint a bit. Great stuff as always! I too am a big fan of the film, but I haven't seen any of the sequels. I'm planning on watching 2 tomorrow, but I can't promise I'll go any further.

    This movie is also a little darker than I usually respond to, but I so love the practical effects and just how crazy imaginative it all is.

    1. You have good ideas! I'm so sorry that I couldn't find your original suggestion and couldn't call you out by name. I feel terrible about that. But I'm glad you dug the show. Thanks again!

    2. Hey, no problem at all. Thank you guys!

  3. Great podcast, guys, with a lot to stir the ol' brain.

    There's a great line in Hellraiser II where Pinhead says it's "not the hands, but the desire" that summons the Cenobites. From this, we can extrapolate that Kirsty's curiosity, on some deep level, brings the Cenobites to her. Then, at the end, it's her desire to be rid of them saves the day, so it's never "just" the box. Also, there is a religious angle to the movie, in that the house has Christian iconography, only it's discarded in hallways or outside with the trash (kind of). You could argue that this discarding is what allows Frank and the evils of Hell to do their thing inside the house.

    Still, all this talk of logic and rules is part of a much wider discussion. I personally fear that the internet's demand for flawless logic in every story is actually hurting a lot of movies and books. Yes, common sense and internal consistency are necessary, but my concern is that we are losing the sense of wonder (or, in Hellraiser's case, the sense of being in a nightmare) by obsessing over every nitpicky detail in the story's logic. Better to let the movie's craziness and pure imagination take you for a ride rather fuss over how any of it is realistically possible.

    My two cents and whatnot.

    1. Super intelligent comment sir. I agree on the internet's ridiculous demand for logic. But also, like Patrick so often says, our demand for logic often plays in to how much the movie works for us. For example, I see Jurassic World this year and moan and complain about the illogic of that mess. But then I see Goosebumps and forgive everything because its just so much fun for me!

    2. I think this is a great comment.

      Although I'm sure you're not referring to ME (smiley face), I don't necessarily want/need everything to be "perfect." But the tighter a story is, the more (for me) it seems to click.

      And I think Daniel's last bit is true with all of us -- if you don't like something (for whatever reason), it's easy to point to how illogical it is.

      I really like the Hellraiser II quote, and I could absolutely see it applying here. However, that's never even hinted at in the first film. But it does kind of take care of that problem. But still ... (you see how I go around and around and around)

      Likewise, I really like the idea of movie-as-nightmare. But, again, that wasn't my takeaway. Therefore, I put forth my logic argument (flawed though it may be).

      In other words, because I don't respond to the visuals/feel/vibe like you guys do, I naturally fall back on a.) it doesn't work for me, and b.) here are tangible reasons why (i.e., logical loopholes).

      But Patrick's right (he loves to hear me say that) -- I will probably revisit this one every Halloween, despite the fact that I don't particularly "like" it.

    3. Personally, I've never watched Hellraiser because a friend I had at the time who was into S & M said it was too freaky for him - the lack of control, you see.

      As this site's most notorious "nitpicker" I do agree that you can't have absolutes in every movie. However, I also agree with David Gerrold who wrote a critique of "Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom" at the time that the movie (and others like it) asked for far too much suspension of disbelief from their audience. Things like their surviving falling from the plane in a rubber raft, the rail cart jumping the gap but landing safely, etc. Meanwhile, you're showing your villain pulling still beating hearts out of people whose skin just opens up for that purpose.

      A comment about "Knock, Knock" - going by another review I've heard of the film, it sounds as thought it would make a really great drinking game. Take a shot every time Reeves could have easily gotten away. Take another when he could but doesn't head butt one of them (because they're always getting up in his face). Take three shots when the wife's assistant would rather confront the intruders about finishing their destruction jobs on the sculptures rather than untie the guy he found in the closet. Chug a whole bottle while Reeves' character does nothing during the several hours it must take to dig that hole in his backyard...until they're just about done, that is. Drink a soda every time these two skanks tell him that they're 15 years old and he believes them.... "Nitpicky" things like that. :-)

  4. Thanks for the podcast guys

    For the second time only after American Beauty being the first :) I am going to disagree with our bossman and go with Doug, For some reason I never really got into the Hellraiser movies, Has anyone seen them all? is that even a viable question? Does it matter?

    Interestingly this month im watching the franchises and I am making my way through most of them but at the beginning of the month I asked if someone else was brave enough to watch all the Hellraiser movies this month as I dont think I can do it? and I even watched all 4 Wishmasters which is not easy, and no one was up for it, I have vauge memories of this film but I never feel like wanting to revisit it, I agree its an important film and I have met Doug Bradley and he was great, but I never really fancy watching it, its been well over ten years so it would be good to see how I feel about it now, I will give it a go in November

  5. I just watched Hellraiser for the first time today, it was an interesting horror film dripping with atmosphere, and it had an outstanding score by Christopher Young that elevates the film to a certain degree. Anyway, I can't wait to hear your thoughts on the movie in the general when I listen to this podcast.

  6. Yep, I get you Doug. I like most horror films which includes films Saw through Paranormal Activity, but I HATED this one. I remember watching this at a GF house and feeling absolutely disgusted, violated and generally gross. Mind you I was in middle school, but still to this day I don't want to revisiit that feeling. Much to everyones point maybe it has to do with...whatever?? I understand how it may be a landmark in horror film history, but I consider it KAPU (off limits). All I know is that I have no desire to revisit this movie, horror classic or not! (unless the siren song of Bromley pulls me back...stop siren stop) Thanks for sacking up and watching it to go head to head with the horror guru and creating a fun podcast. My recommendation is hit "Tucker & Dale vs Evil" to cleanse your pallet.

  7. I agree with Epler completely... This was a great idea. Awesome to hear two contrasting opinions that are both well informed. One of my favorite podcasts to date!

  8. Awwww. I amore you too, Doug.

    I fall more on the Patrick side of the "love or hate" Hellraiser argument. I don't have much to add to the conversation that hasn't already been stated, except my own personal experience with the film.

    I knew of Hellraiser long before I actually saw the movie. My father builds and paints models as a hobby and would frequently get catalogs detailing all the various figures, many of which were the iconic creatures from horror movies. When I was a cowardly little kid, I'd flip through those catalogs and freak myself out by staring at these figures, and the Hellraiser figures in particular. Something about them, all hooks and nails and other bits of metal, really bothered me.

    So, the movie kind of built up this legendary status in my mind. It was something I wanted to see, but was also terrified to watch. When I finally saw it, I couldn't help but be let down. Sure, the hooks and whatnot were gross. But the movie is really garish and kind of cornball. I didn't like it.

    And yet, I sort of did. Hellraiser has an atmosphere that is wholly unlike any other movie, part of which, I'm sure, comes from Barker's inexperience as a filmmaker. But it works. The movie's sort of dreamlike, which works with the subject matter. And it leaves you with so many questions. Repeated viewings have only increased my fondness for it.

    Last year, I made it a point to watch the entire series. Most of it is awful, although I find there's stuff to like in most every sequel except Hell World and Revelations, both of which are truly, truly awful. Both Inferno and Deader feel like movies which have the Hellraiser theme shoehorned in, but I think work in other ways. I don't really like them (Craig Sheffer -- star of Inferno -- has a belly button piercing that I somehow find more disturbing than anything the Cenobites are wearing), but I never felt compelled to stop watching them.

    Great podcast, guys. As always.

  9. Suprised the "come to daddy" lines weren't mentioned haha. Great show though. The end had me rollin'. The only thing that has ever reminded me of Hellraiser was a couple Ken Russell films. Gothic, mostly. Unmistakably British, takes place at a house, filmed through an aquarium as JB says sometimes, and gross as shit.

  10. I think the thing that bothers me most about Hellraiser is how aggressively 80's it is. Julia herself is just so...UGH. I enjoy the film, and a big part of it is just the allure of the hidden mythology of the cenobites--what 'hell' realm do they occupy, why, who created the first cenobite, etc.
    I tend to be a bit OCD with movies. So, when I went back and watched Hellraiser about 3 months ago, I also watched all 8 sequels. The most impressive feat is certainly some batshit insane guy building a giant space station into a giant Lamentation Configuration. Awesome. For whatever horrible reason, Hellworld is probably my favorite sequel. Deader is the one that is most clearly 'Bolt On Pinhead '.

    1. Without looking, I'm pretty sure Deader was definitely the one that started out as a totally different movie. Which is why Pinhead factors in for the last 30 seconds or so.

      I know people like it, but in some ways, III feels the most unlike a Hellraiser film to me. It's like a silly slasher film starring Pinhead as the central villain.