Hellraiser: Hellseeker

This slight sequel to Clive Barker's ground-breaking HELLRAISER (1987), which marks the feature directing debut of cinematographer Rick Bota, picks up where HELLBOUND: HELLRAISER II(1988) left off and reintroduces the character of Kirsty Cotton (Ashley Laurence), who was dragged into the world of the Cenobites by her lustful stepmother and her stepmother's...read more

Reviewed by Maitland McDonagh
Rating:

This slight sequel to Clive Barker's ground-breaking HELLRAISER (1987), which marks the feature directing debut of cinematographer Rick Bota, picks up where HELLBOUND: HELLRAISER II(1988) left off and reintroduces the character of Kirsty Cotton (Ashley Laurence), who was dragged into the world of the Cenobites by her lustful stepmother and her stepmother's demon lover. It opens with Trevor (Dean Winters) and his wife Kirsty in their car, talking and laughing. Then there's an accident: The car goes off the road and into a river. Trevor escapes and dives back under to rescue Kirsty, but the car door jams and she drowns in front of his eyes. Trevor wakes up in the hospital, asking for Kirsty and not realizing that the accident was more than a month ago. In fact, there are all kinds of things he can't remember and he's troubled by blinding headaches and freakish nightmares that keep sending him back to the emergency room. Worse, he discovers that Kirsty's body wasn't found in the car and the police suspect him of murder, though they lack the evidence to charge him. Trevor tries to pick up the pieces of his life, as flashbacks to events preceding the accident disrupt his day-to-day activities and, taken together, paint a picture of Trevor that he neither recognizes as himself nor likes in the least. He betrayed Kirsty with a series of other women &#151 many of whom have subsequently turned up dead, victims of an as-yet-uncaught serial killer — was plotting something with a co-worker and, shortly before the crash, he bought Kirsty a gift — a puzzle box Hellraiser veterans will recognize as the Lament Configuration. Has Trevor done things so awful he can't bring himself to remember, or is there more to the story? The movie's rubber-reality hijinks are familiar stuff to horror fans, but screenwriters Carl DuPre and Timothy Day cook up some slick twists, especially where Kirsty is concerned. Fans of the series may be disappointed to see so little of Barker's sadistic Cenobites, but while they're used sparingly, they're used to good effect.

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