STUDIO: Buena Vista
MSRP: $29.99
Deleted Scenes

The Pitch

“It’s Hellraiser… in Bucharest! With Kari!”

The Humans

Kari Wuhrer (Fatal Conflict, Kate’s Addiction), Doug Bradley (a bunch of Hellraisers), some British people

The Nutshell

Amy Klein (Wuhrer) is an American undercover journalist dispatched (from the UK) to investigate some weirdness in Romania involving a cult called “Deaders” (hence the title, which it turns out does not actually mean “more dead”). These freakazoids choose to end their lives so they can be resurrected by their charismatic leader, who has an ambiguous connection to that peculiar puzzle box that serves as a gateway to wonderful suffering. Descending deeper into the mystery, Amy finds herself being used as a pawn by Cenobite honcho Pinhead (Bradley) to stop these Deaders, and lots of people are gruesomely shredded by chains and hooks.

"Please… must have… more… cherry pie!"

The Package

I love the cover art, with Pinhead seemingly saying “What’s up, yo?” while a giant Kari-cube spins on his crotch. There’s a shocking amount of supplements on the disc itself including two commentary tracks, with the director teaming (separately) with makeup guy Gary Tunnicliffe and Bradley, which is a little weird considering he’s not in the movie for more than ten minutes. There’s also an interesting FX feature on the flesh-tearing hooks and chains and another on the practical effects, plus a making-of featurette, a brief blooper reel, a clip on location scouting, storyboard-to-film comparisons, photo galleries and a whole bunch of deleted scenes (which is where much of the Cenobite footage wound up). Plus a good-looking anamorphic widescreen and solid 5.1 Dolby audio.

"Muahahahahaaa!! There’s only enough left… for meeeeeee!!"

The Lowdown

I sort of lost track of the Hellraiser movies after the first two… I think there was one set in outer space, and one with Craig Sheffer… but director Rick Bota has done a few movies in the series, and he seems to be getting the hang of it judging by the murk and mayhem of Deader. Of course, it’s only just superficially a Hellraiser movie – it feels like an original horror script was refurbished to incorporate Pinhead and the pain aficionados, made particularly obvious by their complete absence for 90% of the running time.

Wuhrer turns out to be nearly convincing as a tenacious reporter with a tortured past, and she’s still pretty smokin’ (I mean that literally – she constantly has a cigarette in her pouty lips, and makes smoking look remarkably sexy). The movie has a strong visual style and there are a number of effective scenes, as when Amy first encounters a victim of the Lament Box, hops on a train filled with sadomasochistic passengers, and later tries to remove a rather large knife from her own back. But considering its tenuous links to the original film (now almost 20 years old!) and Clive Barker story, ultimately Deader is only nominally qualified to call itself a Hellraiser movie.

6.5 out of 10