Pinhead may be one of the horror genre’s most recognizable icons, but fans of the original Hellraiser movie should prepare for something completely different when the reimagining becomes available October 7 for viewers with a Hulu subscription. From what we know about Hellraiser, not only has the plot been changed up, with the Cenobites being summoned in a different way than the 1987 classic, but Jamie Clayton is making history as the first transgender woman to portray the iconic character. The actress debuted her sharp look on Instagram in September ahead of the film’s premiere at Fantastic Fest, and early reactions for Hellraiser indicates the new Pinhead is “perfect.”
Now, with the release just days away, critics’ full reviews are out to give audiences an idea of whether or not they want to grab the microwave popcorn and settle in for this new take on an old fright fest. So let’s see what they have to say, starting with CinemaBlend’s review of Hellraiser. Our own Eric Eisenberg rates the reboot 4 stars out of 5, saying that director David Bruckner has made a movie that is deeply rooted in the franchise, but still has a fresh story to tell.
Sarah Musnicky of Nightmarish Conjurings is impressed with the updates made to Clive Barker’s original concept. While the reboot features less sex, its exploration of addiction is intriguing, and it works. Odessa A’zion makes the role of Riley relatable, and this critic wishes she could catch the movie on the big screen:
Katie Rife of Polygon says while director David Bruckner takes liberties with the source material, he stays loyal to the OG story’s spirit, and in a franchise where the multiple sequels have been hit or miss, the critic thinks this movie ranks near the top:
Matt Donato of IGN agrees with the above assessment that the reimagining treats Clive Barker’s vision with reverence, rating the movie a “Great” 8 out of 10. This critic praises the new Pinhead and calls this “one of the best Hellraiser films since the original”:
Jude Dry of IndieWire grades the movie a B, saying that while David Bruckner’s film is entertaining, it’s been scrubbed of all the “kinky perversion” that attracted many fans to the franchise in the first place. According to the review:
Does this sound like a movie you need to make a part of your Halloween horror viewing? If so, you don’t have long to wait. Hellraiser will be released on Hulu on Friday, October 7.
In the meantime, be sure to check out CinemaBlend’s interviews with Jamie Clayton and other stars from the reimagining, and see what else is in store this fall and beyond with our list of upcoming horror movies. While this one won’t see a theatrical release, you can take a look at our 2022 Movie Release Schedule to see what is coming soon and start planning your next movie outing.
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Heidi Venable is a Content Producer for CinemaBlend, a mom of two and a hard-core '90s kid. She started freelancing for CinemaBlend in 2020 and officially came on board in 2021. Her job entails writing news stories and TV reactions from some of her favorite prime-time shows like Grey's Anatomy and The Bachelor. She graduated from Louisiana Tech University with a degree in Journalism and worked in the newspaper industry for almost two decades in multiple roles including Sports Editor, Page Designer and Online Editor. Unprovoked, will quote Friends in any situation. Thrives on New Orleans Saints football, The West Wing and taco trucks.