Hellraiser VII: Deader
Director: Rick Bota
Starring: Kari Wuhrer, Doug Bradley, Paul Rhys...
by Tom Working
The Hellraiser series seems to have followed an anthology television series format ever since Rick Bota took the director
helm. And the quality and uniqueness of the Hellraiser mythos within the realm of the films has greatly diminished with
each. In Hellseeker there seemed to be some attempt
at connection to the first "core" three films; the fourth, Bloodlines,
being mythologically expansive but unconnected in being more science fiction than horror fantasy.
Anyone who read the fantastically done Hellraiser comics
from the early to mid '90's would have abandoned the direct-to-video movie series a long time ago. I get around to the
movies only in hopes that there might be some glimmer of the original films that started it all. A compelling element of
the comic series was brought in by original story creator Clive Barker, who had been for the most part hands off on the
comic. The Harrowers, a group of mortals commissioned and imbued with powers by a bound goddess, gave an
interesting counterbalance to the world of the Cenobites, and of course something that could actually fight back with a
standing chance of surviving an encounter. This story line was carried on into its own stand alone comic.
It would make sense to me that if they wanted to keep Hellraiser afloat, that they'd take a queue from other Hellraiser
franchises and have a continuing narrative, be it those fighting against the Cenobites or the Cenobites themselves
(for Cenobite versus Cenobite versus Nightbreed, try to find the two-part Jihad
Hellraiser comic at your local store or online). People go to a Freddy movie to see Freddy take up a majority of the
screen time with his sanguine antics. The same applies to Hellraiser and the Cenobites.