I went into this film not expecting much; from what I had seen in the trailer it looked like a cheap sequel to a cult classic. In the trailer, we see Stephen Craven (played by Nick Eversman) and Nico Bradley (played by Jay Gillespie) heading down to Mexico for a road trip. But during the journey they find the puzzle box (you know, the key to Hell’s front door, basically) and they release Pinhead and something very bad happens. We then find ourselves with Stephen and Nico’s family, which have fallen apart since the boys’ disappearance. Stephen’s sister finds the puzzle box, opens it, and now Stephen has appeared from nowhere with only the memories of hell to tell his family of. Pinhead (originally played by Doug Bradley) is being played by a new actor – Stephan Smith Collins. Though he had a lot to live up to, I feel that he presented pinhead very well.
When a movie is made only so that Dimension doesn’t lose the rights to the Hellraiser series, it doesn’t bode well. But for the time given to film the movie and its budget I thought it was quite a good movie. Yes, it had some flaws, but sometimes you have to see what the film is really offering. First of all, the series has been falling down since the fourth film, which was the last Hellraiser film to be based off Clive Barker’s novels, until now. So the new film is based off his work, which is a great idea. The other films between the fourth and Revelations should only be watched if you are a true Hellraiser fan. They really have nothing to do with the Hellraiser series and are more just random horror film scripts that have been merged with a cult classic. The plot of Revelations worked well for how twisted the films are and didn’t seem over the top in any way. The characters at times seemed real, but other times seemed exaggerated. The effects for the Cenobites are always fun to see in every Hellraiser film, and this new gang of Cenobites looked just as awesome as they did in the first movie. It was great to see that they concentrated what little budget they had in all the right places.
Taking everything into consideration, the film was actually quite good. Many other reviews have slammed the film for changing the main actor, but the new one did a great job of living up to the original, and I quite enjoyed that he didn’t copy the character completely. He seemed more brutal in this one, like this is his job and no one steps in his way of doing his job. It was a very refreshing take on the character of Pinhead. The film is very dark and sometimes I didn’t want to continue watching due to the brutality and how evil Nico is not caring for anybody but himself. The characters can seem overdone sometimes but to be honest I expected this. Some parts of the
film had me on the edge of my seat, and the ending was unexpected and made me want more. For a film that was filmed on such a low budget, the effects were done well and weren’t too over the top. Revelations focused more on a storyline and less on blood and guts, which makes it a diamond in the rough of today’s horror films.
All in all it was nothing special, but for a fan of the series or someone who just found out about Hellraiser I would recommend watching it. I hope in the future to see a higher budget, which could help bring Pinhead back to being a horror icon. Since the film was actually something I would consider watching again, I am going to give it 3 out of 5 Nerdskulls.