On the surface, Lord of Illusions has very little to do with the Hellraiser franchise. One is about a shrewd detective in way over his head among supernatural nonsense, while the other is all about Hell. But what if I were to tell you that they take place in the same universe? Because that's absolutely the case, straight from Mr. Clive Barker himself. So this film actually does fit into this year's October themed event, The Hellbound Halloween! But I'm getting ahead of myself.
There's something about franchises--particularly big horror franchises--where it sure seems like each one has a film that just refuses to stick in my head. I wrote about Children of the Corn: The Gathering just last year, but even then I still only remember the barest of details without looking at the post. Something about a fever...? In that same vein, was it Leprechaun 2 or Leprechaun 3 where he was at a pawn shop? And A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master is just a total blank to me. The point being I've seen all 10 Hellraiser films before, but had no memory of what the hell Hellraiser: Deader was about. But now I've rewatched it and can safely say that I'll most likely forget every detail of this boring movie--again--by next month, if not next week.
I've seen all ten Hellraiser movies before, but most of them were a long time ago. I remembered the first two adhering to Mr. Clive Barker's vision and being pretty good, the last two were absolute dog shit, and the ones in the middle were hit or miss. So I went into Hellraiser III: Hell on Earth not expecting much. They're brining back Pinhead after his noble sacrifice in Hellbound: Hellraiser II? Already starting on a bad foot. But turns out this was better than I remember, in part because it has something intersting to say about abusive relationships.
The Hellbound Halloween continues! It's a reference to The Hellbound Heart, the story by Mr. Clive Barker that Hellraiser is based on, by the way. This is the last film in the franchise that Barker had a direct hand in, which is a little concerning since it's only the second film. Yup, from here on out the quality steadily decreases--although I remember Hellraiser: Inferno being decent--until we hit the bottom of the barrel with the last two. But that's something we'll touch on later in the month; right now let's end Julia's reign of evil!
Happy Halloween... month! It's October, which basically means it's already Halloween. It also means it's time to whip out my annual "review a horror movie each weekday while also covering a big horror franchise" event! This is a spiritual successor to “Chwineka Watches 31 Netflix Horror Movies for October” (or CW31NHMO for short), so don't expect a concise name for the idea as a whole from me. Anywho, the second annual event is The Hellbound Halloween, where I cover all 10 currently released Hellraiser movies and a few more morsels from Mr. Clive Barker. So let's dive into what's probably the horniest big horror franchise out there!
I'd like to make a retraction: In my Doctor Mordrid review (my second review ever on this site) I said that Pet Graveyard was a movie from The Asylum. It turns out that it's actually from Uncork'd Entertainment, which is similar in that both companies make bad movies, but Uncork'd seems to have less production value than the Asylum. So with that damning statement, let's tackle another entry from my "movies I have referenced" list!
Welcome back to October of the Corn! Today we're talking about Children of the Corn: The Gathering (the "IV" on the poster and generally accepted title doesn't appear in the movie), the most forgettable one in the entire franchise. Pretty impressive, right? Fields of Terror has the kid who looks like an Oriental shorthair cat; Isaac's Return has the return of Isaac (naturally); Revelation has the weird hotel; Genesis is the one in California without any corn; and the reboot and Runaway are dumb but have at least one or two things about them that I remember. I mean, fuck, this is the one that has the sex offender from Glee and even that didn't leave any sort of lasting impact on my brain! Don't worry, I'm not spending any more time on him.
I count myself lucky that my family isn't too crazy. Sure, we have members like "the one who's always drunk," but things could definitely be worse. Like, oh, for example, my mother didn't have dissociative identity disorder and then died in hospice care, my father didn't die from self-inflicted starvation, and my (nonexistent) brother didn't suffer from schizophrenia before hanging himself! Oh, and I also don't have a tense relationship with my (also nonexistent) children because one time I almost burned them alive while sleepwalking. Man, wouldn't it suck to have that kind of baggage!
By my counting, Mummy Mondays should've ended on June 1st. This is assuming that coronavirus didn't upend just about everything, Movie Night was still meeting regularly, and that we wouldn't've missed a week. But coronavirus did happen and it took me months before I decided to finish up this series by myself. It's been a weird trip full of bad sequels and rare good moments, but with Mr. Tom Cruise's 2017 The Mummy, we can finally put this monster back in its tomb.
I recently talked about the supposed trilogy pattern of "first is fine, second is superb, third is terrible," so it's interesting to watch a trilogy that breaks that pattern. 1999's The Mummy is a great movie that people love, while The Mummy Returns... exists.