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     " Not your usual horror fare... "

      Title: Hellraiser: Hellseeker by Buena Vista Home Video

      Format: Horror DVD

      Reviewing Monkey: Dungapult

      The Hype: Pinhead is back…Again. And, as we've seen before, his life and love is to try and drag more souls into hell with him. This time there's a twist, though- it potentially seems that pinhead exists only in Trevor's potentially demented mind.

      What This Monkey Thought...

      Story and Acting: Surprisingly enough, the story in Hellseeker is actually really interesting to follow. Blatantly lifted from other mind-muck horror flicks like "Jacob's Ladder", it follows a week of Trevor's life after his car plunges into a river and his wife, who he believes drowned in the car, has disappeared. Unfortunately, his memory only comes through in flashes and pictures and he's desperate to put it all together again.
          As if all that wasn't bad enough, he's also being plagued by cryptic horror hallucinations and a rash of disappearances of women he's intimately involved with- which the police have labeled him the prime suspect for. So, suffering from amnesia and being investigated by the world's single most annoying police partners, Dean has to solve the mystery of his missing memories, ladies, and why it some time's looks like he's living in a Tool video.
          Not your usual horror fare, Hellseeker is intelligently written, excitingly presented, and well acted by Dean Winters (of Law & Order and Oz fame). How movies like this fall in the straight to video track and Jason X hits the big screen is beyond me. 3.5 out of 5

      Action: Relying more on atmosphere and suspense rather than gore and violence there is almost no action in Hellseeker. Thus, no rating.

      Visuals and Directing: Dirty, dark, and gritty- the feel in Hellseeker manages to convey the dirtier aspects of our protagonists life while only rarely letting you realize how low budget this flick really was. The shots are set up with a nice mixture of focus/out of focus and lighting for maximum creepiness and the effects always do the job when needed. 3.75 out of 5

      Sound Track: You know, I've watched this twice and I still can't really remember the soundtrack. It's creepy, it's often helping to startle scare you, but it's so subtle that it's a bit hard to keep track of. And while the Oscar committee may take exception to that I think it's great. You don't need music to set a mood- just enhance it. 4 out of 5

      DVD Extras: All the usuals: commentary, alternate scenes, effects feature, etc. All fun (though none particularly inspired) and just enough that, if you like the movie, you'll feel like you're getting an extra bang for your buck. 3.5 out of 5

      Value vs. Price: A bit pricey at $25, Hellseeker does deliver in a way a Hellraiser movie hasn't for years. Still…Twenty five bucks? Little more than I'd like to pay. 3 out of 5

      The Verdict:

       : I haven't enjoyed a movie like this since "Jacob's Ladder" and it definitely runs in the same vain. I've heard a lot of Hellraiser fans who don't like Hellseeker because it's not gory and violent enough but I found the change of pace refreshing. Fun, smart, and tense- it's a good change of pace.

      The Good: Suspenseful and twisted.

      The Bad: Light on the gore.

      The Overall Ugly: A nice addition to a horror collection.

      What it's Worth: Rental first then Market if you like it.

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