Fifth entry in the series reps the feature directing bow of Scott Derrickson (Doctor Strange) with nary a hint of talent or wit. Interesting that the script started as a stand alone film with no 'Hellraiser' element but was adapted into the franchise as a request from Miramax. Pinhead only appears fleetingly without any real menace even in the films' so-called resolution. A definite miss/mess.
There are some good ideas on display here and I like that the story tries to do something different with the whole Hellraiser-schtick. Too bad that both acting and production is kind of uneven. It almost feels like the cenobites were thrown in just to make it a Hellraiser movie when it could have worked without them as a riff on Jacob's Ladder instead.
A vast improvement over the dreadful third instalment, this mildly interesting morality tale cribs a few of the more powerful and evocative elements from The Shining, Twin Peaks and Jacob's Ladder, but fails to attach them to an interesting or substantial protagonist, resulting in a sluggish and very generic procedural only rarely punctuated by some extraordinarily macabre images.
I watched this 5th installment hoping to find a decent sequel and i partially did. Taking a different direction ,the director reduced the cheap,gory murders for the sake of shock in favour of a more symbolic,surreal approach.While not a masterpiece, Inferno deliveres a somehow respectable message.
The music is incredibly misjudged and the film occasionally descends into silliness, but for the first hour or so this film borders on greatness... It seems like the unholy child of SE7EN and Jacob's Ladder and at times is truly terrifying. For this, I forgive it its shortcomings. And hey, even when the film is silly it's still very fun. It doesn't descend into the trash of, say, the last 15 minutes of Exorcist 3...
Inferno is no Eric Rohmer but I did enjoy the morality tale aspect of it, & the director seemed to be fond of David Lynch and Adrian Lyne films. The imagery is more inventive and the production looked like it had a lot of fun; the only problem is Pinhead doesn't really have enough screentime or explanation for why he's running the show. --PolarisDiB