It’s been close to 25 years since the movie hit the screens, but no movie has ever had the same effect on me as this one did when it arrived. At the time, I was so used to seeing Clive Barker’s Hellraiser, I don’t think I knew what to expect, but Nightbreed was a clever mix of fantasy and horror and although I normally frown on reboots, this is exactly the type of film that needs to be rebooted for today’s audience.
Sure the effects where generally top notch for the nineties, but with so much unexplained and so many character’s, who’s stories were left untold, I feel this is ripe for the picking. However, the question will come up in board meetings “Is there still a fan base?” My answer would be, if you could reboot Judge Dredd you can reboot this. It’s not about a fanbase anymore, but how you market it that matters. There are a number of films that came up from scratch and have done well and with so many horror and comic book conventions around the world, a few dollars would be all we needed to resurrect the dead.
I look at Nightbreed as the Pokemon of horror flicks. There were so many monsters in this film and all with their own unique abilities, that marketing would be a snap. Give each character their moment and a bad ass line and you’ve gotta hit. Just think of the potential.
Another way to market this film, is give it a comic book, something that delivers the back story of every character. Did they transform or were they born that way? Are they from the U.S or from all over the world? How old is each monster and what powers do they posses? You see where I am going here?
If you’ve seen the movie, you know the lead character Boone/Cabal, is the tamest looking monster in the whole film. Well..we could beef that up…hell, give the guy some demonic looking wings even. Winged critters always make for good car chase scenes.
I’m realizing, as I write this, that a lot of you would probably like to know what this film is about.
Nightbreed is based on a book by Clive Barker called Cabal and the story goes like this…
The film features Craig Sheffer as Aaron Boone, an unstable mental patient led to believe by his doctor (David Cronenberg) that he is a serial killer. Tracked down by the police as well as by his doctor (the actual murderer) and his girlfriend (Anne Bobby), Boone eventually finds refuge in an abandoned cemetery called Midian, among a community or “tribe” of monsters and outcasts – known as the “Nightbreed” – that hides from humanity.
The film was unfortunately a flop when it released in 1991. The mistake Hollywood made with Nightbreed, was they didn’t know what kind of film it was. Clive Barker was known for his work with Hellraiser, so the tendency was to promote the film as a horror, but that’s where they went horribly wrong. The film is more fantasy than horror. Sure there are some gory moments and satanic imagery, but it’s based more in myth and ancient lore than it is in the occult. If Guillermo Del Toro, Neil Gaiman or Peter Jackson had been around back then a.k.a huge, this film would’ve been done right.
Watching the movie now, I see so many missed opportunities, to expound on a world that, for all intents and purposes, is as vast as Middle Earth. Instead we get this hodge podge of imagery, that doesn’t make a lot of sense, but you want it to. From the cave paintings in the opening credits to the dream sequence when we see the Nightbreed being persecuted “Inquisition” style.
Some of these mysteries are supposedly explained in Cabal:The Directors Cut, that just released, but according to several horror sites it does nothing to elevate the film as a whole. It’s more or less a think piece or blue print, if you will, of the differences between the story the director wanted to tell versus what the studio wanted. I also hear the quality is horrendous. It’s a slow death for a film, that should’ve been rebooted years ago
(Via. Shock Til You Drop)
The focus is more on Boone and Lori. In fact, I’d go so far as to say the Cabal Cut is really Lori’s film. A lot of the emotional weight rests on her shoulders. Boone is still all over the map and drops out of the film for a bit (when he tells Lylesberg he’s going to see Baphomet, it’s apparently a really, really long walk to go downstairs) and Decker is sidelined as one of the film’s myriad threats. There is the introduction to a voice in Decker’s head, beckoning him to put on the mask and kill. This detail is wildly inconsistent and comes in way too late in the film, still, it’s an interesting touch if it was established properly.
This is what they had to say regarding the finale/raid on Median:
Another notable addition that affects the film: The extended raid on Midian which seems much more brutal now and includes more monsters getting blown away by Eigerman’s men. This draws the whole third act action scene out and may be satisfying to some.
So it basically sounds like what needed to happen is the film needed to be re-shot and more character development and that’s what I’m saying could happen with a proper reboot people.
In closing, if you decide to rent this film and feel like I don’t know what I’m talking about, that’s fine and I appreciate you giving it a chance, but if you agree with me and can see this film for what it could truly be…you’re welcome. Fuck Robocop…give us NIGHTBREED.
Want to know more about NIGHTBREED or The CABAL CUT? Checkout these websites!
- Clive Barker’s NIGHTBREED:The Cabal Cut get’s a release date. (mitng.org)
- Fantastic Fest Review: CABAL, An Unrefined Yet Superior Version Of NIGHTBREED (badassdigest.com)
- Midian Unleashed! Clive Barker’s ‘Nightbreed’ To Get A Director’s Cut (geek-news.mtv.com)
- Nightbreed director’s cut to be released next year, exciting Clive Barker fans (marcwinger.com)
I would’ve been more elated by news of a Nightbreed reboot, but I guess this will have to do. Director and writer Clive Barker left an interesting Facebook update that confirms a Hellraiser reboot. Clive promises the same energy as the first, but just with more darkness? I don’t understand how much darker Hellraiser could get, but if the reboot of Evil Dead is any evidence, I’m guessing really really dark and as if this news wasn’t climatic and anti climatic enough, part of the terms of returning to the franchise was that Doug Bradley had to return as Pinhead.
You want to know how I feel about this? I am all for this, provided he doesn’t get all “you mustn’t change what I have put in place”. In order for this to work, this will have to be utterly Satanic. So fucking twisted and well written and acted, that it would put everything to shame. This would be the only way this would work. We mustn’t forget that it had nine tries to salvage the franchise from it’s uninterrupted downward trajectory. The last being Hellraiser: Revelations in 2011.
When comparing the Hellraiser film series with the other top-grossing horror franchises—A Nightmare on Elm Street, Child’s Play, Friday the 13th, Halloween, Saw, Scream, and The Texas Chainsaw Massacre—and adjusting for the 2008 inflation, Hellraiser is the lowest grossing horror franchise in the United States, at approximately $84 million.
This requires a new touch, one that Clive could nurture and weave a beautiful dance with, if done right. There are tons of talented individuals that would love the opportunity. I hope he gives them a chance.
HOT FROM HELL! My friends,I have some news which may be of interest to you. A few weeks ago I had a very productive meeting with Bob Weinstein of Dimension Pictures,in the course of which I pitched a remake of the first HELLRAISER film. The idea of my coming back to the original film and telling the story with a fresh intensity-honoring the structure and the designs from the first incarnation but hopefully creating an even darker and richer film-was attractive to Dimension. Today I have officially been invited to write the script based upon that pitch.What can I tell you about it?Well, it will not be a film awash with CGI. I remain as passionate about the power of practical make-up effects as I was when I wrote and directed the first HELLRAISER. Of course the best make-up in the world loses force if not inhabited by a first-rate actor. I told the Dimension team that in my opinion there could never be a Pinhead without Doug Bradley,and much to my delight Bob Weinstein agreed. So once the papers are signed , I will open a Lemarchand Configuration,dip my quill in its contents and start writing . I promise that there will be nowhere on the Internet where the news of my progress will be more reliable than here ,because the only author of these reports will be Your Infernal Corespondent ,me. My very best wishes to you
- Clive Barker Gets Go-Ahead to Write Hellraiser Remake Screenplay (toplessrobot.com)
- Clive Barker to Write HELLRAISER Remake with Doug Bradley Returning as Pinhead (collider.com)
- Bad News: A HELLRAISER Remake Is Happening. Good News: Clive Barker Is Writing It (badassdigest.com)
- Clive Barker to Write ‘Hellraiser’ Remake, Doug Bradley Expected to Return (slashfilm.com)
- Clive Barker Will Write His HELLRAISER Remake For Dimension Films! (aintitcool.com)
“It takes a miracle of creative imagination on the part of a community to envision a sacred space into existence and that is precisely what happened.”-Alex Grey
The best way to describe Alex Grey’s work is “transcendental art”, I think I just made that up, but if you Googled it, I’m pretty sure someone has a website dedicated to it and Alex’s work is on it. Alex strips away the annoying flesh of his subjects and shows you the soul…no not like Hellraiser, but like seeing the bio-luminescent spiritual components that make up who we are. I’ve told myself, while gazing at his art, that this must be what one sees when you crossover. Just Chakra’s and Raiki beaming from each individual, illuminating what would otherwise be hidden.
Here’s when I talk about my time in New York and when I visited Alex and his wife Allyson’s gallery COSM (Chapel Of Sacred Mirrors) that has been doing what it does since 1996. I always thought the local of his resident gallery was inappropriate for his work, especially when his place was a stone throw away from all the clubs near The Meatpacking District…ew.
So this news that his new gallery (pictured below) got kickstarted, is fantastic. Entheon will be nestled 65 miles north of Manhattan in the town of Warppinger, also home to the Hudson River School, a school that was the mecca of the first American art movement back in the mid 19th century.
Vice Magazine did an interview with Alex and is wife about the project and this is what they had to say…among other things.
You have found a location and a structure to build upon. Could you tell us where it will be in Hudson Valley?
Chapel of Sacred Mirrors is a wooded 40-acre center for visionary culture, an interfaith church where we practice creativity as a spiritual path. CoSM is located in the Town of Wappinger, 65 miles from Manhattan. We are within easy walking distance to the river. The Hudson Valley is a place of great beauty and spiritual history. And the home of the first American art movement, the Hudson River School.
The Hudson River Landscape painters like Cole, Church and Bierstadt visually paralleled transcendentalist sentiments expressed by Emerson and Thoreau that Nature is divine. The native Wappinger people called the Hudson River Mo-He-Kahn-I-Tuke, the “great flow that goes both ways.” The Hudson River is a Moon River, a tidal river that flows from the ocean up to just past CoSM and then back out to sea, changing directions every six hours. The river is a metaphor for community. Each of us is a small stream flowing into the great river with increasing speed and power toward the ocean of love bliss. In the case of the Hudson River, or the Mo-He-Kahn-I-Tuke, we have a spiritual ocean that is pulled within the community, even upstream, and the community is empowered with this special influx of holy energy from the greater body. This is one of the reasons we have always met on the Full Moon, in honor of the river, which we were the same distance from in the city. A number of spiritual movements have originated in the Hudson Valley and there is a pearl necklace of retreat centers up the river, like temples on the Nile. Within several hours of arguably the greatest art capital in the world, next to an exquisite river, artists are finding a place in nature to be creative. Who wouldn’t?
New Yorkers may remember the Chapel of Sacred Mirrors, which ran from 2004 to 2009. How is Entheon different?
CoSM operated 12,000 square feet in the heart of the gallery and club district of NYC. A dance studio, CoSM Shop, the Chapel of Sacred Mirrors and MicroCoSM Gallery, our studio, office, merchandise and shipping were all on that floor. But we couldn’t build an enduring temple of the fourth floor of 542 W. 27th Street so we started looking for land again soon after CoSM NYC opened.
Entheon is a freestanding two-story building with a third ground floor at the back. Many of the works that were exhibited at CoSM in the city will be on view in this installation including all 21 Sacred Mirrors, Cosmic Christ, Net of Being, Theologue, Oversoul, and many others. Within Entheon, MicroCoSM Gallery will once again exhibit the works of excellent visionary artists. CoSM in the Hudson Valley is a tranquil yet very lush and alive natural setting. It is a very large “canvas” for art, creative projects and installations.
Alex and his wife foresee completion of Entheon, in about two years provided everything goes off without a hitch. Looking at the semantics for Entheon this place is not only going to be an amazing gallery, but potentially a place to come and fellowship or meditate. I know a few Burning Man fans who’ll make a pilgrimage to see this place and light a fire. Hope Warppinger is ready. I’ve provided links to Alex’s work below.