Starring: Dominique Pinon, Lyndie Uphill and Darren Day
Mosaic Entertainment
Certificate: 15
Available 26 July 2004

Alice is a woman haunted by the living nightmare of having her young son murdered by a serial killer in the guise of a clown (a sort of demonic Ed Gacy) as they walked late at night. For years she has traced the footsteps of the killer, helpless as the brutal slayings of young children continued. Suspecting a man called Sam as the perpetrator she almost kills him, only to realise he is a kindred spirit. As time goes on Alice begins to suspect the killer might not be entirely human. But has she simply descended into madness...

Oh, dear, where to start... There are so many faults with this film that I'd have been better served with a numbered sheet of paper than a review. The attempt to create a surreal feel to the whole concept simply makes the product resemble a third-generation copy of a second-rate amateur video. The only thing that creates an air of madness here is the music; it's not that it's eerie, merely dull and incessant.

There's far too much repetition, especially the accusatory relatives in Alice's head, and also the multitude of slow-motion sequences. The nasty clown, as far as I can determine, was originated by Stephen King in the book It. Both Doctor Who and the film Killer Clown From Outer Space did it shortly afterward. Since then the idea has become tired and overused. The background to Darren Day's Sam character is never explained, and once Alice realises he probably isn't the killer you never see him again; let's face it, in anyone's book that's awful plotting.

Petros Emanuel, who plays God and appears to Alice, closer resembles a demon, wearing red and sporting dark hair and strange eyes. And don't ask me how Alice knows the killer is a hellbreeder, because I don't remember hearing any dialogue that revealed this fact.

I could probably go on, but what's the point, suffice to say that Hellbreeder is not worth your valuable viewing time.

Ty Power