13 Horror Movie Heroines That Kick Butt

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Kirsty Cotton (Ashley Laurence) in Hellraiser (Image via New World Pictures)

10.) Kirsty Cotton (Hellraiser)

Some of the women on this list defeat evil through brawn or pure, unadulterated stubbornness. Kirsty Cotton manages to battle a cadre of demons using her wits and an impressive amount of guile.

Kirsty (played by Ashley Laurence) appears in the first Hellraiser movie, which appeared in 1987. She’s the teenage daughter of Larry Cotton, and stepdaughter to his second wife, Julia. They move into the British home of her Uncle Frank, who has mysteriously disappeared. Kirsty eventually spots Julia with a mysterious man and, thinking that Julia is cheating on her husband, follows the pair.

She soon stumbles upon a terrifying secret – Julia is, in fact, leading the unnamed man into the attic of their home, in order to feed the skinless, undead Frank.
When she’s spotted by the pair, Kirsty flees – but not before grabbing a mysterious puzzle box. After toying with the box, she solves the puzzle and inadvertently summons a hellish cohort of demons, called Cenobites. Their leader is the now-iconic Pinhead.

Instead of collapsing in fear, Kirsty bargains with the evil spirits. Frank, after all, has escaped from their realm, and the Cenobites would dearly like to snatch him back. After she has supposedly defeated Frank and her definitively evil stepmother, Kirsty solves the puzzle box again and sends the Cenobites and Pinhead back to their realm. Who knew that Rubik’s cube skills would end up being a matter of life or death?