Directed by Kevin Yagher (Tales From The Crypt (1989 TV)) under the pseudonym Alan Smithee.
Written by Peter Atkins (Hellraiser III: Hell on Earth (1992), Hellbound: Hellraiser II (1988)).
Starring: Bruce Ramsay, Doug Bradley, Valentina Vargas, Charlotte Chatton, Adam Scott, Kim Myers and others.
It opens up in space, the year 2127. Already, it is not a good sign. At least Friday the 13th waited until the 10th movie to send Jason into space.
There’s some exterior space scenes, where the ships look pretty cool, because they’re probably models and not CGI. But then we cut to awful CG shots of the puzzle box being solved by a robot hands. The actual robot, however, is some cheap animatronic that looks like a cross between T-800 and that robot from Short Circuit. And the interiors of the spaceship just look like some warehouse.
A guy is controlling the robot and he releases Pinhead and then gets captured. Guess what happens next? We switch to fucking 18th century France as the guy tells about his ancestor, who is a toy maker and he makes the „Lament configuration” puzzle box. He claims this is his best work yet, but then his wife comes in and isn’t terribly impressed by the thing. I wouldn’t be either. It’s a puzzle that has no logical way of figuring it out and everyone who has had it solves it in a minute.
The toy maker runs to the guy who ordered the puzzle box and he has like an assistant played by Adam Scott, who I cannot really take seriously after all his recent comedy roles. So some bad shit happens, they summon some chick.
And we switch to 1990’s. Ok, three time periods, was it really necessary? Anyway, we now follow another one of his ancestors, who, fortunately for the villains, all look exactly the same. Then again, in movies they more often than not do.
There’s also Kim Myers from A Nightmare On Elm Street 2 and she still looks a lot like Meryl Streep. Doug Bradley steals his scenes, but in this movie it’s not saying much.
Considering that a lot of the movie was directed by a special effects guy, none of the effects are very impressive. There’s a clever, but kind of comedic scene, where twin brothers are turned into conjoined twins cenobite. Cenobites are a bit better here than in Hell On Earth, but that’s really like saying that being constipated is better than diarrhea, it’s debatable, but it’s really not worth it. The end result in both cases is shit.
We get a climax, it’s all ok, we feel like the movie should be over now, but wait, aren’t we forgetting something? That’s right, there’s 20 more minutes to go and we return to the future.
The movie turns into Alien as people just run around the spaceship, while cenobites run after them. The movie is no more about craving of pleasures and stuff, now it’s just Pinhead and other cenobites chasing people for the sake of it.
Oh, and [Spoilers] Pinhead is blown up in the end. That is the single most pointless thing they could’ve done. Sure, if they ever decide to set another Hellraiser movie in the year 2128, it will have some effect, but still, that did nothing. He is not a villain. [Spoilers]
Overall, a dull movie which tries to pack way too much in, so everything is watered down to keep the running time in check. Definitely one of if not the worst Hellraiser movie in the series. Not recommended.