Okay, so I didn’t mean to make these past few days Hellraiser-tastic, but Tommy dared me to do this one! Unless it’s sticking my tongue to a frozen lightpole , I have been known to very rarely refuse a dare.
Hellraiser III starts out promising and then blows away all its promise in the second half of the flick. It begins with an enterprising newswoman, hot on the trail of a Very Big Story, a hedonistic club owner, an eviscerated guest of said club and the club owner’s desperate girlfriend.
Meet the asshole club owner:
He buys an expensive statue that’s actually got some very bad things contained inside, like, for instance…Pinhead. (At the end of Part II, we saw Pinhead and friends torn apart and shoved onto a spinning column. That’s the statue, essentially.) After a clubgoer of his messes with the puzzle box stuck inside the statue, aforementioned clubgoer meets a dubious end at the end of some chains. Familiar territory we’re finding ourselves in.
Terri, the determined newscaster, smells a story. She hooks up with Joey, the girlfriend of the piggish club owner, J.P. Together they investigate the origins of the statue and the box, as Pinhead begins to reawaken and starts to sway J.P. into bringing him into the land of the living.
The last half of Hellraiser III is a strange brew of items that make no sense in the established canon whatsoever (Pinhead’s human self and hell self are separated and must be reintegrated, but only through Terri’s dreams). What’s worse is that the old crack team of evil-people-retrievers are gone, gone, gone. Pinhead slaughters a whole club full of people, trying to out-stupid his own tactics one by one. One attendee is killed by ice, another by CD. Yes, CD. Don’t worry, he’ll pop up again.
Characters in this flick are bland, boring and make some of the most nonsensical decisions ever. The sets are cheesy and the special effects are sad.
While everyone else tries to make sense of what in God’s good name is going on in the last thirty minutes or so, Terri’s being chased by eeeevil new Cenobites. They’re the modern upgrades! Think of them as the Windows Vista version of Cenobites, but they’re not without problems.
That, my friends, is a Cenobite who kills people by throwing CDs like ninja stars.
It’s a great idea if you want to make the concept of Hellraiser completely laughable. If so, MISSION ACCOMPLISHED. There’s another Cenobite with a video lens for an eye and a blowtorch Cenobite. Each is … mind-numbingly stupid.
From there, Terri, who looks as confused and stricken as any viewer would be expected to appear, travels into dream-world to reintegrate Pinhead and escapes. Of course she does, because if formulaic horror movies have taught us anything, it’s the sacred rite of the Final Girl.
She drops the Lemarchand Box into a vat of wet concrete, which becomes…
An office building that looks like the box? Is this Dana’s apartment building from Ghostbusters? I don’t know. …But it looks cool.
Stupid, stupid, STUPID movie. STUPID. I have a wall that my head needs to meet, thanks.