Hellraiser is pretty straight forward, if you open this specific puzzle box demons come for you to bring you to hell. As the story progresses you find out that the box was made by a French toy maker and is actually called the “Lament Configuration”. The box is supposed to be hard to open, but it would appear that every dumbass that touches it, activates it. These demons or ‘cenobites’ as they are referred to in the films pop out of nowhere and have the power to skewer you with chains and pull you apart.
There are a few movies in this series that would make you believe that you can sneeze fairly hard and fall out of your skin. Seriously, there are so many people losing their skin or wearing another persons skin that would make you think that Buffalo Bill opened a boutique in hell and business is booming. There must be a really REALLY devoted group of fans that can’t get enough of these films and scoop up every straight to DVD release they can find. The coolest part of the franchise is the man himself, Pinhead played by Doug Bradley. The makeup, the costume, the voice, and those dead black eyes are awesome. The only problem is, you hardly ever get to see the guy. He’s either taking the form of someone else or simply not there.
We have such sights to show you!
The series as a whole has been going down hill since #3. There comes a time in any franchise that is about to die where it becomes self-aware, runs out of ideas, and needs to be shot. Hellraiser 8 had Hellraiser as an online video game like World of Warcraft I guess, and all the people that played it and solved a puzzle got to attend a Hellraiser party. At that point the series knows it’s cliche’s and is simply trying to churn out another film to their baby bird-like fans to gobble it up. Wes Craven did this with Nightmare on Elm Street with his triumphant return to the series with the release of ‘New Nightmare’. Craven also did this with ‘Scream 2′ and its fake Hollywood movie ‘Stab’ that spoofs the first movie. Friday the 13th had a moment of this in Friday the 13th 8: Jason Takes Manhattan where he sees the huge billboard with the hockey mask on it.
I do have to give it to the Hellraiser series in a few aspects though, It was original, and it didn’t have movie titles that eluded to the end of the series over and over like in Friday the 13th and Nightmare on Elm Street. Lets get to some explanations.
Hellraiser (1987): A zombie uses his former lover to kill men so he can feed on their blood to become whole, but gets taken back to hell.
Hellraiser 2: Hellbound (1988) A quiet girl solves a puzzle, hell was briefly under new management, and bad guys died as humans and end up on a spinning beam.
Hellraiser 3: Hell on Earth (1992): A man and his demonic alter ego join again, but are quickly sent to hell when stabbed with a puzzle box.
Hellraiser 4: Bloodline (1996): A man rambles on about his ancestors making a box, then blows up the bad guy in a ship that turns into a box.
Hellraiser 5: Inferno (2000): A detective pursues a bad guy that turns out to be himself through his own custom version of perpetual hell.
Hellraiser 6: Hellseeker (2002): A man goes through some strange stuff that turns out to be his personal hell for trying to off his wife for her inheritance.
Hellraiser 7: Deader (2005): An ancestor of a toy maker that can bring people back to life gets taken to hell, and a journalist stabs herself.
Hellraiser 8: Hellworld (2005): A deranged father kills most of his sons friends after he kills himself over an online game called Hellworld.
Hellraiser (Entire Film Series): Demons called cenobites take people to hell because they open a puzzle box designed by a French toy maker.
- The budget of Hellraiser 1 was $1,000,000. It earned about $20,000,000. It was the directing debut of Clive Barker, who had made only two short films before this.
- Doug Bradley’s cenobite make-up took 6 hours.
- Doug Bradley’s character’s name wasn’t “Pinhead”; this was a fan nickname that began circulating after the release of the film. The script originally identified his character as ‘The First Cenobite’. In the sequel films, ‘Pinhead’ became the character’s “official” name, and Bradley is credited as “Pinhead” after that point.
- The first film’s working title was “Sadomasochists From Beyond The Grave”.
- The address for the house in the original Hellraiser is 55 Ludovico Place. The name of the institute in ‘A Clockwork Orange’ (1971) where Alex is deprogrammed of violence was the Ludovico Institute.
- The horn sound that is continually made by Leviathan in Hellraiser 2 is Morse code for “God”.
- Hellraiser 3: Bloodline was the last film in the series to get a theatrical release, the other 5 were straight to dvd.
- The original script by Neal Marshall Stevens in ‘Hellraiser: Deader’ had nothing to do with the Hellraiser mythos, but when it was decided that this would be a Hellraiser sequel, Tim Day drastically re-wrote the script, including an almost entirely new third act and plot and making the character of Winter a descendant of the toymaker Lemarchand.
- Hellraiser: Deader and Hellraiser: Hellworld were shot back to back.
- The script for Hellraiser 8: Hellworld was adapted from a treatment titled “Dark Can’t Breathe,” which was unrelated to the Hellraiser series.