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Hellraiser III: Hell on Earth
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Index 140 reviews in total 

Peter Atkins script, Anthony Hickox's film is a worthy successor to Clive Barker's flesh-ripping original. A good horror sequel , this is adult horror to die for.

Author: badfeelinganger from United Kingdom
18 September 2014

Hellraiser III gives the series a much needed jump-start, following a great and classic original, and a strong first sequel. Unfortunately, the 'Female Cenobite' (mysteriously left unnamed), 'Chatterer,' and 'Butterball' are gone, but a series of about half a dozen new Cenobites keeps the hellish imagery alive. I think that one of the better elements of this instalment in the series is that they show all of the new Cenobites being created. In the anti-religious tradition of the Hellraiser series, some of Pinhead's antics in the church near the end of the film are great. When the priest holds up the cross to him, Pinhead melts it in his hand, and at the same time he utters an absolutely brilliant bit of dialogue, 'Thou shalt not bow down to any graven image.'After that, Pinhead's self-crucifixion scene was wonderfully sickening, yet his intentions in doing that were both clearly presented and morbidly farcical. Jesus was crucified, paying for man's sins, thereby saving mankind from damnation and becoming the subject of countless masses of people's unquestioning adoration, inspiring Pinhead to crucify himself and state that 'I am the way.' Therefor the underlining meaning is that Pinhead will sacrifice himself, paying for man to 'live' in sin. Utterly brilliant! Besides all that, I think that this instalment had some of the best death scenes of the series so far, particularly in the nightclub. Some of that was almost physically painful to watch, a sure sign of success for a horror film. Not only was that Boiler Room massacre convincingly portrayed, but writer Peter Atkins also had the excellent idea to have poor Terri walk through the masses of mutilated bodies after the massacre had ended. Pretty uplifting stuff, huh? A little too gory and bloody? Don't moan about that, it's not supposed to be good, clean, fun. This is a horror film, and by definition, horror films are supposed to be horrible. Hellraiser III achieves this horror better than either of the two that preceded it, finally leaving the viewer satisfied. With its bravura camera-work, fetishistic Cenobite designs, nerve-jangling soundtrack, and literate Peter Atkins script, Anthony Hickox's film is a worthy successor to Clive Barker's flesh-ripping original.Freed from the stone prison of the Pillar of Souls, Pinhead quickly dispatches decadent rock club owner JP Monroe. Hearing of JP's gruesome death, TV reporter Joey Summerskill sniffs a scoop, but what she finds is something more nightmarish: Pinhead and his new purveyors of pain, Camerahead, CD and Barbie.

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Just a slasher

Author: Max Renn from Melborne
23 August 2014

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

If the franchise would have ended with the 2nd part, then there already would have been too many films, but the 3rd part is even more out there. Barker must have thought that too, 'cause after Anthony Hickox's 3rd part Barker jumped ship and back away from the whole thing (even if he was only just the executive producer on this one already) So he didn't have much to do with the story and he didn't hide that fact or the fact that he wasn't too pleased with the sequels. Hellraiser III made the biggest mistake it could make. It lowered Pinhead to the level of all the other baddies, he only differed from any other typical killer by looking better and having a few good one liners. So they successfully made a slasher movie out of the series. Pinhead is stuck in a block after the Big Confrontation in "Hellbound," The block containing Pinhead and the puzzle cube is bought by a young playboy as an art piece. Pinhead busies himself escaping by getting the playboy to lure victims to his presence so he can use their blood. Once free, he seeks to destroy the puzzle cube so he need never return to Hell, but a female reporter is investigating the grisly murders thus standing in his way. After the pointlessly dragged out beginning (you have to wait till almost half the film for Pinhead to escape) he is ridiculously quiet and spends the rest of the film running from the other Cenobits with the cube in his hand. Barker's pain and pleasure theme is gone, in its place we get the very original "we have to stop the bad guy before he releases chaos onto the world" theme. After the first film that's totally of logic. The makers must have wanted us to just forget that he was neither evil nor the bringer of chaos before. So this part brings to fruition what Hellbound started: in other words stripping it of meaning. Then with no original concept it just adds itself to all the other stupid, pointless horror sequels. This also meant that the terrifying Pinhead becomes someone who chases a woman how? by walking menacingly slowly behind her! He becomes a supernatural baddie in a slasher movie, who kills without discretion or reason anyone who gets close just not the one he should be killing. And the Cenobits who are made from his victims are just plain lame. The killings at the disco that were promising in the beginning of the scene quickly turns to something with which it's easy to see that the whole film should have landed in the garbage. In the bloodcurdling calm Pinheads place we got a hysterically laughing, over emoting Freddy clone. In place of the weighty, brutal atmosphere we got a silly, cartoon parody of itself kills just to shock viewers. So even the gore doesn't end up meaning too much. All in all the only thing positive that can be said about Hell on Earth is Pinhead's awesome church scene. And its true, if you forget there was a first part, that it's a perfect slasher film. 5/10

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What began in Hell, will end on Earth...

Author: Amityville15 from England
19 July 2014

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Joey Summerskill is an ambitious TV reporter whose life is changed forever when she witnesses the horrific death of a tormented teenage boy, torn apart by chains. Determined to find the truth behind this gruesome event, she discovers the lament Configuration Box which opens the door to the Cenobites' demonic world of pleasure and pain. Once again Pinhead walks the earth, creating a new army of Cenobites from the transmuted flesh of his victims and his one desire is to reclaim the box and free himself from the powers of hell.

This film starred: Terry Farrell, Doug Bradley & Kevin Bernhardt.

Hellraiser 3 is not the worst from the first 5 Hellraiser films I have seen, because number 4 is. However this one isn't great. The plot was good and if executed well I think this could have been a good movie, however some of the scenes in this movie were sloppy and wrong. I liked the idea of the soldier who became Pinhead finding Joey and telling him to lead Pinhead to him were he has power, but again this was a scene that I found kind of messed up and not living up to it's potential. Not really recommended but watch if you want to complete the trilogy because the sequels that follow this one are a waste of time and cheap sin offs.

*/***** Very poor.

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It's a watchable third installment in the "Hellraiser" franchise

Author: KineticSeoul from United States
30 May 2014

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

The previous "Hellraiser" movies portrayed Pinhead as this mysterious enigma that is a force to be reckoned with. This time around Pinhead is portrayed as some boogeyman that needs other to power him back up. The plot is somewhat similar of the goons trying to get a powerful evil villain to come back to the real world with a physical form and powers. While a female reporter is trying to find out what is going on with crazy murders that is taking place and having crazy dreams and visions while doing so. The plot this time is super far-fetched and doesn't make much sense at all, especially when it comes to the human mind. The scare factor is almost all gone with this installment with more human indulgence going on. It actually seemed like a rehash of the first movie with more stuff going on, but more doesn't necessarily mean better when it comes to movies. This time it shows the a lot more human side of Pinhead and his personality traits when he was human. Of his thoughts, motives and desires. Which in a way would have been cool, but takes away from the effective momentum of Pinhead as a horror icon. Not only that this installment breaks away from the rules when it comes to the cenobites (it does explain why, but it gets distracting and feels like a cop-out for mayhem). This one expands upon the human indulgence on the human flesh and pleasure, not in depth though but exterior wise (most of the movie takes place at a night club). Including a bit more masochism as well when it comes to the humans and Pinhead. But it fails to expand up on the mythos in a effective manner. I personally don't think this installment is a effective installment, but it's just alright. It's not awful and for the most part at least watchable.


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Taking hell out onto the street, in "don't midjudge violence quota" third installment

Author: videorama-759-859391 from adelaide, australia
27 May 2014

I love the Hellraiser movies. Pinheads's facial features are spellbinding with the voice of a man, I'd feel hesitant about meeting. Though this third installment, does show signs of wearing, it still packs quite a punch, where it seems to have eased up on the violence some, that's if comparing it to number 2 which was all out, in vast supply. There is still a bloody lot of gore, but it's not as graphic like in it's predecessor. (chains have never looked more scary) This Hellraiser is remotely different from the other two. This one's more modern, if with a wooden plot tacked on around the gore, what have you. Here Pinhead has escaped. His box has ended up in this statuette that this young gigolo, nightclub owner, JJ ,has bought. So we know what is to ensue. The p..sed off girlfriend, (Paula Marshall) ends up at this female journalist's place, investigating this big story, where soon it's them against the forces of evil with Pinhead taking it out onto the street in an explosive finale. Hellraiser fans will still like this one, where others there will be varied opinions. We have a nice little sex too with rose giving JJ, before the sweet little thing becomes Pinheads, and JJ's mouth is agape with shock.

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The best of the series by default

Author: mutty-mcflea from Lincolnshire, UK
3 August 2013

Faithfully following in the footsteps of its predecessors, 'Hellraiser III' overdoses on the gooey make-up at the expense of a plot. Despite a dearth of decent performances, scares and atmosphere, and the inclusion of a chestnut as old as an unplugged TV that still works, this is probably the best one.

Reporter Terry Farrell investigates a strange death in a hospital and comes across the puzzle box (still a great design) and of course Doug Bradley's Pinhead, who is trapped inside a plastic sculpture and using a nightclub owner to supply him with fresh victims. Bradley delivers his lines with conviction but there's nothing he can do about their poor quality; no, writers, nothing he says is deep and meaningful, it's just laughable. Director Anthony Hickox seems to think that Pinhead just standing there is effect enough, but he's wrong.

It's all rather silly, and watching people screaming after their skin has been torn off or a spike has been driven into their head puts you off your popcorn a bit. It's one gory effect after another with no real impact beyond 'yuk'.

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Beginning to lack charm

Author: moviefanman76-blogspot-com from United States
2 August 2013

Clive Barker's Hellraiser (1987) is considered by many to be one of the most unique horror films of the late 80's. What emphasized those opinions were gruesome images along with its Gothic tone. A year later, New World Pictures released Hellraiser II: Hellbound (1988) and although it wasn't as critically praised, it still resonated with many fans. I found it enjoyable but the writing was much weaker than I had expected it to be. Then, jump four years later and we get Hellraiser III: Hell on Earth (1992), which to many just didn't satisfy and bordered on the edge of really bad. The sad thing is that, it is bad, even with the few good things it has going for it.

The plot is about a "down on their luck" news reporter, Joey (Terry Farrell), who can't find a decent story to save her career. That is, until she comes into contact with the lament configuration after watching a hospital patient's head explode. Amazingly after being okay with such a traumatizing experience, this intrigues her more to find out what this tiny puzzle box is all about. To do this, she digs into the past using archives from Dr. Channard's mental asylum and interview footage of Kirsty Cotton. It is also explained to why Pinhead is back in this movie because in the movie before, he was killed off. This is one of the better parts, at least when it comes to the back-story and continuity. Peter Atkins, the same writer of Hellraiser II: Hellbound (1988), wrote the screenplay.

I'll admit, it's very much appreciated that Atkins' is keeping the continuity straight. If that wasn't at least on track, my rating would probably be lower. But even so, Atkins' ability to give explanations to why this mystical puzzle box decides to make various humans cenobites, and others not, makes no sense. Is it just by random chance? The cast on the other hand is another bowl of mixed nuts. It's great to see that the casting department had Ashley Laurence come back for a small cameo in the asylum footage and of course Doug Bradley as Pinhead himself. That was great, but the main lead, Terry Farrell wasn't. Farrell just didn't make her character come off as a strong female lead, no matter how many times one says "Go to hell!".

Unfortunately, dialog is another problem. I don't know what Atkins was thinking when it came to dialog, but almost every character here (and maybe even a little bit of Doug Bradley's lines) all have this sarcastic if not watered down dialog that makes them sound like these lines were written for a bad comedy. The Hellraiser franchise is not a comedy, not even a dark comedy, so why are characters making bad puns or being overly sarcastic? Even some of the new cenobites have corny dialog. For example, any female besides Joey (Farrell) wasn't that smart in speech or actions. What's up with that? It wasn't necessary then and it isn't now.

Let's not forget though, this is a horror franchise so there will be plenty of death, blood and ugly images. And for those who wish to see that, yes, you will get your eye full worth without a doubt. But, if you're the viewer looking for the same kind of tone and chills you felt from Hellraiser (1987), it won't be found here. Even more surprising is how absent Randy Miller's score to the film was. I was actually impressed with his work from both Darkman II: The Return of Durant (1995) and Darkman III: Die Darkman Die (1996) because he not only made sure he stuck to the original theme, but added some unique tracks to them as well.

Here however, right from the intro credits is Christopher Young's music! It's not to say Miller didn't provide anything, because I know there were tunes in there I never heard before but it seemed like most of the music was just recycled and edited. It's sad when a composer comes off as sounding lazy – especially if they aren't that bad to begin with. It's not to say this movie doesn't pull through, but its original tone and atmosphere of the picture no longer exists which makes it depressing that a franchise so likable is beginning to lose its charm. It's beginning to get to a point where the only reason why someone would want to watch this is for Pinhead alone. But Doug Bradley can't carry this picture by himself. Otherwise it would've worked from the first installment.

The third entry is much lighter in atmosphere and doesn't carry itself the way the first two did. The continuity is thankfully kept in order but the dialog isn't too clever and the only real character that's worth a watch is Pinhead himself.

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Bloody sequel let down horrendous acting and script

Author: atinder from United Kingdom
2 November 2012

seen once before, one scene as always stood out to in this movie, scene when girl skin torn of her body in the movie. (I enjoyed that scene)

The plot was little confusing at first with a the whole dream angle of the movie, (It makes sense at the end of the movie) , some parts of the movie, I felt like i missed something long the away,

This is a lot gory then second movie, which I did enjoyed nasty gory bloody scenes,

What bring this movie down is really horrendous acting from the whole cast and half the things they say don''t fit in with scene that just happens, scripts was really bad.

One scenes that really cracked me was . The Priest. Demons aren't real. They're parables, metaphors. Joey, as the doors open and Pinhead enters] Then what the BEEP is that?

I have no idea, what meaning of the last scene meant.

5 out of 10

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What the...???

Author: candycat301 from United States
7 August 2012

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This move was a HUGE disappointment. "Even hell has rules", but none of the rules established in I and II were continued into the third installment of this movie. For instance, only those individuals with the right "desires" (such as carnal, sadism, etc.)and who managed to open the box were taken by the Cenobites into hell. Innocents were not to be touched. However, in this movie, Pinhead kills dozens of innocent people who never touched the box, and several of those victims were turned into Cenobites who later go after the heroine. Huh???? Even Frank and Julia were not turned into Cenobites and they were both evil! This movie was not worth the time I spent watching it.

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Pinhead gets technical

Author: Kristine ( from Chicago, Illinois
17 March 2012

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Strange thing in the world of the horror genre, we have the big names of Jason, Freddy and Michael. But there are a few names while still well known for some reason didn't provide such a big splash when it came to the box office like Hellraiser with Pinhead who is one of the best monsters in cinema. The monster is nothing more than about torture and pain, he feels no mercy towards anyone and loves the pleasure of hurting your flesh. The first Hellraiser is without a doubt a twisted crazy classic, to get into Clive Barker's head must be a trip. He created some very disturbing images that will never get out of your head once you see Hellraiser. It was the first time where a horror film had started dark and stayed dark throughout the entire movie and there was no letting go to let you breathe. Then the sequel came along, still staying dark and having a new world to take us into with the same characters and our questions from the first film were answered. It was a good sequel that could hold up a candle to the original. Then, in the spirit of most horror films, we were given the third Hellraiser called Hell on Earth.

The revelation of his own former humanity has resulted in Pinhead being split into two distinct entities: His former self, British Army Captain Eliot Spencer, and a manifestation of Spencer's id, which takes on the form of Pinhead. While Spencer ends up in limbo, Pinhead is trapped, along with the puzzle box, amongst the writhing figures and distorted faces etched into the surface of an intricately carved pillar - the Pillar of Souls. The pillar is bought by the rich and spoiled J.P. Monroe, owner of a popular nightclub called The Boiler Room. An ambitious young television reporter, Joey, slowly begins to learn about Pinhead and the mysterious puzzle box. She is introduced to the pain the box can bring when she views a teenage club-goer being ripped apart by the box's chains in a hospital emergency room. Joey is contacted by the spirit of Elliot Spencer, who tells her that this "Pinhead" is a separate entity. Without Spencer's humanity to act as a balancing influence, this Pinhead is completely evil and has no sense of order. Rather than abide by the laws of the Cenobite realm, he will indiscriminately wreak havoc on Earth for his own pleasure unless he can be stopped.

So given new eye candy with Terry Farrell as the leading lady, competing with Ashley Laurence as Kirsty is no easy task. Terry does do pretty well in keeping up with Elliot Spencer, but her scenes with Pinhead are not up to par. A lot of fans did complain about the new cenobites, that they were too goofy looking, I agree in some sense but still liked the over all look of them. I thought they still were pretty intimidating, well except for the CD throwing cenobite, what was that about? I loved how in the end there were about 10 explosions every 2 minutes and they kept going and going and going. I also got a great kick out of how every person Joey bumped into died a second later in the end, if she ran into me on the other street, I'd be more afraid of her than Pinhead. The way people reacted in this film was unreal at times and the story was a bit silly and a let down from the two previous films. But I did find a certain entertainment from the film and I think some people are a little too harsh on it. Pinhead came to bring Hell on Earth and he certainly did for an hour and a half.


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