Hellraiser: Bloodline (1996) - Plot Summary Poster


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  • In the 22nd century, a scientist attempts to right the wrong his ancestor created: the puzzle box that opens the gates of Hell and unleashes Pinhead and his Cenobite legions.

  • It's the year 2127. Pinhead, the evil cenobite of the series, has found himself on board a space station in outer space, run by scientist Dr.Merchant. Dr. Merchant's mission is to close the gates to hell forever. Because his ancestor, a toymaker in the 18th century, built the evil puzzlebox that opens the gates to hell. And through the generations, the family of the bloodline has tried to stop it. But now, Dr.Merchant has built the reverse box. The box that will close the gates to hell instead of opening it.

  • In the 22nd century, Dr. Paul Merchant has created the ultimate space station for a special purpose: to destroy the Lament Configuration, which has brought silent shame to his family for centuries. In the 18th century, French toy maker Phillip L'Merchant built the first puzzle box, which was used by magician de L'Isle to create a beautiful demon named Angelique, the daughter of Leviathan, the lord of Hell's Labyrinth. As the generations passed, L'Merchant's descendants began the work to create the Elysium Configuration - a box that would destroy the Lament Configuration, until 1996, when one of them, John nearly fell to the power of the box through Angelique. Of course, Pinhead and his Cenobites aren't happy about the fact that the gateway to Hell will by destroyed...

  • Determined to close the gates of hell once and for all, a 22nd-century scientist, whose ancestor originally freed the demonic Pinhead centuries before, tries to reverse the Lament Configuration. Spanning several generations, this final entry in Clive Barker's horror franchise acts as both prequel and sequel to the other installments.


The synopsis below may give away important plot points.


  • The film begins at Space Station Minos in the year 2127. Paul Merchant, the man who built the station, has a robot solve the Lament Configuration (the robot is subsequently destroyed). However, several guards led by Rimmer capture Paul, who warns them of a great evil that needs to be unleashed in order to destroy it forever. Paul tells Rimmer the story of his bloodline.

    Four hundred years ago, Philip Lemarchand, a French toymaker, makes the Lament Configuration for a wealthy aristocrat named Duc de L'Isle, who is obsessed with dark magic. He and his apprentice, Jacques, kill a peasant woman who was never baptized and remove her skin. L'Isle uses the dark magic conjured by the Lament Configuration to summon a demon princess named Angelique to inhabit the woman's skin. She is theirs to command unless they stand in Hell's way. However, Angelique and Jacques betray and kill de L'Isle. Lemarchand, in the process of inventing a design (the Elysium Configuration) to destroy the demons, attempts to steal back the box but is discovered. Jacques callously informs the toymaker that he and his bloodline are cursed until the end of time because of the box he created, before ordering Angelique to kill him. However, his wife survives with their unborn child, continuing Lemarchand's bloodline.

    In 1996, Lemarchand's descendant, John Merchant, has designed and completed construction of the building from the last scene of Hellraiser III in New York City. The lobby and entertainment room are decorated with wall art inspired by the Lament Configuration. John is haunted by dreams of Angelique. Seeing a magazine article on Merchant's success in Paris, Angelique turns on Jacques and mutilates him, killing him for "standing in Hell's way" and travels to New York to attempt to seduce John. At a banquet celebrating John's success, she finds the Lament Configuration in a cement pillar in the basement and makes an unwitting man solve it with the promise of sex. A gateway is opened in an uncompleted wall and hooked chains drag the hapless victim into the portal. The newly resurrected Pinhead emerges, along with a hideous canine-like demon, the Chatter Beast.

    Pinhead wants to make John use the Elysium Configuration to keep the gateway to Hell open so he can come and go as he pleases. After turning twin security guards into a two-headed Cenobite, Pinhead tells Angelique that the best way to make John go along with their plans is to threaten his child, Jack. He gets John to use the Elysium Configuration, but it fails, prompting Pinhead to kill him. John's wife, Bobbi, uses the box to banish Pinhead, Angelique and the Chatter Beast back to Hell.

    Returning to the present, in 2127, Rimmer has Paul locked up. However, he has already summoned the demons: Pinhead, Angelique (now a Cenobite), the Twin Cenobite, and Chatter Beast. One by one, the guards are picked off by Cenobites. Parker is killed by Pinhead, Carducci by Angelique, Chamberlain by Chatter Beast, and Edwards by Twin Cenobite. Rimmer releases Paul, who has a plan to destroy the Cenobites -- he reveals that he designed Minos for that specific reason. Rimmer escapes to a space shuttle, and kills Chatter Beast by raising the pressure in a hallway.

    Paul distracts Pinhead with a hologram while he gets on the shuttle with Rimmer, and activates the Elysium Configuration. A series of powerful lasers and mirrors create a field of perpetual light, while the station transforms and folds around the light to create a massive version of the Lament Configuration. The light is trapped within the box, which then self destructs, destroying the Cenobites and severing the connection between Hell and Earth forever.

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