I put off seeing this movie for quite some time, as I had already heard how bad it was. Now that I've seen it I can honestly say I have never seen a worse film in my life, and I don't even know where to begin with this review! To be fair, I'm going to split the review into 5 different sections: Acting, Story line, originality, special effects / Make up and ending.
To put it nicely, the acting was very bad. Like, awful. Especially from the leading characters Steven (Played by Nick Eversman) and Emma (Played by Tracey Fairaway) - If these actors are ever employed again they should consider them selves very lucky. (Although I would advise that you NEVER see a film with them in it!) It was very stiff acting from all the cast, and none of seemed even slightly realistic. Kind of like they were just reading the script for the first time. Although the group of parents certainly weren't great actors, they out did the teenagers by a long shot and I'll give them credit for that.
As usual, we didn't get much screen time from the cenobites (which is generally disappointing), but in this case it was a good thing, as the acting from the cenobites wasn't too great either. Stephan Smith Collins obviously had very big shoes to fill playing Pinhead, and whilst he looked the part (as much as you can, replacing the leading actor) the voice and dialogue was atrocious.
Story Line (Spoilers)
OK, here goes. The film starts off with two friends (Steven and Nico) running away from their families, travelling around Mexico. Here they do all the usual stupid things you normally see teenage boys in movies do - drink, drugs, sex, 'accidentally on purpose' kill a prostitute....
Of course, they are given the puzzle box by a homeless guy. Nico opens it and summons the demons and is taken to hell, blah blah blah. Along the very predictable road, Steven brings back his friend through a mattress with the blood of a prostitute (after killing her), but refuses to do it again. In a rage, Nico takes Stevens skin, causing Steven to open the box and summon the demons in order to be turned into a pseudo pinhead....
Basically, Nico is now on the run (disguised as Steven) from the cenobites, and returns home to his family. He then goes on a terribly acted rampage, shooting Stevens dad etc, getting Emma to open the box, in order to swap her for him in hell. The demons show up, explain that a swap is not allowed, and for some reason kill one of the ladies there, completely unprovoked.
I'll talk more about the end of the film in the 'ending' section!
Well, this picture pretty much proves that there is none! An absolute rip off of the first two films, where we have the friend being brought back from the mattress (which didn't even have his blood on it in the first place???) so, the common skinless character.
Next we have the soul swap. In Hellseeker we had Kirsty swapping several evil people to save herself. Well, same goes in this one - only Nico is trying to swap someone innocent for himself.
Then there's the creepy homeless dude who gives Nico and Steven the box and says "take it, it's already yours" - I mean, talk about predictable right? There was absolutely nothing in this film that we hadn't already seen in previous installments of the Hellraiser series, and it's all too obvious they couldn't be bothered thinking of a decent story line!
Special Effects / Make Up
Special effects - well, there were none. Not that I can remember anyway! Like most other aspects of the film, the makeup effects were awful (as proven by this picture). When this woman had her throat ripped open, it honestly looked like a fan made film, because oh my god it was terrible. The makeup and costumes were far superior in the original Hellraiser from 1987, which is really something to be ashamed of for a modern horror flick. The effects are only meant to get better right?
And the worst movie ending of all time goes to... you guessed it, Hellraiser Revelations! So there was this weird sexual thing going on with Emma, first she was flirting with her boyfriends dad, then she was passionately kissing her brother, and THEN she decided that it might be hot to go and suffer the rest of eternity in hell. Go figure.
So my simple advice is this. Don't watch it, but if you really have to - don't have high expectations. I honestly don't think it deserves the 2.8 stars that it has on IMDB.
At least for those of us who have had the misfortune to see it, and felt majorly let down - we have 'Leviathan, the story of Hellraiser and Hellbound' and possibly a Hellraiser remake to look forward to! Although I'm not a fan of remakes, I have hope for this one as both Doug Bradley and Clive Barker are returning.
Thanks for reading!