Before watching the new Hellraiser series that looks absolutely fantastic, I wanted to watch the ten movies from the iconic franchise. One strangely stood out, to my surprise. It’s one everyone totally forgot about or doesn’t even know exists!
Before We Start, There Are Sights I Want You To See! Well, No, But Read It!
This is an in-depth review of the forgotten movie Hellraiser Hellworld from 2005. I rewatched the entire movie franchise and came out with subjects related to the plot of the Hellworld movie or eighth instalment. If you plan on watching the movie, do not keep reading this article, as it might ruin it for you.
This is all personal, and I respect everyone’s view of the movie and the Hellraiser franchise. Also, this is a subjective article and an opinion of the movie.
Pinhead and the Cenobites are beloved characters, and we all have preferences. With that said, let’s dig into our younger years! YOU ARE WARNED!
WARNING!!! SPOILER ALERT!!!
MATURE AUDIENCES: All my articles are for adults.
TRIGGERS: PTSD | Gore | Trauma | Violence | Sex | Language | Death | Taphephobia.
Official Summary Of Hellraiser Hellworld
‘The Newest, most horrific tale!’
Gamers playing a MMORPG based on the ‘Hellraiser films’ find their lives endangered after being invited to a rave, the host intends to show them the truth behind the Cenobite mythos.
*MMORPG: Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing-Games
My Summary Of Hellraiser Hellworld
The movie starts with a funeral at a Catholic church. They immediately introduced us to four friends before a fifth young adult walked by emotionally about the loss of his brother.
The young man blames the quartet but brushes it off by taking a seat away from them. Out of the four, the young blond woman walks to the closed casket and opens the lid—wrong, please, Ask A Mortician!—and we see a burned victim who pulls her in.
There’s a ‘sin’ for “dream sequence cliché!”
The movie revolves around the idea that Hellraiser turned into this cinematic universe that also took over the internet in the early 00s. We follow the group of friends to an ‘invite only’ rave party revolving around Hellworld.
Based on the Hellraiser world, we see the puzzle, the Cenobites, but we also witness an entirely new representation of Hellraiser. Everyone believes it to be folklore, where the Cenobites are the main point of interest.
We know someone died because he believed Hellworld, the game, to be real. Was he right? The friends brush that idea off when getting VIP treatment at the party. They see things from behind the scenes that supposedly are real.
One by one, caught in their own world, they separate from one another and become targets. All I can say is that it’s a different retelling of a cult classic!
The Last Movie With Our Pinhead!
Hellworld is the eighth instalment in the Hellraiser franchise and the last to show us our beloved Pinhead as we knew him. After Hellworld, which was simultaneously filmed with Hellraiser Deader, Doug Bradley retired the iconic mantle and left it for someone else to wear.
His Pinhead replacement in Hellraiser Revelations gave an impressive performance. It is hard to reprise a role from someone who wore the mantle for so long and try to imitate the delivery of said character. After all, he had big shoes to fill and did a magnificent portrayal of Pinhead.
Going back to Hellworld, seeing Pinhead throughout the movie was satisfying. The previous three flicks sadly only showed him for a ridiculous ten minutes in the last act, which was quite disappointing. Before Hellworld, the two movies were merely carbon copies of each other with no differences.
Hellworld was a fresh start for the franchise to enter the new millennium. Let’s face it. All horror movies did it! They had to get on with the internet, the online lives of teenagers and young adults, and the new trends. Wow, saying that makes me sound so old!
All in all, I’m happy that Doug Bradley retired from his role with that movie and not the two previous flicks that were repetitive. They were there only to keep the franchise under the same company.
Hellraiser: The Next Generation Characters
Okay, so we have a group of four friends and a plus one who tags along. Does this sound familiar? The usual trope of teens ready to get killed by a masked murderer lurking outside a cabin in the woods. Hellworld is not a slasher flick, it’s a rave party at some mansion hosted by an older man, and there are no teens.
The friends aren’t high schoolers but young adults who aren’t careless about their environment or bullies. They are a regular twenty-something-year-old who suffered the loss of one of their friends, whom they suspect was in too deep with the Hellworld online game and committed suicide.
The Obvious And The Good Decision
We know right from the beginning that the dead brother, Adam, was right. Hellworld is real because of Pinhead and Cenobites. We also know right off the bat that Chelsea—we know her better as Largetha from Vikings—will be our Final Girl.
What sets the group of friends apart from most horror movies in the genre is that they fit together. Often in horror movies, a group of friends always have a jerk, an obnoxious dumbass, the girl that throws herself at everything who slept with her best friend’s boyfriend, etc.
In this movie, the group is realistic, but the dialogue…not so much. However, we have clichés with our Final Girl and the ‘Expandable Black Friend’ known as Derrick—we know him better as Cyborg’s voice in DC Comics‘ Teen Titans and Teen Titans GO!
What made Hellworld different for this next-generation endeavour was avoiding internet overuse. Also, the apparent jump scares at every turn and other annoying factors. Also, the host of the party is often outside digging graves. So was the typical style of the 00s.
The Inciting Incident Or Foreshadowing You Choose!
Hellworld is about to have its annual ‘invite only’ party, and no one wants to go alone to a party without friends. Following that logic, they introduced us to Mike.
This twenty-two-year-old clearly spoke with a British accent at the church in the opening scene, but now is a regular American. Let’s not question his process! Fun fact, we know Mike better as the Man of Steel nowadays.
So, this young American man tries to convince Chelsea to accompany him to the party, but she clearly doesn’t want to go. Throughout the movie, she clarifies that Hellworld is for a younger crowd. At this point, it’s hard to tell if Mike is her boyfriend or not.
The following day, we see the friends and Chelsea attending the party. All four of them solved the online puzzle—it is the cube we know—and had their VIP invitation for the behind-the-scenes treatment of the party as well as Nokia cellphones. Yup, that movie does not make us feel any younger! So, let’s give a ‘sin’ for that!
They follow the host, an older man bringing them to a room where he serves them some moonshine. All drink a shot except Chelsea, who mentions being the driver and Allison, who tries on some perfume and hurts her eyes. Mike touches a tarot card deck that leaves ink on his fingers. Do we ‘sin’ this as obvious foreshadowing?
Sights To Show Or A Mad Scientist Laboratory?
After the moonshine and some touching of oddities, the group of friends follow the host to a strange laboratory.
We have some exposition about the origin of Hellraiser, as in Pinhead and the Cenobites and puzzle. The host also talks about where they stand, and a long chain with a prominent hook catches Mike’s attention.
It reminded me of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre room where Leatherface would hook the girl from her back. Sorry, Hellworld, I must ‘sin’ this twice for the obvious foreshadowing and trying to steal Leatherface’s thunder!
Jars with deformed heads and babies are reminiscent of what you’d find in The Nightmare Before Christmas. Still quite enjoyable, though, as the props are fun to look at, and reactions from the actors leave you wishing they would watch more horror movies.
But the scene was necessary for the host to convince each friend that Hellraiser was real. Sadly, Chelsea must be the downer and know-it-all, telling how Hellraiser is just a made-up game and franchise. Tsk, tsk, tsk, don’t you know you must not ridicule the host in a horror movie?
The host pricks Chelsea with a needle. No one noticed what had happened, and they walked out of the room.
The One Death That Gets The Ball Rolling!
The friends scattered around the mansion. Another sin for splitting up! Don’t they know the rules of horror movies? They are in their twenties. They most certainly watched Scream if Hellraiser is a franchise in their world!
But none of them believe Hellworld to be real or the Cenobites. They are all in different parts of the mansion, and Chelsea wants some time alone after Mike is rude about her single status situation.
Now that we know Jake‘s brother was her boyfriend and died of self-immolation. I mean, dude, think with your brain, not your pants, and try to console her first? Just a suggestion.
The obvious happens. Derrick is gone dancing with some girl on the dancefloor, where we learn he has asthma. He’s out of breath and takes out his inhaler, which somehow falls off his hand and is kicked at a grid where it falls through. Like, how unlucky do you have to be?
One British Is Enough Because: Reasons!
Meanwhile, we have our British girl, Allison,—a ‘sin’ right here because there could be one British but not two! Let’s have the hot guy mixing an American accent with how he speaks because, reasons—Allison gets to a room and sees various disturbing objects and a suspicious chair that she must sit in. Go figure!
Ding! Ding! Ding! We have our winner for the first death! The host shows up while she’s sitting down. He says not to fear the device that resembles a mix of the Dark Ages torture method and an electric chair.
Of course, the host removed the pin that kept the steel cuffs for her hands and ankles and the rotating blades in perfect line with her jugular in place—poor, poor little lamb. She dies screaming, somehow, despite her jugular gushing blood everywhere. Let’s give this another ‘sin’ because, logic.
Let’s Keep The Ball Rolling, Shall We?
Derrick finds his inhaler. It’s in the room with all the jars and a giant swinging hook on a chain. No, he doesn’t die hooked. He gets his head decapitated by a massive half-moon-shaped sawing blade at the hands of Pinhead. At this point, I asked myself, “Why is Pinhead doing Jason Voorhees‘ work?”
But I am not giving this a ‘sin’ because it has a purpose. Let’s keep going.
Meanwhile, we have Chelsea trying to find Allison and recognizing that something is off about the party. Duh! She tries to contact her friends with the Nokia cellphones they received as VIPs. No luck. She is our Final Girl, so…
Jake tries to address the crowd in another room where many people are, but there is no answer. After having some hot steamy sex in a bedroom with a nun, of all people, everyone ignores him.
Either he’s dead, or everyone in the room is dead. Well, which one is it? It remains a question for a while as the nun disappears after he falls asleep following his sexual prowess.
The Foreshadowing We Knew Was Coming
They left us with Mike because we don’t know what’s happening with Jake, and Chelsea is still questioning the party.
After being shot down by Chelsea, Mike tries a cigarette because why not? It was amusing to see him choke since the actor is a smoker. But he doesn’t remain alone for long, and for a good reason. Mike is the hot guy in the group, and, well, Chelsea walked away because she’s obviously blind and in mourning.
A woman I want to say ‘in heat’ was all over him earlier. We didn’t see the act, but one could figure out what she was doing, and now it was time for him to return the favour.
She drags him along a path as they are kissing, and as a viewer, you’re expecting another sex scene to happen. The entire venture was good, leaving the impression that the typical lovemaking scene would occur and both would die. Yeah…it took a turn!
Oh, If Only You Moved A Step To The Side!
Sadly, while Mike is about to go down on her, she pushes him off and locks the door behind her as she leaves. A personal note: that should be a ‘sin’ in itself. Idiot.
Where is Mike? In the room with all the jars and oddities. He walks around a little after begging to be let out without success. Disgusted by what’s around him, including a jar with Derrick’s head in it. He jumps at a noise. He stands between tables in the middle of the room. At this point, he sees the body of poor decapitated Derrick and remains in place.
Come on, dude, one step to the right or left, and you’re good. You saw the freaking hook that sort of scared you earlier! So, another ‘sin’ for the “I’m oblivious to my environment cliché!”
But we all knew it would happen. The hook gets Mike in the back and drags him before lifting him off the floor. The overall look impressed me, though, as it had me think of DJ‘s death in the Event Horizon movie.
And that’s the end for Mike, but not the last we see of him.
How Is It Connected To Pinhead And Hellraiser?
Chelsea and Jake are the only two survivors at two different places in the mansion. Chelsea found proof that the host was, in fact, Jake’s brother’s real father.
Meanwhile, Jake concludes that as long as you know nothing of Hellworld is real, you can’t die. Hearing Chelsea screaming after she sees a Cenobite version of her dead boyfriend, Jake reminds her not to believe her eyes.
We are now seeing five graves with fresh dirt over them. Glad to know the host wasn’t digging for nothing! We’re about to get the killer’s exposition on how his plan came to work. ‘Sin’ for the “Villain must do an Exposé about his villainous plan cliché!”
The Villain Must Reveal The Plan And The Outcome
The truth behind Hellworld was the moonshine and oddities and needle. According to the host, everything that night was in the friends’ heads. The alcohol that acted as a narcotic and hallucinogenic drugged them. They communicated with one another through the cellphones, giving them the impression of being side by side.
When Chelsea is out of the coffin, helped by the authorities and first responders, she quickly tries to see her friends. Sadly, she’s the Final Girl, and they all died. Derreck by asphyxiation, Allison by scratching her throat, Mike out of terror—it is scientifically infrequent and very improbable for someone his age.
Chelsea runs to Jake, who is on a gurney and survives the night. The cops reveal the friends were in coffins for days. I know they had tubes for oxygen connected to their coffin, but geez, how strong was that drug and moonshine?
Pinhead And The Cenobites Come To Collect
The host never believed in Hellraiser. All he wanted was to kill his son’s friends, who didn’t stop him from his Hellworld game addiction. However, the father was never present in his son’s life, yet he wanted to kill those present in the guy’s life? Best father of the year, everyone!
Holding the puzzle cube in some dirty motel with a pack of cigarettes and a forty-ounce bottle of whiskey or something, he plays with it. Has he learned nothing from Hellraiser?
Long story short, we see the Cenobites and Pinhead appearing and claiming him while reminding him of his wrongdoing.
Meanwhile, Chelsea and Jake are together and, on their way, to…somewhere? They receive a call from the host. To be continued? Nah, those were the early 00s way of ending a horror movie.
Oh, The Awesome Sights And Sins Of Hellworld
Seriously though, Hellworld is actually a refreshing movie! It’s a Horror B movie at its best! It has some cheesiness to it but in a fun way.
While watching Hellworld, I thought about Freddy vs. Jason, Book Of Shadows, Wrong Turn, and Jeepers Creepers. It takes you back to the ‘new age of horror B movies.’
I said we’d see Mike again, and we did, along with Allison. They show up as half-morphed Cenobites. I actually liked the makeup on Henry Cavill particularly. He would make a good horror slasher or a very outstanding demon.
When shown in the coffin as they lifted the friends from the ground, I can honestly say that Cavill was the only one portraying a corpse well. He was not moving at all, and his eyes were focused on ‘nothing,’ which is a natural corpse effect. On a real corpse, the eyes don’t align and create a sense of discomfort. Here, Cavill is alive, so his eyes align right, but focused on ‘nothing.’
I was laughing so hard seeing Allison and Derrick breathing like their abdomen and eyelids were moving. I guess another ‘sin’ for not knowing corpses don’t breathe? I mean, it must be acting basics? No? I ‘sin’ it anyway! Also, I wonder why only Mike and Derrick had the corpse contact lenses but not Allison?
Hellworld Is The Only Movie Like It In The Franchise
Throughout the movie, we see the Cenobites and Pinhead in every death scene. It helps with the storyline hiding that the host drugged them.
So, my final thoughts are to watch Hellworld! It’s a little 00s horror B movie treat! Go in with no expectations, and you’ll have a good time! It’s the only Hellraiser movie of its genre in the franchise.
Some Fun Facts About Hellworld
One of the fun facts is that they filmed the movie in Romania and not the United States. It’s clearly shown on the licence plate of the vehicle Mike drives at the beginning of the movie.
Another funny thing is that Cavill is actually the youngest of the main cast at twenty-two, while Katheryn Winnick is twenty-seven, and Khary Payton is in his thirties.
So, get on Shudder or Tubi and watch this little B Gem and enjoy the memories of your early twenties again! Haha! Spooky Halloween, everyone! And don’t play with any cube puzzles. It never ends well!
Also, yes, I wrote this review more in a CinemaSins way because, well, it’s October. I binged watched “Everything Wrong With—fill the blank with a horror movie,” and it felt right to do so! Haha!