***DISCLAIMER*** The following review is entirely my opinion. If you comment (which I encourage you to do) be respectful. If you don't agree with my opinion, that's fine. To each their own. I am just sharing my opinions and perspective. Finally, the reviews are given on a scale of 1-5. 1, of course, being terrible. 2, being not great. 3, being okay. 4, being good and 5, being epic!
Hellbound: Hellraiser II - 2 out of 5
There's a lot of unspoken rules when it comes to a horror film's sequels and one above all others is that the body count MUST be higher. This is very apparent in Hellbound: Hellraiser II and it's probably the only thing the film has going for it.
The story takes place after the first film and follows the survivor of the horrible incident with Pinhead and the other Cenobites; Kirsty. However, and not surprisingly, she is committed to a mental facility because--well, let's face it--who would really believe her when she said that her stepmother and her Uncle who came back from the dead and possessed her father were trying to open the gates to hell. That would be a tough pill to swallow for even the craziest this world has to offer. So, the young Kirsty is put in a straight jacket and is screaming that the mattress her stepmommy was killed on must be destroyed or there's a chance she could be resurrected like her Uncle was. Not surprisingly, no one listens to her story except the facility's administrator and he develops a morbid curiosity and begins to find out if he could both bring stepmother dearest back and solve the puzzle box and open the gates to eternal torment. Why is he curious about this? I don't know because the movie doesn't really go into that but it seems he's been fascinated by the box for quite some time--again, why anyone would be interested in a box that's only means of existing is to punish the person who solves it is beyond me. So, the dear doctor opens the gates to hell with some help of some of his patients and its up to Kirsty and the patient Tiffany to stop the sadomasochistic doctor who teams up with the resurrected stepmom.
Does the story sound complicated? A little bit and much of this has to do with a flurry of rewrites that had to be done to the script over the course of making this film. It's because of these rewrites and the muddy nature of the story that hurts this film more than the weak special effects. In fact, it could also explain the major emphasis on the gore--it hides the story.
The film becomes partially interesting when you get to see the human form of Pinhead and how he ended up becoming this nightmare of a creature but there's really no depth to his story. Basically he was some sort of Captain, got the puzzle box, solved it and had nails put in his head. Further interest can become invested in the film when we see a slightly softer side to the evil Cenobites as they help Kirsty in her battle against the evil doctor. We even see that despite the fact they are sick and evil, they are far from dumb and Pinhead doesn't just go after the person with the puzzle box in their hands but sees through the doctor's deception and goes after the man with the desire to open the box. So, that's worth the viewing of the film, right? Seeing that being evil doesn't ALWAYS mean being dumb.
Eh, who am I kidding? The only real reason to watch this movie is because you either love horror films or, you're like me, and have decided to go through the entire series because once you start something, you see it to the end--no matter how bad it gets. I sure hope the series picks up a little bit...I'm only on part 2.