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Background

Gregory Widen's 1995 film, THE PROPHECY, tells of a second Angelic war. The Archangel Gabriel, like Lucifer in the first war, fights an insurgency in Heaven designed to return the balance of creation to a time before man, when Angels loved were loved by Him above all else. Defending the Word of God and His WIll is the Archangel Michael, who fights to keep humanity's souls intact. Lucifer, still seething and watching from below dreads the notion of Gabriel's victory, as Lucifer cannot stand to see another Angel succeed where he had failed, but more importantly, does not want the competition.

Clive Barker's 1987 film, HELLRAISER, and its sequel, HELLBOUND: HELLRAISER II, introduced a new vision of Hell, where Hell is a dark Labyrinth of stone and order, presided over by a deity known as Leviathan. In service to Leviathan are a cadre of entities, known as Cenobites, who are considered "angels to some, demons to others. " Gateways to Hell can be opened by those obsessed, determined and/or worthy enough to solve certain mythical puzzles, like the infamous puzzle box, The Lament Configuration. Often, those before who have succeeded have done so for the reputed promise of infinite pain and infinite pleasure, indivisible, as promised by those who guard the puzzles.

However, those few who solve the puzzles often find themselves unprepared for the intensity of sensation offered by the Cenobites, and except in rare cases, are never seen again...

...at least not in their previous incarnations.

Synopsis

The Second Angelic War has begun, and Lucifer seeks to tip the scales of war in favor of Michael's forces, to maintain the status quo. Lucifer seeks to recruit the help of Leviathan and the Cenobites against Gabriel's forces. However, he cannot consult with them directly, as the Labyrinth is its own domain of Hell, separate from his. Enter Natasha, a theology student, who Lucifer extorts to solve the Lament Configuration for him... Neither are prepared for what happens next.

Historian's note

The events of the film occur an indeterminant amount of time after the "present day" segment of HELLRAISER: BLOODLINE, but before the events of HELLRAISER: DEADER.

The events are also after the events of THE PROPHECY, but before the events of THE PROPHECY 3: THE ASCENT.

Continuity Discussion

As a fellow diehard fan of the HELLRAISER series, I've heard the screams of protest from many who have heard my ideas for the film, so I wanted to address the issues of continuity here and now...

1) "Clive Barker's mythology of Hell has NOTHING to do with the Hell of Judeo-Christian mythology."
I totally agree. That's why this is a fan-film, and not cannon, if you'll excuse the pun. Also, this is why I made the Judeo-Christian Hell of damnation distinct from the Labyrinth Hell which has nothing to do with divine judgment of good and evil. This is my attempt to create a story intersecting both mythologies while keeping each one distinct and sovereign within its own material.

2) "But how can there be two regions in Hell? There's only ONE Hell!"
Pinhead, from HR2: "But he is in his own Hell, child, and quite unreachable.
Also, Trevor's Hell (HR6) and Detective Thorne's Hell (HR5) are not the same as the naked Labyrinth. And then there's Dante...

3) "The Hellraiser Mythology has no God concept..."
Pinhead, HR4: "Do I look like someone who cares what God thinks?"
So, certainly, there's an acknowledgement of the existence of a God concept on the part of the Cenobites.

4) "...nor a concept of heaven..."
Pinhead, HR3, "...and down the dark decades of your pain, this will seem like a memory of heaven."

5) "...and therefore, no concept of angels."
Pinhead, HR1: "Angels to some, demons to others..."

6) "Why doesn't Lucifer just solve the box his damn self?"
He can't. While this topic could engender rich debate, for the purposes of this story, solving the box doesn't JUST require desire (Pinhead, HR2: "It is not hands that call us, it is desire.") it also requires a soul... (Julia, HR2: "It wanted souls, so I brought you.") And trust me, Natasha's character definitely will have the desire.

7) "Where's Pinhead in this movie? Whoever heard of a Hellraiser film without Pinhead?"
This was an actual question asked on the IMDB message board. It's a completely valid question. To answer: this film is intended for die-hard fans of the Hellraiser series, including its films, literature and especially the comics. The Hellraiser mythos goes much father than just Pinhead, but rather extends out to encompass Leviathan and the entire army of Cenobites. Pinhead is but one Cenobite. This film features four of the others as previously seen in the films. From a practical standpoint, anybody cast as Pinhead will have comparisons made to Doug Bradley. Doug Bradley performs the archetypal Pinhead, and nobody that I would be able to find could have come close to his performance...

In the end, it's all a question of interpretation, and this film takes the interpretation that there is a heaven, with angels, and possibly a God. Judeo-Christian Hell also co-exists but a separate domain from the Labyrinth.

Ironically, this film is written and directed by a hardcore atheist.

IMAGE CREDITS FOR THIS PAGE
From the top:

  1. Viggo Mortensen as Lucifer in THE PROPHECY (1995)

  2. Leviathan and the Labyrinth, HELLBOUND: HELLRAISER II (1988)

  3. Ashley Laurence as Kirsty Cotton and Nicholas Vince as Chatterer in HELLRAISER (1987)

  4. Doug Bradley as Pinhead, HELLRAISER III: HELL ON EARTH (1992)

  5. Doug Bradley as Pinhead, HELLRAISER III: HELL ON EARTH (1992)

THE PROPHECY is available on DVD from Dimension Films. HELLRAISER and HELLBOUND: HELLRAISER II are available on DVD from Anchor Bay Entertainment. HELLRAISER III: HELL ON EARTH is available for DVD outside of the United States, but is available on VHS (out of print?) from Paramount Pictures.