A news reporter named Joey Summerskill, witnesses a mysterious death caused by the Lament Configuration. She wants to find out more for her story. She befriends a girl named Terry, because she also witnessed the death and knows a little more about it.
The girlfriend of the owner of a night club, J.P Monroe, is stripped of her skin by a statue, the statue absorbs her body. Inside is the evil demon cenobite known as Pinhead, who wants to have another body, so that he'll be free.
J.P the night club owner invites Terry over so Pinhead can take her. Discovering the plan, she flees, however, Pinhead convinces her to stay and make her a cenobite. He takes J.P. instead, Pinhead is then free.
Joey meets the ghost of Elliot Spencer, who became Pinhead when he opened the box. During the events of Hellbound: Hellraiser II a girl named Kirsty Cotton set his soul free. After his encounter with Dr. Channard, his cenobite appearance took a form of its own and it wants to take over the world.
Pinhead and Joey go face to face, as he and his cenobites chase after her. Luckily, she opens the box, sending all the cenobites back to hell, except for Pinhead, who evaded capture, Pinhead then manages to take it from Joey. As he is about to kill her, Elliot comes and merges back with Pinhead. Finally, Joey sends Pinhead back to Hell by stabbing him with a blade from the box.
After their encounter, Joey places the box in cement, and leaves. Some time later, a building is made on top of the spot where Joey buried the box, the inside of the box is decorated with the box's design. This building is explained in the sequel.
- Doug Bradley as Pinhead/Elliot Spencer
- Terry Farrel as Joey Summserkill
- Paula Marshall as Terri/Dreamer cenobite
- Kevin Bernthard as J.P. Monroe/Pistonhead cenobite
- Ken Carpenter as Doc/Camerahead cenobite
- Brent Boulthouse as CD the DJ/CD cenobite
- Peter Atkins as Rick Bloodstone/Barbie cenobite
- Ashley Laurence as Kirsty Cotton (cameo)
- This was Dimension Films' first movie.
- This is also the first Hellraiser movie to be made in the United States.
- The band Motorhead made a music video as a tie in to this film.
- This is the first Hellraiser film where Pinhead is the main antagonist.