Not as bad as I had assumed. I wish they had expanded upon the female friendship story line, it's definitely the strongest aspect of the film. Also, it's a topic/subject that's not been really capitalized upon in the horror genre.
Somehow has better continuity than 2 yet the tone is completely off. Hickox defines gratuity by inserting his own name at various places in the movie and spending a good chunk of cash on long war segments that are merely dreams and an explosive ending for no reason. Nevertheless this is where Pinhead is developed and shown his human core. --PolarisDiB
The freefall in quality began with the third entry in the series. Any feeling of horror or dread, well captured in the first two entries, is completely absent here. Middling effects, terrible acting and a script that goes nowhere. Hell on earth? Hell to watch.
Though this is the film where Pinhead went full Freddy, it isn’t exactly as far out as most viewers claim. Barker’s refusal to establish clear rules for this universe lead to a trilogy of films that all feel quite unlike each other and are all entertaining in their own way. HoE is obviously the red-headed stepchild of the bunch, but it’s a slick, sexy, stupid ride that you can hate-watch with affection.
It only takes two scenes before it's clear this is low-rent entertainment - taking a highbrow horror conceit and turning the Puzzle Box into a Big Mac box (literally) for the consumption of the masses. This was confirmed by unnecessary CGI, an uncomfortably emotional Pinhead, and a cenobite DJ spitting killer CDs.
The third entry gives deeper background to the Pinhead character but the villain himself has turned into a wise-cracking anti-hero that never was the point with the films. The film is helped by the fact that the female leads, Terry Farrell and Paula Marshall look cute and some of the death sequences are inspired. The Mötorhead title song is best though.
A good ole crowd-pleasing horror sequel, does it take the first two, indigest them down with popcorn made out of poison-lead pencil shavings? Sure. Do they fuck-up the whole premise and damn near make a kid's movie? Sure. But it's still good B-movie fun! Lots of Doug Bradley hamming it up!