In the film Hellraiser 4 Bloodlines the Elysium Configuration is introduced.

The lore as explained in the film is that the Elysium Configuration exists as an anti-Lament Configuration that creates perpetual light and would serve to permanently close all gateways to Hell. This lore is confirmed in the film’s climax in the 2127 timeline when the Minos is revealed to be a physical manifestation of the Elysium Configuration, is activated, creates perpetual light which closes the gateway to Hell/Leviathan, and destroys Pinhead and the Cenobites.

But, hold on — it is revealed earlier in the circa 1927 timeline that Pinhead, himself, plots to make John use the Elysium Configuration to keep the gateway to Hell open so he can come and go as he pleases. He gets John to use the Elysium Configuration, but it does not work, so Pinhead kills John. John's wife, Bobbi, sends Pinhead, Angelique, and a monstrous dog called Chatter Beast back to Hell using the box.

What gives?

Does an unmolested Elysium Configuration permanently open the doors to Hell allowing Pinhead to perpetually come and go as he pleases, for example entering the line at the State DMV or watching crappy Hellraiser sequels whenever he gets a craving for limitless suffering, or does an unmolested Elysium Configuration close the door to Hell (later sequels notwithstanding) and destroy the Cenobites including Pinhead? Do we know why Pinhead plotted to solve the Elysium Configuration himself?

Reference a depiction of the Elysium Configuration, an apparent 4th dimensional representation comprising of the three dimensions of spatial movements of the Lament Configuration puzzle box, plus those movements in fourth dimension, time:

Elysium Configuration From: http://propnomicon.blogspot.com/2010/02/hellraiser-elysium-configuration.html?m=1

  • As far as I can tell, no part of Hellraiser IV occurs in 1927. Do you mean the 1996 section? And as far as I can tell, Pinhead was allied with Angelique to prevent the Elysium Configuration (except that she actually wants to set it off).
    – FuzzyBoots
    Nov 15, 2021 at 15:53
  • As I recall there are some scenes of the Hellraiser 3 building as it was freshly constructed, which I believed occurred roughly mid-way between the 400 years covered which establishes the entire conceit of Hellraiser IV of using a “building” as the puzzle box, which then gets extrapolated into future bloodline to the use of the Minos station as the physical manifestation of the Elysium Configuration. I took it to be if we can do Lament Configuration with a building, why not Elysium with a space station? Nov 15, 2021 at 16:24

1 Answer 1


I think you may be confusing character motivations and configurations. Pinhead is summoned by Angelique (she actually intended to summon her minion clowns, which were cut from the script) to help prevent John Marchant from developing a means to close the gate to Hell that the Lament Configuration had opened. Angelique has second thoughts about destroying the Elysium Configuration as she no longer agrees with Hell's philosophy, and is enjoying life on Earth, so she attempts to ensure it's used to destroy the gateway in the 20th century. It fails, however, and she and Pinhead are banished back to Hell. Before they learn about the Elysium Configuration, what Pinhead refers to using is the Merchant Building itself.

PINHEAD: He’ll die. But not yet. Imagine that panel frozen in the position of a moment ago. This isn’t a room – it’s a holocaust waiting to wake itself.

Angelique looks round the lobby.

ANGELIQUE: A Lament Configuration? On this scale?
PINHEAD: A vast and permanent gateway to the fields of human flesh.

So the short answer is that the Elysium Configuration does permanently close the gateway between Heaven and Hell initially opened by the Lament Configuration. Angelique summons Pinhead, knowing that LeMarchand had originally planned to build something to destroy the gate, and her believing that his descendents might one day succeed. When Pinhead is summoned, he recognizes the potential of the building to open a permanent gate. Angelique learns that John has designed an Elysium Configuration and decides that she wants him to use it so that she'll be free from Hell and its current austerity. It fails, setting the stage for the 2127 space station and its success.

One of the reasons the plotline may be so muddled is that the script had multiple changes during filming, which eventually resulted in the director disavowing the script.


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