Film Review: “Evil Dead”

 

The dead rise again. Fede Alvarez’s “Evil Dead” dishes out a sumptuous blend of suspense, gore, and dark humor in his remake of Sam Raimi’s horror-comedy cult classics. In an age where mainstream horror movies have become either pseudo-intelligent moments of suspense or campy torture-sex flicks, “Evil Dead” is a much needed breath of stale, death-filled air.

A group of five young adults head out to a cabin in the woods where they used to spend their summers. In addition to spreading the ashes of Mia and David’s (Jane Levy, “Shameless” and Shiloh Fernandez, “Red Riding Hood”) recently deceased mother, the gang is there to righteously help Mia kick her drug addiction.

As the gang clean up their abode, they discover dead cats in the basement strung up like macabre party streamers (seemingly for no reason other than to creep everyone out). They also find a book.

Eric (Lou Taylor Pucci, “Beginners”) decides, on a whim, to tear open the black plastic and barbed wire that cover the book. Ignoring all the vehement warnings written directly on the pages biding him to stop, Eric goes out of his way to recite the forbidden incantation, effectively conjuring a demon that possesses Mia and dooms them all. For the rest of the film, Eric is ironically the voice of reason (though he really has no place to speak) as he repeatedly tells David that Mia’s death is the only way to end the bloodbath.

The film paces itself almost perfectly, beginning with a pivotal evil tree scene that pays homage to the original “Evil Dead” and “Evil Dead II.” Of course, only Mia experiences the horror and because she is a young drug addict going through withdrawals and prone to the dramatic, no one believes her about the evil thing in the woods that is now in the cabin with them.

While the obvious cataclysms occur, they’re intensified tenfold by surprises worse than could be imagined. No opportunity for violence or gore is spared and no sharp object goes neglected; all doors are open and then promptly locked shut by the evil spirit. One can only speculate how many small truck-loads of fake blood were utilized in the making of this film.

But the gore is not the only thing (though it may be the best). “Evil Dead” is a trifecta of suspense, gore, and shock; only one hand is needed to count the number of surprise shots in the film. Rather, “Evil Dead” relies on its creepy score, Jane Levy’s fantastic acting, and it’s brutal slicing and dicing to deliver its punch. It knows full well the audience is entranced, watching every move, anticipating scrupulously what limb will be sheared or if they really will go down into the forsaken basement.

If you love horror movies, “Evil Dead” 2013 is a must-see movie that will only leave you thirsty for more.

More to Discover
Donate to The UCSD Guardian
$210
$500
Contributed
Our Goal

Your donation will support the student journalists at University of California, San Diego. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment, keep printing our papers, and cover our annual website hosting costs.

Donate to The UCSD Guardian
$210
$500
Contributed
Our Goal