In Evil Dead, five friends traveled to a remote cabin in the woods. Mia (Jane Levy) has recently decided to kick her heroin habit, and enlisted the aid of her closest allies in supporting her decision. With much needed isolation, Mia could go through her withdrawals in peace…or so she thought. Little did she know, her friends had ulterior motives. They purposely brought her to this specific location for the seclusion factor, so when Mia inevitably caved, she wouldn’t be able to leave. As the night waged on, and her atmosphere became more erratic, Mia struggled not only for survival, but for the freedom from her friends to escape her fatal conclusion.
After Mia reported a strange smell coming from the cellar, Eric (Lou Taylor Pucci) and David (Shiloh Fernandez) headed downstairs to investigate. During their search, Eric found a book covered in plastic and barbed wire. Driven by his curiosity, Eric read from the book, and accidentally invoked an ancient evil spirit. Now, the group must find a way to save their souls before they are consumed, one by one.
I didn’t hate Evil Dead, but I didn’t love it like I imagined I would. After slowly building up my excitement for the movie for so long, I couldn’t help but feel let down after I left the theater. Now, don’t get me wrong, this is not a bad remake. In fact, I’d probably say it’s one of the best remakes I’ve ever seen. But after reading so many positive reviews and hearing how spectacular it was, I set the bar too high and it fell short.
Mia’s heroin addiction added a cool twist to the story, with the whole “is she going through withdrawals, or is she a deadite?” angle. However, if they really wanted to play that card, they should have cut out the first five minutes of the movie, which reveal what a deadite is and how it behaves. The mystery of her true motives was ruined by letting the audience in on the fact that it’s not all in her head, and there is an evil presence to fear. The mind game that could have given this reboot an edge turned out to be just a filler for personality traits.
Why did the deadites die so easily? Part of what made the deadites in the 1981 version so terrifying, and mentally draining was their refusal to die, because they were already dead. Even if you chopped them up into pieces, they’d still wiggle. However, a large amount of blood loss seemed to be enough to take out these 2013 soul suckers. I am, however, aware that some scenes were cut to give the film a more profitable R rating, as opposed to an NC-17, so I’m hoping that the unrated version will help further explain their demise.
Although there were problems, this remake stands out from the usual abominations that we’ve all sat through. Director Fede Alvarez was fearless when it came to the bloodshed. Evil Dead was marvelously, wonderfully, ridiculously gory. I’m eager to see the director’s cut when the DVD is released.
Evil Dead delivered in the gore department, and it was exciting to see so many practical effects, but it lacked vital components that made the original frightening. The hopeless feeling of isolation wasn’t as present, nor was the need to hold out till morning. There was too much down time between events to keep the feeling of dread present throughout the entire movie. Overall, it was missing the tension that made the original so petrifying. This Evil Dead was gory, but not very scary.
Despite the fact that I didn’t fall in love with the movie like so many have, I really dug Fede Alvarez’s style. He made a slick remake that didn’t tarnish the original’s glory, and is actually pretty fun to watch. I’ve heard rumors of a sequel, and if he chooses to direct it, I have a feeling it could be a real gem.