Director: Fede Alvarez
Writers: Fede Alvarez, Diablo Cody and Rodo Sayagues
Cast: Jane Levy, Shiloh Fernandez, Lou Taylor Pucci, Jessica Lucas and Elizabeth Blackmore
Studio: Tristar Pictures
I really don’t know how I feel about “Evil Dead”. It works as a side story, as we await the return of the once and future Ash Campbell. However, I can’t discredit this release as a decent horror flick in a decade plus American dry spell. This version is bastardization that attempts to play against drug withdrawal metaphors as a proxy for possession. They hole up in Mia and her brother David’s decrepit family cottage and steel themselves for the worst of the withdrawal symptoms to set in. However, their priorities soon shift when Eric discovers a copy of the Necronomicon and recites the exact words the book warns him not to recite under any circumstance. What follows thereafter should, by all rights, be an entertaining, gory romp through the swamps.
There’s something missing from this “Evil Dead” outing and that is comedy. There is absolutely no humor in this one at all. There are only two very thin homages to the original at the end. None of these characters have anywhere near the on screen charisma that Bruce Campbell’s Ash had. The basic reason for the friends to be at the cabin and their staying when things get weird is much better in the new movie. The tree rape is in the new movie though significantly changed and very brief.
What I take away from this Raimi blessed release is that there’s a much larger world for the Necronomicon. Hopefully, that world will possess Jane Levy and Bruce Campbell in the future. What we have here is a noble effort, but ultimately failed cause. Gore is the antithesis of horror, as it gives a quick out for telling a compelling story. Raimi and company worked out a trilogy that told compelling stories while working against genre constraints. It’s thirty years later and we can’t get the same from a big budget release? Count me out.
RELEASE DATE: 04/05/2013
Also check out our videos from SXSW of the Evil Dead 2013 crew. I’ll be adding another one tonight.