Evil Dead – 4/5 – Movie Reviews by Ry!

Evil-Dead-Poster1Evil Dead – 4/5- Real Horror; that is what I really have been clamoring the past few years.  There have been some movies that have come out (remakes and new originals) that try different things, scare tactics and different elements of horror, but never encapsulate the complete package.  In my book, a good horror has a decent premise, horrific elements and good amount of gore.  This helps build tension, eeriness and overall, entertainment.  This reimaging of ‘The Evil Dead’ is one where, you know it has homage to the source, but is a really good horror film.  Gore, tension and overall entertaining, Evil Dead is the answer to my questions

Premise: Five friends head to a remote cabin, to help provide help for a friend trying to break a drug habit.  While there, they discover a Book of the Dead.  What this leads to is the summoning up of demons living in the nearby woods. The evil presence possesses them, one by one, until only one is left to fight for survival.

The acting in the film is on par like most horror flicks.  In this one, you have a group of 5 friends;

Mia (Jane Levy), David (Shiloh Fernandez), Eric (Lou Taylor Pucci), Olivia (Jessica Lucas) and Natalie (Elizabeth Blackmore)

Each of them have a connection to each other, either being siblings (Mia and David), or just being friends from the past.  As in typical horror fashion, they aren’t given allotted time to develop their personalities or traits.  They are given enough time to define them in their roles, and then get positioned as bait for the ‘horror’ film overall.  This isn’t a downfall, as this is a common ploy for any horror film, good or bad.  With the lack of time given to the characters to develop, the story itself is provided more of a characterization.  In doing this, you have a more intriguing display of depth and awe, as the story becomes what you watch evolve. This is done either through the possession of the people, or the general aspect of that evil book.  This is what gives quality to the film as whole.  Giving character to the movie helps keeps you engaged from beginning to end, when the movie slows down and hits epic highs.  The one standout of the film from the 5 characters is Mia.  She is the first to get possessed, and when the ‘demon’ takes control, she portrays it in a very cringing way, making you feel the possession.

The direction of the story is pretty much the ‘setup and go’ standard of horror flicks.  As stated in the premise, the movie starts out (minus the quick gory prologue) with a group of friends heading to a cabin in the woods.  This is the family cabin of Mia and David, and everyone is here to help break Mia of her drug addiction.  After the setup of each of the characters ‘points of views’, it leads into the horror elements.  They discover the ‘book of dead’, and one of the characters (suspend belief here) decides to actually read this.  This unleashes the demon(s) into the world.  In an attempt to escape the cabin, Mia gets possessed, in a rather gritty scene.  After this, you get the linear path of the film, that is a rather strength, since it is a horror film.  It follows the trend of picking off characters one-by-one by the demon’s possession.  Even though you have the general picking off of the characters, through these scenes, the atmosphere is so daunting; it just ripples throughout the audience as you’re encapsulated in these scenes.  Adding to the flavor of the ‘evil’ surrounding the cabin is the gore.  There is a great balance between the gore and violence, and it never steps over the boundary into torture porn.  To me, this is the perfect amount that makes the film cringing, shocking, but entertaining.  Some of the scenes are a little ‘out there’, and some people mind find it beyond grasping, but true horror fans will enjoy the gory elements.   Once the film hits the climax, Mia has been cleansed, but the threat isn’t over.  The last 10 minutes are intense, bloody, but completely engrossing and actually ends on a high note.

The visuals in the movie are strong points of the film.  From the combination of the cabin, the woods and everything created between the two, you are captivated by the creepiness that surrounds.  Once we get into the story’s elements, we are treated to some hard and raw images of blood, violence and menacing scenes.  This ‘rawness’ of the imagery helps portray horrific moments, and keeps you in that real feeling of cringing and vileness.  This is such a great aspect, that it adds depth to the ‘horror’ themes as well as the storytelling.  The score helps add that darkly tone, making you unaware what will happen or not.

Overall, Evil Dead is a creepy and an engaging film.  It has true homage to original, but also giving us a taste of what a real horror film should be in the current generation of cinema.  The gore is cringing at best, and the story, even though cliché at parts helps keeps the audience focused from beginning to end.   This is a film for horror fans, and fans of the original.  If you are in those groups of people, I say … check this out in theaters now.

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