Evil Dead– Movie Review
The cabin in the woods, the attractive young people, the impossibly dense guy who just happens to like reading evil incantations out loud-you know the story. For better or worse, Evil Dead 2013 is definitely a remake- not a sequel or a reboot, but pretty much making the original again with some changes. It’s mostly well made but too predictable- until an ending that might be worth the whole wait.
Five friends- a nerd, a cool guy, a blonde, a brunette, and the troubled one- join at a cabin in the woods to help one of their own, Mia (Jane Levy), try to go cold turkey off dope again. In the basement, they find an occult lair and a book bound in human flesh. As Mia suffers the worst of withdrawl, the nerd obsesses over the book, and reads out an incantation he finds, summoning a Destroyer of Souls who possesses Mia. When she begins acting erratically, everyone assumes it’s the withdrawl- until her behavior is beyond explanation, and begins spreading to others. By then, escape is impossible, and they must fight for survival.
For most of it’s run time, Evil Dead is pretty much horror by numbers. You know exactly what’s gonna happen, exactly when, and pretty much how. That doesn’t mean it’s not enjoyable- the visuals are great, with visceral design, stunning gore, and production values that are obviously higher than the original. But it leaves you wondering why they bothered remaking it, with the remaking being so literal. The characters are so feather light that it’s not even quite entertaining in a self-aware-horror way. The same goes for the script; Diablo Cody supposedly contributed to it, but film lacked her usual insight and humor.
Then, the last fifteen minutes come, a clever twist sends the film on a distinct and meaningful path still rooted in the franchise, and all hell breaks loose. The special effects- which director Fede Alvarez promised would be mostly on set and not CGI- for the first time create a whole new world, and not just shock value.
Levy, the squeaky clean star of ABC’s Suburgatory, was an inspired choice for a Scream Queen, and largely carries the film with an excellent performance.
Did you see Evil Dead? What did you think?