“Evil Dead” – Review by Mike Holtz

“Evil Dead Movie Review”

Evil Dead

By: Mike Holtz, WeWatchedAMovie

Directed by: Fede Alvarez (First Feature Film)

Starring: Jane Levy (Fun Size), Shiloh Fernandez (Dead Girl)

So much hope. So much excitement. So much disappointment…….

Let me start this by saying I’m an Evil Dead fan but  had zero qualms upon hearing the news of a remake. I couldn’t wait to get more Evil Dead and when the reviews and acclaim started to pour in my excitement only grew. Then came the trailers…. wow. Stories of people walking out of the theater passing out from the hardcore gore sent me over the top. This was going to be epic……or not.

The story remains the same as it did in Sam Raimi’s classic with a few new tweaks. Mia (Levy), her dull character of a brother (Fernandez) and a few other dull characters head to a cabin in the woods (get it?) to help Mia kick her drug habit. Once there they find a book made of human flesh and when one of them reads its words aloud they awaken an ancient demon that won’t let them leave. Now after an entertaining albeit pointless opening we begin our journey into madness.

Let’s talk about the real star of the show. The gore. From word of mouth you would have thought this movie was gonna have you crying alone in your apartment while listening to “The Crying Game” a-la Jim Carrey in Ace Ventura after he finds out Finkle is Einhorn and Einhorn is Finkle. While I will admit Evil Dead packs a punch and has a few cringe worthy scenes….. more so than I’ve seen in quite a while. It is not the first time this has been done and it’s not the best its been done. The sad part is a lot of the most cringe inducing scenes were given away in the trailers. There were some limbs a-flyin and some stabs-a-stabbin’ but nothing any fan of the original Evil Dead would feel the need to call in sick the next day over. There is gore for the sake of gore and then there is gore that is executed so perfectly that you involuntarily scream at the screen (Think pencil in the ankle from the original Evil Dead). Evil Dead brought the well shot gore and great effects that nobody should sneer their noses at but it’s not the full on assault and spectacle you may have been lead to believe.

The one true bright spot of Evil Dead is Jane Levy’s performance. The one true fail on the part of Evil Dead is focusing on her brothers character for seventy percent of the movie, only letting Levy breathe life into the film for so long. She was charming and believable both as an addict losing her mind from withdraw, to the Ash type of character she becomes. I would love to see an Evil Dead 2 with her in full kick ass mode for the whole film. The rest of both the actors and their characters are forgettable and dumb as they come. They weren’t even worth a comedic break in the film or even a sexy time break in the film as none of them were funny or even sexual(You know, typical expendable horror movie characters).

There’s no problem here with Evil Dead trying to be serious and dark…… the problem is if your going to do that you need to be scary. If you’re not going to be scary than you need to be entertaining. The best thing about the films predecessors was the feeling that anything could happen at any moment. It was a ride and a spectacle of not only gore but pure mouth-wide-open fun. (haha, that sounds dirty).  Evil Dead however, is pure watered down boredom in between each and every death. I hate the fact that I just had to write those words so let us end on a positive note….

The Cinematography was blood-colored beautiful and the Direction was commendable with a few nice and subtle odes to Raimi within the camera work if you watch closely enough. Levy is a powerhouse and there’s a few cool deaths, a nice Bruce Campbell like catch phrase or two thrown in the mix and some pretty cool gore. (Even if it isn’t as hardcore or un-flinching as advertised) . But dammit, this is one of those movies that got away and one that could have been so much better.   4.5/10



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