Evil Dead (2013)
June 11, 2022 5:30 PM - Subscribe

Mia (Jane Levy), a young woman struggling with sobriety, heads to a remote cabin with a group of friends where the discovery of a Book of the Dead unwittingly summon up dormant demons which possess the youngsters one-by-one. A remake of the 1981 classic directed by Fede Álvarez (Don't Breathe).

Currently available for digital rental in the US on various outlets and free on Tubi.
posted by DirtyOldTown (6 comments total)
I feel like Fede Álvarez correctly made the following assessments:

1) The appeal of the original Evil Dead lies in: the merciless viciousness of the Deadites; unsparing depiction of grievous bodily harm; the energetic direction of Sam Raimi.
2) The weak spots were the story and some of the FX.
3) Raimi's style was untouchable and cannot be replicated.
4) So the best option is to lean into the first two parts of 1, improve on 2, and direct with as much energy and skill as possible without even attempting to flash a signature style that would pale next to Raimi's.

Good work all around. And memorably gory!
posted by DirtyOldTown at 6:30 PM on June 11, 2022

The original movie was such a thrill ride the first time I saw it as a teenager. Just amazing. Something I had never experienced before with film. It will always hold a fond place in my heart. A few years ago I re-watched it, and while it wasn't the same incredible thrill in this older, horror-movie-jaded time of my life, I was so impressed with what I hadn't noticed when I had watched it in my youth: the editing and sound design just seemed to achieve so much on such a low budget. I personally think this is the quintessentially perfect low budget horror movie.

The remake? It was . . . . .okay.
posted by WhenInGnome at 7:00 PM on June 11, 2022 [1 favorite]

It's a 3.5/5 remake of a 5/5 movie, but who in their right mind would have thought a remake could land safely in "pretty good, has its merits for sure" territory?
posted by DirtyOldTown at 9:18 PM on June 11, 2022 [5 favorites]

I've grown to appreciate this remake as a leaner and meaner version of the original after initially not being a fan. I like Fede Alvarez's films but there's a streak of cruelty and meanness in the violence that don't make them the easiest to watch.

My initial reaction was in large back because this film has literally (in the literal definition of literally) the dumbest character in maybe all of horror movie history.

The friend who kicks off the whole series of unfortunate events cuts through barbed wire to get the book of the dead open (I believe he even cuts himself doing so) and then, after reading the instructions of "do not read this aloud", immediately reads the text aloud for no reason. There's not even a pretense for why he needs to read it aloud; he's not recording a podcast, he's not making a joke to his friends, he's not compelled by deadites, he doesn't even do a cursory eye-roll, utter 'yeah, right' and read it aloud out of spite. He just does it because the plot requires it.

Once he's killed, I would've been happy for the movie to end because the biggest villain of the story had been defeated by that point.
posted by slimepuppy at 3:51 AM on June 12, 2022 [3 favorites]

Those are valid points. Eric is the worst.

I would say though that the change to why they are there (from "horny people drive to and break into a terrifying shack to party" to "revisiting the once-beloved family cabin in a last ditch effort to help someone detox") is far superior. I also liked the way it balanced the action between the characters.

I also liked the way the book laid out the progression of the evil.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 4:03 AM on June 12, 2022 [4 favorites]

Fede Alvarez has taken some incredibly uninspiring sounding movies (Evil Dead movie without Bruce Campbell; Girl with the Dragon Tattoo sequel without anyone from any of the earlier movies including either of the girls with the dragon tattoo!!) and really made them fine films. I was shocked by how much I liked this one.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 5:43 PM on June 14, 2022

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