3 StarsSam Raimi’s debut film has been ‘re-imagined’ for a new generation, without the charm, manic energy or charismatic lead that fronted the 1981 original. That’s not a knock on the new film, it just seems to have emanated from a different realm than the previous installments. This is a deadly serious affair that features some of the most squeamish-inducing special effects in recent memory.
Five friends gather in a remote cabin to stage an intervention. Poor Mia (Jane Levy) has a vicious heroin addiction that she has been unable to kick, so her brother David (Shiloh Fernandez) and their closest pals are going to hole-up in the woods and help in her detox. That’s the plan, until someone discovers the basement full of dead animals and the markings of witchcraft. Along with the ruins, is a book covered in a flesh like texture and encased in barbed wire. Against the wishes of his friends, one curious camper opens the unholy book and utters the Latin phrase that conjures up an evil presence.
This destructive force finds a host in Mia. At first her pals think she is suffering from withdrawals then they become aware that she is possessed. From that point forward Evil Dead turns into a standard horror film, we wait for each new victim to succumb to a grizzly death and then spring back to life as a monstrous entity.
There is something unnerving about the film and they way that it’s sexually suggestive impregnation of Mia is handled may cause more cringes than anything else in the picture. The special effects are outstanding, practical applications are applied when may filmmakers opt for CGI or visual trickery. These touches, along with an obvious respect for the source material make this reboot, a stand-out among its genre contemporaries.
Director: Fede Alvarez
Stars: Jane Levy, Shiloh Fernandez, Jessica Lucas