When I heard they were making a new Evil Dead I was both excited and worried. For one Evil Dead a beloved cult classic while on the other it is a remake per se and you know how they can go right. Well this seem’s to fall in a grey space for me so let’s get right to it.
For one this new Evil Dead is grittier in that it takes itself somewhat seriously this time around and starts the movie off with a plot. A group of young adults head to this cabin in the woods where they attempt to help their friend Mia (and one of the character’s sister) in detoxing from her drug use over the course of a weekend. Now we already know that there was some freaky things that happened at this cabin via a flashback so it’s only a matter of time before things get out of hand.
In fact it takes almost no time at all for things to start going down the drain for these people. Mia is seemingly possessed after one of the friends reads from the necronomicon found in the basement and inadvertently summons this malevolent demon / spirit. From that point on there is the typical body count and craziness one would expect.
There are plenty of homages to the previous Evil Dead that you will be wondering if they are trying to freshen things up or are we simply watching a retread. Again depending on your taste it can go either way. I would go so far however as to say that it was too much retread. Rather then making the reboot their own thing they kept trying to use what we already have seen before and the movie comes off as being incredibly lazy.
The acting started off pretty good as well with everyone playing their designated roles and the prospect of the brother-sister relationship rebuilding between Mia and David had plenty of potential. But once the gore fest commenced this took an almost amusing backseat because she was possessed throughout the whole movie. Everyone else who seemed interesting initially were just fodder for the meat grinder.
And while the tone at the beginning of the movie is serious and the acting being quite decent we are torn away part way through the movie with ridiculous dialogue from the possessed friends as they each have their moment under the spotlight. It’s like they tried to inject campy dialogue from the original during these supposedly scary moments. Yes, let’s have the demon / spirit / possessed person yell “cunt” in various phrases. Oh the horror! When that moment hit, Evil Dead lost all credibility it had going for it. It’s ok to use expletives and other foul language in a horror movie. Hell it is expected but the dialogue was sophomoric. Maybe I expect better from demons / spirits.
This Evil Dead embraces gore and gives people a sight that is rarely seen. At times it was outlandish with how far it was going. But if you’re a fan of that type of gorefest then you will be more than happy with what this movie has to offer. At times even I had to admire the sheer amounts of fake blood used.
Evil Dead is an interesting beast. I think they had the intention of doing something new to freshen up the franchise and reboot it yet they missed their opportunity rather spectacularly and made a remake that brought nothing new to the table except current special effects and cinematography. I will admit the trailer had me fooled. I expected a somewhat serious take on the movie and doing something new. It is not the worst movie I have seen and I would go so far to say to at least rent it on a cheap night but I almost wish this had never been made.