Movie Review: Evil Dead (2013)

Director: Fede Alvarez
Genre: Action, Horror
Distributor: TriStar Pictures
Run Time: 91 Minutes
Rated: R

Five twenty-something friends become holed up in a remote cabin. When they discover a Book of the Dead, they unwittingly summon up dormant demons living in the nearby woods, which possess the youngsters in succession until only one is left intact to fight for survival.

Movie Review
OK, so here's the deal, I wasn't originally going to review this film. I, like most fans of the horror genre understand that the only Evil Dead that actually means something is the one starring Bruce Campbell. Any reboots, remakes, sequels, prequels or fan fiction are too be taken with a grain of salt. However, upon finishing the film I was left actually wondering if maybe, just maybe the director knew what he was doing by remaking this movie as he did.

Evil Dead isn't a direct copy of The Evil Dead although it should be noted that it obviously borrows heavily from the original source material (which I am fine with). Instead the story is given an updated feel for this generation while still retaining the core elements of the franchise. The one big issue I had with the reboot though was that it went for all scares and left out pretty much all of the humor that made the original so great. Since Mia, the main protagonist is a heroin (yes, heroin) addict her friends decide to take her on "vacation" so that she can kick the habit because we all know that the best place for heroin withdrawal to happen is a secluded cabin in the woods miles from civilization. Am I right? Mia is obviously a very troubled girl so naturally she's the poor soul who winds up taking much of the beating from the malevolent forces once unleashed from the Necronimicon.

In many ways I liked the progression of this film and of course the ending had a pretty nice twist but since the overall mood was pretty dark to begin with an with the run time being so short, I just didn't really care about any of the side characters who winded up dead throughout the story. So sad, too bad, moving on.

Now obviously I liked the film and for a reboot/remake it could of been a hell of a lot worse. I'm looking at you, Poltergeist. What the director might have missed out on in character development he made up with in effects. I really loved the scenes where Mia was seen peeking out from underneath the floorboards, so creepy (plus a total nod to the original but better)! I also liked how the possession took over the host. The sound effects as the body twisted and snapped gave me chills. Lastly, I did appreciate that the cinematography perfectly captured the spookiness of the surroundings. Creepy woods and rain do not a dull film make.

Overall, I would have to say I am pretty happy with this reboot. It might not have been the Horror genres finest hour but it didn't butcher the series either and for that I am grateful. Plus with the surprise ending, maybe we can have a Mia and Ash meeting in future installments of the franchise. I would be down for that for sure! With that being said, I'll be rating Evil Dead (2013) ★★★.


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