Evil Dead Review

poster from the Sony Pictures film Evil Dead 2013

I don’t plan on comparing this Evil Dead remake/reboot with the original, mostly because I didn’t see it. I like horror movies, but the ones I enjoy are the ‘tense and scary’ type like Sinister rather than the ‘gross and spattery’ type like Saw. I wasn’t sure which kind Evil Dead would be, probably because I watched the green band trailer.

A group of people retreat to a cabin to help a friend recover from a drug addiction but accidentally unleash a demon by reading an evil spell book.

I should have watched the red band trailer instead (or the original), because it would have clued me in to what Evil Dead really is: an attempt to break the Guinness World Record for most fake blood used in a movie. It’s not so much scary as it is disgusting (my friend was actually gagging) and as a result I was bored with it by about the 30 minute mark.

The rave reviews displayed on the Evil Dead posters led me to believe that this movie would be in some way different from all the bloody drivel that’s out there, but Evil Dead gets off to a decidedly ridiculous start and goes downhill from there.

Necromicon from the Sony Pictures film Evil Dead 2013

Once upon a time there were some people who read a book. They died, the end. Never read books, kids.

Mia (Jane Levy) is a heroin addict who has come to her family’s old cabin in the woods to go cold turkey with the help of her brother David (Shiloh Fernandez), his girlfriend Natalie (Elizabeth Blackmore) and friends Eric (Lou Taylor Pucci) and Olivia (Jessica Lucas). Recognize this setup yet? I sure do. It’s the one they make fun of in Cabin in the Woods, complete with a convenient excuse for everyone not to believe Mia when bad sh** starts happening.

Jane Levy gets raped by vines from the Sony Pictures film Evil Dead 2013

You’re fine, Mia. Everyone gets raped by plants when they’re detoxing.

The cabin is a run down rathole, which is immediately obvious to everyone, but they’re so dumb that they make no effort to turn around and leave. Olivia, who is a nurse, even claims to be giving Mia “the exact same treatment she’d be getting at a hospital.” (except, you know, the part where hospitals are CLEAN). It’s like she got her heroin habit-kicking training from watching Trainspotting.

Shiloh Fernandez from the Sony Pictures film Evil Dead 2013

This looks just like Mark Renton’s sketchy flophouse! It’s perfect!

Mia dumps her heroin down the well (that they get their drinking water from… more points for Team Stupid), Eric reads a gross book he found in the basement surrounded by dead cats, and we’re off to the races! And I mean that literally – the characters in Evil Dead seem to be in a race to see who can get dismembered the fastest, with extra bonus points to anyone who does it themselves.

Jessica Lucas from the Sony Pictures film Evil Dead 2013

Why so serious, you guys?

The demon Eric released is supposedly bonded to Mia’s soul, but he must be stuck on there with school glue because he frequently breaks off to jump into whoever’s nearest to a pointy object. Despite the fact that everyone’s already got more holes in them than a tin can at a buckshot convention and one of their number is dead on the bathroom floor, brick-dumb David is still insisting that “we’re all going to get out of this” (and not in an ironic way, either).

Lou Taylor Pucci from the Sony Pictures film Evil Dead 2013

It’s okay, we’ll just patch you up with a little duct tape and you’ll be good as new.

After a near-continuous 80 minute assault of severed limbs, spraying blood, and deafening music, Evil Dead STILL wasn’t over. Characters were still discovering new and better power tools to mutilate themselves with, including ones that are in no way strong enough in real life to cut through a bone. By this point I had run out of candy to eat and was slumped down in my chair wishing I’d brought my 3DS so I could play Lego Lord of the Rings while I waited for the movie to be over.

Elizabeth Blackmore from the Sony Pictures film Evil Dead 2013

Come on! Who even brings an electric carving knife to a campout?

Finally, FINALLY it was over. I turned to my friend and asked her what she thought. She said she’d “learned a lot” and I realized that I had to. I learned that you don’t need power to run power tools, that flesh and bone is about as resilient as a hot dog wrapped in pastry, and that there’s enough blood in a human body to float the Titanic.

blood puke from the Sony Pictures film Evil Dead 2013

I have a birth defect which allows me to empty my veins through my stomach.

I also learned that grievous chest wounds and field amputations are a) survivable b) don’t even hurt afterward and c) easily cured by duct tape. In fact, everything I knew about logic and the world turned out to be completely wrong! I feel like this movie should have been a comedy, but if it was trying to be satirical or ironic, I either missed it or the actors utterly failed to convey it. Skip this one unless you’re a phlebotomaniac.

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