Many would wonder why anyone would attempt to remake a cult classic such as Evil Dead. The truth is Evil Dead 2013 should serve as a cinematic lesson in how to revisit a story that has become iconic.
In 1981, The Evil Dead arrived from mastermind Sam Raimi. The Oz: The Great and Powerful director made his mark by writing and directing the horror film that set a standard of excellence for the genre. The flick starred Bruce Campbell in the role of Ash, a part that would come to define him. The Evil Dead would spawn two sequels -- the most famous is Army of Darkness. Ash and Campbell became connected as Ash and that chainsaw.
There are several pieces to this puzzle that had to come together and allow this horrific swath of creative genius to bloom anew. Having Campbell and Raimi as executive producers is certainly one. The second puzzle piece, and most important, is writer-director Fede Alvarez.
The Uruguayan filmmaker impressed Campbell and Raimi with his work on the short film Panic Attack and the promise that was shown on that thrill ride has come to fruition on every frame of this film -- proof is teased in the Evil Dead trailer.
Evil Dead doesn’t try to be something it’s not. The story is simple. This time out a group of friends has traveled to a cabin to support Mia (Jane Levy) as she tries to kick drugs once and for all. Mia has gathered her best of the best mates and even gotten her estranged brother (Shiloh Fernandez) to come along for familial support.
When she starts “feeling” things aren’t right at the cabin, the audience knows what is going on, but her support group dismisses it as a withdrawal symptom. Meanwhile, Eric (Lou Taylor Pucci) has discovered a basement and a book that could not appear more evil.
Imaginations… start your engines.
How marvelous the film is lies also with the cast. Leading the charge is the actress who plays Mia. As she told us in our Jane Levy interview, the thespian had to inhabit three distinct roles. Her character’s arc is far reaching and terrifying. She is miles away from Suburgatory!
Joining her in this triumphant evil excellence is Fernandez, Pucci and Jessica Lucas, who portrays Mia’s friend Olivia. Even the selecting of Olivia’s vocation is a perfect example of the care and thought that went into the writing of this screenplay by Alvarez. The fact that Olivia is a nurse, further fans the fire of terror for the audience.
Even though we know that Mia is coming under the influence of some demonic force -- between the drug withdrawal and the medical explanation given by Olivia -- the audience can be simultaneously confident in the calm-ish nature of Mia's friends while waiting for the other scary shoe to drop.
As for details beyond what Movie Fanatic has already stated, we will provide none. This film must be seen on the big screen and if horror movies are your thing, our Evil Dead review can firmly state that the film is the scariest movie you will see this year. Guaranteed.