The film’s tagline is “the most terrifying film you will ever experience.” It’s weird how accurate that tag is. Like that’s…really scary.
Evil Dead is the 2013 horror remake directed by Fede Alvarez and stars such non-big names such as Jane Levy and Shiloh Fernandez. Levy stars as an innocent young girl named Mia. And by innocent, I mean a hardcore drug addict. Her brother David (Fernandez) brings some close friends with him to a rickety cabin in the woods so that Mia can detox. But, like any good horror movie, they find a book that releases a demon that terrorizes the young adults in the most brutal of fashion. Now, horror remakes have been more or less terrible. There were some gems, like The Ring, but movies like those are very rare and far in-between. Well, here’s another example of another pretty good remake of a horror classic, because Evil Dead was pretty sweet.
First, and I think this is the biggest point of the movie, the imagery in this movie is incredibly disturbing. While not super spooky or scary, there are some scenes where the set-up is scarier than the pay-off. The environment itself is even spookier, using really dark lighting some twisted designs for things like the book, the basement they find the book, and the forest itself. As if the environment wasn’t disturbing enough, the filmmakers decided to make it even more disturbing and brutal. This film is horrifyingly graphic. When you see a father shoot a shotgun at his possessed daughter’s head and her face explodes, you know what kind of movie you’re getting. And it only gets worse as the movie continues. Spoiler alert: demonically possessed people and nail guns do NOT mix. At all.
Before anyone says anything, I am NOT glorifying the violence. All I’m saying is that the brutal violence made the movie one thousand times better than what it could be, especially considering the rest of the film wasn’t perfect. The lead actors weren’t great, but they worked for what they are: cannon fodder that we’re here to watch all die. We really don’t care about their backstory or why they are here because we’re here just to watch them all die in such gruesome fashion that even Mortal Kombat would be saying that it’s a bit much. I’m sorry, I have to touch on the violence in the film because it is actually some pretty scarring images that may or may not leave your head as you walk out. If you can get really queasy very easily or aren’t a huge fan of violence, this movie will not be your cup of tea. As in at all.
That being said, as amazing graphic Evil Dead is, the biggest draw is that it’s not as scary as it could have been. There were a lot of scenes shown in the trailer that weren’t in the film. For instance, the “we’re gonna get you” scene from the trailers was cut out of the entire movie. That scene alone would have elevated the movie to be scarier than what it is. But yet, it wasn’t as scary as it should be. Also, we really don’t care about the main characters. As in at all. They aren’t well-developed enough to care about them. And the dialogue was a bit terrible sometimes. Some of it was chilling, but others were really cliché and delivered with so much cheese.
In the end, Evil Dead did what it set out to do in a very gruesome fashion. While not super scary, it was truly disturbing and dark and a good example of a really good horror remake.
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.