The Evil Dead

Evil Dead Collector's Edition

Anchor Bay and Renaissance pictures release this collector's edition of the late seventies cult horror film. Digitally remastered making the picture crystal clear and the sound very intense (don't turn this one up too loud, your neighbors will think your family is a bunch of tree worshiping druids!)

The Evil Dead has never looked better but shame to say some of its impact has been lost over the years. It has been surpassed by gorier flicks but this is not to say that it is not a major and influential horror film or a great cheesy gore movie for that matter because it certainly is.

If you don't already know the plot it is quite simple; Two young men (one being Bruce Campbell) go to a rickety old cabin in the woods for a vacation. The trip doesn't go so well when they release evil spirits who have been waiting in slumber to rise and stir some shit up. There is an unusual characterization in how Ash (Bruce Campbell) becomes the unlikely hero because Scotty (Hal Dedrich) seems to take care of business during the first half of the film. The camera work is quite nifty (much the same in the sequel) and there are some nice and disgusting ideas used for make-up effects and special effects in general. The blood orgy ending involves claymation resulting in a somewhat funny looking but cool anyway blood drenched conclusion.

The flick definitely is dated and a lot of flaws are revealed in clarity with the pristine picture quality. I noticed how Ash's clothes seemed to always dry nice and fast just after being soaked in blood. As I mentioned before the sound effects are overwhelming and they include a plethora of demonic voices and sounds whispering "join us". The scene where Cheryl, Ash's sister is molested by a tree is hilarious and tasteless ( I have weird thoughts about those sort of things like does grass get horny when you walk or lay down on it?). No doubt, all Evil Dead fans will want a copy of this because it is the best version of the film currently available. There is also a limited edition with a book included which contains facts on the movie, I'm not sure if it mentions how Raimi was influenced by the flick Equinox to make Evil Dead.

Evil Dead is probably one of the most popular horror films of all time and it has inspired too many horror films to name. Check this version out or at least watch your friends copy. BTW, it's not LBX because it was never shot in the ratio format designed for it. Evil Dead 2 and Dawn Of The Dead were the same way, bars were just cropped over the top and bottom of the picture for "looks".

Rating: 4 out of 5

Richard Taylor

 

 

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