The (much too online dispute) ‘reboot’ of ‘EVIL DEAD’, based on the original Horror/Video Nasty classic from 1981/Sam Raimi. And I must stress Horror as the sequels inoculate more Black-Comedy which the franchise became more synonymous with. The thing with this ‘reboot’ (I don’t like the term ‘remake’ here – and wait till after the credits) it is a very serious film, something which critics did not like about it, since (again!) the humour has become such a trademark of the franchise isn’t evident.
What it might lack in that department it reviles in the ‘old-school’ on-screen violence and gore, which you don’t see much anymore (and something I can imagine the younger generation will not ‘get’). It literally is like going through a car wash of gore, and what is done to effect is that it does not feel tiresome as the gore and violence level increases as the film comes more to a close. The only issue though is the first 30 minutes set up is fairly typical horror setup, which as feels more a slog to get through as it’s dull (even if the Cinematography is beautiful). It’s the same set up as any other Horror film, and none of the characters (apart from one) have any depth – the brother’s blond girlfriend just seems to appear on screen (I can’t give you name without having to look it up – showing how unmemorable the minor characters are even for a typical Horror setup). Also on a side note I found it amusing the same party-going girl from ‘Cloverfield’ is playing the same character here. And while they have the idea of Jane Levy’s character being the Ash hero character here, there is nothing very refreshing or new. Perhaps they could have had one of the male protagonists got tree raped instead. Now that would do something different and perhaps more profound. And on this it is interesting to see people saying that the ‘’three stooges’’ plotting was reimaged with another modern ‘remake’ of ‘Cabin Fever’.
Back to the gore though the practical effects to create it are done extremely well, bring a nostalgic glow. Fans will also like the homage’s and references to the original trilogy including the conventional uses of the ‘Demon Cam’ through the trees, ‘tool-up’ sequences in the shed, and generally the play they have with the plot points of the original (see the different use of the ‘Demon-in-the-Attic’. etc) which means there has been more thought then your usual ‘shot-by-shot but glossy’ Hollywood Horror re-imagine. Again though to give the film more an identity they could have done something less conventional (again my point of the male characters). But to see the gore return to ‘old-school’ form this is something to be cherished. It isn’t a essential watch (watch the original Raimi trilogy as they are essential genre pieces), but it’s respectful enough, which maybe fan’s (and who isn’t!) of the original films might not mind, even if ultimately there isn’t any need for it. It’s more for casual (not hardcore) genre fans, and Mark Kermode’s review brings a more negative but respectful response to it. Oh and double brownie points to you if you spot Sam Raimi’s ’73 Oldsmobile Car – the first appearance of it in a film not to be directed by Raimi. Groovy!!!!!!!!!!!!