Wednesday, 10 December 2014

The Evil Dead (1981) - Fantastic horror masterpiece

Wow what can I say about this film. It is a proper horror icon, being possibly one of the best zombie horrors I've seen. For being made in 1981, it is very disturbing, frightening, and also extremely violent. I have also came to the conclusion now that I prefer this to the remake made in 2013. So if I've previously said I preferred the remake, don't take my word because this is so much better than the remake. Sam Raimi created an absolute masterpiece in 1981.
The ratings for this classic are as follows:

  • IMDB - 7.6/10
  • Rotten Tomatoes - 96%
  • Meta Critic - 70%
Meta Critic is definitely being too harsh on this film, whilst I believe IMDB are being reasonable. Realistically, Rotten Tomatoes provide it with a rating which is very close to what I would give it.

The plot of this excellent film is so simple, however it works perfectly. As you should know, this film is directed by the wonderful Sam Raimi and lasts roughly 85 minutes. Five friends are spending the weekend in a remote cabin in the woods. While investigating the cellar, they discover a tape and a decaying old book full of strange incantations. The tape is played and it unleashes powerful evil force from the forest that is determined to destroy every last one of them. That's how simple the plot is, however it worked so well. 

Where can I even start with the best features seriously. First of all, the camera angles are absolutely exceptional. Even from the beginning of the film, there is a very intense atmosphere created due to the increasing momentum as the friends drive closer to the cabin and simultaneously the camera seems to be nearing them. The acting is also fantastic especially from the man himself - Bruce Campbell. He played the role of the character Ash and he nailed it! Another feature I loved about the film was whenever a character was chased outside in the woods, the trees would fall down and snap as they became closer to the person which I thought was a brilliant technique used to enhance the fear. As you could probably expect, the movie is packed with intense violence and disturbing, gory scenes. I mean for a film to be made in 1981, this film is so damn disturbing! Some of the effects are really disgusting, and make you feel uneasy. Another point to mention is the make up. I definitely preferred the make up in this film in comparison to the remake and the demon locked in the cellar scared the living daylights out of me. The sustained growling and screaming from the demons was excellent and certainly frightened. I could speak about best features all day, however I'll end it on the note that the film was generally really scary and provided many unexpected jump-scares. It's a phenomenal film which definitely deserves a watch.

There is only one weakness in the film that I can remember being unimpressed with. This was the scene in the woods where the tree branches basically raped Cheryl (Ellen Sandweiss). I felt as though it was simply unnecessary and was also a little stupid. I mean, surely Raimi could have came up with a more realistic way of her to become possessed?

Overall, I was very impressed with this film. I can't believe I actually preferred the remake to this film as it is simply exceptional. With only one weakness for me, the film was packed with gore, fear, and many more amazing features which caused me to remain immersed in the film for the 85 minutes it lasts. If you haven't seen this then it's a must, because it is a pure horror icon.

Overall Rating - 8.5/10

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