The new Evil Dead is getting some serious promotion, and it honestly looks pretty awesome, so I decided to check out the original film before I venture out to see the new film this weekend. It had been over ten years since I had last (and first) seen the classic Sam Raimi film. Aside from the most memorable portions (*COUGH* tree rape *COUGH*), I had forgotten most of the movie.
|This is all I dare present from the "tree rape" scene. Google it more at your own risk. (This is actually from a similar, tamer version of a nature attack in Evil Dead 2: Dead by Dawn.)|
Even though the character of Ash and all his goofy adventures are my favorite parts of this franchise, none of it would exist without Sam Raimi. His work on this film created a style that has led him to the heights of Hollywood. I would argue that that is bad thing, but I'm starting to accept that Raimi might need to stay with the big event pictures for a while. I'm not sure it's possible for him to replicate what he's done here. He still values real sets and things as much as possible, but it seems like every film he's choosing to make is impossible to make without vast amounts of CG. Here, he had no choice but to make things messy, and the film benefits from that. The blood, the demon makeup, that milk-blood stuff they puke up, the over-the-top violence; it's all so much more fun, and at times, frightening, to see because you know that it had to be done onscreen, not on a computer months later.
All of this leads to the remake, directed by newcomer Fede Alvarez, who wowed Raimi, and others, with his short films. Raimi also made plenty of short films before he made The Evil Dead, so it's fitting that Alvarez would get to make his version of it. From what I've seen in pictures and previews, it appears that Alvarez has made a worthy film. The most important aspect of the film is the fact that there is no Ash character. This is good for two reasons. 1. No one should try to be the new Bruce Campbell, especially since Bruce Campbell is still alive and well. 2. More importantly, Campbell has suggested that eventually the two separate Evil Dead versions could merge. Alvarez is already talking about a sequel, and the plan involves another Army of Darkness followed by a seventh Dead film that would tie it all together. That sounds pretty great to me.