What the hell, man? I know the stink of second-hand commerce wafts off of many re-makes and sequels. Generally, however, I can shake off my abundance of cynicism and try to enjoy the ride. But the Evil Dead revamp sinks to a new low.
The mark of Sam Raimi’s Evil Dead franchise was its humor, embodied by the face (or perhaps chin?) of the original franchise, Bruce Campbell. The over-the-top, poorly done special effects added to the wicked, humorous madness of the first three flicks. There was a preposterousness to the festivities that made it impossible to take seriously.
And the new Evil Dead? Well, it’s really just the standard “We’re stuck in the woods and creepy shit is happening” horror flick. Because without the humor, that’s all that’s left, other than an uninspired cast, terrible writing, worse direction and special effects that are meant to shock or titillate, but mainly just fall under the header “been there, done that” for anyone who has seen a half-dozen horror flicks over the course of their life. In other words, it’s a shitty film with the title of a much better film tacked on to it to sell it to the masses.
ED 2013 does have one thing going for it. The main character, Mia, is a junkie, and her friends and brother have gathered to help her get off the junk, taking advantage of the isolated woods surrounding the old cabin. Initially, the crew doesn’t believe Mia’s possessed by a demon because she’s acting, really, like someone going cold turkey.
And had directory/co-writer Fede Alvarez had the deftness or skill to work that angle more, he could have ended up with an interesting movie. Instead, from watching Evil Dead you get the impression that when Alvarez needs to crack open a few eggs for breakfast, he uses a jackhammer. There is no touch, subtlety, tension or pacing to replace the lack of humor, and that falls on Alvarez.
And, ultimately, it falls on the audience who wasted their time on this hunk of crap.