While those outside of Austin wait in anticipation for more news on an “Evil Dead 4” (the third sequel to the original trilogy), SXSW is only concerned with the “Evil Dead remake – and rightly so, it’s apparently fantastic!
If my script review last year didn’t suggest as much, the Fede Alvarez directed remake of Sam Raimi’s horror classic is a very frightening, very entertaining film – in it’s own right. Those who attended the film’s premiere at the festival have voiced their opinion, and there’s not a negative line in any review.
The Hollywood Reporter says :
Blood-drenched” barely begins to describe Fede Alvarez’s remake of Evil Dead, a gore-for-broke affair that strips the flesh off Sam Raimi’s cult-beloved comic-horror franchise and exposes the demons at its core. The presence of Raimi, original collaborator Rob Tapert, and star Bruce Campbell as producers should give the faithful permission to attend what would otherwise smell like a shameless exploitation of the 1981 film, but the high production values and nonstop action offered here should also please younger genre fans who’ve never bothered to rent it.
From the initial attack on Mia — the infamous “tree rape” scene — to the literal rainstorm of blood that accompanies the climax, Evil Dead delivers satisfyingly disgusting effects that serve an ever-accelerating action pace. The only respite from the gore comes in those treacherous moments when one of the possessed stops spitting threats and blood to speak in the wounded, innocent voice of the human who used to inhabit its body. The flip-flopping between “why are you hurting me?” and “I will rape your soul in Hell!” is one of the original film’s gags — like Raimi’s camera, dodging trees as it offers a breakneck POV shot of demons swooping in to inhabit unwitting mortal shells — that Alvarez executes perfectly in this unasked-for but entirely welcome remake.
Collider says :
If your goal is to give the people exactly what they want, then you better give them the best you’ve got otherwise it’s obvious pandering. Fede Alvarez‘ remake of Evil Dead does not pander. It fiercely grabs the audience by the throat, and vomits as much blood and viscera as we can stomach it, and not everyone will be able to stomach what the horror flick has to offer. Alvarez and cinematographer Aaron Morton set a creepy vibe, but their primary interest is in gleefully laying out the implements of destruction. “We know what you came for,” the film says with a devilish smile. And then it lets loose violence beyond all reason. The fear eventually fades, the emotions recede into the background, but Evil Dead delivers on the bloody mayhem that needs far more than an MPAA rating. It needs a warning label.
By the metric he has laid out for his picture’s goals, Alvarez’ film is a wild success. It’s a crowdpleaser that will leave gore-hounds stuffed, but we should all be somewhat shaken by the gruesome feast Evil Dead asks us to devour.
Variety says :
The rare remake that likely will be enjoyed most by diehard fans of its predecessor, “Evil Dead” often comes off as the cinematic equivalent of a cover-band concert tribute to a supergroup’s greatest hits — albeit with a lot more gore. First-time feature helmer Fede Alvarez’s blood-soaked reprise of Sam Raimi’s franchise-spawning low-budget shocker, “The Evil Dead,” boasts way better production values than the penny-pinching 1981 original and conceivably could delight genre fans who have never seen the first version or its previous remakes/sequels. But it’s bound to play best with those who catch Alvarez’s many wink-wink allusions to Raimi’s pic.
Bloody Disgusting says :
It’s even gorier than you’re expecting. I seriously don’t have a clue as to how they wrangled an “R” rating here. Blood, pus, bone fragments, limbs and brains are flung around with playful abundance and the result is both punishing and exhilarating… This film doesn’t condemn its audience, it exalts it – and as a result it’s able to achieve a sustained symphony of carnage that energizes rather than exhausts.
Crave Online says :
Fede Alvarez’s Evil Dead is a film that sits alongside Evil Dead 2 and Army of Darkness as better than the original The Evil Dead. To be fair, there have now been three previous movies that played with a tone of outrageous violence and macabre humor, but the lessons were well learned. Alvarez favored The Three Stooges a little less than Raimi, but it is still so Evil Dead.