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The Evil Dead Film Review

Updated on January 7, 2013

Directed by Sam Raimi

Written By Sam Raimi

Starring Bruce Campbell, Ellen Sandweiss and Richard DeManincor

Cert 18

Released 1981


Five young people go for a short vacation deep in the woods. They stay in an old log cabin and hope for some fun times! What they actual get is very different when they unwittingly release long dormant Demons through a Satanic book called The Naturan Demanato, The Book Of The Dead.


As the film we opens we flip between 5 young people in a car driving along a road and trying ascertain whether or not they are going in the right direction, to an image of skirting across eerily steaming rivers and through broken trees. The music that plays in the background has Demonic overtones and both camera shots seem to be leading us in the same direction.

Remember this is 1981 and the film cannot help but show its age, also the fact this film was created on the smallest of budgets. But for me that is what en deers it so much. What it lacks in production values, dynamic erformances and lavish sets it more than makes up for in you believing more in the characters and the scenes because they look real! They're not beautiful and polished, they're rough and honest.

As the film takes it natural course and lots of bad things happen to the poor unsuspecting vacationers, we get the opportunity to look at how the terror is constructed. We are treated to all of the things that make a good horror movie great, uplit scared faces, people wandering off when no normal person would do so, tension building pauses as a curtain is pulled back, inappropriate tools in the wrong places. Everything that you would expect to be in the film is there in spades!

As we get more used to violent images in film watching a film like this makes you understand how far our tolerance for violence and graphic images has become. The images we see in The Evil Dead made this a film that at the time would have been borderline allowable, and it is true that the actual deeds in the film are quite horrific. But due to the Special Effects at the time it makes it something that now most people, even 'cushion peekers' would be able to cope with!

The Evil Dead is the Horror Film that set the bench mark for many films that followed in its wake and rightly so it holds a place, and always will in the hearts of many fans of the genre. It's true that if you showed this to someone now and asked them if they were scared by it, they might probably laugh, but I would hope that they would be able to appreciate the love, time and craft that went in to creating something that paved the way for all of the films that want to fill its shoes!

A truly brilliant piece of film making.

The Evil Dead Trailer (1981)

Evil Dead 2013

This year will see the release of a new version of Sam Raimi's Cult Classic The Evil Dead, let's hope it lives up to the status of it's Daddy! With Raimi on board as Producer I'm sure he will want to ensure that it does!!

Evil Dead 2013 Trailer


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    • Sami theshark profile image

      Sami theshark 5 years ago from Royal Berkshire, UK

      I'm a 'cushion peeker' when it comes to horror but this just doesn't appeal to me. I like the honesty of this review and it sounds more of a spoof than a horror. Think I might have to give it a go!

    • gabrielthomas72 profile image

      gabrielthomas72 5 years ago from Shrewsbury, England

      Each to their own!! I love it for it's cheapness and endurance to still shock the weak stomached among us.

    • peanutroaster profile image

      peanutroaster 5 years ago from New England

      I disagree. Its campy humor. Eyeball flying through the air, that is comedy.

    • gabrielthomas72 profile image

      gabrielthomas72 5 years ago from Shrewsbury, England

      I don't think it was supposed to be funny at the time, but now it does look very rubbery!

    • peanutroaster profile image

      peanutroaster 5 years ago from New England

      Awesome funny horror movie! Campy goodness!