It's the early 80's, what do you expect? This is a scary scary film. And I think I know why films now a days can't hold a candle to films like Halloween and Evil Dead. And that is because a photo copy is never as good as the original. That is the bottom line. Directors don't care about a lot of the material that they are filming today, especially when it comes to horror films and that is because they don't write their own stories. They do someone elses work. But not Evil Dead. This was Raimi's baby from the outset. When films like the two mentioned were filmed they <more>
were filmed by two directors that were complete unknowns. They had no pressure to make a great film and they did it on an incredibly low budget. Halloween was made for $150,000 and Evil Dead for $50 000. So what that meant is that the directors could stick to their visions but they had to find innovative ways to do so. Their budgets didn't allow a heap of special effects so they had to rely on what they knew. And that was, how to create atmosphere using the camera. And Evil Dead is one of the best at doing that. There is one scene in this film that I will never forget and that is one of the early scenes where the cast arrives at the cabin. Here we see a long shot of the cabin and it has very eerie music playing. This shows the cabin as being menacing. It lets you know that there is evil in that cabin. And that we are in for a hell of a ride.Sam Raimi made a masterpiece here that I believe stands the test of time. You can put this film up against any of today's so called horror films and I guarantee you this scares you more. Raimi cares about his movie and he does everything to make you feel the terror that the cabin people feel. We are scared and disgusted at what happens when one of the women goes outside alone at night and meets a tree that does unspeakable things. And when the book is first introduced.... that is horror movie history there. What a brilliant concept. A book that is evil. I have often wondered about such books. We hear about them all the time in movies about ancient Egypt and ancient times. But here we have a book that has weird incantations from another world and another language, and you just know that as soon as some idiot utters the words that they are not supposed to say, well they won't be around much longer.The Evil Dead is a miracle. It was made on a rock bottom budget yet it is scarier than any Hollywood movie that is made for 20 million could ever hope to be. If you want to truly experience a frightening experience, rent this film, it knows what it wants to say. And it knows how to make you afraid. So be afraid. Be very afraid. You may never look at the forest the same again.
A few nights ago, a couple of friends and myself watched The Evil Dead again. It was like the 68th viewing for me I think...lost count somewhere around 50 but it still only means one thing to me: PARTY !! Many feeling can occur when watching this delicious masterpiece by Sam Raimi. You can either adore it, be frightened by it or be disgusted by it. But it always leaves a big impression on you and I can't imagine anyone would hate it. And there is ONE feeling that everyone should have towards this movie...RESPECT ! Mostly respect regarding the achievement of Sam Raimi. This guy was 21 <more>
years old when he made this film and that's impressive to say the least. I'm around that age at the moment and I sure as hell haven't pulled it off yet...I strongly doubt I ever will, actually. No, when you're able to come up with such an original and dared idea for a horror film, you belong to the greatest minds in the film industry. Sam Raimi did it and his further career only confirmed his status of being a genius with every single movie he directed afterwards. Tons of respect towards Bruce Campbell as well. Sure his performance in this movie is far from great, but at the time, he did it because of his friendship with Sam Raimi. And because The Evil Dead became a big hit, his career was launched too and he certainly grew as an actor. Bruce Campbell is now in the favorite actor-list of many B-movie fans...And I'm one of them.Then there's Tom Sullivan...responsible for the make-up. What a fine job he did. The Evil Dead gave a whole new meaning to the word "gore" and we have this man to thank for that. Most nowadays horror films still can't live up to the standard of Evil Dead...not even close. The plot of this film is as simple as can be...but it works. Five friends drive to a small cabin in the woods to spend a small vacation. They find a tape recorder with a message...Out of curiosity, they play it and pure evil is rised in the woods. One by one, they become possessed and turn into horrible demons who try to kill those who're still alive...That's it !!! And that's all there is needed to create a fun and very original horror movie. The same story already came out in 1978 as a short film called "Within the Woods". It was meant to fund money for this film and it's great B-movie fun as well. If you're a big fan of The Evil Dead trilogy, it's certainly worth searching for.Anno 2003, Sam Raimi has grown out to one of Hollywood's favorite directors. He became immortal in the eyes of the big budget audience with his movie Spiderman. The sequel of that one is in production while I write this. I'm sure it will be as decent as the first Spiderman was, but I'd still prefer to see Evil Dead 4 coming from the brain of Sam Raimi.A fun trivia element to finish this review with : If you're watching the end credits of the Evil Dead, you'll see Joel Coen is credited as Assistent Editor. Coen now is a famous director as well and may be considered as the best director alive. Back in 1981, he and Sam Raimi were close friends and even shared a studio when they were in collage. Joel Coen made his debut in 1984 with Blood Simple. One of the best cult movies ever made...Join us....
What more can be said of Raimi's legendary cult-classic that hasn't already been beaten to death like a puss-oozing zombie that crosses paths with Ash? Possibly nothing, but I'll try. Before Spiderman and before the countless spin-offs of this movie were made or even conceived, Raimi and friends decided to make a low budget zombie flick mainly for fun, and surprisingly it has become a masterpiece of shock and horror. Possibly a perfect example of how to make an entertaining film on a shoe-string budget, The Evil Dead delivers what it promises, the ultimate in grueling horror. Even <more>
with it's mild budget and sometimes shaky acting, TED shocks and spooks the audience through chilling atmosphere and some of the most violent effects ever put on film. Those who are squeamish need not apply. As a matter of fact, just run for your girly life.There are several reasons this film succeeds. First, Raimi's camera work is truly masterful. By using fast camera work and aggressive shots, Raimi has created an eerie world that is sometimes hard to look at but too entertaining to turn away from. His style from behind the camera is absolutely unmistakable. This is perfectly exemplified in the beginning of the film, where the camera alone creates enough atmosphere to leave you biting your nails in suspense of what's to come. You feel at any moment someone is going to get their neck chomped on by some zombie hiding just out of view. One of the most impressive openings I can think of, perfection in pacing and atmosphere. It gets even better once the action starts. Some shots hold for a seeming eternity, and part of you wishes for it to stop for it's unrestrained gore and violence...but the other part of you is getting a sick kick out of it. One of the most impressive shots is where the darkness from the trees begins to chase people, knocking any tree or obstacle down that happens to be in it's way. Truly magnificent technique, however they did it. TED also succeeds because it's self-aware of the fact that it's a simple zombie movie and never takes itself too seriously, and doesn't expect the audience to do so either. It's meant to be campy, cheesy, revolting and chilling at the same time. There are moments in the film where it seems to be making fun of itself and the genre in general. For this fact alone, one cannot hold certain things against it such as sometimes questionable acting from the supporting cast and sometimes the downright implausibility of certain situations. If you can accept this and you're not put off by mannequin ultra-violence, then you should find yourself on the supporter's side of the fence. I think some don't like it because it can be ridiculous and cheesy in parts, although it was meant to be. Even with the fact that it's sometimes cheesy, there are some downright chilling moments in this film that most horror films nowadays cannot begin to muster. Case in point, the zombie screaming from the cellar door. The zombie growls and howls themselves are enough to send shivers up one's spine. And let's not forget the unforgettable tree love scene, ridiculous and hilarious simultaneously.Last but certainly not least: Bruce Campbell as Ash, the badass of all zombie films. Campbell is Ash, period, and always will be.In my opinion, this is by far the best of the trilogy, and although there could have been more of the chainsaw, this is the definitive zombie film and probably always will be. I feel it succeeds over it's sequels due to it's increased violence and lack of humor in comparison. It's blood, gore, camera work, and shock factor are still formidable even today and are what make this such a cult classic. If you've ever liked any horror film, this is an absolute must-see.Love or hate it, there it is.
The scariest piece of horror ever! (by en_van_med_en_bil)
Until about 3 years ago, my favorite movie was Halloween 2. There was no doubt, whatsoever that THAT was the greatest horror flick ever.Then, in the fall of 1999, I found The Evil Dead on a sale at a shopping center in Stockholm for a great price. The previous missing 12 minutes of blood and gore that the Swedish censorship had cut were back, in the full uncut Swedish version.I bought it with another film, 'cause there was an offer to buy 2 movies and only pay 100 crowns about $11/£7 today .I saw it, and I was scared beyond recognition! The music, the low budget camera, the camera <more>
work! Everything. It had everything!It was scary, it was dark, the music was scary, it was made during the golden age of horror early 80's with a low budget and no huge stars in it - everything I look for in a horror movie.It still is my favourite - no doubt about it. I can't imagine any movie being better than Raimi's masterpiece, I definitely can't.The greatest piece of horror ever!
You don't need a big budget to make an accomplished film (by ametaphysicalshark)
Sam Raimi's feature length debut "The Evil Dead" is truly one of the greatest horror films of all time and the start of a magnificently entertaining trilogy of hilarity and some real scares. Made on a budget of only $375,000, the film is surprisingly accomplished on a technical level. The effects, although they do look fake by today's standards, hold up a lot better than you might have expected, and the stop motion sequence at the end, which looks a lot faker than anything else in the movie, was accomplished for its time and budget."The Evil Dead" is about a group <more>
of young adults who travel to a cabin in the woods and discover a 'book of the dead'. No prizes for guessing what happens next as each character is possessed except for Ash and disposed of via an intriguing variety of methods. Considering its budget, unknown director at the time , and typical slasher plot "The Evil Dead" would almost certainly seem headed towards forgotten B-movie status, and yet it has stood the test of time and remains one of the most widely acclaimed horror films of all time. Why? It's simple. Although "The Evil Dead" is nowhere near as funny as its sequels, it's still a humorous self-satire while also being terrifying despite its age. This odd combination only perfected in this film's sequels and "Creepshow" works because Raimi crafts a tense and moody environment, puts his characters in there, and then ruthlessly disposes of them, sometimes doing so several times for the same character. What's worse is that there's nowhere to go. Raimi creates a claustrophobic feeling in anyone watching, he wants you to think about being in a situation where you're trapped with nothing but death and destruction surrounding you. For most people, he probably succeeds. As far as acting goes, none of it is really very good but Bruce Campbell is instantly likable as Ash, who just has to be one of the most memorable horror film characters of all time.Gory, desolate, hopeless, and still funny, "The Evil Dead" is a horror masterpiece that isn't quite the strongest entry in the series, but is shockingly accomplished and entertaining despite its low budget and inexperienced cast and crew. This is a film everyone must see, along with its sequels. 9/10
A marvel what some college film students can do on a shoestring budget (by KUAlum26)
SPOILER S POSSIBLEThe first ever full-on film project by budding filmmakers Sam Raimi and Rob Tapert then called Bobby Tapert would prove to be a work of endurance and love and also one of the more entertaining horror films made in the eighties.The plot is painfully simple: Five young adults from Michigan drive off into the woods for a camping vacation,using a seldom-used cabin as their haunt. They uncover a tape recorder and a crusty,dusty and blood-and-flesh-coated "Book of the Dead" or "Necromonicon",inadvertently incant the chant that awakes a limitless supply of <more>
malevolent spirits in the woods,and then one by one get picked off until a lone survivor is left to fight to escape. The story isn't much of an accomplishment:it's the whole physical undertaking that's the real accomplishment.On a small budget that was probably getting smaller as the shoot continued I don't know the exact amount of time of filming,but it probably lasted at least a year ,the filmmakers and stars all of 'em,most famously budding star Bruce Campbell as the conflicted but can-do Ash had to make the most of a limited set,claustrophobic settings,gallons of viscous fluids,endless supplies of cakey make-up,a limited amount of lighting probably NOT an accident,there and probably a mass-produced amount of fog to create something that has both the feel of a creepily eerie film about the undead and yet had the effects to back up the type of slasher horror pic that the producers were aiming for.The first of an intriguing trio of horror/comedy films that Raimi,Tapert,Campbell and company would crank out over a period of just under fifteen years and,after seeing this film in full,I'm not sure if anyone involved originally intended to make any sequels ,the atmosphere and noticeably cheap effects may turn-off your pickier horror film snobs,but anyone with a sense of adventure and high tolerance for gore will be reasonably pleased--if not greatly impressed--by this first effort film. A keeper,not a renter,not only for repeated viewing but also for the extras.
Director Sam Raimi and good friend Bruce Campbell set out to make a real scary movie...although filmed on 16mm, THE EVIL DEAD is good enough to be your next nightmare and a hell of a lot better than your run of the mill slice and dice. Campbell plays Ash Williams, one of five college friends set out to have a wild weekend in the woods. Two guys...three girls journey to a remote cabin, of course in the middle of the woods. And the woods whisper "Join Us". The group stumbles upon a book and a tape recorder belonging to the previous inhabitants, warning of evil spirits lurking in the <more>
woods. When the dead come out to play, the newest victims turn into horrid ghouls. Ash, who at heart is a cowardly pansy, turns out to be the macho, macho man to the rescue. It takes courage, a shotgun and a chainsaw.When the flesh-eating demons start their attack, the blood doesn't just ooze; it splatters, gushes and flows by the bucketful. And there is the scene where one of the girls is beckoned into the woods only to be attacked and raped by a...tree?! Cheap special effects galore decorate this vacation to a little north of Hell. The comedy was unintentional. It is a product of bad acting by actors with little or no experience. But still, Raimi as writer and director has stumbled upon something here. THE EVIL DEAD more than deserves its youth restricted rating. As if it really matters, other cast members are: Betsy Baker, Hal Delrich, Ellen Sandweiss and Theresa Tilly.
Fabulous, visually impressive low budget horror film. (by poolandrews)
Five friends, Ashly 'Ash' Williams Bruce Campbell his girlfriend Linda Betsy Baker , Scott Hal Delrich , Shelly Theresa Tilly as Sarah York and Cheryl Ellen Sandweiss have rented a cabin in some woods in the middle of nowhere. They drive up to the cabin, through the woods. That night, as they eat dinner, the cellar door slams open. At first everyone assumes it to be an animal, but to make sure Scott goes down into the dark cellar to check. When he doesn't come back and doesn't answer when the four remaining friends call him, Ash also enters the cellar. Along with Scott <more>
he looks around and finds a shotgun, a tape player, a dagger with a carved handle of skulls and the Necronomicon, the book of the dead, a grotesque looking book that's bound in human skin and written in blood. Back up top they play the tape, it's a spoken translation of the text contained within the book of the dead. Once played the evil dead are resurrected and awoke from their ancient slumber. Later on that night Cheryl thinks she hears someone outside her window, having gone out to investigate she is attacked and raped by possessed tree branches. She manages to make it back to the cabin, no one believes her but Ash offers to take her back to town. However it soon becomes apparent that they can't leave as the only bridge has been destroyed. Back at the cabin Cheryl becomes totally possessed by the evil dead and she stabs Linda in the ankle with a pencil. Soon more of the friends are possessed until only one remains, will anyone survive? Can the friends be saved? Can a way back to town be found? Will that chainsaw in the work shed be used for bodily mutilation, or is it just for show? Watch it and find out, now!Written and directed over the course of four years by Sam Raimi, who's now hot property in Hollywood following the success of Spider-Man 2002 and it's sequel Spider-Man 2 2004 , Raimi makes a cameo appearance in this as one of the hitchhiking fisherman near the start of the film. I love this film, it's so energetic, features loads of over-the-top gore and is just great to watch on a pure fun entertainment level, and it's no surprise Raimi has gone on to enjoy the success he has. The direction from first timer Raimi is full of imagination, style, vigour and as many clever camera tricks he can get away with and his budget would allow for. I love the 'dead cam', we get a P.O.V. shot from the evil dead as they twist and turn their way through the woods, with trees falling down in front of them as they pass over them. A cool looking shot where Ash buries Linda in the woods, the camera is placed in Linda's grave looking up at Ash as he shovels dirt into it, Ash chucks the dirt onto the camera lens, bit by bit the screen goes black until finally only Ash's face is visible through a little section that hasn't been covered, god knows how this was achieved but it works really well and looks like a lot of effort and thought went into a short scene. A great throwaway shot where the camera is positioned under Ash looking up at him as the soles of his shoes are visible on each side of the screen. Or a shot which follows Ash across the room from above his head, the camera speeds along to keep up with him and the beams in the roof coming into shot as he walks under them, and they make a whooshing noise as they quickly enter and leave the shot. And a shot where Ash walks on screen, but the image is upside down and the camera moves towards the back of his head and over it and turning 90 degrees it comes to rest on a shot of his face the right way up. Or the way Raimi can make someone walking up a wooden staircase to the cellar interesting, he puts his camera behind and underneath the slats of wood that make up the staircase and follows Ash as he walks up them from this cool angle, the film is visually excellent and a joy to watch, throughout. The acting is just OK, except Campbell who is as likable as always. The script by Raimi is also great entertainment and manages to pack the screen with a feast of blood soaked set-pieces. Although variable in quality the effects include, zombies, dismemberment, stabbings, decapitations, eye gouging, staking, shotgun blast wounds, burnings, beatings, bitten off hands and a pencil stuck in someones ankle, the blood flows freely in this one! There is also some slightly unconvincing stop motion animation at the end, but like all the special effects in this film, I've seen a lot worse and they really aren't all that bad, just not comparable to todays multi million costing soulless CGI. There a couple of shots here and there when it's obvious that a double was used probably because the original actor or actress was no longer available, in particular the fight Ash has with the possessed Linda after she emerges from the grave he buried her in, her hair style is totally different between certain shots! The only nudity is when Cheryl is raped by the possessed trees, another cool sequence. I love this film, get past a slightly slow first 20 minutes and your in for a highly entertaining and action packed gore fest, watch it as soon as you can! Highly recommended.
You bastards, why are you torturing me like this? Why? (by lastliberal)
This award winning video nasty that was initially banned and re-released uncut in 2001 is one of the 74 films banned in Britain.One can only imagine what will happen in a remote cabin in the woods.Something akin to getting off the main roads in Texas.It doesn't take long for the spookiness to start, and smart people would be running immediately.No, don't touch that stuff in the basement! Ellen Sandweiss is the first to come into contact with the evil creature and gave us good breast in the process. Boy can she scream! Then things really get interesting!It's creepy and the makeup <more>
and special effects are great. There is blood aplenty.This was one heck of a horror film and Bruce Campbell was fantastic.