Review: The Evil Dead

Director: Sam Raimi
Year: 1981
Score: 7.5/10

So... tree rape. The jokes write themselves.

So… tree rape. The jokes write themselves.

The film that kicked off the Evil Dead saga is rough around the edges but full of memorable moments and gruesome visuals. The basic premise is now so familiar but would presumably have seemed original at the time. Sam Raimi uses lots of imaginative camera angles and shots, including of course the oft-imitated ‘shaky cam’ representing the fast-moving demonic point of view. Bruce Campbell is perfectly cast as Ash and doesn’t take long to make the role his own, creating one of the horror genre’s most iconic (and amusing) characters. The balance of horror and comedy is a little off in this one; Raimi was still learning his craft at this point, and didn’t get that particular balance right until the sequel six years later. Notably, one of the Coen brothers (Joel, to be precise) served as an assistant editor and learned a thing or two. If you think you’re a horror fan and you haven’t seen this, well, you’re not really a horror fan, are you?

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