HMM Day 1 – Evil Dead

Welcome to day one of Horror Movie Marathon 2021! That time of year where I deliver one horror movie for the entire month! That’s thirty one horror movies for anyone looking for a rich horror season. I feel good, I feel like taking on the world. Now let’s start this shit show off the right way.

Have you ever done drugs? Chances are most of us have either been directly or indirectly effected by drug abuse. Did you know that nearly twenty one million people suffer from some sort of drug addiction? This could be hard drugs like heroine or crack. To other drugs like opioids.

My mom is an opioid addict. I mean, she’s not giving handies in the street alley or selling family heirlooms to get her fix. But she is dependent on some serious shit! But she admits her need for these pills and I kind of get it. The woman has had a broken back since 1989 and in 1992 had metal rods placed in her spinal column. I still remember my dad bringing her home from the hospital. We took out the back seats to our van so she could lay down on a mattress in the back! Kind of like our own ambulance system. Then she was bed-ridden for a good while. I guess the surgery worked but one can’t tell because she has always suffered with pain. The woman can’t stand for long periods of time but she can’t lay down for too long as well. It’s a conundrum of ups and downs! She walks with a cane and falls often. It’s like the metal rods made everything worse. But to combat the pain, she was placed on high doses of pharmaceutical pills. But those doses always become a new threshold and she has her doctor either prescribe her higher doses or stronger meds.

Her knowledge of drugs is off the charts! The only thing I know is aspirin and I don’t even take that shit when I have a head ache. I’m all about dealing with pain and I have my mom to thank for that ideology. Pain is good! Much better than being addicted to pills. I remember when I got shingles on top of my head. Just a large clump of red welts forming at the top of my head like a yarmulke! It hurt so bad and my doctor prescribed me some hard stuff. But I chose to not take it! I accepted that pain like a champ! The best was the pain and it’s final absence made the victory all the more satisfying and assuring.

But man I wish she could brake free of the pills. That’s why I came up with an idea! You see, what I’m gonna do is I’m going to make my mom happy again. I’m in the process of getting my pilots license and when I do get it, I’m stacking my bucket of bolts mother on that plane and dumping her on a remote island some place in the Atlantic! Don’t worry, I’ll make sure she has all her food and provisions. I’ll make sure to set up a nice little cabin out there as well. Every month I will life flight her more rations and a good book. My kids can come along and wave to their Grandma. Drop her the annual Christmas card to keep her spirits high. This way she can clean her system out and deal with the pain.

You know, this might be a good idea for a business! We capture drug addicts and send them to an island to beat their addictions for a good while. There they can kick and scream all they want and know one will hear them! They won’t be able to leave because the ocean is a scary thing. Everyone can get a painting easel with paints and brushes. They can follow along an entire Bob Ross collection and when they are clean and sober, they can use their new found skill of painting to make some cash! I mean, there are worser ideas. Just look at what my friend Mia went through in 2013’s Evil Dead.

Evil Dead is a 2013 film directed by Fede Álvarez and starring Jane Levy, Jessica Lucas, Shiloh Fernandez and Lou Pucci. Sam Raimi and Bruce Campbell served as producers and close consultants for the film but decided to remain behind scenes in much of the creative decisions. The film was a box offices success but has a low rating of 63% on Rotten Tomatoes. This could primarily be due to people believing it a retelling of the original story and also not having the notorious Evil Dead character Ash Williams in the film. One guy stated its uncreative premise and ignorant characters as a reason to not enjoy the movie. But fuck that guy, what person would remain sane when demon possessed people are cutting their tongues in two?

The Story

For anyone that is an avid Evil Dead fan they will be very familiar with this premise. We follow a group of five friends who take their drug abusing friend Mia to a log cabin in the woods for her strict recovery. While there, an evil presence is released and quickly possesses each person in the group. Extreme blood and butchery ensues and we are left with another reason to never go to secluded cabins ever again.

I picked Evil Dead 2013 because I try my best to pick a hard hitting horror film for day one of my Horror Movie Marathons. I also wanted to pick a movie that is very polarizing in the horror community. I’m sure many people will be like “This is shit!” and then never trust me or read another one of my marathon posts. Evil Dead 2013 is one of those films in my opinion. So you’re one of two people. You loved this movie and see it as a bigger reveal for the entire Evil Dead franchise. Or… you completely hate this movie and agree with what many critiques had to say about it.

For the most part I can see why some hard core Evil Dead fans might be pissed while talking about this picture. There is absolutely no campiness to it. The blood doesn’t look artificial and there are no monkey howls coming out of the demons. The movie itself has a much darker and foreboding tone. Everything is cold and dreary looking. To top it all off, our beloved horror hero Ash Williams fails to make an appropriate appearance. In fact, for this movie the main character is a chick and is very depressing. Unlike Ash, Mia is in a terrible state and is very unlikeable as a person when compared to jolly old Williams. So all-in-all, the movie sets an entirely different feel. Yes it is Evil Dead… just given to us in a new skin. To contrast and compare with the original film is something you can’t help yourself in doing. I myself found having to re-check my expectations for the movie and see it for as its own thing and for that I am happy.

I know, I’ve Been There

So I get it, remakes can suck. I’ve felt just like the rest of you and said the same line “Why can’t Hollywood come up with new shit!” and then answer myself with “cause they have no idea!” This always unfolds into an argument where I end up punching myself in the face. I know I’ve been there, I’ve said it over and over again. But the sentiment has made me a pessimist and a person that I don’t like. I feel being bitter sucks, it’s like how Stephen Colbert feels when he does those stupid Covid-19 vaccine dancing videos on his unfunny show. You become a shell of a man and can’t enjoy anything and quite possibly you never make your wife happy.

But at the same time, I am a realist. So many movie remakes have been jacked up. The Fog, Friday the 13th, A Nightmare On Elm Street, Poltergeist, Child’s Play, Halloween and let us not forget Ghostbusters! But there are good remakes. I think 2010’s The Crazies is a much better movie. 1988’s The Blob is a great one and as I recall, 1982’s The Thing is one of the best horror movies ever made! So let us be honest and let me correct my original statement, remakes are not entirely a bad thing! 2013’s Evil Dead is a good movie and kicks ass. You just have to sit back and appreciate it as a stand alone film.

Being bitter makes you like this guy!

What I like about this movie is how it takes glimmers from the original and rebrands those moments in new ways. What I mean is, where many films take literal moments in original films and just reshoot them, Evil Dead gives us shadow memories of those things. Ok, so think about 1982’s Poltergiest and the creepy clown toy scene. That shit is scary as hell! But it stands as one of the best scenes in all horror movie cinema! But when they remade Poltergiest in 2015. Instead of doing something new and awesome… they pretty much re-shot that scene verbatim! GOSH THAT PISSES ME OFF! You can do something similar but have a fucking idea! Oh wait, there I go again and getting bitter. Back to Evil Dead. Evil Dead 2013 did it right! I need to keep telling myself this. It’s still Evil Dead but just different.

Which is good because at first watch, you think you know exactly what is going to happen. Sure they go to a cabin and sure they read from the Naturom Demonto. People get possessed and the slaughter commences. But the story takes certain turns that make it fresh and interesting. It’s a different film and makes us view it in a different way. To be honest, I’ve always watched 1981’s Evil Dead with a “this is fun” kind of way. If you were to make a list of serious horror films. You would have Hellraiser, A Nightmare On Elm Street… but not The Evil Dead or Evil Dead II. Those films are more fun than terrifying. I’m not saying they’re bad or not scary. They’re just fun. But this 2013 film is one of those “Oh man, this is jacked up.” kind of attitude. It belongs in the ranks of serious horror.

I was surprised at what path director Fede Álvarez took. I like the character Mia and how she is trying to get clean from drugs. Her withdrawal makes her a prime target for the demons and it catches her friends off-guard when she gets possessed. The story doesn’t go into it as a romantic situation where bad things happen. No, this is unrelenting. Things suck for Mia and her friends. Now it’s gonna get much worse. You don’t know who to cheer for. I guess the brother and for the most part, you find yourself thinking he’s the one we cheer on. But then the entire thing takes a crazy turn and you find yourself bewildered by how it goes. But I love that! Who wants to go into a movie knowing exactly what is going to happen?

That’s the curse of remakes. People go in knowing the story. Knowing who the heroes are and aren’t left unsuspected. Evil Dead leaves you unsuspecting and at the mercy of a new red carpet and that’s great. I don’t want to know for sure who the lone survivor is and what I got truly impressed me. But at the same time I am always thinking “Yep! That’s Evil Dead sucker!” Besides, do we really want a movie that is made pretty much identical to the original? No, that would be stupid!

The movie may not be “campy” and has no artificial look to it and that’s where it works. Evil Dead is way more brutal than the original films. Where the original, it implies Ash is cutting his hand off. But in this you get to watch the entire appendage get cut and even more! Plus all the gore is done with practical effects so in that same way it is remaining in the same spirit of Evil Dead. I think people think it’s all CGI because it looks so damn good! Even the demon possessed characters look way more intense where they make you feel so much more uncomfortable. Jane Levy as Mia is mind numbingly creepy. Even before this chick gets all nuts she looks scary and someone I would run away from. But when she gets all tripped out and possessed, she goes balls to the wall scary.

I for one found myself loving this movie. If you want blood and guts then this movie has it. People get truly jacked up. If you want pure demon possessing insanity, then this movie has it in droves. In fact, this is balls to the wall brutal! There is one scene where a character is beaten with a crowbar and it’s unforgiving. But it’s ok because it happens to a character that deserved it.

You want brutality? Then you got it bitches!The best thing is, the majority of the film is shot with practical effects! Not many people actually get this. So when you see the blood pouring into the hot Jessica Lucas’ face! You’re seeing it without that computer shit.

But Maybe This Isn’t A Remake?

We all think of it as a remake but actually we’re wrong! TIME TO GIVE A SPOILER! You see, Ash Williams does make an appearance in this film! You just don’t know it cause you’re lazy. He’s there and it is great. But what this tells me is that Evil Dead is not a remake and it’s not just a continuation of The Evil Dead franchise! It’s much more. You see, you may not be aware of this but Rick & Morty started in 2013. If you’re not familiar with this show then you should know it’s about a genius named Rick Sanchez that is basically the smartest living thing in the known universe. Rick develops a portal gun that can teleport him to any location. Weather that be the same dimension or any alternate dimension!

The show is a comedy but it opens the idea that for everyone of us there are millions, billions, trillions! Trillions of you either very similar are completely different. There are alternate versions of you. There are bug versions that live in a bug world. There ghost versions, versions of you with boobs for eyes and versions of you where you’re gay or a woman! So you right now are reading this and thinking I am nuts. But an alternate dimension of you in D1343B2-Q is thinking, “this guy is a fucking genius!” So thanks you in D1343B2-Q! I love you enthusiasm.

So with that in mind, the entire story of Evil Dead 2013 is happening in the Ash Williams reality. It’s just a different dimension where the main character is Mia! I mean doesn’t it make sense? The Necronomicon Ex-Mortis is just like Rick Sanchez’s portal gun! Does it not open up and send Ash to medieval times? Maybe Army of Darkness is not a movie about time travel but actually a story about an alternate reality of Ash Williams where the world is stuck in medieval!? Holy shit this is awesome. I’m getting hard nips just writing this out. This means that the Evil Dead show, Ash Vs Evil Dead is it’s own dimension! Even the episode of Creepshow where the Necronomicon is read from and the evil dead arise is it’s own dimension! IT’S ALL CONNECTED!!

Ok, I know this a far stretch and most likely not true. But wouldn’t it be? I know Sam Raimi and Bruce Campbell are working on Evil Dead Now. A new sequel to the franchise. So wouldn’t it be awesome to have a multi-dimensional situation where Mia and Ash come together from their own dimension!? Doesn’t this make the movie so much cooler?

Even without this wild idea, 2013’s Evil Dead is still a kick ass movie. I love the blood and I love how it gives us something different. Kind of like seeing another dimension of the glorious original. The movie goes on and each moment is terrifying and chisels in your memory bank. So please, give it a chance. Don’t be bitter and enjoy it for what we were given. Another version of a kick ass story. This is why I have chose Evil Dead for day one of my Horror Movie Marathon! As for my poor mother on the stranded island. I think the old bird will do just fine.

Thanks For Reading!

Thanks for reading my post! Below are four more films from the past day ones of my Horror Movie Marathons! Check them out!

3 Comments Add yours

  1. rdfranciswriter says:

    This was all just too brutal. I like the “Is it drugs or demon possession?” angle, but in the end: too brutal. I won’t revisit it as I have the original.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. nscovell says:

      Yea it is pretty intense. Definitely balls to the wall as I like to say.

      Like

      1. rdfranciswriter says:

        Yes. The first, well, it’s my nostalgia and the fact it was charming at what Raimi was attempting. And the oddball shots. A self-nail gun to the face (in 2.0) — while a great looking effect — not so “charming,” you know. Didn’t hate it and didn’t dislike as much as the Poltergeist remake.

        Again, Poltergiest 2.0 is very well made . . . and Sam Rockwell is a fav of mine . . . but I was left, “meh,” with it.

        Liked by 1 person

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