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on 21 July 2016
A classic Horror film created by a bunch of student friends on a little to no budget with creative special makeup effects and interesting fast paced horror plotline this is a must for any horror fan I personally like the evil dead 2 more but that's simply because it's a more refined film this is a cult classic. within an era of Freddy and Jason this film offers a great indie experience that created a cult following.
exactly what a horror movie is supposed to look like.
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on 16 May 2017
Special effects impressive.
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on 4 April 2017
top blu ray
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on 16 March 2017
Great
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on 1 May 2017
Really happy with it!
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on 6 April 2013
I'm a fan of this movie, I always wanted this steelbook edition, Worth it alot, More than 3 hours of extras, Making of really cool
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VINE VOICEon 25 January 2012
Released in the years before cable TV and before video cassettes made low budget schlock available to the average viewer, Evil Dead found its audience with the midnight movie horror festival crowd. No way did it get a nationwide release. Privately owned cinemas bought prints and slowly the film spread from coast to coast and even made its way to Britain. But by this time videos were gaining popularity and it was released on cassette at the same time as a very limited theatrical release.

Critics and censors dismissed it as trash and not long afterwards it was relegated to the video nasty bin and banned. As silly as this may seem, that was the lunatic logic of James Ferman's BBFC. The fact that it is inventive and well directed was lost on them. And until fairly recently only cult audiences appreciated its value. With Sony's new Blu Ray we can all finally enjoy the uncut, definitive and best-looking presentation possible.

Originally released in 1981 as The Book Of The Dead, this was a feature length re-make of Sam Raimi's short film, Within The Woods. The plot (excuse) and story (violence) involves a quintet of friends, enjoying a few days of quiet at a remote cabin in the Tennessee woods. These are not Friday the 13th goofballs who want nothing but sex and skinny-dipping. They are realistic. And it all goes nicely until Scotty (Hal Delrich) finds an ugly-looking book (with a face) and an old reel-to-reel tape recorder in the basement. The tape is of an archaeologist explaining how he resurrected demons that took over his wife in the very same cabin. The professor is nowhere to be found, but the haunting burial rites and incantations written in Sumerian text in the ugly book, The Necronomicon Ex Mortis-Book Of The Dead, are on the tape also.

Sheryl (Ellen Sandweiss) freaks out. She hears a demonic voice out in the woods. "Join us!" Foolishly going out to investigate, she is raped by a tree. Although this particular scene isn't so hard to watch, the film still has the power to disturb and make you squirm. Once Sheryl returns, all hell breaks loose and Raimi has a helluva time firing torrents of blood of varying colors throughout the cabin. Limbs are hacked off with carefree abandon and poor old Ash (Bruce Campbell) has to take them all on at once.

The supernatural hijinks were repeated to a much lesser effect in the sequel, but here Raimi creates an atmosphere of dread and whatever that force is out in the woods - it's scary. It does have some humour, but first time around the filmmakers obviously wanted horror first. You'll wince a few times, no doubt. The raw tone goes hand-in-hand with the low budget and Raimi's bizarre, hardcore cartoonish style is much in evidence.

More time is spent building character. Ash loves his girlfriend and a simple little scene between them makes us root for him. He is still to become the hapless buffoon, as he will repeat in Evil Dead 2 and Army of Darkness. At the very least, Evil Dead is so popular that it can no longer be regarded as a cult movie. It's not a classic. Not yet. But it is highly regarded and definitely worth several viewings.

The Blu Ray sports a 1.85:1 1080p transfer that is wonderfully grainy and a DTS HD-MA soundtrack. Loads of extras are included, but sadly Within the Woods is not one of them.

NOTE:

The film was shot open-matte with a cropped theatrical aspect ratio of 1.85:1. Some shots are a little tight but it still looks good. Purists will disagree but the US edition is in 1.37:1. I guess you can't please everyone but at least you can choose which one suits you best.
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TOP 50 REVIEWERon 18 June 2016
Not many films get to me in the way this one did, i found it pretty unnerving when first watching it probably on 'Betamax' or 'VHS'
when released onto the format, not sure whether it was the ground and trees outside the cabin moving or the evil emerging from the
cellar.....though buying the first two on Blu-ray when first released it has taken me till now to re-view the film....woos....maybe.
The film centres on 5 students - 'Ash' (Bruce Campbell) - 'Cheryl' (Ellen Sandweiss) - 'Scott' (Richard DeManincor) - 'Linda' (Betsy
Baker) and 'Shelly' (Theresa Tilly) who during a spring-break hire a remotely situated cabin.
Things quickly go wrong when during dinner the trap-door mysteriously fly's open, 'Ash' and 'Scott' investigate below, they find a tape
which they of course play,,,,bad move as it turns out, it releases demons and spirits upon them.
After 'Cheryl' is attacked and raped by possessed tree's she finds it difficult to convince the others of what had happened, however 'Ash'
agree's to take her to the nearest town to find somewhere else for her to sleep only to find the only bridge offering exit from the area
has collapsed.
The evil will take hold of each in turn, they turn on each other, mayhem ensues.....will anyone walk away alive ?
Though a low-budget offering the film is truly dark and creepy.....will send a chill through your spine.
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on 28 August 2017
The Evil Dead is possibly the craziest horror film I've seen. If someone asked me "Luke, describe in 400 words what happens in The Evil Dead"...I would probably struggle. Basic plot is basic. Group of teenagers go to remote cabin in woods, discover book of the dead, play a tape recording speaking some dead lingo and then creepy stuff happens. I've seen the remake a good few times, this is my first watch of the original and actually I would probably rate them the same for different reasons. An advantage that the original has, is Sam Raimi. Wow. Probably his best film. He does lack some technical finesse but the inventive POV camera tracking shots through the woods were incredibly effective. When Ash climbs up the stairs in the basement, when he walks through the cabin...extremely well crafted camera techniques that heighten the experience. His writing was also good, not the best but better than your average horror. There are hints of personality to our characters, particularly Ash, but I don't think it was enough to make me care about them. A slight dark comedic undertone within the script but it's extremely subtle. The star of the film is the makeup design. I don't think I've ever seen anything quite like it. Blood is spewing out everyone eventually, bodies start to decompose in rapid stop cuts (great editing during those scenes) and when the teenagers start to become possessed...some of them looked damn terrifying! The prosthetics were innovative as well, particularly the infamous tree rape scene which had been originally cut in several countries (I wonder why...). Let's face it, in 1981 no one ever saw anything quite like this in terms of gruelling horror...it was bound to be cut and edited to make theatrical releases in different countries. This isn't so much a scary film, more aimed towards the gore sub-genre. Some of the characters felt way too calm given the circumstances. Seriously, who would be relaxed if they disembodied their friend? An effective and inventive gory horror that just lacks technical finesse and memorable supporting characters.
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HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERon 5 March 2016
"Low-budget" is usually used either as a criticism, or as an excuse for a movie's shortcomings. But a movie's actual cinematic quality isn't determined by its budget.

Case in point: "The Evil Dead," the classic cult film that turned writer/director Sam Raimi into a big name. Produced on a shoestring budget in less-than-ideal surroundings, this movie proves that you don't need amazing special effects or big-name stars to produce an excellent movie -- just a simple tale of five clueless people going off to a cabin in the woods, only to encounter demonic horrors, possession, and some trees that don't understand what "no" means.

Five college students are venturing to a remote cabin in the woods, including Ash (Bruce Campbell), his sister Cheryl (Ellen Sandweiss) and his girlfriend Linda (Betsy Baker). And with the words "remote cabin in the woods," anyone who has seen horror movies in the last few decades knows roughly what's going to happen. Either eldritch horrors or brutal murders are afoot.

It turns out to be the former -- when the guys venture into the cabin's basement, they find a book called the Naturom Demonto ("roughly translated: Book of the Dead") bound in human flesh and inked with blood, and a tape recorder whose incantations release the book's evil. And the evil wastes no time in attacking the group... although it seems most interested in Cheryl. She hears voices calling "Join us," her walk in the woods leads to an encounter with some very rapey trees, and she ends up possessed by a rotten-faced demon.

Unfortunately, the only bridge back to civilization has completely collapsed, leaving them stranded miles from any kind of help. And though they are able to trap the possessed Cheryl in the basement, more of the group are being targeted by the demons lurking in the woods outside -- either to possess them, or to brutally murder them. Or both. Will Ash be able to survive the night in this horrifyingly haunted house, or will he succumb to the "evil dead"?

Sam Raimi managed to make "The Evil Dead" on a budget of under a million dollars, with a real cabin, minimal crew and inexperienced actors (including his childhood friend, future cult icon Bruce Campbell. In other words, this gory little cult movie is only a little more polished than the kind of homemade horror movies that some people put up on Youtube. And honestly... its rough, low-budget style is a large part of its charm, both in how cheesy it can become and in how inventive Raimi had to be.

And about half the time, the results are pretty atmospheric and creepy... and the rest of the time, the movie is pretty hilarious. In the first half, when we have a slow-building, eerie build to the horrors waiting in the woods, with moments of almost Lovecraftian creepiness when the flesh-bound book is uncovered. Raimi uses odd camera angles (and the odd zoom-through-the-swamp-from-the-demon's-point-of-view) to emphasize the unnerving aspects of the story, which is quite impressive considering the limited budget. Actually, it's even creepier because of the gritty, realistic look of the movie.

But once the demon possessions start, the movie bounces into the kind of excess that is utterly hilarious -- fountains of gore, guts, a chainsaw and zombie makeup, mingled with cackling demon girlfriends and a wild-eyed Bruce Campbell lurching around having weird experiences. It stops being scary, but it achieves a delightful cheesiness that is almost irresistible. Where else can you see blood streaming from wall sockets?

The actors all do a pretty good job here, although most of them are generally not noticed in favor of Campbell -- Ellen Sandweiss is quite good as the tormented Cheryl, who is raped by branches and driven into hysteria by the knowledge of the demonic presence, while Richard DeManincor/Hal Delrich is pretty convincing as the insensitive jerk of the group. And of course, we have Campbell. He doesn't yet have that over-the-top, larger-than-life masculine presence he's known for, and utters a few woodenly-delivered lines, but he definitely has a scene-stealing presence and intensity. And most importantly, he can throw himself into seemingly silly scenes (attacking his possessed girlfriend with a wooden beam as large as he is) with utter conviction.

It's cheap, it's cheesy, and its shoestring budget is apparent. But "The Evil Dead" ends up a delight through a combination of working well within its limited means, and in graduating from creepy suspense to an orgy of possession and dismemberment. And the demonic fun has only just started.
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