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In the summer of 1979, a group of Detroit friends with $375,000 raised from local investors headed for a cabin outside of Morristown, Tennessee to make a film about five college students possessed by an ancient "Book of the Dead". The filmmakers' goal was to create "The Ultimate Experience In Grueling Terror," a movie so relentless that it would stand forever as a landmark in modern horror history. When it was released in 1982, it was immediately recognized worldwide as one of the most ferociously original horror films ever made. Twenty years later, this is The Evil Dead like you've never seen or heard it before. The Evil Dead is now more grueling than ever, featuring newly restored state-of-the-art digitally remastered picture and sound, and loaded with incredible new extras, all personally supervised by director Sam Raimi. This is the Ultimate Edition of the legendary film that launched the careers of Raimi, producer Robert Tapert and star Bruce Campbell, unleashed an unprecedented army of primitive screwheads upon the world and changed the face of horror forever.
Director Sam Raimi's first film has achieved legendary status since its 1982 release, and for good reason. Though perhaps not as widely seen as its two sequels, EVIL DEAD 2 and ARMY OF DARKNESS, THE EVIL DEAD is arguably the best of the three. It is the story of five college-age friends who travel to a cabin in rural Tennessee where the stumble upon the Book of the Dead, an ancient tome bound in human flesh and inked in blood. After unwittingly awakening the unspeakable terror told of in the book, each of the friends is transformed into the evil dead, one by one, except for Ash (Bruce Campbell). So, Ash is left with no other way to survive than to dismember the living corpses of his sister, girlfriend, and two of his friends. Shot on a shoestring budget, the film boasts some impressive camera work and extremely over-the-top gore effects as well as a sense of humor much more subtle than the tongue-in-cheek aesthetic of the two sequels.
"We can't bury Shelly, she's our friend."|(Ash, to Scott, after watching him hack off the limbs of his possessed girlfriend and then suggest that they bury the remaining parts)
"...Raimi maintains suspense and a nightmarish mood..." 02/09/1983
Sight and Sound
"...[A] tongue-in-cheek cult favourite..." 05/01/2002 p.59,"[H]ighly effective as a tense horror -- its scares balanced by plenty of tongue-in-cheek humour." 11/01/2005 p.88
"Sam Raimi's masterpiece that's still as shocking and entertaining today as it was in 1981." 08/31/2010
To say that the Evil Dead movies are not for everyone is an understatement. A strong stomach is required. If you can't take copious amounts of blood and gore, this is not your movie...
...a first film that easily surpasses other notorious horror debuts such as The Last House On The Left or The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. The influence of The Three Stooges on its comical creative trio...gives the film a playful but unsettling feel... it blends effectively with the squirming gore that gives the film its reputation.
Leonard Maltin's Movie & Video Guide
Wildly stylish...one of the grossest horror films ever... provides a deliriously imaginative roller coaster ride for those with strong stomachs.
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