Director: SAM RAIMI

85 minutes, U.S.A., 1981, Colour, D-Cinema

This month’s Fright Night revisits Sam Raimi’s classic debut, one of the best and most popular horror films ever made. Equal parts comedy and over-the-top gore, the film’s plot is simplicity itself; to borrow the official synopsis for last month’s Fright Night, “five friends go to a remote cabin in the woods. Bad things happen.” But unlike Joss Whedon’s cleverly subversive take on the genre, The Evil Dead is a much more straightforward good time.

The fun begins when the five discover a ‘book of the dead’, fashioned from human skin and written in blood, and unwittingly play a tape of the book’s incantations for the raising of demons. The demons begin to isolate and possess members of the group, turning them into ‘deadites’. Soon, only one man is left standing against the forces of evil – the legendary Bruce Campbell in the iconic role of Ash. The visual inventiveness and humour that are now seen as Raimi’s trademarks are already in evidence, as is Campell’s cool. This digital rerelease of the film is a rare and not-to-be-missed opportunity to see The Evil Dead in all its good old-fashioned gory glory on the big screen. (Notes by Kevin Coyne.)


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