Evil Dead [Blu-Ray]
Director: Fede Alvarez
Cast: Jane Levy, Shiloh Fernandez, Lou Taylor Pucci
Release Date: Now Available on Blu-Ray & DVD
A Review By: Kevin Lovell
Film Rating: 9/10
Disc Rating: 9/10
Five friends head to a remote cabin, where the discovery of a Book of the Dead leads them to unwittingly summon up demons living in the nearby woods. The evil presence possesses them until only one is left to fight for survival.
Here we have a prime example of how precious source material should be treated when being remade. Instead of remaking ‘The Evil Dead’ flat out, they keep the basic themes and premise, but for the most part what we get is an entirely new re-imagining of the film. There are a number of moments that fans of the original(s) will be grinning at (such as I was) and everything else that is brought into the mix really makes a surprisingly fresh and interesting invention, and the film is of course insanely gory to boot. ‘Evil Dead’ does something that is so rarely applied to mainstream horror films these days in that it takes itself completely seriously. I’m not sure there are even two moments in this film that will cause the audience to chuckle. Make no mistake, this is an intense, bloody and vicious film, and it succeeds on almost every level. Some elements felt a bit out of place, but these things are so few and far between that after the overall experience it’s quite difficult to even pinpoint these minor annoyances.
The cast consists of mainly unknown actors and actresses aside from Jane Levy (Suburgatory) who I personally adore, and it helps keep the realistic tone of the film that you are not looking at a bunch of familiar faces. You can truly imagine these kids living this experience in this cabin out in the middle of nowhere. Fede Alvarez made his feature length debut with this film, which he both wrote and directed, and he did a remarkable job with the film. This will be a name to follow in the coming years. It becomes abundantly clear throughout that this man is without question as big of an ‘Evil Dead’ fan as the rest of us. This film could not have possibly been in more capable hands.
This is certainly a Blu-Ray worth picking up a copy of. The Blu-Ray features a number of exclusive bonus features including director’s commentary and more. Another factor about the Blu-Ray I must point out which I really appreciated is the fantastic disc art. I could not think of a better possible choice for the art on the actual disc. I would recommend fans of the film certainly pick up a copy on Blu-Ray if they can.
The Blu-Ray release of ‘Evil Dead is presented in a full 1080p High Definition presentation utilizing the film’s original 2.39:1 cinemascope aspect ratio. As is usually the case with Sony releases, the picture quality is gorgeous. Everything is detailed, sharp and smooth with nothing out of place or lacking. Fans of this one should certainly be happy with the video presentation on this release.
The Blu-Ray release features an uncompressed 5.1 channel DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack which is probably one of the most stand-out audio tracks I’ve experienced in recent memory. It seems like there is always some eerie noise or disturbing effect spinning from speaker to speaker, or coming from right behind you and it certainly helps add a very creepy feeling to the film. Watching as one character walks into a dark room and right behind you you can hear the sound of sawing into flesh really packs an extra punch to the whole experience. This was a very impressive lossless soundtrack that provided everything you could possibly want and probably more.
The Blu-Ray features a respectable list of extras, a number of which are also exclusive to Blu-Ray and not featured on the DVD, giving you yet another reason to pick up the Blu-Ray copy of this one if you have the option of formats. The special features include: ‘Cast & Filmmaker Commentary (including director Fede Alvarez, actress Jane Levy and others)’ ‘Evil Dead: The Reboot’ which is a featurette featuring the likes of Bruce Campbell and more as they discuss how this new take on The Evil Dead came to be, ‘Unleashing The Evil Force’, Making Life Difficult’ and a few other extras as well. This one should have more than enough extras to keep you occupied for a good while after you finish watching (re watching) the film.
Film Rating: 9/10
Disc Rating: 9/10
‘Evil Dead’ is Now Available To Own On Blu-Ray & DVD From Sony Pictures Home Entertainment.