Director: Lee Cronin
Cast: Lily Sullivan, Alyssa Sutherland, Morgan Davies
Release Date: June 27, 2023
A Review By: Kevin Lovell
Film Rating: 8/10
Disc Rating: 6.5/10
In “Evil Dead Rise,” the action moves out of the woods and into the city, and tells a twisted tale of two estranged sisters, played by Sullivan and Sutherland, whose reunion is cut short by the rise of flesh-possessing demons, thrusting them into a primal battle for survival as they face the most nightmarish version of family imaginable.
Please Note: Warner Bros. Discovery Home Entertainment provided me with a free copy of the 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray I reviewed in this Post. The opinions I share are my own.
‘Evil Dead Rise’ tells the unsettling tale of two estranged sisters; one a single mom living in a rundown apartment building set to be demolished, and the other a traveling guitar technician; the pair reunite at the rundown apartment only for their reunion to be cut short when flesh-eating (and possessing) demons are unleashed within the building following the discovery of a mysterious book and recordings related to it after an earthquake cracks open the parking garage’s floor. Now, instead of the nice visit they were hoping for, the night will turn into a blood-soaked and terrifying fight for survival as the building’s remaining tenants start falling prey to the evil presence.
Written and directed by Lee Cronin (The Hole in the Ground) who does a great job at the helm of ‘Evil Dead Rise’ capturing much of the franchise’s style, tone and notable traits, while simultaneously bringing plenty of new elements to the mix this time around. The film’s cast includes Lily Sullivan (I Met a Girl), Alyssa Sutherland (TV’s Vikings), Morgan Davies (TV’s The End), Gabrielle Echols (Reminiscence), and introducing Nell Fisher, with the majority offering decent and fitting performances for the most part in each of their respective roles.
‘Evil Dead Rise’ is a dark, claustrophobic and blood-drenched ride into the depths of hell, which in this scenario happens to be a rotting apartment building scheduled for demolition that our characters find themselves trapped within following an earthquake which reveals a new book of the dead and recordings. They naturally unleash a demonic presence throughout the building that begins to take down the residents one by one, while unleashing almost surprising amounts of blood, gore and other nastiness along the way and always maintaining an adequate level of tension and uncertainty that only becomes more severe as things progress.
The film does a great job of largely staying true to the roots of the franchise and repeatedly paying homage to the previous installments with some familiar quotes, weapons and more that remind you what franchise this film is part of, while at the same time crafting its own unique approach to the material that results in a very different, yet no less graphic and bleak type of film that will elicit grins from franchise fans thanks to its nods and tips of the cap, while also delivering a fully serviceable film for those who are entirely unfamiliar with the franchise; allowing the newcomers to fully appreciate and enjoy this one without becoming at all lost or confused along the way. It never pulls its punches and once things start going wrong it only picks up the pace and tension without allowing nary a break in the chaos going forward, throwing gallons of gore, vomit and carnage at the audience and taking us for one truly wild ride that continually proves itself to be an awful lot of fun.
Overall, ‘Evil Dead Rise’ is a wild, creepy and delightfully nasty ride that pays homage to previous installments in the franchise while also very much crafting its own unique and massively entertaining nightmare. ‘Evil Dead Rise’ is highly recommended, especially for fans of the Evil Dead franchise, as well as genre fans who appreciate a graphic demonic possession film who should all find a lot to love about this one regardless of whether or not you’ve seen a single ‘Evil Dead’ installment previously (something that is not at all necessary to fully appreciate ‘Evil Dead Rise’ which stands on its own). If you’re already looking forward to this one but haven’t yet had the chance to check it out, it should easily prove well worth your time and the price of a rental. Max subscribers can also stream the film at no additional cost as of the time of this writing.
The 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray release of ‘Evil Dead Rise’ features a full 2160p Ultra High Definition presentation with HDR-10, presented in its original 2.39:1 Aspect Ratio. The video presentation looks pretty great as a whole and offers a clean, smooth and nicely detailed presentation from start to finish. Everything within from character specifics and clothing, along with the dark, gloomy environment and surroundings of the building interior look sharp and remarkably clean, and the presentation holds up surprisingly well even with nearly the entire film taking place in notably dark and dreary places. The HDR-10 addition also contributes a nice color palette that shows some impressively deep and clean colors both in gore and other elements throughout, while also providing beautifully deep, rich black levels. Overall, this is a solid Ultra High Definition video presentation that looks quite nice as a whole and should largely please both fans and first time viewers.
The 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray release features a Dolby Atmos (Dolby TrueHD 7.1 channel compatible) soundtrack. Please note that this review pertains solely to the Dolby TrueHD 7.1 audio presentation. This multichannel soundtrack is downright bonkers in the best way possible and it serves up a clean, crisp and insanely aggressive audio presentation throughout that repeatedly contributes some additional tension, creepiness and fun to the viewing experience. It takes full advantage of all seven available channels in order to send a whirlwind of activity throughout the various speakers including chanting, creaking, electricity crackling, creepy noises and action effects, plus a great deal more constantly overtaking the speakers in the most aggressive way possible, while always making certain that any dialogue or other audio elements that might be occurring simultaneously remain sharp, clean and fully audible at all times. Overall, this is a phenomenal Dolby Atmos (Dolby TrueHD 7.1 compatible) soundtrack that sounds outstanding and continually hits hard throughout.
The 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray release of ‘Evil Dead Rise’ does not include any bonus content.
*Please note that the above images are taken from the Blu-Ray disc included in the 4K UHD Combo Pack and resized. They do not represent the quality of the 4K Ultra HD disc itself and will additionally suffer quality loss as a result of .jpg compression. Larger versions of each image can be viewed by clicking on the image. All images and content included on the 4K UHD & Blu-Ray release are the property of their respective owners.
Film Rating: 8/10
Disc Rating: 6.5/10
‘Evil Dead Rise’ is Now Available to Own on 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray, DVD & Digital from New Line Cinema & Warner Bros. Discovery Home Entertainment
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