Next Friday, April 5th, yet another Hollywood remake of a classic horror film is being released. This happens to a lot of movies. Eventually Hollywood thinks “hey, this was awesome and a huge hit thirty years ago. Let’s not leave well enough alone and totally remake it with this new technology and release it again!”
I’ll see the remakes. Sometimes they are great. Sometimes they are terrible. Next Friday will be no different. I will join the masses to go see the remake of Evil Dead.
You may have seen the trailer. They are marketing the movie as the most terrifying movie you will ever experience. The trailer does look scary enough. I’m a horrible judge of the scaryness of movies though. Contagion is still, to this day, the scariest thing I have ever seen. I don’t blink an eye at the traditional horror films. Monsters and ghosts don’t get me. Disease and the end of the world get me. Anyway. Back to Evil Dead.
I love Evil Dead. Like, I really love Evil Dead. I wrote an entire term paper on Evil Dead while studying abroad.
The original Evil Dead trilogy is amazing. The first Evil Dead, released in 1981, was considered a “rite of passage” for diretor Sam Raimi (Spider-Man Trilogy, Oz The Great and Powerful) and actor Bruce Campbell (everything Sam Raimi has pretty much ever done). Raimi turned twenty just before filming began. Twenty. The whole was seriously just a fun project done by a bunch of friends. They raised their budget by asking parents and friends and family members for money. Campbell was chosen to be the star because of his chin (not factual but probably true.) So they went to a cabin in the woods with truck loads of corn syrup and they made a horror film. And it worked.
People were genuinely scared when they watched the original Evil Dead. When you watch it now, it is wildly hilarious. The second film (the best in the series) Evil Dead 2: Dead Before Dawn is actually meant to be a horror comedy and is even funnier than the first. The third, Army of Darkness, shows that Evil Dead is something that needs to be made with little to no budget. It goes off the rails a bit. However, it is still hilarious.
So this is why I have reservations about the new Evil Dead. They are trying to make it scary? But…but…why? Why not continue with the integrity of the films and make it a horror-comedy? Sam Raimi and Bruce Campbell are both producers of the film, and they both are speaking highly of it, but that doesn’t convince me. Yet. It doesn’t convince me yet.
There are a million horror movies out there but there are none like Evil Dead. In my term paper I argued that lower budgets force directors to be more creative, and I will stand by that to a point. The B in B-Movie doesn’t stand for bad. Just like the B-side to a single isn’t a worse song. Oh wait speaking of songs did I mention that there is an Evil Dead musical? There is. And CSU is performing it next month.
Evil Dead had such a cult following that Canada decided to turn it into a musical. I am more excited about going to CSU’s production of said musical more than I am to see the remake. You guys, there is a splash zone there is so much blood. It is going to be great.
The fact that Evil Dead was turned into a musical shows the fun side of the trilogy. Horror films these days take themselves so seriously. And I am worried that this new Evil Dead will be like the Percy Weasley to the Fred and George originals. Like, just loosen up you know? Horror movies can be scary and thrilling and funny. Recent example: Cabin in The Woods. That movie had fun. The Nightmare on Elm Street remake? Loosen your tie, man. Take a load off. Have. Some. Fun.
I am not discouraging anyone from going to see the remake that comes out next week. In fact, I urge you to go. I also, however, urge you to watch the originals. They are great movies to watch with friends and they are pretty addicting. I’m not saying every one will rush off and start writing term papers about how great these movies are after their first viewing of Evil Dead 2, but it has happened before. The synchronized head movements in Evil Dead 2 are truly inspiring.
Also, Bruce Campbell. I would love for you to tweet me back someday (@ebrownie). Since I know you are totally reading this right now.