"Evil Dead" (2013) Review – Hardcore Drugs as Deadites

Updated on May 3, 2019
Sam Shepards profile image

Hi, I'm Sam, I love movies. My main interest is science fiction and zombie movies. Pessimistic and survival films I also enjoy a lot.

Reboots rarely raise good expectations. The majority of its audience usually goes to movie theaters out of respect for their nostalgia and with an evident predisposition to the new material.

Evil Dead was no exception. Little did it matter that Bruce Campbell, Sam Raimi, and Robert Tapert were executive producers, safeguarding the legacy of the saga. Evil Dead was always doomed to disappoint, even if it was just a little.

Quite simply, you cannot expect a massive cult hit in an Evil Dead entry without putting Ash at the forefront of the story.

Taking all this into consideration, what Fede Alvarez achieved is admirable. No, there was no cult or universal critical acclaim, but Evil Dead managed to be a box office hit, attracting old fans and new audiences and even motivating some positive reviews.

The truth is, Evil Dead is a great horror movie.

Following the tradition started in Evil Dead II, there is no clarity as to where Evil Dead lands in this universe. Is this a soft reboot? Well, taking into account the callbacks to the structure of the original trilogy, it seems that way. The old cabin, the group of young people about to start suffering, the rapist tree, the destroyed bridge that avoids the escape, the severed hand, the chainsaw, among others, are too many clues that just can’t be coincidences but a blueprint of a new version.

However, Fede Alvarez openly plays with ambiguity, even going so far as to say that he considers this film “as a story that takes place 30 years after The Evil Dead ended. The car is there, the cabin is there, a family bought it and did some work on it more than 20 years ago, and the book has found its way back to the cabin.”

Honestly, it matters very little. Ash has a “cameo” at the end of the credits that could just mean absolutely nothing, beyond a wink to hardcore fans.

Evil Dead is its own thing.

This time, the young victims of the damned cabin have a different motive. Mia (Jane Levy) is a heroin addict, and the rural retreat with her friends Eric (Lou Taylor Pucci) and Olivia (Jessica Lucas) is designed to be a detox weekend. Mia’s brother, David (Shiloh Fernandez) arrives late to the event along with his girlfriend Natalie (Elizabeth Blackmore). Due to David’s historical attitude of running away from trouble, there is some tension in the group.

Mia’s withdrawal gets worse while in parallel the group discovers–as usual–the Necronomicon in the cellar of the cabin, where there are also indications of a ritual in which someone was burned alive. Eric takes great effort to investigate the contents of the book, to the point of enunciating the evil-freeing spell. It makes you wonder if he actually did deserve his horrible death.

Fede Alvarez takes the reins with an enviable personality and does not fall into the trap of trying to emulate Raimi’s slapstick and humor. For Alvarez, this story is closer to the spectrum of The Exorcist and Saw than to The Three Stooges.

Of course, this doesn’t mean that there is a total disconnection with the franchise. The iconic POV through the forest is there, just like the cabin, the book, the cellar and many other details.

Evil Dead also makes a sincerely adorable effort to give coherence to the continuity disaster of the saga. For example, at one point Eric tries to burn the Necronomicon, discovering that it’s impossible. This is just to explain how the book appeared in Evil Dead II after Ash just burned it at the end of The Evil Dead.

What's Your Rating For Evil Dead (2013)?

See results

Evil Dead is a full-blown gruesome experience and borderline torture porn. Forget about cartoonish laughing reindeer or joking deadites. Here, the suffering of the victims feels real and at times difficult to digest. There is a nice mix between body horror, gore and the supernatural that is rarely seen on screen.

And above all, there is a huge amount of self-inflicted painful damage, in what is practically a recurring motif in this movie, as a symbology on drug use.

The story of Mia’s addiction as a backdrop in this horror story is a great script move by Fede Alvarez and Rodo Sayagues. This film works quietly on its own, as an extreme allegory about addiction and the devastating effects of hard drugs in youth.

Evil Dead is about self-destruction, and in that respect, it is consistent with its own place in the history of the franchise.

Because although Jane Levy did a great job, at this point it’s almost impossible that we will see her play this character again. Much less do a crossover with Ash.

Take a look at my Evil Dead list that covers all entries in the Evil Dead universe.

Movie Details

Title: Evil Dead

Release Year: 2013

Director(s): Fede Alvarez

Actors: Jane Levy, Jessica Lucas, a.o.

3 stars for Evil Dead (2013)

© 2019 Sam Shepards


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, reelrundown.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://maven.io/company/pages/privacy

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)