Boozie Movies: EVIL DEAD and Falling Out of Love With Sam Raimi

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Boozie Movies: EVIL DEAD and Falling Out of Love With Sam Raimi
As with any Boozie Movie piece, caution should be exercised when proceeding. There are spoilers ahead and I was a little bit drunk and more than a little bit cranky. But beyond exposing my state of mind it's intended to temper whatever lofty expectations you may have developed while also exploring a long relationship with the original. So take what comes ahead with a healthy dose of salt.


I feel so cheap and used. I feel like I've just been suckered out of my hard earned money once again by a second rate prostitute who doesn't even provide full service with any type of happy ending. I feel like I just got swindled into a $200 private dance in the VIP area of an overpriced strip club only to discover that there really is no sex in the champagne room.  

As the credits rolled on the Evil Dead remake, my initial reaction was to turn to my friend, an acclaimed horror filmmaker and festival programmer and ask, "What the hell was that?  Why do I feel so angry right now? I feel personally insulted. I should have known better. I know that this is a business.   I understand that Sam and Bruce and Rob are all out to make money.  I knew this wouldn't be the same as the thing I grew up loving but I didn't expect a Platinum Dunes remake. I feel like I was just shit on for the last ninety minutes. The whole entire film, I kept thinking of that South Park episode where George Lucas and Steven Spielberg keep gang raping Harrison Ford in Indiana Jones 4.

To this my friend said "Dude, this is our Phantom Menace, we just got our Jar Jar Binks."

And then the credits come to an end, and like so many other films now, there was a post credit surprise sequence that we were all urged to stay for.  We were promised a grand surprise.

What is it?

The screen fades in on a moon lit profile shot of Bruce Campbell with an obvious emphasis on the outline of his chin.

He turns to the camera and says "Groovy."

Then.... cut to black.

Every one still left in the theater cheers.

"Fuck you, fuck you all. "

Thanks Comic Con.

At one point in the Evil Dead remake, there's a J-Horror type jump scare where the camera then pivots onto one of the impossibly hot yet utterly generic super model actresses as she screams. The camera pans down and zooms into an XCU on her super tight and super short Khakis and lingers there for a few beats as we're treated to a perfect view of her camel toe.

That's the type of film that the Evil Dead remake is.

At this point, I only whispered to myself, "Are you fucking kidding me?"

And at this point, some fraternity brother in a tilted baseball cap and sports jersey with a gaudy gold chain around his neck whipped his head to me and told me he was going to punch me in the fucking mouth.

It took a lot of restraint to not heckle the film, to keep my boiling rage filled emotions to myself.  I may have been downing the cheap beer that I smuggled into the screening throughout the film's short running time to dull the sting of being slapped in the face, but I did behave myself. I wasn't sighing out loud or making any type of show of displeasure at the travesty I was sitting through.

I just shook my head with silent disappointment, completely befuddled as to why the whole of the film blogosphere has been raving about this.

And this shit heel date rapist looking bro had spent the first half hour of the film chatting away with his girlfriend but now felt the urge to threaten me with physical violence the moment I whispered one comment to myself.

Why? I assume it's because I had made a condescending remark towards a lame jump scare that somehow made his Jersey Shore partner shriek in fear.

I guess that he felt as though I insulted his girlfriend by making a quip about a moment that worked for her. And maybe I am an asshole for that. Good for her. I'm glad it works for her. It was an insultingly stupid and offensive moment in the film. Maybe she felt threatened by my comment as though I somehow ousted her as being stupid and stupid people like to defend their stupidity with violence. Just look at Fox News and most republicans.

Forget all of the SXSW hype and online buzz being heaped onto this soulless cash-in. There is very little to separate this Evil Dead reboot/sequel/ remake thing from Rob Zombie's Halloween. Sure, it's bloody but the violence has no impact. There is nothing more in the film than what you've already seen in the trailers. It's all music video flare with flash cuts, a superficially visceral but ultimately watered down and gutless re-imagining that only pretends to have the balls to really get under your skin the same way the original did.

The set up is familiar, a group of young college aged kids go to a cabin the woods, they find an evil book (Never referred to as the Necronomicon), they open the book, and then really bad things happen.

The big gimmick here is that one of the kids is a heroin addict trying to quit cold turkey.
It could have been a decent gimmick if handled correctly, hell, it could have been a brilliant gimmick if the filmmakers actually tried to capitalize on it. This could have been an insane mind fuck where the director could have played with the audience's expectations, never letting them know what's real or just a hallucinatory delusion brought on by withdrawal.

If you've ever know a junkie personally, you know there's not much separating them from being a deadite.

Unfortunately, the film doesn't even begin to explore that idea. Yes, lead actress, Jane Levy is raped by a tree pretty early on and none of her friends believe her at first, but rather than building on that scenario, it's only a few minutes until everyone is cutting each other up and fighting for survival, it's a totally wasted plot device.

The cast is made up of the type of hollow American Apparel models who seem more fitting as fodder for a Platinum Dunes slasher reboot. None of the players here have any discernible personality or character.

So no, despite all of your secret hopes that an Ash type character will emerge by the end of the film, none does. Of course there's a final survivor and you can probably already guess who since she's just signed on for two more films.

But it isn't strong character work that's the draw for a film like this. We're here for the most terrifying film will we ever experience after all right?

Well, there is nothing that comes even remotely close to the shock or discomfort of the pencil to the ankle sequence or Cheryl's complete dismemberment by axe in the first film.

Worst of all, the remake completely white washes and glosses over the infamous aforementioned tree rape sequence. Once again, what you see in the trailer is exactly what you see in the film. Sure, it's still a rape sequence and that in and of itself is icky stuff but it feels almost more distasteful to have it muted and played as a J-Horror jump scare. A sequence like that should be awful.  It should be painful to watch. You should come away wishing you hadn't seen it.  It shouldn't feel like Ringu. Here, the director is nudging you on the shoulder and saying, "Hey, remember that fucked up scene in the original?"

Any long time devotee of Sam Raimi already knows of his perplexing fixation on the J-horror craze of the early 2000's. As marvelous as a director as he may be, he's been a shit producer for most his career. Nearly every film he's overseen under his Ghost House Pictures label has either been a remake of a bad Japanese horror film, or a lazy knockoff of one.  Even Bruce Campbell has been dismissive of Raimi's productions and is known for making quips at his friend's expense at conventions.

"There's nothing scary about little girls with black hair that pop up for no reason, who give the camera a weird face before disappearing again. That's not horror."

Yeah, well, neither is the Evil Dead remake.

This trend for Raimi as a producer hasn't ended yet. For the first half of the film, the deadites appear as apparitions, as little girls in white dresses with long black hair covering their faces, and they have a tendency to sporadically pop up in mirror reflections and in the corner of the frame in the background while the characters on screen are unaware of their presence.

That seems to be the only basis for the whole re-imagining part of this film.

The promotional materials may have you believe that Evil Dead is an entirely new vision that frees itself of any holdings to the original source material. If you've seen the trailer, you already know that the film has a few obligatory references and homages to Raimi's beloved classics. You already know that Ash's 1973 Oldsmobile Cutlass makes a big appearance.

A little fan service is to be expected, but the entire film is built on references and homages and it uses them as a crutch to hold itself up over a shoddy script, nonexistent characters, and general lack of suspense.

Some elitist fan boys may appreciate how obscure the references can get.  A friend once described the genesis of nerdom to me as nothing more than a love for inside jokes. Nerds like knowing the inconsequential and obscure references and nods to popular culture that will go over the heads of most others.  I wonder if the love for Evil Dead within the blogosphere is based only the writers getting all of those references.

So let's get those out of the way here and now.


The lead character begins the film wearing a Michigan State T-Shirt which Ash's girlfriend wore in Evil Dead 2. More importantly, Michigan State is the college where Sam, Rob, and Bruce all first met each other and developed the short that would later become Evil Dead, Into the Woods. Mia, the heroin addict's brother gives her the same tacky mirror necklace Ash gives his GF in both of the first films. The piano score that opens the remake is a retuning of the melody played by the evil spirits on the piano in the cabin in Evil Dead 2. Of course, director  Fede Alvarez re-imagines the infamous work shed montage sequences of the original films and there's the whole demon spirit POV roaming through the woods although it never forces its way through any doors or windows . That would have actually been exciting.  There are numerous dutch angle close ups on clocks (hey, you know the drinking game for the original right?), and there's a sink POV shot while a character tries to rinse the evil out of her hand.  Both of the male characters are wearing blue button up shirts reminiscent of Ash making you wonder if there might be a surprise twist where one of them might come around to a hero's arc despite the filmmakers saying otherwise in the press. Numerous bouts of dialogue are revisions of popular one liners. You'll hear, "My god, what's wrong with her eyes?", "Swallow this", and "Does that sound fine?" Although, I'm surprised we never hear "join us" or "dead by dawn".

Oh, and the deadites all talk like Linda Blair's Reagan from The Exorcist with dialogue like, "I'll fuck your wife's cunt in hell." For whatever reason, I feel as though we can all thank Diablo Cody for that little treasure chest.

I'm sure if I looked carefully enough during the credits, Shemp is probably listed somewhere a few times as well.

Essentially, watching Evil Dead is like having sex with a hooker. It tells you what you want to hear. It tells you how big your five inch cock is, how strong you are.  But you know it's not true, you know it's only doing these things solely because you paid it for that. It's just going through the motions.  It's just lying there with its eyes closed waiting for you to finish up and roll over so it can leave and make stupid compulsive purchases at Wal-Mart with the money it just made off of you. Maybe you'll cum, but you'll feel guilty about it in the morning only to forget about it completely by the next day. There won't be any lasting impression taken away from Evil Dead.

I already forgot most of it and I just saw it last night. I couldn't even tell you how it ended exactly. There's a lot of blood, there's a chainsaw, and I don't know, it was all very blasé and that's what's so awful about it.

But I'm starting to feel like the comic shop owner in The Simpsons. I feel like the angry reclusive kid with Aspergers who throws embarrassing temper tantrums in the high school cafeteria, I feel like the kid everyone wants to avoid due to his socially awkward nerd rage.  

How can I be so angry over a film? Am I not just another internet troll who's spewing nasty criticism as a result of his own de-habilitating insecurities?

I probably need a time out, a cold shower possibly. I probably just need to relax. It's only a movie right? It's nothing to get so worked up over right?

Horror films are made with the sole purpose to make money. I shouldn't feel personally offended by this.  Hollywood has been churning out crappy horror remakes for years. Platinum Dunes has already taken dumps on Friday the 13th, Nightmare on Elm Street, and so so many more.

But Evil Dead wasn't Friday the 13th or Nightmare on Elm Street. Those have always been big annual franchises made to capitalize on the stupidity of teenagers with disposable income who were just looking for a way to get their girlfriends to give them a hand job after or during the movie.

For any true Evil Dead fan, it was about far more than just the campy kitsch factor. It's about a lot more than Bruce Campbell and his silly one liners.

Evil Dead is the embodiment of the American dream for every aspiring horror filmmaker who spent his childhood making gory short films.

I don't want to write a Harry Knowles' review. I don't want to write five pages waxing philosophical on my childhood and vomit out some nostalgic diatribe where I spend fifteen passages talking about which action figures I played with and what drive in theater my father took me to or how much my girlfriend enjoyed the opening credits.

But this is the internet and you're now reading this on your lunch break in your shitty little cubicle at the shitty little day job you hate. Maybe seeing Evil Dead after finishing up at your shitty day job on Friday is the only thing you've had to look forward to all week. Hey, I'm here to help you and you've already made it this far, so I can only assume you find the humor in my silly rants.

Too young to have seen the original Evil Dead films in the theaters, I am old enough to have seen Army of Darkness during its theatrical run in 1993. I was 10 years old. It was one of the first R- rated films I had seen in the theaters, although even at the time, it felt more like a PG-13. I knew nothing of the Evil Dead films, few people seeing AOD did then.  My mother had taken me because she liked the trailers. She's always had an affinity for fantasy films and thought it looked like a funny spoof on her favorite, Excalibur.

I instantly fell in love with the film, what ten year old boy wouldn't?  It seemed designed specifically to play towards the sensibilities of pre-pubescent males who just started getting their first erections and are waking up to sticky bed sheets.

By 13, I had subscriptions to Fangoria and more importantly, Video Watchdog which ran a 15 year anniversary article on the original Evil Dead. My little mind was blown away that Army of Darkness was not a standalone picture but actually the third film in a trilogy.  Until then, I thought the beginning prologue that set the film up was intended to be a wacky joke cramming two films worth of insane storyline into 5 minutes.

But those first 5 minutes actually were two different films.  I immediately ran out to the video store to rent Evil Dead but couldn't find it anywhere. I eventually found a VHS copy in the budget bin of a K-Mart.

I came home and watched the film with my best friend and my mother expecting another Army of Darkness.

None of us had any idea what we were in for.  


Our jaws were on the floor the entire film.  We'd never seen anything like it. By 13, I had already seen the Freddy and Jason movies, even Texas Chainsaw Massacre. But none of them were rough like this. Evil Dead was downright nasty. On the first viewing, it wasn't fun. It was shocking; psyche scaring, and nightmare inducing. Evil Dead felt...evil. It felt dangerous, like the film had a life of its own.  It really was the ultimate experience in grueling terror. I didn't understand camp yet. I didn't laugh at the bad acting or dopey dialogue. We were all too horrified by the nonstop onslaught of uncomfortably graphic carnage. The film doesn't play nice, it doesn't spare you, and it doesn't cut away.

My mother was horrified. She was outraged. But she couldn't turn it off either.

The next morning, she drove me back to the K-mart where I purchased the tape and made me return it. She didn't want it in her home.

But my friend and I couldn't stop talking about it. This was something completely new.  We had to find Evil Dead 2.

We called around to all of the video rental shops.  There was only one West Coast Video that carried it. We weren't surprised because this West Coast Video was also the only place near our area of town that had a porn section in the back. It was also the only place around that had a copy of Faces of Death on its shelf. It was still stacked up too high for us to reach yet, that would come later.  It seemed fitting that this was the only place where we'd find the sequel to that horrible, disgusting film we couldn't get off of our minds.

Two hours and three bus transfers later, we had Evil Dead 2.

Again, our minds were blown away but in a completely different manner. Evil Dead 2 was almost a palate cleanser. It was gory but fun. It had the horror elements from the first but the humor and comic book action of the third. It instantly became our favorite film. For months, every single day after school, I'd rush home to watch it again and again and again.

I lent it out to friends, showed to all of my film buff family members. It became an obsession. I had to know everything about the film.

I hunted down old Fangoria magazines and other independent horror zines that talked about the film so that I could learn about the production. I special ordered a hundred dollar VHS of Army of Darkness from Japan so I could see the original director's cut ending that had only been released overseas.

I found myself wearing a different Evil Dead T-shirt to school every day.  By 1999, I found myself in the counselor's office for mandated therapy for wearing those shirts in the age of post Columbine zero tolerance policies.

I then found myself at a summer film workshop at NYFA. Wearing the same Evil Dead shirts that got me into trouble at school now lead to me making instant lifelong friendships with fellow aspiring horror filmmakers enrolled in the program.  We would watch the Evil Dead films in our dorm rooms at night, studying them, trying to figure out how all of the practical effects were achieved.  We then tried to recreate those same effects in our own films for class.

There's just this energy and passion to the Evil Dead films that resonates with fellow filmmakers more so than any other cult genre film.  Again, it's not just about the gore. It was about the heart and ingenuity that went into the making of it.

And knowing that Sam Raimi, Bruce Campbell, and Rob Tapert were blue collar, middle class kids from the Detroit area was inspirational. These weren't Hollywood players. These weren't your typical Manhattenite NYU Tisch kids. These were just some dorky friends who wanted to break into the film business. They weren't even necessarily horror guys. They just wanted to make something wild enough to score them some attention. They ended up making the ultimate video nasty. They had captured lightning in a bottle and then Sam Raimi went on to direct the criminally underrated A Simple Plan and was soon after announced to take the reigns over from James Cameron on Spider Man. This guy went from a super 8 horror short to obscure cult icon to the mother fucking director of Spider Man.

This is who we all wanted to be.

Let's say it again. The real love for Evil Dead is about soooo much more than Bruce Campbell shouting about his boomstick and telling customers to shop S-Mart.

If you wore an Evil Dead shirt to a horror convention back in 1997 or 1998, you were going to make new friends. Going to the book signings for Bruce Campbell's autobiography back in 2001, it felt like being part of some community.

These fans, they weren't just nerds in love with some commercial property.  Every passionate Evil Dead fan I met seemed to be an aspiring filmmaker, makeup artist, writer, or cinematographer. Oh, did you know that Peter Demming, the DP of Evil Dead 2 later moved on to Lost Highway and Muholland Drive, or that Bill Pope, DP of AOD would later revolutionize the entire industry with the technology he developed while lensing The Matrix.

But then the nerds took over the internet and now everyone suddenly loves Evil Dead. That community that once existed has been cannibalized by Harajuku styled fad culture.

This is the type of baggage that any true Evil Dead fan is going to be carrying to the remake.

In all of the wrong ways possible, Raimi tried to recapture that underdog spirit of his debut feature by hiring Fede Alvarez, a filmmaker with no prior Hollywood experience. On the positive side, he's not a former hack commercial director like so many others getting their big break. But his sensibilities are no different from the gluttony of music video directors now helming major features.

I imagine that he has other short films to his name that we haven't seen, but we've all been told that he got the job based on his viral video, Panic Attack.  This was not a short film, it was a special effects demo reel, an impressive demo no doubt, but there's no demonstration for story or character or even any indication that he understood how a film should flow.

The Evil Dead remake is technically impressive, but it's completely inept as a horror film. Obviously, the original is as basic as it gets story wise. But it's still effective. The first Evil Dead is a slow burn that builds with mounting dread and tension before going off the walls. The remake hits the ground running and opens with a hastily edited bit of nastiness that may have read well on the page, but falls on its face in execution. I almost expected a Linkin Park song to play afterwards for the opening credits. Alvarez simply doesn't understand the concept of mise en scene. He doesn't understand how to stage a scare or create tension using a camera. He's an effects man, not a storyteller.  Worst of all, he has no imagination. Every beat is teleprompted before it happens, there are no twists, and there are no surprises. There is no heart or soul to this slick looking turd.

I always thought of Sam Raimi as a William Castlesque show man. I understand that he's not an art film director.  Hell, he's not even an artist. He just wants to be an entertainer. I don't fault him for that. I admire it in fact. He's like a circus ringleader. He's always worked hard to be as good as an entertainer as he can. I always admired the fact that Sam wears a suit and tie to set everyday when shooting to show his respect and appreciation for his cast and crew.

But it hurts me that he's willing to back this cynical attempt to cash in on fan boy fervor. I always felt as though Raimi legitimately loved his audiences. Michael Bay doesn't. Michael thinks you're an idiot, he's laughing all the way to the bank while snorting coke off of strippers' titties while you pay to watch his shit. He doesn't give a fuck if you actually liked Transformers, he already has your money.

Raimi wanted you to like his films......until now.

Part of me feels as though Sam's response to this would be "Fuck you, at least this remake doesn't have a dubstep soundtrack, I could have done that too. That's what the kids want these days. I fucking gave it to them, I gave the kids what they want."

The kids today suck but now I sound like a bitter old man and I'm not even that old yet.


Want to see Evil Dead 4? Go back and watch Drag Me to Hell, better yet, go out and buy John Dies at the End on blu ray so we might see This Film is Full of Spiders.
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boozie moviesevil deadremakesam raimiFede AlvarezRodo SayaguesSam Raimi (based on the motion picture "The Evil Dead" written by)Jane LevyShiloh FernandezLou Taylor PucciJessica LucasHorror

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NickApril 4, 2013 4:44 PM

Ouch. Your reaction is what I fear my reaction will be. And since it sucks, methinks of buying John Dies... on Blu instead.

hutchApril 4, 2013 6:09 PM

Fuck this and Fuck GI JOE. My money is going to NYC's 'Old School Kung Fu' fest and a US screening of 'Manborg', beeyotch!

Benjamin MahApril 4, 2013 6:32 PM

I think your final words summed it up perfectly. "John Dies..." is the true heir to the spirit of the Evil Dead films.

AlexApril 4, 2013 7:57 PM

I guess I'm in the minority of actually enjoying this film. I had a blast watching it but then again I didn't grow up watching the evil dead films. It was bloody, it was campy, it was exactly what I wanted.

hutchApril 4, 2013 8:26 PM

no offense, but case-in-point.

AlexApril 4, 2013 8:35 PM

That's hy I had to post. To be fair though, I have seen them all and was in the SXSW crowd at the world premiere so I was definitley blinded the joy of the crowd. I will agree that no awesome ash character emerges, I could care less about the lead in this film. Also whlie the hooker reference is true, some people just don't care. It's hard to win over die hard fans of any original film and I'll likely write a review similar t this when Spike Lee's oldboy remake comes out. very few remakes compare to the original and that's a fact.

hutchApril 4, 2013 10:48 PM

The thing with remakes in order for me to give my time and money you have supersede the O.G. version. Even if the remakes is just as good as the original, what's the fucking point? I got 24 bux, am I gonna see 2 different films or 2 of the same? And this bull about introducing a new generation is bull. Just re-release the originals if possible.

hutchApril 4, 2013 10:50 PM

grammar check. i need a nap. remakes make me cranky.

steveApril 5, 2013 12:23 AM

I wish that guy had punched you in the mouth.

Van Gogh FuckYourselfApril 5, 2013 12:42 AM

Your a fucking idiot. Phantom Menace my ads.

Van Gogh FuckYourselfApril 5, 2013 12:43 AM


thudvainApril 5, 2013 1:42 AM

"This is the type of baggage that any true Evil Dead fan is going to be carrying to the remake."
and that's actually kind of sad :(
I grew up with the films as well; in fact, they're what got me into horror in the first place. Evil Dead 2 is one of my favorite horror films of all time.
Guess I'm not a "true Evil Dead fan" though, and my soul isn't as attached as your's, considering I felt pretty much the opposite, despite also being an avid remake-naysayer.

"Raimi wanted you to like his films......until now."
Do you really need to project your own dislike onto Raimi as well? Just because you hated it doesn't mean he does.

NikkiApril 5, 2013 3:46 AM

Greg is just full of it. This, no doubt, was surely not my Phantom Menace. The original films by Raimi were my vice as an adolescent with aspirations of making a movie just as epic one day. I had a lot of faith in this movie because I had faith in Raimi and Campbell when they whole heartedly approved of Alvarez's version.
Sure, it lacked the humor of the original, but honestly, it wasn't a huge sacrifice really. What Fede Alvarez did was something that mankind has done over its existence and just recite an amazing story in a way that works for another generation.
It was beautifully shot, the plot was believable, and its one of the first horror movies I have seen in years that actually managed to scream like a bitch(prior to this, I thought I had become desensitized).
I won't let other critics deter my ultimate opinion on this movie. I feel like I got my money's worth.

Benoit laflecheApril 5, 2013 5:15 AM

Please stay away from John dies at the end on DVD...the book was brilliant, the movie was nothing more then a confused mish mash, horribly written waste of time.

Benoit laflecheApril 5, 2013 5:25 AM

Worst article I have ever read on twitch...Mr Brown, I hope there is such a thing as disciplinary actions at twitch!!!!! Hahahahahahahah Mr Christie deserves a time out for sucking...leave the rants to Greg giraldo (god bless his soul).

Michael_456123April 5, 2013 10:42 AM

"as though I somehow ousted her as being stupid"

Irony, thy name is Greg.

Todd BrownApril 5, 2013 10:52 AM

Oooh, the fans are getting defensive about someone not liking the movie ...

hutchApril 5, 2013 11:28 AM

they've got remake stockholm syndrome.

hutchApril 5, 2013 11:30 AM


Todd BrownApril 5, 2013 11:33 AM

I think the first half of John Dies actually nails the tone of the book pretty bang on. The problem is that John Dies is WAY too big a story to be contained in one film and so the second half of the movie is incredibly rushed ...

BaphomittApril 5, 2013 3:26 PM

This went from making a few valid points about the film's shortcomings to just being a fucking asshole wasting my time, more so than the film did.

thudvainApril 5, 2013 3:48 PM

I think it's more about how vehemently and personally he hates it. Half the article is his "I'M A TRUE EVIL DEAD FAN, MY OPINIONS ARE GOD" way of "reviewing" it.

VindaloofortheeyesApril 5, 2013 6:24 PM

Do you honestly defend, and endorse, the following statement in a movie review:

"But I'm starting to feel like the comic shop owner in The Simpsons. I feel like the angry reclusive kid with Aspergers who throws embarrassing temper tantrums in the high school cafeteria, I feel like the kid everyone wants to avoid due to his socially awkward nerd rage."

If so, how?

Todd BrownApril 5, 2013 6:34 PM

This piece is not what I would consider a review at all. It has elements of review within it but it is about significantly more than just the film. And, yes, if the film provoked such a strong reaction within him then I ABSOLUTELY defend and endorse that statement, particularly when delivered with that much style and skill. Which is exactly why I published it.

VindaloofortheeyesApril 5, 2013 6:48 PM

Let's step away from whether or not it's a review, as that's not really the point (although I would argue that - given the main focus of the piece is to provide a personal response to a film - it constitutes a review).

You think it's appropriate to allow a writer on your website to describe the (sometimes) public social difficulties Asperger's children have as "embarrassing"? And then allow that article to go on to suggest that "everyone" wants to avoid them?

"Style and skill" is not enough of an excuse if the content itself is ugly. As Greg makes clear in this 'review/whatever-it-is' with a number of sexual metaphors, it's what's on the inside that counts.

Todd BrownApril 5, 2013 6:58 PM

Shall we make a list of the authors who would need to be censored if I accepted your argument that ugly language should not be used to describe ugly things? Or ugly emotions? The ugliness is entirely the point.

VindaloofortheeyesApril 5, 2013 7:08 PM

We're not talking about them, we're talking about this article.

In what way is ugliness entirely the point? Please answer this, even if you disagree with the rest of what I've said. The situation with Aspergers children is not ugly. In most respects, they are no different to anyone else.

The sentence says, through its use of first person, that Aspergers' Childrens' social difficulties are embarrassing when this is exactly what they are not. Embarrassing for who? Also, who wants to avoid them? Not me, and it's wrong to assume that "everyone" wants to.

To take it further, if we contextualise, he is blaming the movie for making him feel this way. As though somehow being made to 'feel' like you've got Aspergers (whatever that means) is the worst sin a movie can commit.

Todd BrownApril 5, 2013 7:25 PM

In what sense is ugliness the point? In the sense that Christie clearly found this an ugly film that provoked an ugly response within him. The piece is not about data, it's about an experience and the struggle to articulate it in what is considered a socially normal way. It is about the emotional impact of what he found an emotionally hollow and exploitative film and is far less about the data points of what he liked or disliked about it than about the experience of it and provoking those same responses within those who read it. And clearly it has worked.

Which is not to say that the Aspergers reference was thrown in as cheap shock. I don't believe it was at all. It's all about the ability to function within social norms and within social expectations. It seems very clear to me within the context of the piece that he is not talking about anyone other than himself. This is not, 'Look at those freaks,' it's referencing a disorder that impacts social interaction and frequently marginalizes those with it as a shorthand to express his own failure to be 'normal'. While also questioning whether he even wants to be if stuff like Evil Dead is what 'normal' produces and appreciates.

Todd BrownApril 5, 2013 7:27 PM

That was a lot to type on a phone while carrying sushi. Now I'm going to eat.

VindaloofortheeyesApril 5, 2013 7:42 PM

I'm afraid I disagree. When Christie says "I feel like..." He is making a statement about HOW Aspergers Children feel. And when he says "everyone" tries to stay away from them, how is that only about himself?

Who defines what's socially normal and what isn't? Who has that right? If Christie wanted to say the film stopped him from being to function normally then that's fine, but it's not ok to use Aspergers as a touchstone for normality purely because he believes they are not "normal".

And, again, the implication is that the film has done something wrong (I think we'll agree the review is a negative one) by making him "feel" like someone with Aspgers.

At best, its meaning is ambiguous and insensitive. The answer is to either keep issues like this out of movie reviews/whatever-this-is or, perhaps, have a better and more precise reason for bringing them up.

hutchApril 5, 2013 7:44 PM

He has to do it that way.
1. Because it's true
2. Because he's one person that has to wade against this tidal wave of...I don't even know what the term is for this new generation that endorses nothing but remakes. Art is a zero-sum game when it meets commerce. And I'm pretty tired of not getting to see new stuff from artists who'd rather do their own stuff instead of interminably living through someone else's IP because remake lovers won't stop throwing cash at needless tripe. It wears on you after a bit and goes beyond the "you do you, and I'll do me" mantra. You doing you is getting in the way of me being me. Hence angry reviews such as this.

Todd BrownApril 5, 2013 7:51 PM

Normalcy isn't defined by a who, it's defined by statistics. The only question is whether it's good to be normal. The conclusion here is no.

VindaloofortheeyesApril 5, 2013 8:04 PM

"Normalcy isn't defined by a who, it's defined by statistics".

No, it isn't. The fact that you have said something like that and not justified it means this is over. For me, anyway.

Thanks for replying, though.

Todd BrownApril 5, 2013 9:24 PM

It absolutely is. Normalcy has it's origins as a mathematical concept. In behavioral sciences normalcy is defined by adherence or proximity to an average. This is the actual definition. Look it up. Whatever definition you're using is just something you've made up.

Todd BrownApril 5, 2013 9:35 PM

Or, should you not bother, here's the definition: conforming to the standard or the common type. It's a fairly bland and generic definition, but you get the point. Whatever is dominant, or the most common, is - by definition - normal. It comes down to sheer statistics.

Your mom goes to film schoolApril 6, 2013 1:38 AM

I don't feel the need to defend myself with all of the other troll comments.There's no way for me to be more descriptive/specific with my problems with the film and why I personally felt betrayed by it. I made a clear argument, the ass hats attacking me here haven't. Which only proves my point, this is a movie for assholes who listen to bad heavy metal, drive pick trucks, and tailgate others on the highway getting hard ons being overly aggressive. But per your issue, I've been diagnosed with Aspergers, which supposedly isn't even a thing as of a year ago. So... I'm speaking from experience and having a laugh at my own expense, so you can get your panties out of a twist..

Paul AloisioApril 6, 2013 3:02 AM

I have to say...I think you are an absolute MORON. Yes, that is right, a MORON. This film was EXCELLENT. Please, re-watch the first Evil Dead. In its time it was supposed to be a serious horror film filled with shock value and gore beyond belief (for the time.) This movie has done exactly what the first was supposed to accomplish. Now, mind you, I have seen all three of the originals more times than I can count and when I left the theater following the end of the remake, all I could say was "Holy Shit." I think you are wrong on all points and should stop whining like a little baby.
It is not the original
But it is still FUCKING AWESOME.
Boo Hoo, you cynical fuck!

Anyone reading this article, please ignore the author of the original review and SEE THIS MOVIE!

You are complaining that this movie is too filled with blood and gore but that was THE ESSENCE OF THE ORIGINAL FILM.

Keep crying you virgin nerd, THE EVIL DEAD REMAKE WAS INCREDIBLE.

Benoit laflecheApril 6, 2013 3:34 AM

I totally agree with you Todd, i did quite enjoy the first half and I think there was some atrocious decision on the way the script should go, but who knows maybe somebody else will take a swing at it in a decade or so

VindaloofortheeyesApril 6, 2013 5:10 AM

If you were only doing that then there wouldn't be a problem. But you're not. With what you said, you are making huge generalisations not about only people with Aspergers, but also those that are around them by saying that "everyone" wants to stay away. If it was just your own experience then you should say that in the review? Then there wouldn't be an issue.

VindaloofortheeyesApril 6, 2013 5:13 AM

We are talking about "normal" behaviour here, and behaviour has such a messy definition that using statistics to define it would be impossible, given that it depends on such a vast range of factors and depends upon the specific circumstances.

Todd BrownApril 6, 2013 8:23 AM

Not even remotely true.

Todd BrownApril 6, 2013 8:24 AM

So you're saying the guy with Aspergers isn't allowed to say he feels like a kid with Aspergers? Way to go, thought police.

VindaloofortheeyesApril 6, 2013 10:07 AM

Not at all, I'm saying he should make it clear he is talking about his own experiences. I am, however, suggesting that it doesn't give him the right to roam free and describe others with the disease, and those around them, any which way he wants.

Todd BrownApril 6, 2013 10:15 AM

Shall we count the number of time he says 'I' versus 'they'. This could not POSSIBLY be written any more clearly and explicitly from a first person perspective.

From the particular paragraph you're talking about alone, "I'm starting to feel", "I feel like", "I feel like".

From the next paragraph: "How can I be so angry over a film? Am I not just another internet troll".

From the next one: "I probably need a time out", "I probably just need to relax."

Gosh, I wonder who he's talking about, who's experiences he's basing this in. Seems pretty ambiguous to me. Yep.

I get it, the piece upset you. But you're in an untenable, indefensible position with the argument you're trying to make.

VindaloofortheeyesApril 6, 2013 11:02 AM

Given that, in the previous sentence, he also says he feels like the comic book guy from The Simpsons, I think it's quite reasonable for a reader to assume that every time the write says "I feel", he's not necessarily basing it on real life experiences.

If it was from a personal experience, then why not just say that? Writing in first person doesn't always mean that you are writing about your own experiences? Especially in a piece like this that slips between tenses so quickly.

All I can say is that for me it's ambiguous. If that's annoying you (your sarcasm and condescension suggests that it is), then I'm sorry.

ElijahApril 6, 2013 1:32 PM

You know, an early version of the script for JDATE leaked a while back, and it was pretty much just the Las Vegas stuff in what is "Book 1" of the novel.

That version would have been incredible, and the first half is pretty true to that and is absolutely worth watching. But it feels a lot like Coscarelli and Co. chose to film all of the more surreal, effects-heavy stuff from the book. In short, they chose to film all the parts that were largely considered "unfilmable."

But having said that: Yes, everyone rush out and buy the Blu-Ray because there is some genuinely great stuff in there, and because if it makes enough money, we're more likely to see more. "This Film is Full of Spiders," for example.

That novel has a much more film-ready narrative arc, I feel.

Will SchusterApril 6, 2013 3:09 PM

I think he has AssBurgers and that's why he finds it so distasteful.

Will SchusterApril 6, 2013 3:15 PM

I did enjoy the remake, but i think you are way off base in saying that was the essence of the original film. It wasn't about the gore. It was about creating a mood and then seeing how far that you could be manipulated. The gore was just one of the tools used to create the illusion of discomfort and horror.

PeterKapowApril 6, 2013 8:55 PM

Another amusing and accurate appraisal on the state of genre cinema.

To the angry mob, keep wearing those blood-tinted glasses and enjoy the fact that you're so easy to please.

peteshelleyApril 7, 2013 4:34 PM

Personally, I find it troubling that the douche that composed this rant was appalled to the point of indignantion by the implied objectification of the "camel toe" shot, yet found it acceptable, in his "hooker analogy", to refer to a woman as an "it" a half dozen times.

And yes, his verbal ruminations during said scene may have understandably signalled the potential for a "running commentary" by him to an adjacent viewer, who also understandably, might then deem threatening the douche muttering under his breath and tarnishing his theatre experience as an appropriate pre-emptive tactic.

HaabakkukApril 7, 2013 5:20 PM

I don't know what everyones issues are with the film. I've seen the originals and i loved them. I love the homages they had to the old one and I loved the new material in it. I love the vague characters. In fact I believe that if they got characters that you actually grew attached to, this movie would have been a step too far. I do wish that I had never seen the commercials before I watched the movie, they did give a lot of it away. I lost all respect for the author of this post not because of his opinion, everyone is entitled to that, but from the venom in the words. There is no reason why anyone should be this upset over a movie. Ten bucks and two hours of your time and the review made it seem like the end of the world. Of course the commercials and stuff are going to be saying that its the scariest movie and its so much scarier then the original. Its advertising. Honestly by this point people should become accustomed to the fact that remakes are almost never going to be as good as the originals with few exceptions as True Grit and The Longest Yard that matched in its formers glory. I'll gladly stand by this movie. It kept me interested. The twist caught me. The one liner at the end may be my new favorite even thought it felt a little forced. It was a diamond in the ruff with the wave of mediocrity that has been filling the theaters for the last couple of months. Is it the best scary movie, no. But it may be the first thing i actually consider a horror movie in the last ten years.

Kurt HalfyardApril 7, 2013 9:25 PM

Oh, here are a few horror films to actually consider -- I offer you GRACE, IRREVERSIBLE, VINYAN, ANTICHRIST, PONTYPOOL, FUNNY GAMES, THE BABY'S ROOM, THE INNKEEPERS, and BUG.

HaabakkukApril 7, 2013 9:43 PM

I saw The Innkeepers and Funny Games out of those. The InnKeepers was a pretty good one but in the end it was more of a supernatural thriller to me. I guessed the end spot on halfway through it but I blame that on my writers instincts. The atmosphere was rather creepy but in the end the cinematography and characters downed it from being good to okay. After "Naked City" by bonehead played at the beginning of funny games i wasnt able to take the movie seriously. I may have watched a redone version of the movie or something, but it never caught me. I laughed at the whole rewind scene and cheered when the boy was shot down simply because of how dumb his decisions were. Ill have to put the others on my to watch list for sure though. When I said the movies in the last ten years I didnt specify that I meant movies that made it to big screen like Mama or the massive nuke of the Apparition. Citadel and a couple of other indies did pretty well.

tedApril 7, 2013 10:38 PM

Evil dead "remake", not a shot for shot. Im sure what you wanted was a updated version in hd and with the same cheesiness (which i liked). Its definitely different from the original, even from the beginning, only things alike are the five teens, the dr, the daughter the book, the bridge and the cabin, similar in that they are present somehow.

VindaloofortheeyesApril 8, 2013 6:38 AM

"Personally, I find it troubling that the douche that composed this rant was appalled to the point of indignation by the implied objectification of the "camel toe" shot, yet found it acceptable, in his "hooker analogy", to refer to a woman as an "it" a half dozen times."

Agreed. There's also something uncomfortable about the way he seems to feminise - and then, after doing that, insult - everything he doesn't like.

Tha mickApril 10, 2013 6:14 PM

Terrible review. Movie was great. Like saying the newest batman sucks bring back Adam west. Gratuitous crotch shot? There was nudity in the original friend, none in the new version. I think this NEW movie cleverly gave a nod to the old but was his own modern take. I think maybe you should rewatch the original and be reminded how terrible it was(I say that with much love). Great movie, loved it.

AlApril 10, 2013 9:06 PM

I agree that they dropped the ball a little, but Raimi's defending of Alvarez's vision isn't because he doesn't care about the audience, but because he understands too well why you loved the original so much, it was made by a young up and comer.

Raimi's productions may not match how he directs, but thats precisely because he gets out of their way. Its important to him that they get to make their film, because thats how he would want it in their shoes.

I think it shows he truly cares about directors trying to bring their ideas to the screen. So even though I left the theater a little disappointed with Evil Dead, I'm happy to know its because Raimi is looking out for his peers.

Will SchusterMay 7, 2013 10:24 PM

Just like we got Bubba Nosferatu?

Pink BismuthMay 9, 2013 5:32 AM

You see what I took away from his comment was that he felt angry, outraged even, at the remake and wanted to express this rage, has expressed this rage, and feels embarrassed by his violent response because he knows it's just a movie and that most people wont understand where he's coming from. He feels like no one will understand why he's upset to such a degree. That was the point of his comparisons. I mean he writes:

"But I'm starting to feel like the comic shop owner in The Simpsons. I feel like the angry reclusive kid with Aspergers who throws embarrassing temper tantrums in the high school cafeteria, I feel like the kid everyone wants to avoid due to his socially awkward nerd rage."

These are clearly just three different examples of a person potentially feeling angry but knowing most people wont understand why they're so overzealous and thus feeling embarrassed by it. A common characteristic of someone with Aspergers is social awkwardness. Many people with AS can have intense interest in particular subjects, and discuss it with one-sided verbosity. They can engage in a one-sided, long-winded speech about a favorite topic much like any impassioned indignant nerd (which was the subject of his other two comparisons) which quite accurately expressed his angry response to the movie. And people with AS can observe what are considered social norms (they often try to replicate said norms, usually with limited success) and so it's perfectly possible, indeed plausible that a person with AS that had a temper tantrum in public would feel embarrassed over it, recognizing that they didn't conform to social norm.

And thus it's pretty much the same as the other two comparisons. What exactly is wrong with a person with AS feeling embarrassed over a temper tantrum they had in public, who wouldn't be embarrassed about having a temper tantrum? I don't think he was saying people with AS are abnormal, just that if they had a temper tantrum they would feel embarrassed- just as anyone would. I'll assume that he specified it as a person with AS to further drive home the feeling of alienation, of feeling single mindedly angry and knowing others don't share that anger or understand it. I could be wrong but that's how I interpreted that.

I wasn't going to even post this comment, this is a silly, irrelevant argument (not to mention a month old) but your comments really bugged me so I thought, "Well lets just share our opinion, sure it's the internet so arguments are pointless, and sure I'm probably being a bit of a troll by contributing to/rehashing an irrelevant argument but hey it's six in the morning." And okay I admit I'm still full of awkward nerd rage after seeing that god awful remake....

Pink BismuthMay 9, 2013 6:11 AM

Oh yeah and I totally forgot to add that, yeah if you're the comic book guy from the Simpsons, or angry, socially awkward nerd, or a kid who has temper tantrums in public- regardless of whether you have AS or not- people are typically going to avoid you.... just saying. It's not right but hey, people don't typically enjoy being around people who are socially awkward and angry about things they don't understand. I'm assuming that was also a large part of his comparisons and the point he was trying to get across....

In an actually related comment, I agree that this remake was just awful. Full of jump scares and cliches. The characters was flat and unpersonable, they didn't give you much to connect with. The dialogue felt forced sometimes, especially the cursing, I'm fine with cursing but the cursing in this sounded like it was written and read by a 12 year old. Half the movie I had to remind myself I was watching Evil Dead and not the Ring. The main Deadite just looked like the girl from the Ring. I'm like "damn they put the drugs in the well and now that well girl's all cracked up." And for some reason they included sirens in the soundtrack at random intervals, I guess for suspense, so then I was just waiting for Pyramid Head to show up... And the deadites had twi-eyes, because you know, there's nothing scarier then the eyes of those sparkly meyer-pires.... One of the deadites also made a sound that reminded me of both a monkey and a velociraptor.

The pacing was slow and yet not even a little tension or character building. The characters were forgettable and really just felt like fodder, they were nothing but body count and I feel like the whole focus of the movie was aimed at trying to surprise and shock the audience. Surprise and shock are all nice and well but would it have killed them to focus on atmosphere and making sure we actually cared if the characters lived? I liked the gore, some of the effects were a refreshing departure from CGI, though I don't find myself as impressed with the effects as others seem (I just don't think it's that innovative or anything, so they didn't use CGI on everything, should I pat them on the back for doing something horror movies have done for years? For not taking the lazy way out? It's like giving someone a metal for saying please and thank you, it should just be a given to utilize physical effects.) Anyways, gore isn't atmosphere, it's not tension, and it can't be the substance of the movie.Those are just the bare bones of my complaints for this movie, but I guess I might as well stop ranting. People will still like this
remake- my opinions won't make a difference- it's everything people want in main stream horror now, jump
scares and shock gore.

EVILSHREDMay 30, 2013 5:12 PM

No levitation. No white eyes . No full body dismemberment . No deep scary voices. No awesome demon sarcasm.They even left out the creepy little "we're gonna get you" song that was in the trailer ! Good enough movie , just not very scary . The original was both violent , shocking and scary. Awesome camera work is not scary. Blood rain is also not scary. Also , when too much is explained (like in most modern horror movies) all mystery is gone.The unexplained and the abstract are scary .I saw the original in 1984 when I was 14. Been a fan ever since.
I'm not quite as butt hurt as this guy though. And certainly wouldn't be making comments during the film. Something tells me he was really annoying to sit in front of ! LOL

TweckJuly 24, 2013 2:14 PM

Hey, the POV demon view DOES force its way through a door. Did you really watch this movie, or did you just sit there pretending to watch it with a huge stick up your ass, snobbily refusing to like anything about it? This "review" contains amazing inaccuracies, rendering it even more of an insult than you claim the movie is.

TweckJuly 24, 2013 2:15 PM

And hey moron, this is not Sam Raimi's movie. Get over yourself. Jesus.

RJohn XerxesDecember 26, 2013 10:24 PM

this review is a thing of absolute genius.

FrankDecember 29, 2013 2:00 PM

You are the type of person that ruins movies for other people. If you don't like it, get over it and say why you don't like it. You couldn't even remember the film very well and were apparently drinking? Good job, you are a bad critic.