31 Days Of Horror: The Evil Dead

10 Years of Fear“We’re gonna to get you! We’re gonna to get you! Not another peep — Time to go to sleep!”

Ahhh, The Evil Dead. Sam Raimi and Bruce Campbell’s first film. Shot on a puny $350,000 budget, the film became a huge success and spawned two sequels, a 2013 remake and a recently ended TV series.

Ash Williams (Bruce Campbell), his girlfriend, Linda (Betsy Baker), Ash’s sister, Cheryl (Ellen Sandweiss), their friend Scott (Hal Delrich), and his girlfriend Shelly (Sarah York) are heading out for the weekend. Their destination: a creepy-looking cabin way out in the wilderness. The only way to it is to cross a rickety bridge that’s off the main road. Hopefully nothing horrible will happen at this remote shack that’s so far away from any help!

At the cabin, the group finds a weird, ancient-looking book, along with a tape recorder and a creepy-looking dagger. Playing the tape reveals that an archaeologist uncovered the Necronomicon Ex-Mortis — the Book of the Dead. Turns out the book is bound in human flesh and written in blood, and contains passages that resurrect demons. The tape reads one of the passages and the evil is unleashed in the woods again. Cheryl freaks out and flees into the woods, but the trees come alive and rape her. She returns to the cabin and quickly becomes possessed by a demon. They lock her in the cellar but then Shelly becomes possessed, too. Soon, Ash is the last person standing.

I love The Evil Dead. The movie has amazing camera work and editing, and is creepy, horrifying and scary as hell. Sam Raimi would go on to direct Evil Dead 2 and the third film, Army of Darkness, before finding success in Hollywood making Spider-Man movies.

The second film is probably the better movie — it’s a semi-remake with more humour, and a bigger budget  — but there’s something super unsettling about the first movie. The third film turned the series into an action horror comedy: it’s fun but doesn’t compare to the first two.

In 2015, Sam Raimi and Bruce Campbell returned to the franchise to make Ash Vs Evil Dead – a TV series on Starz. It sadly only lasted three seasons but it was a pretty good show overall. Still, none of it would have happened without the first movie.

Here’s my original post on The Evil Dead on the original Dog Blog, waaay back in 2009.

Author: Shane Hnetka

Shane Hnetka spends most of his life watching movies and reading comic books, using his vast knowledge of genre culture for evil instead of good.