HALLOWEEN OF HORROR REVIEW: MY NAME IS BRUCE

CAST

Bruce Campbell (Ash vs Evil Dead)
Grace Thorsen (Calvin Marshall)
Ted Raimi (Xena: Warrior Princess)
Ben McCain (Black Scorpion)
Ellen Sandweiss (The Evil Dead)
Dan Hicks (Maniac Cop)

In the mining town of Gold Lick, Oregon, Jeff (Taylor Sharpe), a young fan of B movie actor Bruce Campbell, and his friend Clayton (Logan Martin) go out to a cemetery to meet two girls, Big Debbie (Ariel Badenhop) and Little Debbie (Ali Akay). Jeff removes a medallion off the mausoleum, unleashing the Chinese god of the dead, Guan-Di (James Peck), who kills Clayton and the Debbies while Jeff flees.Meanwhile, Bruce Campbell is finishing filming for the fictional Cave Alien II, and is promised a birthday surprise from his agent, Mills Toddner (Ted Raimi). Bruce meets Jeff, who kidnaps Campbell and takes him to Gold Lick in hopes that his hero can save the town from Guan-Di. Upon arrival, Bruce assumes it’s his birthday surprise from Mills, and thinks it’s all a movie, despite a lack of cameras and a script, and agrees to “help”. He learns about Guan-Di in the town’s hall and during a dinner party, Bruce gets on the good side of Jeff’s mother, Kelly (Grace Thorsen), who had initially been irritated by Bruce’s behavior.
After gearing up at Gold Lick’s gun shop, Bruce and many citizens of Gold Lick go out into the woods to take on Guan-Di, which Bruce still thinks is part of a movie. Bruce then finds out that it’s all real and flees Gold Lick, angering the townspeople, disappointing Kelly and upsetting Jeff. As part of a running gag, an Italian painter (also played by Ted Raimi) constantly repaints the population sign every time someone dies, including himself. Bruce returns to his caravan to find that everyone, including his own dog, hates him a lot. He has a restraining order placed upon him by his ex-wife, Cheryl (Ellen Sandweiss), and finds that his “surprise birthday present” from Mills was just a singing prostitute named Kasey (Janelle Farber). Bruce is then called by Jeff, who informs him that he’s going to take on Guan-Di alone in spite of Bruce’s retreat.
my-name-is-bruce
Kasey takes Bruce back to Gold Lick, where he is treated with contempt and tries to reconcile with Kelly. To rescue Jeff, they both drive to the old cemetery, in which they set up dynamite at the mausoleum and try to lure Guan-Di inside with one of Jeff’s cardboard cut-outs of Bruce, which Guan-Di doesn’t fall for. After kissing Kelly, Bruce decides to sacrifice himself (with bean curd playing a significant role in luring Guan-Di) and the dynamite is blown up. He emerges from the debris alive, and hangs the medallion back onto the mausoleum wall to ease the spirit. Guan-Di then also comes back to life, and at the very last minute, it turns out the whole scenario was a movie. Bruce argues with Ted Raimi about the cliched ending and turns it into a happy ending, which involves Bruce and Kelly married, living in a nice house with their son, Jeff, who is accepted into Harvard University. After the movie ends, Bruce asks “What could be a better ending than that?”, after which Guan-Di appears and attacks Bruce.
How can you not like Bruce Campbell! A man with hundreds of b-movies under his belt…..and proud of it!And that is basically what this is, a celebration of persona. Pure tacky trash is what this film is! And  it’s good! It’s cheesy! It’s cringe worthy! It’s…..Bruce Campbell. He really shines in this movie, gladly mocking his life in cinema.

HALLOWEEN OF HORROR REVIEW: MAN WITH THE SCREAMING BRAIN

CAST

Bruce Campbell (Ash vs Evil Dead)
Tamara Gorski (Hercules: TLJ)
Ted Raimi (Xena)
Antoinette Byron (Rebel)
Stacy Keach (The Bourne Legacy)
Raicho Vasilev (Spartacus)

Image result for man with the screaming brainBruce Campbell plays William Cole, the wealthy CEO of a U.S. drug company who travels to Bulgaria with his wife, Jackie (Antoinette Byron) in the hopes of diversifying his company’s financial interests. Cole is a stereotypical ugly American who constantly complains about the lack of Americanization of the former communist country. They’re driven to a hotel by a taxi driver, and former KGB agent, named Yegor Stragov (Vladimir Kolev), in which Yegor gives William a ring to give to Jackie. While William is at the construction of a subway, Jackie secretly cheats on William with Yegor.Man-with-the-Screaming-Brain-14William gets back to the hotel and bumps into the hotel maid and gypsy, Tatoya (Tamara Gorski), who kills men that date and dump her. Jackie then comes in, catches William kissing Tatoya and dumps him. William chases Tatoya, who had taken William’s money and ring (which is revealed to be Tatoya’s that she gave to Yegor when they dated), and Tatoya knocks him in the head with a pipe outside the hotel. Yegor witnesses this and so Tatoya kills Yegor with his own gun.A vengeful Jackie has Cole’s life support plug pulled in hospital, and then goes to Gypsy Town where Tatoya lives and attempts to kill her, only to have Tatoya kill her by throwing her down a flight of stairs. Meanwhile, William wakes up in the warehouse of a Russian scientist named Dr. Ivan Ivanovich Ivanov (Stacy Keach), and his idiotic assistant Pavel (Ted Raimi), who had taken damaged parts of William’s brain and replaced it with healthy tissue from Yegor’s. When William runs out of the warehouse, he discovers he can hear Yegor’s voice in his head, and they both plan to “get the woman that killed us both”. Jackie, who had also been picked up by Dr. Ivanov and Pavel, has her brain put inside a robot, and so she escapes and also plans to exact revenge on Tatoya.William/Yegor and Robo-Jackie chase Tatoya around town. William gets involved in a car crash with his foot underneath a car and Tatoya makes another attempt to kill William by setting the leaking car gasoline alight. Jackie saves him and is presumed dead in the explosion. After avoiding some bar punks that believe William “raped Tatoya on her wedding day”, William/Yegor begin suffering brain damage due to their cells not able to coexist in the same head. Jackie, who had survived the explosion, appears and attempts to kill Tatoya by throwing her off a bridge, until Jackie stabs her brain, causing her to malfunction, and has Jackie thrown off the bridge. William chases Tatoya through the subway construction and the sewer and finally kills Tatoya by dropping her in sewer river, after obtaining the ring back. William and Jackie then confess their love for each other before Jackie’s batteries finally die, as does William due to the brain cells of him and Yegor. Pavel brings William, Jackie and Tatoya’s body back to Dr. Ivanov to fix them, as he had earlier found a way to make William and Yegor’s brain cells coexist in the same head. The movie ends with William back in the U.S. six months later, still sharing his body with Yegor’s brain. He goes to a brain trauma benefit with Jackie, whose brain had been transferred into Tatoya’s body.Man-with-the-Screaming-Brain-11This is exactly what you expect from the Mighty King Of Chins.A Mad story about a Mad Scientist,played with Brilliant humour by Stacy Keach who brings Bruce back to life after He is attacked by a Crazy Woman. Funny,imaginative and Really Silly….in a good way that is.

HALLOWEEN OF HORROR REVIEW: BUBBA HO-TEP

CAST

Bruce Campbell (Ash vs Evil Dead)
Ossie Davis (Dr. Dolittle)
Ella Joyce (Roc)
Heidi Marnhout (Imagine That)
Bob Ivy (Near Dark)
Daniel Roebuck (Final Destination)

An elderly man at The Shady Rest Retirement Home in East Texas is known to the staff as Sebastian Haff, but claims to be Elvis. He explains that during the 1970s, Elvis Presley (Bruce Campbell) grew tired of the demands of his fame and switched places with an Elvis impersonator named Sebastian Haff (also Campbell). He claims it was Haff who eventually died in 1977, while he, the real Elvis, lived in quiet, happy anonymity and made a living pretending to be himself. After a propane explosion destroyed documentation which was the only proof that he was actually Elvis, he was unable to return to his old lifestyle.
A hip injury during a performance causes him to get an infection and slip into a coma. Twenty years later and living at the retirement home as the film opens, he is contemplating his age, frailty, loss of dignity, impotence, and “A growth on [his] pecker”. Elvis’s only friend is a black man named Jack (Ossie Davis) who insists he is President John F. Kennedy, claiming to have been dyed black after an assassination attempt, and abandoned by Lyndon Johnson in a nursing home. Initially skeptical of Jack’s story, Elvis does spot a mysterious scar on the back of Jack’s head. It could be from the head wound seen in the Zapruder film, but then it might not be.
Eventually, Elvis and Jack face off against a re-animated ancient Egyptian mummy that was stolen during a U.S. museum tour, and then lost during a severe storm in East Texas when the thieves’ bus veered into a river near the nursing home. The mummy strangely takes on the garb of a cowboy and feeds on the souls of the residents of the home. It is dubbed ‘Bubba Ho-Tep’ by Elvis, who is given a telepathic flashback of the mummy’s life and death when he looks into its eyes. The slow, plodding mummy is a real and credible threat, as instead of going against young adults who could potentially outrun or overpower it, the mummy gives chase to the elderly. Jack and Elvis lack mobility and need a motorized wheelchair and a walker to get around the grounds.
Elvis and Jack create an elaborate plan to destroy the mummy. Destruction of the mummy would release the trapped souls of their dead friends, and they would be able to go to their final resting place. Elvis and Jack battle the mummy in the middle of the night, with Jack in an electric wheelchair and Elvis wielding a makeshift flamethrower. Jack is knocked out of his wheelchair by the mummy and is about to have his soul sucked. Elvis hops in the wheelchair, zooms into the mummy to save Jack, and damages the flamethrower, getting a large gash in his abdomen in the process. Jack dies from a heart attack. Elvis becomes committed to getting rid of the mummy, and he throws the gasoline on him and then throws matches at him, killing the mummy.
Elvis lies on a hill near the river bank, dying from the blood loss from the gash and broken ribs. He talks in his mind about how he doesn’t fear death, knowing that he still had his soul and that he saved all of the fellow people at the Shady Rest Retirement Home. As he reflects upon this, the stars align into a message for Elvis saying “all is well”. With a dying “Thank you, thank you very much,” Elvis passes away.
How can you not love a movie called Bubba Ho-Tep featuring the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll taking on a cowboy mummy – especially when you have Bruce Campbell playing the role of Elvis? Add in a remarkable performance by Ossie Davis, one of the best soundtracks in recent years, and a huge number of extras on the DVD, and you’ve got a movie of must-see status.

HALLOWEEN OF HORROR REVIEW: ASH VS EVIL DEAD – SEASON 3

MAIN CAST

Bruce Campbell (Bubba Ho-Tep)
Ray Santiago (In Time)
Dana DeLorenzo (The Mad Ones)
Arielle Carver-O’Neill (Predestination)
Lindsay Farris (Gods of Egypt)
Lucy Lawless (Xena: WP)

Bruce Campbell, Katrina Hobbs, Ray Santiago, and Arielle Carver-O'Neill in Ash vs Evil Dead (2015)

RECURRING / NOTABLE GUEST CAST

Katrina Hobbs (Home and Away)
Ellie Gall (Stargate: Origins)
Jeffrey Thomas (Spartacus: Gods of The Arena)
Albertine Jonas (Dirty Laundry)
Samantha Young (Charlie’s Country)
Lee Majors (The Six Million Dollar Man)
Chelsie Preston Crayford (The Code)
Will Wallace (Step Dave)
Jodie Hillock (Tracker)
Emilia Burns (The Shannara Chronicles)
Colin Moy (Spartacus)
Mikaela Rüegg (Power Rangers Super Ninja Steel)
Jessica Green (The Outpost)
James Gaylyn (Power Rangers RPM)

Dana DeLorenzo and Lindsay Farris in Ash vs Evil Dead (2015)W00hen Sam Raimi and Bruce Campbell first worked together on The Evil Dead, no one could have anticipated that this 1981 splatter-fest would snowball into not only a cult classic but one of the pillars of modern horror cinema. For decades after the trilogy’s final installment in 1992’s Army of Darkness, fans clamored for more of Campbell’s buffoonish badass Ashley J. Williams. After Raimi and Campbell helped shepherd director Fede Alvarez’s 2013 reboot/remake, hopes for more of their original vision seemed bleak. Then Ash vs. Evil Dead happened.Katrina Hobbs and Arielle Carver-O'Neill in Ash vs Evil Dead (2015)Since 2015, Campbell has reprised his titular role for the Starz series, giving an older but decidedly not wiser Ash a whole mess of gory shenanigans to get into. Now returning for season 3, the series complicates matters further, introducing a teenage daughter (Arielle Carver-O’Neill) Ash has never met and forcing him to become the reluctant hero once again. Meanwhile, Ash’s longtime compatriots Pablo (Ray Santiago) and Kelly (Dana DeLorenzo) find themselves drawn back into the fight against evil, as the trio must protect Ash’s newfound progeny against the demonic Ruby’s (Lucy Lawless) latest plot. If that all sounds just wacky enough for you, you might be destined for a date with Ash vs. Evil Dead.Lee Majors, Bruce Campbell, and Arielle Carver-O'Neill in Ash vs Evil Dead (2015)Of course, the plot of the show isn’t the point. Not really. Rather, the joy in watching it unfold lies in the cringe-inducing carnage, over-the-top black comedy and surprise callbacks to both previous elements on the series as well as the films that inspired it. Even original Evil Dead co-star Ellen Sandweiss popped up in season 2 for a bit.Arielle Carver-O'Neill in Ash vs Evil Dead (2015)Naturally, fans have been reveling in having an iconic hero like Ash back in action, and the “Ghost Beaters’” — as Ash, Pablo and Kelly call their scrappy band — repeated visits to the cabin that started it all have only fanned the fandom flame since Ash vs. Evil Dead‘s premiere. Thanks to the show’s repeated efforts to develop the Evil Dead mythos and provide a hell of a fun time doing it, the series has remarkably persisted in the face of dwindling ratings.Perhaps that’s to be expected with a series like this, though. At this point, viewers likely are already onboard for what Ash vs. Evil Dead has to offer or know better than to tune in. Indeed, the show’s particular brand of blood-spattered lunacy — which clearly tries to outdo its own bizarre grotesqueries with every episode — isn’t everyone’s taste, nor should it be.Lucy Lawless in Ash vs Evil Dead (2015)However, the series is so committed to its own ridiculousness that those who find this off-kilter tone appealing will probably only love it that much more for its niche properties. After all, the entire Evil Dead franchise was built on the back of a cult classic, a midnight movie that has somehow endured. So naturally, fans have been eating it up, while the uninitiated have turned a blind eye to Ash vs. Evil Dead. Those who have been watching know how much fun Campbell is in his signature role, and that appeal only continues with season 3. Giving Ash a daughter to care for challenges him to at least feign being a responsible adult, bringing out a side of him viewers haven’t yet gotten to know. Considering how much we’ve seen of the lusty, boozing, accidentally competent hero, it’s impressive that Ash still has layers to explore.Arielle Carver-O'Neill in Ash vs Evil Dead (2015)Moreover, Lawless earns the runner-up spot for VIP this season. She’s always been a hoot as Ruby, who always seems to be pursuing multiple schemes at once. But this year, the character takes her dedication to deception to new heights. As far as arch-nemeses go, the former warrior princess remains a formidable foe for the Ghost Beaters.Ash vs. Evil Dead is the best it’s ever been this year, the series does feel as invested in these characters as ever before. Despite all the insanity going on, viewers can’t help but root for and care about Ash, Pablo and Kelly and the predictably horrific adventures they face with a wink, a nod and (very often) a chainsaw. Unfortunately though  Ash vs. Evil Dead was  on the Starz chopping block after this season making this season the last we will see, and with Bruce Campbell stepping down from his most famous role, thislooks like the last we will see of Ash Williams.

 

HALLOWEEN OF HORROR REVIEW: ASH VS EVIL DEAD – SEASON 2

MAIN CAST

Bruce Campbell (Jack of All Trades)
Ray Santiago (My Name Is Earl)
Dana DeLorenzo (2 Broke Girls)
Lucy Lawless (Spartacus)
Michelle Hurd (Daredevil)
Ted Raimi (Xena: Warrior Princess)
Pepi Sonuga (Famous in Love)

Bruce Campbell in Ash vs Evil Dead (2015)

RECURRING / NOTABLE GUEST CAST

Joel Tobeck (Young Hercules)
Lee Majors (The Six Million Dollar Man)
Stephen Lovatt (Spartacus: Gods of The Arena)
Stephen Ure (Deathgasm)
Ellen Sandweiss (Oz The Great and Powerfui)
Campbell Cooley (Power Rangers Ninja Steel)
Sara West (Dead Girls)
Nicholas Hope (Soul Mates)

Ash vs Evil Dead (2015)Though not without a few stumbles, Ash vs Evil Dead’s second season was a definite improvement over its freshman year run. Not that Season 1 wasn’t fun and ferocious gooey gory goodness, but it didn’t quite have a handle on Ash, as a character, like Season 2 did. Last year, Ash seemed to bounce back and forth between total doofus and a more earnest sort of hero who was in the midst of a transformative arc. What was needed — and yes, it’s tricky — was a blend of the two. Ash needed to become less of a reluctant savior while still being fundamentally, you know, Ash.This is where Season 2 really nailed it. Sure, we got some truly awesome action set pieces involving rampaging killer cars, diabolical devil trees, and all sorts of evil minions of hell — sequences that awesomely pushed us to our hardcore gore, and good taste, limits — but what resonated the most about this second year was how well Ash came off as a character. Ash was allowed to be smart, but in his own goofball way. For example, he’d have ideas to track down books and demons that involved raging alcohol-infused parties and his iguana’s pet tracker. Plans that sounded totally asinine but fell into that “so dumb they actually worked” category. Even Ruby, Ash’s biggest critic, constantly had to admit that Ash, for better or worse, could get things done.Bruce Campbell, Ray Santiago, and Dana DeLorenzo in Ash vs Evil Dead (2015)Bringing Ash back home and revealing that he’d been ostracized by his town and family after the blood-soaked events of the Evil Dead films was a crucial part of this blending. Ash was given, of all things, an off-screen backstory and through this he could be afforded spare moments of vulnerability. Ash could bicker with his bigoted, bitter father (infused with wonderful crotchetiness by Lee Majors) while we, the viewers, could know that he secretly longed for his love and approval.Bruce Campbell and Ray Santiago in Ash vs Evil Dead (2015)Pablo’s story this year, as a wannabe warrior-turned-living version of the Necronomicon, helped give the season a nice flow. Season 1 was a road trip. Not every stop along the journey hit the mark. This time, even with the time travel, Ash sorta stayed put in Elk Grove and it was Pablo’s connection to the book, and the rise of Baal, that moved us groovily through the story. Pablo’s death also really added a cool exclamation point that the final two episodes needed. Sure, Ash’s little burrito would come back to life by the end, but Ash’s grief over losing his friend is what led to the final defeat of Baal.Lucy Lawless in Ash vs Evil Dead (2015)Another thing that Season 2 brought to the table was a better take on Lucy Lawless’ Ruby. Essentially the straight-laced reactive character in the group (though everyone side-eyes Ash), Ruby joined the Ghostbeaters this year as a half-demon who’d made a horrible mistake. Season 1 never gave us her origins or (well explained) motivations, so it was fitting to see her change completely and get rebooted for the good guys. Unfortunately, this Ruby died in the finale and was replaced with 80s evil Ruby..Bruce Campbell in Ash vs Evil Dead (2015)Ruby was in Kelly’s ear all season, talking destiny and taking matters into her own hands. Then Kelly even had her own “Ash Fight” when Ash was supposedly under the control of Baal and she got to throw down with the demented therapy puppet (which was amazing). She became even more of badass than season 1 and it will be interesting to see what becomes of Kelly in season 3.Lucy Lawless and Dana DeLorenzo in Ash vs Evil Dead (2015)I’d be remiss if I closed this review without mentioning Ash being dragged up into a possessed corpse’s butt. This season definitely went above and beyond when it came to, um, orifices and fluids (of all kinds), but this moment, back in the second episode, was really one of the most gag-worthy and “out there” moments the show has ever done, finally taking full advantage of being on an anything goes network like Starz. It was magnificent and, though the show may try, it’ll probably never be topped.
bp1o7i3a6alalclalucbAsh vs Evil Dead: Season 2 gave us a fully realized Ash, who was both hilarious and valiant, while also fleshing out his character more with a great “town boogeyman” backstory. It would have been nice to see Kelly’s arc land somewhere more significant, but overall this was a raunchy, gloppy good time filled with grit and guts.

HALLOWEEN OF HORROR REVIEW: ASH VS EVIL DEAD – SEASON 1

MAIN CAST

Bruce Campbell (Jack of All Trades)
Ray Santiago (My Name Is Earl)
Dana DeLorenzo (2 Broke Girls)
Jill Marie Jones (Sleepy Hollow)
Lucy Lawless (Spartacus)
Bruce Campbell, Ray Santiago, and Dana DeLorenzo in Ash vs Evil Dead (2015)
RECURRING / NOTABLE GUEST CAST

Damien Garvey (Terra Nova)
Mike Edward (Power Rangers Operation Overdrive)
Sian Davis (Hercules: The Legendary Journeys)
Bridget Hoffman (Frozen)
James Gaylyn (Avatar)
Mimi Rogers (Ginger Snaps)
Ben Fransham (Legend of The Seeker)
Jared Turner (30 Days of Night)
Hemky Madera (Weeds)
Kelson Henderson (Power Rangers SPD)
Peter Feeney (Black Sheep)
Rachel Blampied (Shortland Street)
Mark Mitchinson (Power Rangers Megaforce)
Milo Cawthorne (Power Rangers RPM)
Samara Weaving (Home and Away)
Indiana Evans (H20)
Ido Drent (Offspring)

Well, we’ve had to be patient for nearly a quarter of a century to finally see Ash wield his chainsaw again, but trust me: it was well worth the wait. Ash vs. Evil Dead fires on all cylinders.  After so many years had passed since Army of Darkness (aka Evil Dead III) came out in 1992, it looked like a direct sequel just wasn’t going to happen anymore, yet apparently, the Raimi-Campbell gang had been working on one for some time. According to recent interviews with the show’s creators Sam Raimi and Bruce Campbell, what was first supposed to be a new feature film and the fourth entry in the franchise, over time turned into an idea for a TV-series, and I believe fans will be very happy with the result. Instead of a 2-hour film for a sequel, we now get 10 episodes  with Ash and the Deadites.Bruce Campbell in Ash vs Evil Dead (2015)At the beginning of the show we meet Ash leading a lazy, but apparently happy slacker life, residing in a run-down trailer and working as a stock boy at a Value Stop (for some obscure legal reasons, the writers couldn’t use the name S-Mart from Army of Darkness’ iconic last scene). In the show, 30 years have passed since Ash’s last encounter with the Deadites, and while he might be well into middle age now, he hasn’t matured one bit. Ash is still the exact same guy we last saw fighting walking skeletons and other ghastly undead things in Army of Darkness, cracking wise and appearing as cock-sure of himself as ever. These days, he likes to spend most of his spare time either getting wasted in his trailer or picking up random ladies – or both . suffice to say that his rather irresponsible lifestyle ultimately won’t go too well with his duty as keeper of a certain  dangerous book, and  bloody mayhem soon ensues.In my opinion, Ash vs. Evil Dead does everything right. Instead of going down the “gritty drama” route of shows like The Walking Dead or taking the “straight horror” approach of Fede Alvarez’ Evil Dead remake, creators Sam Raimi and Bruce Campbell fully embrace the over-the-top goofiness and playful tone of Evil Dead II and Army of Darkness, while still delivering the scares of the first film and plenty of gore. The Deadites are frightening. The production values in general are absolutely great; the writing is in the vein of the first three films (no wonder, since the episodes were mostly written by Sam and Ivan Raimi); the music, the pacing and the direction: really everything just falls into place. It’s clear that this wasn’t some lazy attempt to cash in on the name of a beloved cult-franchise, but a labour of love for all involved.Another great plus of the series is the cast. Seeing Bruce Campbell step back into this iconic character is simply hilarious fun; it still fits him like a glove (or, perhaps more accurately in his case, a chainsaw). But there was never a doubt in my mind that he would deliver (it seems Ash is a character Campbell was born to play); what really surprised me was how well the rest of the cast fits into the show. Ray Santiago as Pablo and Dana DeLorenzo as Kelly (they’re Ash’s co-workers at the Value Stop) are completely able to hold their own; they are fully fleshed-out characters and just as fun to watch as Ash. Also we have Lucy Lawless of Spartacus and Xena fame, who’s character is a mystery until episode 9 when all hell breaks loose and leads into a great Season One finale.Ash vs Evil dead brings back everything that we all loved about the original Evil Dead films, but it also manages to introduce interesting new characters and story lines which help maintain the element of surprise for long-time fans. And the show works just as well as a stand-alone story, so people unfamiliar with the original trilogy need not worry either: they will find just as much to love here as those who know and cherish Sam Raimi’s classics – as long as they have a certain affection for trashy, gory horror comedies and don’t expect serious drama. The good news its already been picked up for a season 2, so we got more blood and gore to come

HALLOWEEN OF HORROR REVIEW: EVIL DEAD (2013)

CAST

Jane Levy (Suburgatory)
Shiloh Fernandez (Red Riding Hood)
Lou Taylor Pucci (Fast Food Nation)
Jessica Lucas (Gotham)
Elizabeth Blackmore (The Vampire Diaries)
Jim McLarty (Power Rangers Operation Overdrive)
Bruce Campbell (Maniac Cop)

In the woods, several men pursue and capture an injured girl. The girl, who turns out to be possessed by a demon, is brought into a cabin’s cellar and tied up. Her father sets her on fire and shoots her in the head.

David (Shiloh Fernandez) and his girlfriend Natalie (Elizabeth Blackmore) meet up at a cabin in the woods with his younger sister Mia (Jane Levy). Along with them are their friends Eric (Lou Taylor Pucci) and Olivia (Jessica Lucas) and David’s dog. They plan to stay in the cabin until Mia overcomes her heroin addiction. It is later revealed that David moved to another city years before, leaving Mia to take care of their dying mother. Eric remarks how David has grown distant over the years, but Olivia notes that their old friend is back and trying to make a change.

The group discover the cellar, where they see rotting animal corpses, a shotgun, and a book entitled Naturom Demonto. Eric, having some knowledge of witchcraft practices, begins studying the book. Despite the written warnings, he reads aloud an incantation, awakening a malevolent force. It rushes towards the cabin and into Mia, who is standing outside alone. Mia begins seeing someone in the woods and asks the group to leave. They refuse, believing that she is suffering from withdrawal. Mia steals the car keys and drives away, but a mysterious girl causes her to crash the car. As Mia walks back to the cabin, she is frightened by a ghostly shape and becomes entangled by the branches of a tree. The girl, who looks like a demonic form of Mia, releases black tar-like vines from her mouth. The vines crawl inside Mia, beginning her possession. David and Olivia find Mia and take her back to the cabin, ignoring her warning. David finds his dog killed and dumped under the shed, and confronts Mia. In the bathroom, he sees her scalding herself in the shower. David tries to drive her to a hospital, but heavy rains caused a flood, blocking the way out.

That night, the possessed Mia wounds David, threatens the group with death, and falls to the floor unconscious. When Olivia retrieves the gun, Mia overpowers her and vomits blood on her face. Mia is then locked in the cellar. Olivia goes to the bathroom to clean herself, and becomes possessed. Eric checks on her and sees her cutting into her cheek with a mirror shard, another scene from the book. Olivia attacks and wounds Eric, who grabs a broken piece of the toilet and bludgeons her to death.

In the shed, while David tends to Eric’s wounds, Eric tells David of what he learned from the book. According to the book, a demon called the Taker of Souls must consume five souls in order to unleash a being called the Abomination. Mia lures Natalie into the cellar and violates her, before Natalie is saved by David. Natalie cleans the bite wound inflicted by Mia and sees an infection spreading from it. As it quickly crawls up her arm, she tries to stop it by cutting the arm off. Eric explains to David that Mia must be “purified” either by live burial, dismemberment, or burning. The purification will end her possession. As they debate, Natalie becomes possessed and attacks the two. David shoots Natalie’s other arm off with the shotgun. The demon leaves her body and Natalie bleeds to death, confused, in David’s arms.

David plans to burn down the cabin with Mia in it. Mia starts singing their mother’s lullaby, and David changes his mind and decides to bury her instead. He digs a grave, then enters the cellar to subdue his sister. Mia ambushes him and attempts to drown him. Eric intervenes and knocks Mia out, but not before suffering a fatal stab wound in the process. Before Eric dies, he and David reconcile. David sedates Mia, puts her in the grave and buries her. After she loses consciousness, he digs her up and uses an improvised defibrillator to revive her. The demon is exorcised and her self-inflicted wounds are healed, and the two reconcile. As David enters the cabin to retrieve the car keys, the possessed Eric stabs him in the neck. Before dying, David locks Mia outside and shoots a nearby gasoline can, killing Eric and himself.

With five souls now claimed, the Abomination rises from the ground as blood rains from the sky. As Mia fights the Abomination, she severs her own hand in the process, before she cuts the Abomination in half with a chainsaw. Its corpse sinks into the ground and the blood rain stops. Sunlight begins to shine through the forest as Mia, hardened by the events of the night, walks away into the forest. Unbeknownst to her, the Naturom Demonto lies on the ground nearby and slams shut on its own.

In a post-credits scene, an older Ash Williams says “Groovy” and looks at the camera.Exposition at its most blatant and unapologetic is demonstrated, within 5 minutes you are told exactly who everyone is in relation to one another and what you need to know about them. Doing this in any other film always feels forced and clunky but it works in Evil Dead, we just don’t care about how long they’ve been friends or the fact that one of them is a high school teacher and thats why he loves old books. It get’s all that necessary information out of the way so we can dive into the horror and trust me, once the horror actually starts there’s not a second of a breather.