The original Evil Dead was an honest to God horror film, or at least it tried to be. Evil Dead 2: Dead by Dawn and Army of Darkness took things in a more comedic direction. Perhaps writer/director Sam Raimi secretly regrets that decision. That might explain the grisly tone on display in the red band teaser trailer for the remake.
The story is simplicity personified. A group of teenagers crash out in an abandoned cabin located deep in the woods. One of them stumbles upon Naturan Demant, aka The Book of the Dead. He reads passages from it aloud, thus awakening evil spirits. Instantly, a not-so-innocent weekend getaway turns into a living nightmare.
In the minds of most fans, The Evil Dead series has become synonymous with its comically inept hero, Ash. Unfortunately, Ash will be sitting out the remake. That’s just as well, as there seems to be no place for him. Judging by the trailer, there is nary a laugh to be had, intentional or otherwise.
The original Evil Dead wore flaunted the obvious fakeness of its gore FX like a badge of honor. By contrast, the remake seems to lean more in the direction of torture porn. The trailer ends with few shots that fans will most definitely recognize. Possessed limbs are severed, chainsaws become weapons, and trees become sexual predators. It all ends with perhaps the most wince inducing money shot to ever conclude a trailer.
All in all, this remake seems designed to bludgeon the viewer into submission. All things considered, I’d have preferred another sequel to a remake. That being said, I am curious. The Evil Dead films are relentlessly entertaining, but for the most part they aren’t that scary. Perhaps this is more in line with what Raimi originally intended. Or maybe this is his idea of what modern audiences want to see. Either way, I hope this film has more to offer than relentless bloodletting.