Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Halloween Holocaust: Evil Dead II (Sam Raimi, 1987)

Like Peter Jackson's Braindead (aka Dead Alive, 1992) and the relatively unknown - not to mention completely, but wonderfully bonkers - Japanese cult gem Hausu (Nobuhiko Obayashi, 1977), Evil Dead II is both a virtuoso piece of film-making and a superlative example of the comedy-horror movie, that (also like these two other films) pushes its stylistic exaggeration to such a sublime extreme that it essentially becomes a live action cartoon. 

As I'm sure most of you are aware, it's basically a remix of its predecessor, but with a bigger budget. Whilst re-watching the film earlier tonight, it occurred to me that one can easily compare the first two Evil Dead movies and the first two Terminators; in the sense that the first film in both franchises is more of a straight horror movie (by comparison with their follow-ups at least), where as the sequels are, in somewhat varying ways, more obsessed with spectacle than spooks. This is, I should add, not necessarily a bad thing; it just depends what kind of thing you're in the mood for. If shits and giggles are what you're craving, then roll-up! roll-up! (in more ways than one, if you're so inclined) and dive right on in. Needless to say, if you want something a bit more sub-textually meaty to chew on, then you'd be advised to head elsewhere for your evening's entertainment. 

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