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Blu-ray Review

DVD cover

Evil Dead II


Starring: Bruce Campbell and Sarah Berry
Optimum Home Entertainment
RRP: £19.99
Certificate: 18
Available 22 September 2008

Ash and his girlfriend decide to take a romantic weekend in a wilderness cabin. Whilst there Ash discovers a tape of an archaeologist reciting from the necronomicon, which frees evil spirits who take over his girlfriend, having overcome the first attack he is mistaken fro a murderer by the archaeologists daughter, her friend Ed and Jake and Bobby who guide them to the cabin. They find Ash fighting for his life and a little more than insane, then all hell breaks loose...

Evil Dead 2 (1987 - 1 hr, 24 min) is a comedy horror film directed by Sam Raimi (Army of Darkness, Spider-Man), co-written with Scott Spiegel (Tora! Tora! Tora!, From Dusk till Dawn 2). The movie was nominated for four awards.

For fans of these films this new Blu-ray release is going to be a real joy, as the picture has been restored to its full glory. Anyone who had seen the first film may be confused by the first ten minutes as it recreates the first film, although in a truncated form, this was because Sam and Bruce had lost control of the rights for Evil Dead. Fear not, as soon as we get past this the true mayhem begins.

I’m sure that nobody will shoot me down in flames when I say that the demented script is not the strongest part of this endeavour. It’s certainly not as well plotted as its sequel Army of Darkness (1993), but then the intention here is to take the audience on a rip roaring Tex Avery rollercoaster ride of a horror film with as many creature special effects as they could afford - and they could afford a lot. From gross out prosthetics to driving Bruce Campbell through a forest on the front of Raimi’s car whilst spinning him around as he gets bitch whipped by the passing foliage.

Of course, the whole film relies on Bruce Campbell’s acting, who to my mind is one of the most underrated comedic actors of his generation. Watching him as the maniacal Ash always has me in stitches. Raimi shows what can be done with a limited budget and a lot of wit.

The disc comes with a 5.1 or DTS-HD Master Audio track with a funny and well worth full length commentary by Sam Raimi, Scott Spiegel, Greg Nicotero and Bruce Campbell. The only other extra is a making of featurette (31 min, 58 sec) which is a very tongue in cheek look at making the film. The movie is presented in a 1080p 1.85:1 aspect ratio.

In the end it is a film which is unlikely to change your life, but will make you laugh a hell of a lot.


Charles Packer

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