You can’t get a film with much more cult status than Evil Dead 2, Sam Raimi’s horror comedy follow up to his low budget original.
The film starts with a recap of sorts of the first film (they could not get rights to use footage from Evil Dead 1) when Ash and his girlfriend go to a cabin in the woods they find a tape recorder which has on it words that can resurrect evil spirits. Of course, the tape is played and all hell breaks loose as Ash, with the help of some others who arrive at the cabin, tries to escape the forces of Evil.
Don’t be fooled, there is a lot of gore in Evil Dead 2, but the tone is very different, switching from horror to laugh out loud moments this film achieves that balance very well, where so many others have failed. Bruce Campbell’s performance is superb as he gets punished and pummeled but never gives up. Some fantastic camera work from director Sam Raimi gives the whole film a roller coaster ride effect and the ending sets up the sequel (Army of Darkness) superbly.
The picture quality on this new release from Studio Canal is pretty good overall, with the low budget and film stock used it gives a natural image with good depth. The panoramic shots and images of the camera speeding through the woods look excellent, overall a fine looking image is presented. Audio has two options, English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 and English DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0. Both are fine, the 5.1 remix does spread the sound to give some good surround effects and the dialogue is easy to follow.
Extras are provided with a superb featurette called Swallowed Souls – The Making of Evil Dead II (99 minutes HD). Most of the cast and crew are interviewed (Director Sam Raimi is sadly absent) and it goes into great detail on the problems encountered and the shooting schedule.
Other extra’s are Behind The Screams (18 mins), animator Tom Sullivan talks about the special effects and how they were achieved, The Gore The Merrier (32 mins) again takes an in-depth look at the special effects make up, Cabin Fever (31 mins) Behind the scenes video footage taken by special make-up effects creator Greg Nicotero, Finishing off with a photo gallery and a great audio commentary with director Sam Raimi, actor Bruce Campbell, co-writer Scott Spiegel, and special makeup effects artist Greg Nicotero.
Fans of the film will love the presentation and the extras on this disc. A great fun film and a quality release from Studio Canal.
(Note: This seems to be the same Blu ray as Lionsgate Films released in the United States in 2011.)
FILM: 8.5 OUT OF 10
PICTURE: 7 OUT OF 10
AUDIO: 7 OUT OF 10
EXTRAS: 8.5 OUT OF 10