Bil’s rating (out of 5): 0.
USA, 2013. TriStar Pictures, FilmDistrict, Ghost House Pictures. Screenplay by Fede Alvarez, Rodo Sayagues, based on the motion picture by Sam Raimi. Cinematography by Aaron Morton. Produced by Bruce Campbell, Sam Raimi. Music by Roque Baños. Production Design by Robert Gillies. Costume Design by Sarah Voon. Film Editing by Bryan Shaw.
A remake in name only of the Sam Raimi horror classic, that gives a similar setup to the original but confusedly throws in elements from all other recent horror films, and badly. It also gives an unnecessary back story to the Witch In the Woods plot that promises for a rich experience but never follows through. A group of youngsters gather at a secluded cabin to help one of their members through a drug detox, all of them highly skeptical of the endeavour as she has tried it before. What they don’t expect is to all be possessed by a demon after one of their members reads aloud from an enchanted book they find in the basement, which turns them into hideous zombies who cause no end of gory physical mayhem to each other and themselves. Of course there is a much bigger budget than Raimi had, but there isn’t the slightest bit of intelligence coming from behind the camera. What made horror movies in the eighties so popular was that the more successful ones came with a healthy sense of camp; there’s a reason why it was only stuck-up, conservative fuddy-duddies who had a problem with them as detrimental to the morality of young people. In the current era of every mood swing being entitled to a Syndrome moniker and the youth market having become the Holy Grail of economic pursuit, we have a group of people who are taken far too seriously before they become fodder for the meat grinder (in the original they were just heading for vacation to a cabin in the woods). This one barely gives any life to its characters before it destroys them: it’s so flat that I found myself longing for the days when horror movies were just an excuse to punish sexuality. Such a trope was offensive, but it at least was also inspired. Here there is only corn syrup porn, with a moronic director who knows that girls cutting their own arms off to survive is thoroughly disgusting, but has no idea that it’s actually supposed to be funny too.