Evil Dead is the cult classic horror film that has spawned multiple movies & the TV series, Ash vs Evil Dead. Evil Dead films are the quintessential movies of horror-comedy genre. I’ve seen it best described as “slapstick gore.”
So, like most horror movie plots of the 70s & 80s, Evil Dead follows the same plot line of a group of teenagers/young adult partying it up in a cabin in the woods & everyone dies (spoilers I guess) except the one with common sense… the lone survivor. However, Evil Dead isn’t a slasher film of the 80s, but demons & demonic possession.
There are good horror movies & there are bad horror movies. Bad horror movies, to me, are the ones that try way too hard to be edgy & gory. But then there are the ones that are bad on purpose. And that is Evil Dead.
I enjoy all horror from the scary AF to the cheesy B movies that are straight to VHS/DVD. If you are a fan of the cheesy, not taking itself too seriously horror films, you will enjoy Evil Dead. And all the rest of them.
Candyman is another one of my favorite horror films that came out of the 90s. I remember renting this at Blockbuster & watching it with my friends during a sleepover & being utterly terrified. Of course, I’ve seen it so many times over the years, that it’s no longer scary, but has become one of my favorites.
The film is about a woman, Helen, researching urban legends as part of her thesis at the University of Chicago. One of the legends she learns of is of the Candyman, who appears after saying his name 5 times while looking in the mirror. When he is summoned, he guts the person with his hook for a hand. The stories of Candyman told by students & staff around campus brings Helen to Cabrini Green, a housing project in the city where several brutal murders have occurred over the years that have simply been attributed to gang violence.
Candyman still holds up well today & Tony Todd is still just as creepy… And I still have a hard time watching anything with him in it anymore. It is creepy & gory & has enough jump scares to keep you on edge.
It’s been at least 5 or 6 years since I last watched Scream. I think I have watched it at least 15 times, if not more, since it was released and it is still as good as I remember. Scream is the classic horror slasher film of the 90s. With over 475k audience reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, it has a solid 79% score. If you’re not familiar, Scream is a Wes Craven film. Wes Craven is a horror legend, responsible for some of the best horror films, including the Nightmare on Elm Street movies.
Scream is kind of a spoof of the whole teen slasher movie horror genre, but is still its own scary movie. The movie takes place in the town of Woodsboro where a psycho killer, aka Ghost Face, stalks & taunts his victims before brutally murdering them. Although a classic slasher flick, Scream isn’t all that gory & leaves the brutality to your imagination. Scream offers an excellent cast & is one of the best campy horror movies ever…and has some of the best sequels to a film.
So I was not a fan of this movie. I have yet to find a witch film that is scary and hoped this one would be the one. Sadly, this was not the case & I was very underwhelmed, despite the rave reviews I’ve read. I appreciate slow burn type films that build up to the scarier moments, and leave you with an unsettled feeling, rather then relying on jump scares, but this just didn’t do that at all.
The film begins with a family ousted from their plantation, so they build their homestead on the edge of the forest. Pretty soon, strange & unsettling things begin to happen to the family & around their home. The eldest daughter, Thomasin, is babysitting her newborn brother when he is suddenly taken by some type of creature off into the woods. As the strange (not scary) things are happening, the parents accuse Thomasin of being a witch. But the whole movie I felt I was just trying to understand what the hell they were talking or arguing about half the time & just waiting for something to happen.
I’m not suggesting to not watch this movie. You may enjoy it. I’m just warning you that it is 90+ minutes of your life you won’t get back if you thought it was as bad as I did. The critics loved it with a 90% on the Tomatometer on Rotten Tomatoes, but the audience score was a dismal 58%. And that it much more accurate.
A bonus review I found on Rotten Tomatoes that I found hilarious as this guy really hated this movie & I just have to share it as it. Although I didn’t hate it as much as he clearly does. You will find a lot of reviews like this one too. I wished I had read more of the bad ones then the good. I might not have wasted my time on this movie.
I will admit that I was very skeptical going into this movie for two reasons. First, because of the story itself. And second, Stephen King adaptions can be hit or miss….and I’ve seen a lot of misses. I recently read Gerald’s Game as I have been reading through King’s works in order & the story is quite intense. As a lot of the story is hallucinations, thoughts & memories inside the main character’s head. But I was pleasantly surprised by this adaptation.
The movie begins with Jess & her husband Gerald heading to their vacation home for a weekend away. From the beginning we learn their marriage is kind of on the rocks & this weekend retreat is meant to hopefully “spice” up their marriage & bring them closer together. Of course, Gerald’s idea of spice things up & Jess’s are totally different.
Pretty soon into the film, Jess is left handcuffed to their bed. These handcuffs aren’t the toy kind with the easy release, but straight up police issued shackles with keys. Which are conveniently left on the bathroom counter across the room. Then Gerald has a heart attack & dies in the middle of all this.
After Gerald dies, the film revolves around Jessie & her break from reality while being handcuffed, traumatized, dehydrated & starved for a couple days. I was nervous as to how this would be done & in all honestly, how close it would follow the novel as it is pretty graphic. It is a fairly close adaption of the novel & the King universe easter egg connections are included.
Jessie is played by Carla Gugino and does an amazing job being inside of her own head. We get a glimpse of how she views Gerald & how she thinks Gerald views her. Gerald is played by Bruce Greenwood, and is a great supporting role considering he is dead within the first 15 minutes. We also see how Jessie view herself as well as she tries desperately to get out of the situation she is in.
I will not sugar coat anything, this movie will make you very, very uncomfortable. It is very graphic, not only with what Jessie endures in present day, but how her mind retreats to relive previous trauma. And whether or not what she is seeing is real or hallucinations. This is is one of the better Stephen King adaptions I have seen. Flanagan stays true to the novel, & embraces the graphic nature of the novel.
You do not have to be a King fan to watch this film. I find this one of King’s more terrifying storied as the horror is not supernatural, but a totally normal situation anyone could find themselves in. It may not be handcuffs, but anything that causes you to be restrained & stuck without help nearby is terrifying enough to me. You can’t reach the phone. Calling for help is no longer an option. Your phone is dead. Or out of reach. These are things that are truly terrifying.