Critics Consensus: Evil Dead Is a Solid, Gory Update

Plus, Jurassic Park is Certified Fresh.

This week at the movies, we've got an army of darkness (Evil Dead, starring Jane Levy and Shiloh Fernandez) and an island of dinosaurs (Jurassic Park, starring Sam Neill and Laura Dern). What do the critics have to say?

Evil Dead

62%

With Evil Dead and Evil Dead 2: Dead By Dawn, Sam Raimi pulled off a heady mix of over-the-top gore and subversive humor. Critics say this new Evil Dead doesn't come close to matching its classic predecessors, but it's a visceral, smarter-than-average frightfest that will impress gorehounds (and churn the stomachs of more sensitive types). When a group of teenagers in a remote cabin inadvertently summon demonic forces, they're left to fend off all sorts of unimaginable evils -- including each other. The pundits say Evil Dead lacks the sick wit that made the originals so compelling, but it's an efficient, merciless piece of work that manages to carve out a style all its own. (Check out our interviews with the Evil Dead cast, as well as our gallery of particularly intense horror movies.)

Jurassic Park: An IMAX 3D Experience

93%

Upon its release in 1993, Jurassic Park smashed box office records and set a new standard for special effects. Now it's getting a deluxe 3D theatrical rerelease, giving audiences another chance to witness Steven Spielberg's deft mix of monster movie scares and beautifully lifelike dinosaurs on the big screen. Critics found Jurassic Park to be more spectacle than substance, but also were quick to note that it's spectacle of a very high order, and the special effects hold up remarkably well 20 years later. (Check out this week's Total Recall, in which we run down some of cinema's most memorable dinosaurs.)

Also opening this week in limited release:

Finally, props to Justin D. for coming the closest to guessing Temptation's 15 percent Tomatometer.

Comments

Jason H.

Jason Huang

EVIL DEAD!

Apr 4 - 05:09 PM

Movie Monster

Bentley Lyles

I want to see the original Evil Dead sometime. The remake looks pretty good. Can you believe that I haven't seen Jurassic Park? I've only seen the sequels. I need to get to it!

Apr 4 - 05:10 PM

Jin Kim

Jin Kim

Then you will surely have a blast if you go see it in 3D IMAX.. Even though I saw it like 50 times I think will go see it again just for the 3D

Apr 4 - 05:20 PM

Corey Dowd

Corey Dowd

The original Evil Dead is on Netflix!

Apr 4 - 07:31 PM

bbbrrrrrice1

Brice Watts

Original Evil Dead is on Netflix.

Apr 4 - 08:12 PM

Jay Anthony

Jay Anthony

I Watched the original evil dead when i was 7, Man the original is super scary and Gory! you must really see the original Evil dead

Apr 6 - 11:32 PM

StonedMagician99

Andy Spencer

65% for the Evil Dead is too low. No, it isn't as good as the original, but it is by no means intended to be at all comical in any way. Comparisons to the original in terms of quality are inevitable, but to compare the two in tone is pointless. I think it deserves a 75% at the very least. Oh, and I HAVE seen it, as I was lucky enough to attend SXSW this year.

Apr 4 - 05:19 PM

JJ ..

JJ .

I was going to post another comment, but you my friend, have hit the nail right on the head.
And I'm glad it's good.

Apr 4 - 10:41 PM

shogunofharlem

Mark Harris

I agree that the remake is excellent, but I'm tired of people saying the original was comedic. Its sequels were certainly comedic, but The Evil Dead was VERY serious and scary, NOT funny. The tone of the remake is actually very much in line with the original.

Apr 5 - 10:41 AM

Penn Buffington

Penn Buffington

Thank you, I'm glad I'm not the only one who noticed.

Apr 7 - 07:36 AM

Gary Harras

Gary Harras

Yes, 65% i a bs score, this was the best horror movie in many years. And the best remake i have seen in a really long time.

Apr 7 - 12:00 PM

Glen Benton

Glen Benton

65% is too high for this piece of garbage.

Apr 7 - 01:31 PM

Jin Kim

Jin Kim

Then you will surely have a blast if you go see it in 3D IMAX.. Even though I saw it like 50 times I think will go see it again just for the 3D

Apr 4 - 05:20 PM

Jaxx Raxor

Adam Jones

Looks like April once again will the calm in the movie theaters before the storm that is May and the start of the Summer movie season. Evil Dead seems pretty decent and Jurassic Park is a classic (I never saw it in theaters but I saw it in Television a few years after) but it's a re-release so take that as you will.

Apr 4 - 05:25 PM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

By far, the film I'm most excited about is "Upstream Color", Carruth's follow-up to his cult hit "Primer". It got great reviews at Sundance, and hopefully it will play near me soon.

The problem I've been having with the "Evil Dead" hype is that it looks devoid of the same "sick wit" that fans cherish about the original. In fact, so many of the more enthusiastic reviewers of the new film seem to applaud this lack of wit to such a degree that I wonder if many of them were ever fans of the original to begin with. Like Lucas, it's just impossible for Raimi to convince me that somehow the fans have just been wrong all this time, and now we're finally getting the "Evil Dead" we weren't ever asking for (that would be the fourth one, with Ash in the post-apocalypse). I'll still see it, and I hope it's at least a decent horror film, but, sorry, it doesn't appear to have the same magic that made the first one a cult classic.

If you haven't seen "My Dinner With Andre", then you probably don't really have anything better to do until you do. As it is, I'd love to see the Andre Gregory doc, as well as the Angela Davis one. "Simon Killer" looks vaguely interesting, and as much as I hate James McAvoy, hopefully Cassel slaps him around enough to make "Trance" entertaining.

Did Redford think that "Lions For Lambs" was too subtle?

Apr 4 - 05:26 PM

infernaldude

Infernal Dude

No Ash. No Evil Dead. I'm glad its getting good reviews but I agree with what you are saying in terms of "sick wit".

Apr 4 - 08:36 PM

Virginia Lee

Virginia Lee

Wait, Ash isn't in this?

Apr 5 - 06:12 AM

Valmordas

Val Mordas

I think most people are confused. The first Evil Dead wasn't all that humorous, it was a splatter gorefest. Wasn't until part 2 that the camp humor was introduced.

Apr 4 - 10:38 PM

infernaldude

Infernal Dude

No Ash! No Evil Dead!

Apr 4 - 10:56 PM

Hayden Silbermann

Hayden Silbermann

Would you want to see some actor try to imitate Bruce Campbell and fail?

Apr 6 - 09:00 PM

Penn Buffington

Penn Buffington

No, because Bruce and Sam said so, besides they are making a sequel to Army of darkness, you'll get your Ash fix then.

Apr 7 - 07:38 AM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

@Hades - I want to see some original horror films for a change.

@Penn - The sequel to AOD is a rumor based on an off-cuff idea Raimi mentioned in an interview. Neither Campbell or Raimi have committed to it or confirmed it.

Apr 7 - 04:07 PM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

The first "Evil Dead" wasn't slapstick, but that's not what's meant by 'sick wit'. The film was very witty in Raimi's clever and inventive camerawork and editing. (And Bruce Campbell is funny even when he's not really trying) The film had an exuberance that the trailer for the new one doesn't show much evidence for. And worse, from a critic I tend to trust, James Berardinelli: "It's not scary." And that hurts.

Apr 4 - 10:57 PM

Valmordas

Val Mordas

Eh I guess scary is relative. There aren't many movies I can say that about, but I'm not really scared of movies. The best I can hope for is getting that creeped-out feeling.

Apr 5 - 05:17 AM

infernaldude

Infernal Dude

What makes a movie "scary" to me is when you care about the characters and don't want to see bad things happen to them. And then they cut off their hand and attach a chainsaw to it!

Apr 5 - 02:13 PM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

The remake wasn't even hip enough to run a poster with the tagline "Who's Laughing Now?"

Apr 5 - 02:28 PM

Wynter Mitchell

Wynter Mitchell

Agreed, it was better than ok. It was gruesome. It was gory. Clever story arc. NOT SCARY! Sorry, even knowing what I thought I was coming and what could have been, I never had the sense of being frightened

Apr 6 - 12:37 AM

Kyle Anderson

Kyle Anderson

I'm on a similar page with evil dead. I know someone at school who was trying to hype it and...yeah. COnversation was essentially, "So it's just the silly horror plot, but done seriously without the self aware humor"...why?
I was a week too early to see a pre-screening oh upstream color in chicago, and I am horribly disappointed in myself. About 100x more excited for that than evil dead, I doubt I'll even see it in theaters

Apr 5 - 07:38 AM

Chris Cook

Chris Cook

The sequels added the "humor" that essentially turned Ash into a meme. Thankfully that is gone and going back to the roots. As for not coming close to matching its predecessors, well, to each their own I guess. Plenty of people think it ranks right up there with the original.

Apr 4 - 05:33 PM

StonedMagician99

Andy Spencer

You pretty much nailed it. I think it's the second-best film of the franchise, narrowly beating 2 and certainly better than the (kinda crappy) Army of Darkness.

Apr 4 - 05:37 PM

Valmordas

Val Mordas

Disagree, the twisted humor is what put this series on the map.

Apr 4 - 10:40 PM

scifimark

scifi mark

Its just a generic horror movie now and nothing to distinguish it. I guess its ok for what it is and 65 for a horror movie is fairly decent. Im not even sure why it should be called evil dead

Apr 5 - 08:40 AM

Dave J

Dave J

Their would've been a sequel to "Army Of Darkness" had more people paid to see it! Now it's one of those movies that's garnered a cult following!

Apr 5 - 01:27 PM

Penn Buffington

Penn Buffington

They're making a sequel right now.

Apr 7 - 07:41 AM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

"Right now". No. Raimi is producing the "Poltergeist" remake. He has not announced his next directing project.

Apr 7 - 04:09 PM

Penn Buffington

Penn Buffington

I agree, the 1st one was brilliant and disturbing, they 2nd was ok, the 3rd was down right stupid with the exception of a few iconic scenes (goody little TWO SHOES!) LMFAO.

Apr 7 - 07:44 AM

Glen Benton

Glen Benton

People who think this ranks up there with the original are mindless fucking drones without a shred of taste.

Apr 7 - 01:34 PM

Vits

Vicente Torres

1) I won't see EVIL DEAD until I watch the original. I know, I know. What's wrong with me. Well, it was banned in my country.
2) JURASSIC PARK is excellent, though the ending dissapointed me. Not as much as the sequels, but still.
3) If UPSTREAM COLOR is anything like PRIMER, I'm gonna hate it.
4) Can't say I'm surprised about 6 SOULS. Julianne Moore is a very good actress, but she has never made a Thriller that didn't generate unintentional laughs. Why would the directors of UNDERWORLD PART 4 change that?

Apr 4 - 05:37 PM

StonedMagician99

Andy Spencer

You pretty much nailed it. I think it's the second-best film of the franchise, narrowly beating 2 and certainly better than the (kinda crappy) Army of Darkness.

Apr 4 - 05:37 PM

Valmordas

Val Mordas

Disagree, the twisted humor is what put this series on the map.

Apr 4 - 10:40 PM

scifimark

scifi mark

Its just a generic horror movie now and nothing to distinguish it. I guess its ok for what it is and 65 for a horror movie is fairly decent. Im not even sure why it should be called evil dead

Apr 5 - 08:40 AM

Dave J

Dave J

Their would've been a sequel to "Army Of Darkness" had more people paid to see it! Now it's one of those movies that's garnered a cult following!

Apr 5 - 01:27 PM

Penn Buffington

Penn Buffington

They're making a sequel right now.

Apr 7 - 07:41 AM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

"Right now". No. Raimi is producing the "Poltergeist" remake. He has not announced his next directing project.

Apr 7 - 04:09 PM

Penn Buffington

Penn Buffington

I agree, the 1st one was brilliant and disturbing, they 2nd was ok, the 3rd was down right stupid with the exception of a few iconic scenes (goody little TWO SHOES!) LMFAO.

Apr 7 - 07:44 AM

Daniel Irwin

Daniel Irwin

The first "Evil Dead" was pretty much of a mixed bag. I've been more impressed with its sequels. Remake is a no-no because it reminds me too much of "Cabin in the Woods".

"Jurassic Park" was my second-favorite movie of all time next to the original "Star Wars". There's a chance I might be seeing it in a theater.

Personally, however, I think "Trance" should have gotten a much wider release. I mean, what can I say about Danny Boyle. I really love his directing style, even if I thought "Slumdog Millionaire" was overrated.

Apr 4 - 05:50 PM

Kriftonucci

Jim Ylonen

The Cabin in The Woods? Screw that, let's have something original.
Like an Evil Dead remake! -_-

Apr 4 - 06:36 PM

Penn Buffington

Penn Buffington

I don't understand folks love affair with "Cabin in The Woods." I didn't think it was all that great, like a high budget episode of "Buffy." Or maybe I was looking for something serious and just didn't "get it."

Apr 7 - 07:48 AM

Glen Benton

Glen Benton

Nothing more original than a movie being remade for the 3rd time.

Apr 7 - 01:36 PM

Corey Dowd

Corey Dowd

The original Evil Dead is on Netflix!

Apr 4 - 07:31 PM

John Tyler

John Tyler

The original Evil Dead trilogy is fantastic. I saw the remake at SXSW and it was equally as great IMO. It's one of the best AND the better remakes in recent years.

Apr 4 - 07:38 PM

SecondBest

This Guy

I would like to see the new Evil Dead, but I'm such a wimp when it comes to horror movies...so I probably wont. Trance also looks good.

Apr 4 - 07:46 PM

bbbrrrrrice1

Brice Watts

Original Evil Dead is on Netflix.

Apr 4 - 08:12 PM

Mike Smith

Mike Smith

WOW!!! TWO films getting a ZERO at the same week!!! Let us hope to hold that all weekend!!!

Apr 4 - 08:13 PM

infernaldude

Infernal Dude

No Ash. No Evil Dead. I'm glad its getting good reviews but I agree with what you are saying in terms of "sick wit".

Apr 4 - 08:36 PM

Virginia Lee

Virginia Lee

Wait, Ash isn't in this?

Apr 5 - 06:12 AM

shadypotential

Chris Cox

Torture porn? no thanks.

Apr 4 - 08:36 PM

Dick Travis

Mick Travis

This isn't HOSTEL, duDE!

Apr 4 - 10:09 PM

Penn Buffington

Penn Buffington

No actual torture from what I understand, just a lot of violent dismemberment and maiming from various house-hold tools and objects.

Apr 7 - 07:50 AM

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