Movie Analysis: ‘The Evil Dead’

“The Evil Dead” was released in the United States on October 15, 1981. It was directed and written by Sam Raimi. This film is rated R and is not suitable for some audiences because of its gore and obscene scenes.

“The Evil Dead” follows the story of five college students as they go to a cabin in the woods, only to realize there is some horrors hidden in the basements.

Evil Dead is a great gore movie with twists and turns that will leave you never wanting to go into the woods again. Image courtesy of

The film starred Bruce Campbell as Ashley, Ellen Sandweiss as Cheryl, Richard DeMainicor as Scott, Betsy Baker as Linda and Theresa Tilly as Shelly.

The budget for “The Evil Dead” was only $350,000, but it grossed $2.4 million in the US and $29.4 million worldwide. In its initial release, “The Evil Dead” was given an X rating because the ranking system wasn’t as thorough as it is now. It now has a TV-MA rating because of violence, nudity and gore.

With the film having such a small budget, there were some complications with the set. The first problem was that the filmmakers decided to film in an actual cabin in the woods. The cabin was in Morristown, Tennessee. The cabin that is featured in the film is also where 13 crew members stayed.

In interviews, everyone on set described this arrangement as being especially brutal because everyone had to sleep on the floor and in the same room. Because the cabin was abandoned, it didn’t have proper plumbing, so most of the crew didn’t shower for days.

Due to how awful the conditions were, most of the cast left halfway through filming. Ten other actors had to stand in for the main actors. A replacement couldn’t be found for Bruce Campbell, so he had to stay throughout the entire production. Campbell also severely sprained his ankle during filming and director Sam Raimi poked the injury several times to make him have more of a dramatic limp.

- Advertisement -

At the end of filming, each member of the crew put something sentimental in a box and placed it in the fireplace of the cabin. Years later, it was discovered that the cabin had actually burned down and the only thing that was remaining was the fireplace with the box safely inside.

All of the difficulties seem worth it in the end because “The Evil Dead” is now known as one of the most iconic horror films. It made a pathway for a whole new way to make a horror film. “The Evil Dead” received an award for Best Low Budget Film in 1983 by the Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror Films. It also won an award for the Best Special Effect in the Catalonian International Film Festival.

“The Evil Dead” has  become a cult classic with  an array of sequels such as “The Evil Dead 2” and “Army of Darkness.” Both of those films are directed and written by Sam Raimi. There is also a TV series called “Ash vs Evil Dead” which is in the same cannon.

Bruce Campbell plays Ashley and Ellene Sandweiss plays Cheryl. Image courtesy of IMDB.

The 2013 reboot, “Evil Dead” was my first scary movie, so I was curious about what it was based on. After watching the original “The Evil Dead” I understood why it is considered a cult classic.

Even though it has a basic plot, “The Evil Dead” still manages to scare and keep you watching. The movie is so gorey and has truly terrifying practical effects. I don’t really think that this movie really relies on suspense as most horror movies do. “The Evil Dead” relies more on being scared about the actual witchcraft attached to the house rather than the suspenseful jumpscares.  You would expect that it would be a cheesy ‘80s horror movie, which it is, but it still manages to achieve and scare like a modern horror movie.

If you would like to watch “The Evil Dead,” it is available on Netflix and Hulu Premium.

All of the fun facts in this article come from IMDB’s fun fact page.

Do you have any recommendations on what films I should look into next? Send your suggestions to [email protected]