Evil Dead is a 2013 American horror film co-written and directed by Fede Alvarez. It is the fourth installment of the Evil Dead franchise, serving as both a reboot and as a loose continuation of the series. It is the first not to be directed by Sam Raimi.
The film is the feature debut of Alvarez, whom Raimi selected. It was produced by Raimi, Bruce Campbell, and Robert G. Tapert: the writer-director, lead actor, and producer of the original trilogy respectively. The film had its world premiere at the South by Southwest festival on March 8, 2013. On March 9, it was announced that a sequel was in development.
An injured and staggering girl is captured in the woods. She awakens tied to a post in a basement, with many people present. The girl’s father, Harold, is about to light her on fire, and she initially pleads for him to save her but then quickly reveals she is possessed. She is then set on fire before Harold shoots her in the head.
Some time later, a group of friends are meeting at an old cabin deep in the woods. The group consists of Eric, Olivia, Mia, Mia’s brother David, and David’s girlfriend Natalie. The group has arranged this getaway as Mia’s opportunity to become clean after her drug addiction caused her to overdose to the point of clinical death. Olivia suggests that Mia will attempt to bail out, and they should keep her from leaving, to which they agree.
Upon entering the cabin, Mia complains about a stench of death, to which the rest of the group appear oblivious. After David’s dog begins sniffing at a rug in the main room, they discover the door to a cellar. There, they find various animal corpses suspended from the ceiling, a double-barreled shotgun, and a book titled Naturom Demonto. Ignoring repeated warnings scrawled on its pages, Eric ends up reading a passage from the book aloud, which casts a demon that starts haunting Mia. Terrified, she pleads the group to leave, but they refuse as agreed. The demon, now taking the form of a darker version of Mia herself, chases her into the woods and possesses her.
The group finds Mia and take her back to the cabin where she attempts to warn David, but the group dismisses her believing she is just trying to leave to get drugs. David then finds his dog bludgeoned to death with a hammer, and when he attempts to confront Mia with this, he finds out she had locked herself up in the bathroom and severely burns her face in the boiling hot shower. David attempts to drive her to a hospital, but a flood has blocked the roads. Back at the cabin, they try to sedate Mia, but she shows up in the living room with the shotgun and shoots her brother in the arm. Mia tells the group in a demonic voice that they will not survive the night before collapsing to the floor. Olivia tries to seize the shotgun, but Mia attacks her, vomiting blood on Olivia’s face. During the struggle, Mia falls into the cellar and is locked in. Olivia goes to the bathroom to retrieve more sedatives for Mia, but strangely does not return right away. Eric goes in to check on her, only to find that she has become possessed and has cut off a large portion of flesh from the side of her face. Olivia attacks Eric, who manages to beat her head open with a broken piece of the sink.
Immediately after, as David attempts to patch up Eric’s wounds, Natalie hears Mia crying in the cellar, and goes to check on her. When Mia is revealed to still be possessed, she traps Natalie in the basement, bites her hand, and then vomits blood into her mouth. Natalie is rescued by David, but a black infection starts spreading quickly up her arm from the wound in her hand. However, Natalie is able to regain focus long enough to cut her own arm off with an electric knife in an attempt to stop the possession. Eric’s attempts to destroy the book are shown to be futile; he reveals that the book describes a prophecy by which a demon known as the Taker of Souls needs to devour five souls in order to release the Abomination from hell. To achieve this, the Taker has taken Mia’s body, and the only ways to release her are to burn her, bury her alive, or dismember her. A possessed Natalie attacks David and Eric before her remaining arm is shot off by David and she bleeds to death.
David resolves to burn the cabin and Mia with it, but after being overcome with emotion as Mia sings a lullaby from their childhood, he devises another plan. He enters the cellar with tranquilizers but Mia attacks him before Eric saves him. David immobilizes Mia and buries her. After Mia dies, he digs her out and using an improvised defibrillator he revives her, now free from the possession. David goes back into the house for the car keys but he is then attacked by a possessed Eric. The mortally wounded David gives Mia the keys, tells her to leave, and locks her out of the house. Eric warns David “He’s coming” before David shoots a container of gasoline igniting the house on fire, killing himself and Eric in the process.
Shortly after, the final stage of the prophecy from the book takes place: it begins to rain blood, and the Abomination crawls out of the ground and goes after Mia. During the chase, Mia is forced to rip off her hand when it becomes pinned under David’s jeep. Mia then manages to kill the Abomination with a chainsaw, and its remains sink back into the ground. The blood rain stops as dawn breaks, and Mia wanders away from the aftermath, oblivious to the Naturom Demonto on the ground as the book closes on its own.
During the end credits, audio is heard, from the original film, of Professor Raymond Knowby telling about his discovery of the Naturom Demonto. Then, in a brief post-credits scene, an older Ash Williams recites his iconic line from the original films, “Groovy”, and turns to the audience.
Learn more about the concepts, principles and symbolism behind the subliminals found in this film:
First Published: Dec 27, 2012 – Last Updated: May 12, 2013