Picks and Pans Review: The Evil Dead

UPDATED 05/02/1983 at 01:00 AM EDT Originally published 05/02/1983 at 01:00 AM EDT

If there are any ancient Sumerians around, they ought to sue for defamation of character, since they are blamed for the curse that leads to all the havoc in this imbecilic horror movie. Set in a lonely cabin in Tennessee, this debacle is directed by a young Detroit filmmaker, Sam Raimi, with no sense of style. His technique: Turn people into ghoulish fiends and follow that up with a lot of bleeding and gut-spilling. As soon as the vines and trees start attacking—they manage to rape a young woman in one particularly ugly scene—it is clear that only a huge dose of weed killer could have saved this film. To what perverse strains of human nature do movies like this appeal? (R)

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