8 February 2006 | Anonymous_Maxine
Interesting look back.
I have to admit that I wasn't as impressed with this documentary as I expected to be, because I just finished reading Bruce Campbell's book, If Chins Could Kill, which went into vastly more detail about the making of the films than this documentary. On the other hand, it's a great look back at the making of Evil Dead II, and provides some of the same insights that I read about in Campbell's book and gives a great sense of the personalities of the people involved in making the movie. A lot of these guys had known each other since they were kids and it was great to see the way people like Sam Raimi and Bruce Campbell worked together in that Raimi is always openly trying to torture Bruce in any way he can imagine, and the more ways he can imagine the better the movie seems to turn out.
It struck me as a little odd that they pointed out so many of their own mistakes in the last third of the documentary, but it was all in good fun and I think that's a lot of the point of the horror genre as a whole (this is something that Eli Roth missed completely in his latest crapfest Hostel, which I hated so intensely that I will probably find some way to badmouth it in the next 30 or 40 reviews that I write for the IMDb. I'm literally overflowing with bitter hatred for that movie).
There are also some interesting trivia items pointed out, such as the Freddy Krueger glove hanging on the wall above the door in the cabin when the girl's headless corpse bursts in to attack Ash with his chainsaw. A more interesting point, however, was not pointed out. Campbell talks in his book about that The Hills Have Eyes poster that you see torn in half in the movie. In his book, Campbell describes a Jaws poster torn in half in The Hills Have Eyes, which Sam Raimi saw as Wes Craven challenging Jaws, suggesting that his own film was scarier, so Raimi responds by tearing a Hills Have Eyes poster in half in this film. Craven reportedly responds by having a character in Nightmare on Elm Street watching a horror film on TV at home late one night none other than The Evil Dead. It's these little respectful interactions between different filmmakers that are really fun to watch for, and again they reinforce the idea that this stuff is all in good fun. Definitely an interesting documentary, Evil Dead fans are sure to love it, and also don't miss the audio commentary on the DVD, because you can get even more of a sense of the kind of atmosphere that must have been in the air during the making of the movie.