The Evil Dead

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The Evil Dead (also known as: Evil Dead, The Book of the Dead, Sam Raimi's The Evil Dead and The Evil Dead, the Ultimate Experience in Grueling Horror) is a 1981 horror film [1] written and directed by Sam Raimi, starring Bruce Campbell, Ellen Sandweiss, and Betsy Baker. The film is a story of five college students vacationing in an isolated cabin in a wooded area. Their vacation becomes gruesome when they find an audiotape that releases evil spirits.

The film was extremely controversial for its graphic terror, violence, and gore, being initially turned down by almost all U.S. film distributors until a European company finally bought it in the Cannes Film Festival marketplace. It was finally released into theaters on October 15, 1981. Although its budget was just $375,000, the film was a moderate success at the box office, grossing a total of $2,400,000 in the U.S. upon its initial release.[2] Despite getting mixed reviews by critics at the time, it now has a dedicated cult following.[3] The film has spawned two sequels, Evil Dead II and Army of Darkness, and a stage musical; work on a script for a further film has started.[4]

Contents

Plot

Five Michigan State students venture into the hills and mountains of Tennessee to spend a weekend in an isolated cabin. There they find The Book of the Dead (a fictional Aztec/Canaanite text, unrelated to the Egyptian Book of the Dead), otherwise known as the Nyturan Demonta. While searching the basement of the cabin, the students find and play a tape recording of demonic incantations from the book, unwittingly resurrecting "Kandarian" demons. The characters are then possessed one by one, beginning with Cheryl Williams (Ellen Sandweiss), after she is hypnotized by the song of a demon and lured into the forest at night. Alone and far from the safety of the cabin, the demon proceeds to possess the trees of the forest, which come to life in a snake-like fashion and brutally rape her. Cheryl escapes the trees and is chased by the demon all the way back to the cabin, where no one believes her story and assumes that she was attacked by a wild animal. Her brother, Ash (Bruce Campbell), decides to drive her into town where she can stay the night. They discover that the only bridge is completely destroyed and the supports are bent into the shape of a claw-like hand.

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