Evil Dead Rise: a demonic family reunion? (horror film review: video).
If you thought family gatherings were a nightmare, wait until you see what the estranged sisters in Evil Dead Rise go through. In this fifth installment of the much-beloved franchise, we’re treated to yet another delightful buffet of gore, demonic possession, and witty one-liners that’ll make you question your own sanity for laughing.
Directed by Lee Cronin, Evil Dead Rise stars Lily Sullivan and Alyssa Sutherland as two estranged sisters who find themselves in a race against time (and demonic creatures) to save their family. It’s like your typical family drama, only with more blood, guts, and dismemberment. Finally, a family reunion we can all enjoy!
Set in an apartment complex, the film begins with an earthquake, unearthing a hole in the parking lot. As you do, the children of the family venture into the hole and discover a strange book, the infamous Book of the Dead. Who needs an iPad when you’ve got ancient demonic texts to entertain the kids?
The demonic entity unleashed is, of course, a barrel of laughs, cutting power to the building and turning family members into possessed, murderous shells of their former selves. As if Ellie’s (Sutherland) violent elevator attack wasn’t enough, she later returns to her apartment to projectile vomit in front of her sister and children. Talk about sibling rivalry!
As the family battles their possessed loved ones and neighbors, we’re treated to a smorgasbord of creative kills and gruesome effects. From decapitations via drone to a possessed child chewing glass in the kitchen, Evil Dead Rise really raises the bar for family dysfunction.
The pièce de résistance, however, is the climactic battle in which the possessed corpses of the neighbors merge to form a spider-like creature. A monstrous family reunion like no other! Our heroines, Beth (Sullivan) and Kassie (Nell Fisher), make their last stand in a blood-soaked parking lot, dispatching the demonic creature with a chainsaw and a wood chipper. A heartwarming family moment, really.
Evil Dead Rise received positive reviews from critics, who appreciated the film’s ability to balance horror, gore, and dark humor. The film premiered at South by Southwest on March 15, 2023, and is set for a U.S. release on April 21st 2023 by Warner Bros. Pictures. Whether you’re a long-time fan of the series or just in the mood for some good old-fashioned demonic family drama, Evil Dead Rise is a bloody good time that’s sure to have you laughing, screaming, and questioning your own relatives.