Evil Dead (18) ***

Jane Levy as Mia in Evil Dead.  Picture:   PA Photo/Studio Canal.
Jane Levy as Mia in Evil Dead. Picture: PA Photo/Studio Canal.
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In 1981, Sam Raimi re-invigorated the horror genre with The Evil Dead, an overtly camp, low-budget journey of terror in the company of five university students who encounter malevolent forces in the Tennessee Hills.

The film’s giddy mix of black humour and extreme violence, including an infamous scene of a girl being sexually assaulted by a tree, bestowed cult status on Raimi’s deliciously twisted vision.

British censors were divided, trimming 49 seconds of excessive gore from the theatrical release and a further 66 seconds from the 1990 home version in response to media-fuelled hysteria over so-called ‘video nasties’.

More than 20 years later, Fede Alvarez’s affectionate reboot is unlikely to make a similar cultural impact, stumbling down a clearly signposted narrative path with considerably more cash in the special-effects kitty.

Evil Dead shoehorns almost its entire plot into an exposition-heavy opening 30 minutes.

Once the gratuitous mutilation begins, the bloodgates open as shrieking cast members are sliced, scorched and eviscerated by an electric carving knife, a boiling hot shower, shards of shattered glass and a pneumatic nail gun.

This horror reboot is unlikely to have the same impact as the original.