The Gore the Merrier: The Making of Evil Dead II (2000)
This documentary provides film fans with an in-depth, behind-the-scenes look at the making of the horror comedy about a man who must lead a medieval army to victory against a horde of undead in order to return to his own time. Includes interviews with star Bruce Cambell, director Sam Raimi and other members of the cast and crew, who discuss what it was like to be a part of the making of this cult classic.
How sad is this?
Good concept, poorly executed.
It's funny watching the elements come together in this complicated scam. On one hand, the set-up isn't quite as complex as it seems, but there's an easy sense of fun in every exchange.
Tells a fascinating and unsettling true story, and does so well, without pretending to have all the answers.
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.
The Making of 'Evil Dead II' or The Gore the Merrier is a short 30 odd minute documentary that was produced by Anchor Bay for their DVD release. The documentary almost entirely focuses on the special make-up effects, it features retrospective interviews with effects team Robert Kurtzman, Howard Berger & Gregory Nicotero who filmed all the camcorder behind-the-scenes footage featured. As you would expect they discuss the effects in a fairly obvious way in the sense of 'we moulded a fake head for that bit' or 'he had a full latex body suit on' sort of thing. What really makes this documentary invaluable for Evil Dead II (1987) fans is the candid on set footage shot by Nicotero, everyone seems very natural & like their having lots of fun. Sam Raimi, Bruce Campbell & various other cast & crew members are present in this raw footage but don't appear as interviewees which is a little disappointing as the documentary is very one dimensional & you wish other areas were discussed, nothings perfect I suppose. There are a few brief camcorder shots of scenes that didn't make it into the final cut of the film including the chopped up body of Ed (Richard Domeier) & the puppet with half of his head sliced off along with a scene where the possessed Ash eats a squirrel & one where the possessed head of Linda (Denise Bixler) in the vice vomits green slime over Ash. They talk about some of the effects & scenes that didn't go as planned. The documentary finishes of with a spoof of Re-Animator (1985) called Evil Dead Baby filmed by the effects crew in their spare time, probably. For what it is this is a great insight into the effects of Evil Dead II but I felt it was far too shallow & I would have liked to have seen a bit more participation from other members of the crew. This is essential for Evil Dead II fans but even they may be a little disappointed by how limited it actually is. Having said that it's still definitely worth watching especially since it's a free extra on a DVD.
Seeing the KNB guys (before there even WAS a KNB) and the 'Detroit Mafia' (Sam Raimi, Bruce Campbell, Rob Tapert, etc) hamming it up and having a blast making one of the greatest movies of all time is just too great to miss! Highly, highly, highly recommend this DVD. You also get one of the greatest commentaries of all time on it with Raimi, Campbell, Nicotero and Spiegel. Altogether a great package!
If you are a big of the EVIL DEAD trilogy like I am then you will enjoy this amazing "making of" documentary that reveals just about everything you've ever wanted to know about the EVIL DEAD trilogy. It features almost everyone who was involved with the EVIL DEAD trilogy and is something that is worth more than a couple viewings.