One side effect of working as an independent is that it takes more energy than working for a company. Between that and the drain of having young children, I don’t have the same amount of time for movies. This is a shame, but a fact of life right now. I do make sure I have time for at least one new movie on the weekend and this week it was Drag Me To Hell.
Drag Me To Hell is the latest movie from Sam Raimi. Sam Raimi is a very important person in my life. I’ve been a fan of his since I “ruined” my girlfriend’s birthday with The Evil Dead back when I was in high school (I should point out that I recently learned, via Facebook, that she’s now a fan). A little later, I discovered that Sam and the rest of the Evil Dead crew, including the great Bruce Campbell, were from the Detroit area. This somehow made my dream of working in movies seem a little more attainable.
Since making the Evil Dead movies, Mr. Raimi has gone on to make serious films (A Simple Plan) and great popcorn movies (the Spider-man series). Most have been solid, but they didn’t have the same edge as his earlier stuff.
Drag Me To Hell is a nice return to the insane camera work and strange mix of influences I originally loved him for. I’m sure there were many teenagers who went looking for a “serious” horror movie, you know like Saw VI, and walked away bewildered by a film as influenced by Looney Tunes as The Omen. The anvil gag was my personal favorite. It’s also strangely heart-warming that he’s still amused by disgusting body fluids being poured or sprayed into peoples’ open mouths.
In other hands, these things would come off as sloppy or artless but in his case he makes them inspired. Drag Me To Hell isn’t a movie trying to change your worldview or speak out on an important issue. Its only goal is to work hard at giving you as much entertainment as it can while it’s playing. Thank god there’s a director who can still pull that off.
ONE LAST THING
This movie, like all Sam Raimi films set in the modern era, featured his high school car. It appears in all of his films. It does not, however, have a Bruce Campbell cameo. I guess you can’t get it all.