Drag Me to Hell
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Christine Brown (Alison Lohman) is on her way to having it all: a devoted boyfriend (Justin Long), a hard-earned job promotion, and a bright future. But when she’s forced to make a tough decision that evicts an elderly woman from her house, Christine becomes the victim of an evil curse. Now she has only three days to dissuade a dark spirit from stealing her soul before she is dragged to hell for an eternity of unthinkable torment. Director Sam Raimi (Spider-Man and The Evil Dead Trilogy) returns to the horror genre with a vengeance in the film that critics rave is “the most crazy, fun and terrifying horror movie in years!” (Owen Gleiberman, Entertainment Weekly)
Touted as a return to Sam Raimi's horror-movie roots, Drag Me to Hell is indeed closer in spirit to the director's Evil Dead pictures than to his Spider-Man films. You got your gypsy gargoyles with rotted dentures, your upchucking corpses, your flexible two-way orifices--yes, Raimi's definitely back in the saddle. There's even a story: a sad loan officer (Alison Lohman) turns down the aforementioned denture-wearing gypsy for a loan extension, which leads to an evil curse and a date in hell in three days' time. A séance, an animal sacrifice, and a session in a storm-tossed graveyard will make the 72 hours pass very nervously, thank you, along with assorted scares. Justin Long plays Lohman's upper-class boyfriend, and Raimi fills the rest of the cast with some unusual and unfamiliar types. Along with the giddy horror-comedy that bursts out of the movie every 10 minutes or so, there's also an underlying mood of pity: Lohman's character is something of a hard-luck sad sack, who does enough wrong things to make her seem like a truly abject individual, well outside the heroic model of most multiplex offerings. (Lohman's own little-girl-lost quality adds to this feeling.) But don't let that get in the way of the fun-ride aspects of this goofy enterprise: Drag Me to Hell is a bunch of Z-movie gags wrapped in top-drawer production values. --Robert Horton
Stills from Drag Me to Hell (Click for larger image)
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