Don’t let the initial suspense and fun-filled montages fool you, this movie is all action.
My first notes on this film were “Drugs are baaad, kids.” I still stand by this statement, but it takes on a different meaning by the end of the film. Jason William Lee plays the long game with The Evil in Us, taking its audience on a long, ill-fated, and familiar story of young adults partying in near isolation with bad habits and bad histories. Some direct quotes from the disastrous fourth of July get-together include “Drugs don’t do this to people!” and “This isn’t f***ing Bath Salts, Okay?!” That one kind of hit home, because, well. This horror reviewer is currently residing in Florida- home of Bath Salts Guy. Don’t know that story yet? Some guy hopped up on amphetamines dubbed “Bath Salts” chewed someone’s face off in Miami. Modern-day zombie stuff. Drugs are baaaad, kids. The ABCs of Death 2 included a short film about that exact incident. You really couldn’t pay me to work for Florida Tourism.
The most interesting developments of this film are not in its major content, but in the brilliantly subtle and totally maddening subplot that left me outraged and impressed. Any film that evokes such strong emotion did something right, even if it was incidental. Lee however, made purposeful strides to the brilliant “conclusion,” if it could even be considered one. I can see this film becoming a series of action movies, the kind that are already a celebrated tradition in western cinema. My favorite concept included in this film was the concept of aftermath.
Very few disaster/horror/thriller films include descriptions of what happens next. It adds a level of drama to the story, and always gains a sympathy vote from me. The WORST part of this film was the fact that it begins as a story that could only happen to the stereotypical unlucky men and women of horror, and then escalates into “it could happen to you, too.” That’s the worst for me, because if there’s one thing that that keeps me calm during horror movies, it’s that I can imagine the scenarios are too far-fetched to occur in my general vicinity. Thanks for scaring me, Jason William Lee. I hate you.