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Evil Dead Trap 2: Hideki (Unearthed Films) Blu-ray Review

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    Ian Jane
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  • Evil Dead Trap 2: Hideki (Unearthed Films) Blu-ray Review

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    Released by: Unearthed Films
    Released on: September 27th, 2022.
    Director: Isou Hashimoto
    Cast: Youko Nakagima, Rie Kondou, Shirou Sano
    Year: 1991
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    Evil Dead Trap 2: Hideki – Movie Review:

    This 1991 sequel (really in name only) to the first Evil Dead Trap film from 1988 will appeal to those who enjoyed the truly weird cinema that the Japanese do so well. High on atmosphere, less so on logic, it’s a nicely paced movie with some decent, practical gore effects and some interesting, quirky character.

    The story in the film revolves around a quiet young introverted woman named Aki Otani (Shoko Nakajima) who spends her time working as a projectionist in a ramshackle old movie theater. Aki also has a tendency to see the ghost of a little boy every now and then who may or may not be the ghost of an aborted baby.

    Aki eventually runs into Emi Kageyama (Rie Kondoh), and old high school friend, and Emi introduces Aki to Kurahashi (Shiro Sano, who kaiju movie fans will recognize from supporting roles in Godzilla 2000 and Godzilla, Mothra And King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack), a man who happens to be harboring some weirdness in his past and who also happens to be married. Anyway, Aki and Kurahashi hit it off rather quickly and are soon involved in a strange and torrid love affair. Emi, on the other hand, is totally focused on herself and her career – she’s a TV news reporter – to notice how strange things are starting to get.

    While all this is going on, a serial killer is running around and keeping pretty busy, while Emi is following the story. Telling you anymore would be a major spoiler, but the movie takes some pretty odd, unexpected turns in its final third, twists that you probably won’t see coming regardless of how many horror movies you’ve seen over the years.

    Does it all make sense? Kind of. A lot of what happens in this movie works on a kind of dream logic level, much like Argento’s Inferno. Adding to that, some of the lighting in the film is reminiscent of Argento’s work as well. Though it’s not quite that slick, there is interesting use of primary colored lighting on display in the movie, often times timed to coincide with some flashy murder set pieces. The movie is very well shot and the gore set pieces littered throughout are effective and quite shocking (squeamish viewers will probably want to look away during the film’s notorious arm snapping scene).

    Likewise, the acting is also pretty good. Shoko Nakajima, as Aki, is relatively believable even in some fairly unbelievable situations, and even quite sympathetic at times. She isn’t your typically impossibly beautiful actress, she looks like a real person, and that lends her work in the film some weight. Shiro Sano is great as the wonderfully slimy Kurahashi, he’s a lot of fun to watch here and definitely makes the most out of pretty much every scene that he’s in, often times stealing them from the rest of the cast. Rie Kondoh isn’t as impressive as the other two leads but she’s still quite good here, especially as the plot shifts into some pretty wild directions towards the finale.

    Not all of director Isou Hashimoto’s ideas gel together the way that they probably should have, but overall, this is a pretty solid watch thanks to some good acting, stylish cinematographer and solid murder set pieces.

    Evil Dead Trap 2: Hideki – Blu-ray Review:

    Unearthed Films brings Evil Dead Trap 2: Hideki to region A Blu-ray on a 25GB disc with the ninety-seven minute feature using up just over 22GBS on that said. The AVC encoded 1080p high definition presentation is framed at 1.85.1 widescreen and it looks solid, if never quite reference quality. Detail is impressive in the close up scenes, but there are some spots where the black levels look closer to dark grey than true black. Depth varies from scene to scene, with those using stronger lighting showing off more than those bathed in darkness. There aren’t any noticeable problems with print damage, dirt or debris nor are there any issues with noise reduction or edge enhancement, though some minor compression artifacts pop up here and there.

    Japanese language audio options are provided in 16-bit LPCM 2.0 Mono and 24-bit LPCM 2.0 Stereo with optional subtitles provided in English only.

    Extras are slim, limited to a still gallery, a trailer for the feature, a few bonus trailers (Evil Dead Trap, Dr. Lamb, The Untold Story), menus and chapter selection. This release does come packaged with a slipcover, however.

    Evil Dead Trap 2: Hideki – The Final Word:

    Evil Dead Trap 2: Hideki hass got enough style, bloodshed and intrigue to definitely make it worth a look, particularly those into the stranger side of Japanese horror films. The Blu-ray release from Unearthed Films is light on extras but it does offer a nice upgrade in both the audio and video departments over the past DVD edition


    Click on the images below, or right click and open in a new window, for full sized Evil Dead Trap 2 Hideki Blu-ray screen caps!

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