Directed by Toshiharu Ikeda
Starring Aya Katsuragi
Masahiko Abe Miyuki Ono
Incredibly atmospheric, eerie and gory horror film from Japan that sadly has only gained sporadic exposure in the United States, mainly through film festivals and the underground video market. It`s now available on DVD and is definite must-see for modern horror fanatics.
Ono plays a late-night TV show host who plays videos that fans send her. One video appears to be a snuff film. After a little investigating, she and her crew realize the film came from an abandoned industrial complex and foolishly go to check it out. They are then murdered one by one.
Ikeda demonstrates a style very reminiscent of Dario Argento, with murders committed in over-the-top, creative ways. Even the music sounds like it was composed by Goblin, Argento`s musical group of choice. But "Evil Dead Trap" is actually much better than much of Argento`s later work. The make-up effects are stunning, particularly during the "snuff movie" during which a woman`s eye is punctured. Unlike so much of what we see in horror today, it literally leaves you gasping, asking, "How the f--- did they do that?" Remember when horror movie effects used to do that in the U.S.?
Aside from its availability on DVD, this pic is very hard to find and you can bet you`ll never run into it at your local Blockbuster. It was a huge hit in Japan and two sequels resulted.
One note about the title: The literal translation of the Japanese title is something like "Formation of a Ghost". Who knows how it got this obviously Sam Raimi-inspired moniker in the U.S.
-- Review by Lucius Gore
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