horror/comedy

Shaun vs. Evil Ed (1995)

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Directed by Anders Jacobsson

Starring Johan Rudebeck, Per Löfberg, Olof Rhodin and Camela Leierth

Poor Ed is a film editor who gets moved to the “splatter and gore” department in order to censor the bloody scenes in a hyper violent film series the studio just picked up for distribution.  He doesn’t care for that sort of thing but when threatened with being fired, he continues his work but the violence he sees takes a toll on him and he begins to hallucinate violent images that warp his fragile little mind and he starts losing his shit.

Review

After a film editor commits suicide (tastefully with a grenade in his mouth) the head of the horror division of a film studio hires Ed to take over and censor the fictionally infamous “Loose Limbs” series that the studio picked up.  Ed is initially put off by the splatter violence shown in these films and as much as he tries to get out of the job, he’s told to the job or he’s fired. 

Reluctant, Ed goes back to the job but due to the overwhelming violence he’s subjected to viewing, he starts to dream and hallucinate increasingly disturbing images.  He starts acting out scenes from the movies, seeing people as monsters as he finally loses his mind and goes on a murderous rampage.  He’s so good at killing that he easily takes out a SWAT team sent to take him out once he breaks loose inside an insane asylum.  It seems the only person who can stop him is the studio delivery boy who loves the “Loose Limbs” series that Ed has watched but seems normal enough until he has to fight fire with fire in order to save his girlfriend from becoming another victim.

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Ew, your mouth was open and everything.

The film makes no bones about the fact that this is clearly a satire against film censorship. The film is Swedish so its a bit of a lash out against the organization that censors their films but it’s not a huge leap for North American audiences to think of the MPAA the same way.  Some people believe violence in movies warps peoples’ minds and therefor makes them violent too.  While the movie is, of course, bloody violent, it’s so over the top you can’t help but laugh at how gory it can be. 

It certainly doesn’t take Ed very long to lose his marbles but this isn’t a drama about the effects of violence, it’s a splatter film so we get all sorts of wonderful scenes involving hacked off limbs, decapitations, a blown up head and many stabbings and gunshots.  I actually thought it was going to be more violent than it was but what’s presented here is just fine for gore hounds to enjoy.

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Every editor who worked on “Twilight.”

As with most films coming from a country that doesn’t speak English, the actors are all dubbed.  Though the actors are clearly speaking English for the majority of the film, they all get voice actors that range from hilariously tolerable to the absolute worst.  While most of it is acceptable given the film isn’t meant to be high art, some of the dubbing is atrociously bad but at least it doesn’t ruin the movie.

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Botox might cure that.

In the end, “Evil Ed” is a pretty serviceable gore film with a unique perspective that raises it above similar titles of the genre thanks to the tongue in cheek humour provided.  It’s satire but the filmmakers don’t stick it in your face all the time to remind you what they’re trying to do.  It’s a bloody fun film.

TL;DR

Story: 8 – A gore-soaked splatter film disguised as a satire against film censorship.  I like it!

Blood: 8 – From the head explosion at the beginning to the crazy shoot-em-up finale, there’s a fair amount of blood gushing to be found.

Nudity: 4 – A couple of quick T&A shots just for the hell of it.

Overall: 8 – A unique twist on what could’ve been a generic slasher, it’s funny and entertaining for those who like their films bloody.  Like me!

Trivia

-The film took five years to make and wound up only playing in four theatres in Sweden upon its release.

-Bill Moseley provides his voice for the killer in the fictional “Loose Limbs” films.

-“Evil Ed” contains several homages to other films like “Night of the Living Dead” and “Gremlins” but there are several obvious references to “Evil Dead” throughout.

-One of the films that Ed edits apparently contained a scene with a beaver raping a woman who then gets her head blown up by a bazooka.  The scene is never shown though there is a rumour that it was filmed but cut from the final product.

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