Without a doubt, Evil Dead Trap ranks amongst my favourite Asian horror titles. Last night, I decided to give my trasured Synapse disc another whirl. It had been a good while since I last watched the film - would it still hit the mark with repeated viewing? The answer is an emphatic "Yes." There's been a lot of references to Argento and Fulci when people come to write about Evil Dead Trap. It's not difficult to understand why. The film features impressively violent set pieces like the Italian masters, has a Goblinesque soundtrack and has a vivid use of colours like Suspiria or Inferno. It's simply a delight to watch. Although the soundtrack is compromised (mono only), it's a good one and its repetitive nature will ensure it lingers in the subconscious after you've turned the television off. I love the whole premise of the film. A female reporter on a late night television show is sent a gruesome video featuring the bloody dispatch of a young woman who looks the spitting image of her. Hooked by curiosity (Is it an elaborate practical joke? Is it a snuff movie?), the reporter and her colleagues set out to investigate the tape, following deliberate directions left on the video itself. The path leads to a deserted factory and that's where the fun starts. The film is gripping stuff. It's simple and delivers its shocks efficiently (like a bizarre Friday the 13th film). In the last 20 minutes of the film, the weird switch is turned up a notch and we enter a Cronenberg-like state of affairs. Curiously, the first time I watched Evil Dead Trap, I felt the film lost its impact towards the later stages. Watching it again in the early hours of this morning, I've changed my mind. The film works really well as a whole. It's a journey from the logic and organisation of a television company to the strange nightmare world we find ourselves in before the credits have rolled. In terms of acting, the performances are excellent. I've read that asian softcore porn actresses were cast in some of the roles which might explain some of the scenes (including a protracted and unpleasant rape sequence). The central character, Nami, played by Miyuki Ono is believable and someone you root for. As in the majority of asian movies, the ladies are easy on the eye. This is probably the perfect introduction to Asian cinema as it's atmospheric, gory (some of the traps are executed so fast that you don't see them coming and the outcome will satisfy most gorehounds), has a decent soundtrack and a few scenes of "t & a". It also has an eyeball abuse scene that I believe tops the one in Fulci's Zombi 2. (This scene actually appears in the DVD menu sequence making it one of the goriest intros I've ever encountered on a DVD!) All in all, a great film and a great DVD from Synapse. I've not listened to the audio commentary yet but I have been informed it is unintentionally hilarious. So I'll be giving the disc another spin for definite in the not too distant future... Asian Horror DVD of the Month will return in October...see you then.