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As I have said before, I love the Evil Dead Trilogy. I could go on and on about the little details that I love about each film. It came as a surprise after getting myself reacquainted with this trilogy that The Evil Dead was actually the result of a short film made in 1978, Within the Woods. Upon that discovery, I knew I had to find it and watch it immediately.
Within the Woods serves as a great blueprint for The Evil Dead. You have four friends staying in a cabin that happens to be on an ancient burial ground. Of course, things get tampered with and hell breaks loose when Bruce becomes possessed and tries to kill his friends. With some reworking of the plot and adding on to characters, Within the Woods serves as an excellent launching pad for one the most original and horrifying flicks ever made.
One of the more interesting things that I hadn't thought about until recently was that Ellen Sandweis, who played Cheryl in The Evil Dead, was the final girl in this half hour long short. I wonder why Sam Raimi went with that direction in his short and had her get possessed in his feature length debut? Perhaps he wanted to flip the 'final girl' trope?
Good luck finding a decent link that has good resolution. I've looked around and each one I've seen is so bad, you have to squint your eyes to be able to see certain parts clearly. I can't complain about it being available. I'm glad it's there for us all to enjoy. However, I do hope that in the future, should we be graced with an anniversary edition of the Evil Dead trilogy, it will include Within the Woods fully restored so that we can fully appreciate it's humble beginnings.