EVIL DEAD | EVIL DEAD 2 [welcome to heck]

T H E   E V I L   D E A D
a n d
E V I L   D E A D   2

T H E   E V I L   D E A D

Five students, one cabin, and a basement full of occult archaeological artifacts. What could paws-ibly go wrong?

I don't think you can watch one Evil Dead film and not watch them both (the third, Army of Darkness, is further along the Harryhausen-Xena axis (not that that's a bad thing.)) This first one is an incredibly efficient splatter flick where everyone is in danger from almost the first frame. It's not quite a zombie flick, nor really a slasher film - almost every character is a victim, but almost every character is the aggressor, as well. The nature of the demonic possession angle means the cast gets to really lean into some over-the-top performances, and for these damned souls, there will be no rest until morning. It's gory as hell, and you will never forget the tree scene, though more out of audacity than brutality. Boy uh a lot of these movies are dodgy with women, I'm realizing. Moving on: The Evil Dead is a pure splatter gorefest and its impact on the genre will echo for generations to come. (And the remake, though being about ten times as stupid, is actually pretty entertaining - but also a lot more extreme.)

Director: Sam Raimi (Darkman, Drag Me to Hell)
Cast: Bruce Campbell (Bubba Ho-Tep, Running Time)
Ellen Sandweiss (Within the Woods, Satan's Playground)

CONTENT (spoilered; highlight for warnings)
violence against women, sexual assault by tree, demonic possession, graphic use of a pencil, dismemberment, eye gouging

CAREER STATS [on a scale from 1 (least) to 10 (most)]
FUN: 8
It's played straight, but there's just a little Three Stooges.
Nowhere is safe. No-one is safe. Not even you, viewer!
Like a rollercoaster; you know there's no danger, but...
2's more entertaining, but 1's more in the spirit of things.

E V I L   D E A D   2

Ash goes back to the cabin? Nah it's a hard reboot, let's be real. A trip upstate to a cabin in the woods never hurt anyone. At least, not like it's about to hurt Ashley Williams.

This is the one! This is the horror movie that defined my adolescence. I swear it's five minutes or less before people start getting possessed and Ash's vacation goes to shit and everything bad that could possibly happen to a human being starts happening to him. This is the one with all the best memes, too - the possessed hand scrabbling around, the chainsaw replacement (with accompanying shotgun), all the best lines; it's all in here. If it sounds a little bit like the Bruce Campbell Show, well, it is; the other actors are there for a reason, and they're doing good work, but this film is Ash versus Special Effects. And it's great! It's a film that truly hits both extremes on the "dark / comedy" scale. It's the Three Stooges with a gore budget. Raimi's slapstick never got better, and his horror never got more phantasmagorical.

Director: Sam Raimi (For Love of the Game, A Simple Plan)
Cast: Bruce Campbell (Escape from L.A., Congo)
Sarah Berry (C.H.U.D. II: Bud the Chud)
Kassie Wesley DePaiva
(Guiding Light, One Life to Live, Days of Our Lives)

CONTENT (spoilered; highlight for warnings)
violence against a partner, violence against women, decapitation, amputation, self-harm, mental breakdown

CAREER STATS [on a scale from 1 (least) to 10 (most)]
FUN: 10
An ideal fusion of slapstick comedy and boundless splatter.
Images and moments that will stick with you, not keep you up.
Just a glorious non-stop swirling vortex of pain, for Ash.
A better film, but not as good for a Halloween party, I guess.

Army of Darkness, Evil Dead (2013), Dead Alive, Re-Animator

the alchemist cookbook


the babadook

basket case

the changeling

child's play

creep 2

a cure for wellness

a dark song

les diaboliques

the evil dead /
evil dead 2

the exorcist III

friday the 13th part VI: jason lives

the frighteners


hostel: pt 2

house (1977)

house (1986)

house of the devil


the curse




stir of echoes

the taking of deborah logan

the texas chainsaw massacre

the thing

we are still here

the witch

the wicker man