Wednesday, 9 January 2013

Evil Dead: Army of Darkness

"Evil Dead: Army of Darkness" aka "Evil Dead 3" aka "Bruce Campbell vs Army of Darkness" (1992, Sam Raimi, Dino De Laurentiis Communications, Renaissance Pictures, Universal Studios) is the third original "Evil Dead".

Since the "Evil Dead" remake is on the horizon, I thought I'd rewatch the awesomeness that is the original 3 films. As a Bruce Campbell fan and a Sam Raimi fan, it's obvious that I would rate these three films highly on my list, but I defend this as so:
  1. Bruce Campbell is awesome
  2. Sam Raimi is awesome
  3. Evil Dead is awesome
'nuff said ;)

Oh, ok then.

I'm starting backwards. Partially because I've seen all 3 so many times it won't make a jot of difference to my viewing experience, and partially because I want to watch no. 1 before I watch the remake of it (regardless of how many months premature my viewing will be!).

"AOD" is my least favourite of the three, but it is by no means bad. Turning completely WTF-crazy and funny, this film finds our protagonist, Ash (Bruce Campbell) trapped in the medieval past after being sucked through a time vortex along with the evil in the second film. He is captured by some knights, who have mistaken him for one of their enemy's men, and is taken back to their castle and forced to face off against a deadite.

Poor old Ash, not only is he lost in time, without one of his hands, captured by knights and forced to do battle (yet again) with the demonic undead, but to add to his woes he is found to be the man from the prophecy who is to rid the world of the Deadite scourge!

Ash is saved from death, and instead sent to retrieve the 'Necronomicon' or book of the dead, so that he can a) get rid of the Deadites and b) be returned to his own time.

Unfortunately, being Ash, he makes a bit of a mess of the whole thing and winds up; amongst battling miniature versions of himself, accidentally spawning an evil twin and almost being sucked into the abyss; accidentally raising the army of the deadites to do battle against the humans. Oops?

Can the humans defeat the undead? Can Ash finally put those college science books to good use? Will he get to do the nasty with lovely lady Sheila (Embeth Davidz)?! All I can say is "Hail to the king, baby!"

Manic, funny and violent, this film is a light hearted nod to the franchise. Ash is supremely awesome in that charismatically hectic kind of way. The whole film is a big cartoon-like laugh with some fairly impressive fight scenes (fakey skull masks not withstanding).

This version of the DVD has the real ending which Raimi preferred. As much as I like the happy ending, it doesn't fit with Ash's fatal character flaw of being overly cocky and never paying attention, so I have to side with the Raimi in this one! Ash would definitely have screwed it up.

Funny and nuts, this film is less horror and more action gore, but B-movie gold regardless! If you haven't seen it, I recommend!

That, is his boomstick.
[Image: Universal Studios]