Army of Darkness (1993)


Writer/director Sam Raimi returns once again to end his Evil Dead trilogy with Army of Darkness in '93. I remember at the time this film came out I wasn't into horror flicks as much, so when I heard of the film I didn't know what it was, so I actually never got around to viewing it until a year or two after its release. Armed with an even bigger budget, Sam took the film to a larger scale, with a number of make-up, puppet, and special effects to show the army of the undead. The movie has an even lighter and more comedic tone than the previous two and focused less on horror and more on entertainment. Although it's my least favorite in the series, it still ranks high in my list,as it's still a hilarious film with its blatantly obvious cheesy effects.

In this movie we follow Ash as he's sent to medieval times through the portal at the end of the second film. Starting off slightly different than how the second ended, we witness Ash get captured by Lord Arthur's men, as he's mistaken as one of the enemy's men. Thrown into a pit containing a deadite, Ash obviously makes short work of vile creature with his trusty chainsaw. Once shunned by the townspeople, he's now taken in as a hero and is dubbed the "chosen one" that'll rid the world of the deadites. Ash doesn't care much for the "medieval screwheads" and only wants a way back home. The Wiseman explains that the only way back is to reclaim the Necronomicon, and to recite specific words before he retrieves it. Naturally Ash doesn't say the words correctly, which ends up unleashing more evil upon the world, one of which includes "bad ash", which he first encountered while in the process of retrieving the book. Now Ash must help the villagers and the knights to fend off against the army of the undead.

What I've always enjoyed about the Evil Dead films are how each movie had something new to offer. In the first movie we saw a darker, more scary side; the second had a more kick-ass heroic side; and the last had a more fun and hilarious side. Also, a lot of things aren't reused at-nausea like a lot of other horror sequels. For instance instead of Ash reusing the same-old chainsaw, they give him a metallic hand. Its little things like that which makes the trilogy all-the-more enjoyable. Sam has expressed interest in doing another film for years, but it wasn't until recently (especially with news on an Evil Dead remake) that the news seems to be more relevant than ever. Who knows when or how the next film will take the series, but I'll tell you one thing -- another film will be nothing without Bruce Campbell as Ash.

If you enjoyed the previous two films then you'll defintely enjoy this one.
If you enjoyed the previous two films then you'll defintely enjoy this one.