Director: Sam Raimi
Stars: Bruce Campbell, Sarah Berry, Danny Hicks, Kassie Wesley
In 1981, a then-unknown Sam Raimi recruited some close friends to make a little gore-fest called The Evil Dead, a balls-to-the-wall exercise in demonic possession, crimson geysers, and mostly lighthearted horror-comedy. Six years later, Raimi and leading man Bruce Campbell completely lost their minds, and the genre community reaped the secondhand perks.
The greatest benefit, of course, is the celluloid result of that combined lunacy: Evil Dead 2, an out-of-control sequel that goes above and beyond in its silliness and gory slapstick. The folks behind the camera, as well as in front of it, know full well that the film’s wild images, like a man’s severed hand trying to kill him and the same guy killing demons using a chainsaw jammed into his wrist-stump, are inherently ridiculous, and, subsequently, tons of laughs.
Using that awareness to their advantage, Raimi and company jump into the mayhem early and never pull back. And with a physical comedian/proficient actor like Campbell at its center, Evil Dead 2 doesn’t skip a beat.