I was originally going to rank the Evil Dead series but found myself not able to. Mainly because I have only watched each film for the first time this month and I believe I would need to rewatch the whole series before I ranked them. Still, I have thoughts on the trilogy and the remake!
The Evil Dead (1981)
I had no idea what I expected from The Evil Dead. All I knew was that people loved the sequel, liked the first one, Bruce Campbell starred, oh and that it had a show called Ash vs. Evil Dead. That was it. Evil Dead is a classic, but it’s one that isn’t talked about nearly enough. Like so many horror movies it was made with a low budget, but that doesn’t hold it back from being a masterclass of tension. Once things got going I was on the edge of my seat. Plenty of blood and gore too, not that I need it in a horror movie, but when it is done right which it is here then it works nicely. As for cons, the infamous tree rape was not necessary and felt in bad taste. Also, I would add none of the characters were particularly great and yes that includes Ash. Ash comes into his own in the next two movies, he is far too serious here to be the Ash that we all love. This is still a great horror movie in spite of its flaws.
Evil Dead II (1987)
Now, this is groovy. I will admit, I was a little confused at first since I thought Evil Dead 2 would immediately take place after the first one, but that doesn’t happen. Once I realized they were simply redoing the first one in the first 15 mins, I quickly got on board. I would consider Evil Dead 2 more of a comedy more than horror, but what it does for both is extremely impressive. Especially since it excels at both. Bruce Campbell is terrific as Ash, all his physical comedy is what truly makes this movie a blast to watch. I do slightly put this one over the first mainly because I like Ash much better here and there’s no tree rape which makes it automatically better than the first.
Army of Darkness (1992)
I don’t typically like movies set in the medieval days, but of course, I made an expectation for Army of Darkness. With Bruce Campbell’s irresistible charm and the humor better than ever, Army of Darkness makes for an excellent viewing experience. It’s ironic that when Ash is at his worst as a human being is when I like him best. That’s what I most liked about Army of Darkness Ash isn’t the flawless hero. We see Ash let his power go to his head and he become arrogant and controlling and immediately pays the price for it. Then he has to fix the mess he made and it’s great. I would put Army of Darkness and Evil Dead on the same level. I like the horror we got in Evil Dead 2, but I preferred the humor in Darkness more. I know shocking! Either way, this was a fantastic end to a well-done trilogy.
Evil Dead (2013)
I actually watched a remake of something! I usually tend to avoid remakes, because I never hear good things about them. Evil Dead is a rare exception because I heard mostly good reviews and wanted to give the remake a shot. I’m glad I did because I really enjoyed this remake. I may even like it more than the original which I believed is a conversational opinion. I just like character moments in the remake and the more down to reality approach to the Evil Dead. I did miss Ash, but I liked all the homages to the original trilogy, yet it still felt like it’s own. This is how remakes should be done. Do enough to make it your own, while also feeling like it belongs into the franchise it’s remaking. This is one of the better remakes I have seen. If more remakes were like this I would probably watch them more often than I do.