Dead by Dawn! The Evil Dead Trilogy Triple Feature


The Evil Dead
Sam Raimi’s debut feature, the one that introduced audiences to anvil-jawed hero Bruce Campbell and scared the world out of creepy cabins in the woods forever, is a low-budget rollercoaster ride double stuffed with shocks, gore and bizarre humor – a funky fright flick made by and for true horror fanatics. An unsuspecting group of college pals decide to vacation at a creepy backwoods cabin (big mistake!), but instead of rest and relaxation they find an unspeakable evil lurking in the forest, and one by one, the kids are transformed into undead creatures with a taste for terror. Soon it’s up to our man Ash to survive the night and save the day, but it ain’t gonna be easy … (Dir. by Sam Raimi, 1981, USA, 85 mins., Not Rated) 35mm

Evil Dead 2
Raimi really outdid himself with this extremely gonzo, blood-drenched follow-up to his horror classic Evil Dead, reimaging that truly frightening flick as both a parody and a sequel. Or perhaps even more accurately, it’s a remake on a better budget, and this time we get a gruesome slapstick comedy filled with plenty of gooey gore, wild slapstick antics and the definitive Bruce Campbell-gets-beaten-to-a-pulp performance. Once again, we have several twenty-somethings (including our hero, Ash) visiting a broken-down cabin in the woods where they discover a skin-covered copy of the Book of the Dead, which naturally unleashes hellish supernatural powers that gut, cut and slash every character in sight. All, that is, except Ash, who takes this massacre very personally and spends the rest of the film losing limbs, getting his head smashed in and literally losing his mind while battling the unseen forces, much to the audience’s delight. Totally nuts and genuinely hilarious, this is one of the definitive horror comedies of all time. (Dir. by Sam Raimi, 1987, USA, 84 mins., Not Rated) Digital

Army of Darkness
Officially “Part 3” of the wild and wacky Evil Dead series, Raimi’s Army of Darkness is an outrageous, action-fueled comedy with monsters – a film designed to make you laugh more than scream, at least if you have a really sick sense of humor. Bruce Campbell returns as Ash, a hardware-store clerk who is magically transported – along with his beat-up Oldsmobile and a chainsaw attachment for his severed left forearm – to the brutal battlefields of the 14th century. He quickly assumes power (who else in the Middle Ages packs a shotgun and a chainsaw?), and unites his ragtag band of medieval knights against the demonic Deadites, aka The Army of the Dead. Cue the vicious winged harpies, sword-wielding skeletons and mischievous bite-sized Ash clones. It’s The Three Stooges meet Jason and the Argonauts on meth amphetamines, and proof positive that no one else does it quite like Sam Raimi. (Dir. by Sam Raimi, 1991, USA, 81 mins., Rated R) Digital