Double Feature Friday: Evil Dead 2 (1987) and Army of Darkness (1993)

Why in the fuck would we do a double feature on Evil Dead 2 and Army of Darkness?  I mean there are 3 movies, a reboot/sequel thing and a television show with 2 seasons in the book.  I mean why these two?

Well, The Evil Dead, kind of works as a stand alone.  Rarely have I sat and watched all three movies at one time, never have I ever watched all four.  But through the years I have been to theaters showing these two, Evil Dead 2 and Army of Darkness.  Think about it, Ash revisits the cabin after some time…It almost plays out the first movie anyway.  There is more comedy added to it and it leaves off with an open ending.  Army of Darkness picks up immediately where Evil Dead 2 leaves off.  So, they can be a double feature.  While The Evil Dead is such a great horror film, I truly believe it is more of a stand alone than the beginning of a trilogy.

Evil Dead 2: Dead By Dawn (1987)

Like I said, the movie starts similar to the first, with the exception of Ash and Linda head to the cabin alone, rather than a group.  Ash plays a tape of an archaeologist known as Professor Raymond Knowby, the cabin’s previous inhabitant, reciting passages from the Necronomicon Ex-Mortis (or Book of the Dead).  Linda dies, well Ash slices her head off with a shovel.  After he buries Linda, he is possessed, thrown through the woods and when he wakes, he tries to escape but cannot.

The first half of the movie is all about Ash being driven insane.  When possessed he, fights his evil hand in an epic duel and everything in the cabin begins to laugh.  That is, by far my favorite scene in the movie.  He is standing in the middle of the room laughing with the lamp and the buck head and everything else.  Then the laughing stops and he shoots at the front door, when we catch up with the rest of the cast.  We do meet them earlier in the movie, but it is all a set up.  The daughter of Professor Knowby comes to the cabin with missing pages to the book of the dead.

Evil Dead 2 is a classic in its own right.  There are some who do not like the comedy aspect of Evil Dead 2, but I actually prefer the second movie to the first.  Maybe, I don’t know, when I watch the original, there are scenes I love.

If you have not seen Evil Dead 2, I would go ahead and watch it as soon as possible.  Sam Raimi at his finest and Bruce Campbell’s finest role.  Also, this is my favorite version of Ash.  It is between the cock Ash in Army of Darkness and the innocent Ash from the Evil Dead.  Of course, one of the best moments, Ash puts the chainsaw on his hand and cuts down the barrel of his shotgun and the camera zooms in and he says…”Groovy”. This is something he has become known for saying.

Evil Dead 2 is a classic, cult classic.  It is a must or horror fans.

Army of Darkness (1993)

At the end of Evil Dead 2, Ash is sucked into a portal and sent back to the time of Knights and witches and wizards.  Ash is taken by soldiers and thrown into a death pit.  In the pit he has to fight off the pit witch and while fighting, he gets his chainsaw tossed to him to help him fight.  It a magnificent scene, heroic for sure.  Eventually Ash gets to uses his rifle and gives the best speech.

All right, you primitive screw-heads, listen up! See this? This… is my boomstick![continuing nonchalantly] – It’s a twelve-gauge, double-barreled Remington. S-Mart’s top of the line. You can find this in the sporting goods department. That’s right, this sweet baby was made in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Retails for about $109.95. It’s got a walnut stock, cobalt-blue steel, and a hair trigger. That’s right… shop smart: shop S-Mart… You got that?

Brilliant!

Army of Darkness is a pretty basic and fun story.  Ash helps the people fight against evil.  There are great moments when he as to resite the words to remove the correct Necronomicon.  When he is split into Ash and Evil Ash is great as well.  This movie is way more silly than Evil Dead 2, but we have a epic end battle scene.

One thing, Ash brings back the iconic line, “Groovy” comes from this movie.  When Ash gets a replacement hand, he says the line.  Army of Darkness is full of one liners, “Give me some sugar baby”.  We really get a sense of who Ash is more than ever.  This bleeds into the show Ash vs Evil Dead, which is terrific.

Army of Darkness is another must for horror fans.  I would say, watch these two back to back, it makes sense.  I think Evil Dead 2 is the best of the bunch over all, but I really do like Army of Darkness a lot.  Army of Darkness is its own movie and something completely different to the first two.

Now, sit back, grab some popcorn and enjoy these movies.  Don’t bother with any of the alternate endings of Army of Darkness, stick the the S-mart ending.

Don’t forget Bloody Streaming Roulette is coming back tomorrow!

About Ray Marek III 401 Articles
I have been watching horror films since I was 6 years old. The story, one Saturday night, my mom and I were watching movies and she fell asleep on the couch. We had the channel set on HBO and the movie we were watching ended and the next one, A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy’s Revenge. This was some time in 1986. I watched then entire film, I was sitting on the edge of my seat. When my mom woke, she asked me what just ended and I told her, “Freddy”. That was all I talked about for weeks and finally she broke down and rented more horror films for me. She rented, the Texas Chainsaw Massacre part 2, Re-Animator, Friday the 13th VI: Jason Lives and Halloween II. I watched all and fell in love with horror films forever. 5 Horror Films to Watch Inferno (1980) A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984) The Beyond (1981) Friday the 13th VI: Jason Lives (1986) Horror of Dracula (1958)