When Sam Raimi’s Evil Dead 2 was released in 1987, it changed the face of genre cinema forever. It quickly became a cult classic and the video release ensured that its influence was far and wide. It came as a bit of a surprise considering the impact of The Evil Dead, which got caught up in the video nasties debate upsetting conservative voices on television and radio at the time. Whilst the sequel carries on where Raimi’s 1981 film left off, the tone is completely difficult. Ash is back but this time the emphasis is on comedy. Over 30 years later and his legacy has paved the way for a whole generation of horror film-makers.
After the events of the first film, Ash (Bruce Campbell) finds himself alone and haunted in the cabin. He’s soon to be joined by professor Knowsby’s daughter Annie (Sarah Berry) and her research associate (Richard Domeier), who have discovered the missing pages of the Book of the Dead. They’re guided there by rather obnoxious Jake (Dan Hicks) and his girlfriend Bobby Joe (Kassie Wesley DePaiva). When they arrive, Annie discovers her parents are dead and that there’s something malevolent in the woods.
Evil Dead 2 remains one the most truly joyful horror films ever made. Its macabre, maniacal and irreverent heart comes through the unique presence of Campbell. Never has an actor embodied a character as he does with Ash. Raimi ensures that the blood and gore is plentiful and frequent, as are the beautiful array of camera angles and shots, whilst Campbell brings a whole encyclopaedia of facial expressions. The best way to experience Evil Dead 2 is to simply strap yourself in and enjoy the ride.
Special edition contents:
- Audio commentary with Sam Raimi, Scott Spiegel, Bruce Campbell and Greg Nicotero
- Bloody and Groovy, Baby! – Tribute to Sam Raimi’s Evil Dead 2
- Shallowed Souls: Making of Evil Dead 2
- Cabin Fever: A “Fly on the Wall”
- Road to Wadesboro: Revisiting the Shooting Location with Filmmaker Tony Elwood
- The Gore the Merrier: Making of Evil Dead 2
- Interview with Bruce Campbell
Evil Dead 2 is released on 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray, DVD and Digital Download by Studiocanal on 4 March.