Army of Darkness (1992)

Genres - Comedy, Horror  |   Sub-Genres - Horror Comedy  |   Release Date - Feb 19, 1993 (USA)  |   Run Time - 81 min.  |   Countries - United States   |   MPAA Rating - R
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Review by Karl Williams

An excellent tongue-in-cheek horror film that's loosely a sequel to the cult favorite Evil Dead pictures, this larger budgeted follow-up fails to capitalize as well as it might have on its delightful high-concept premise. That's a criticism targeted strictly to non-horror buffs, however; true genre fans probably won't even notice, given the accepted paucity of intelligent plotting in most horror outings. Besides, an abundance of dandy dialogue, pop cultural references, and imaginative action sequences nearly enough makes up for a story that occasionally disappoints. Bruce Campbell returns in the role of the heroic Ash, a part that the actor performs once again with panache, reminding his followers and non-fans alike what a shame it is that the likable, square-jawed B-movie impresario hasn't been elevated to A-list leading man status as of yet. Director Sam Raimi takes it a little easier on the stylish camera work, seamlessly blending the visuals into his story telling, maturing as a filmmaker, but still a gleeful enough fan himself to inject some stop-motion critters straight from the Ray Harryhausen school of special effects. The film's other credits are impressive: music from the great Danny Elfman and a supporting cast that includes classy actress Embeth Davidtz of Schindler's List (1993), of all people. It's not for everyone but for the heavy metal-rock & roll-loving, horror movie-devoted populace, Army of Darkness (1993) will satisfy their jonesing for a good cinematic time.