Forget Marvel, Sam Raimi Reinvented Horror: A Cliché-Free Guide to His 8 Films
From gory cult classics to mind-bending Marvel installments, Sam Raimi owns the horror genre.
With his distinctive style and brilliantly terrifying mind, Raimi has delivered some unforgettably unique and horrifying films, working with all kinds of budgets and talent and always delivering.
The Evil Dead (1981)
Raimi was the one who kicked off the cult classic Evil Dead franchise more than four decades ago, with his vision brilliantly combining violence, gore, and comedy in a terrifying horror story following Ash Williams, about unwittingly unleashing demonic evil, and he pulled it all off with a minuscule budget.
Evil Dead 2 (1987)
The startling second addition to Evil Dead, built further on the unique blend of horror, humor, and Deadites, but this time with a heavier dose of torture and gore. Interestingly, legendary horror author Stephen King's admiration for the first film helped finance this bloody sequel.
Innovative and criminally underrated, Darkman follows a vengeful scientist hunting down the gangsters who killed his girlfriend and left him burned and disfigured.
With the scientist using synthetic skin to disguise himself for short periods to get his sadistic revenge, Darkman makes for a unique blend of sci-fi and horror that is both creepy and believable.
Army of Darkness (1992)
The third installment of the Evil Dead franchise delivers an unexpected take on the first two horrors, with Evil Dead's Ash Williams hilariously transported to Medieval times to face the Deadites once again, but this time to an entire army of them, and having to save two worlds at once.
The Gift (2000)
Moving in a more somber direction after the Evil Dead films, this supernatural horror showcases another side of Raimi's storytelling and follows a psychic whose abilities give her insight into a sinister disappearance, which becomes a high-profile murder.
Drag Me to Hell (2009)
An ambitious loan officer refuses to extend an elderly lady's mortgage, which results in the woman placing a deadly curse on her and dooming her to Hell in a matter of days. Genuinely terrifying and absurd at the same time, Drag Me to Hell bears the markings of a classic Raimi horror film, brilliantly adapted for the more modern audience.
Ash vs Evil Dead (2015-2018)
Surprisingly, Raimi's highest-rated project is a series. Unsurprisingly, it is an extension of his Evil Dead films. With a 99% critical score, the series follows Evil Dead's titular character Ash, 30 years after the first movie, as he learns that he will never truly escape the Deadites, and has to step up to save humanity from demonic forces once more.
Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness (2022)
This marvelously complicated film spans multiverses and is not a horror film, but a Marvel superhero movie with elements of horror and sorcery, brilliantly executed by Raimi, showing off his talents beyond shock and gore in a more commercial space.