Generally favorable reviews - based on 12 Critics What's this?

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Universal acclaim- based on 84 Ratings

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  • Starring: ,
  • Summary: Ash (Campbell), the sole survivor of "The Evil Dead," continues his struggle with the forces of the dead, with his girlfriend Linda. The two discover a mysterious tape recorder and hear the voice of Professor Knoby reciting passages from the Necronomicon, or Book of the Dead. The professor's words invoke a spell that unleashes the spirit of evil alive in the remote forest surrounding them. Watch in terror as the plot sickens and the supernatural demons invade the cabin on a gory crusade for human victims. In desperation, Ash attempts to escape his horrific fate by battling with the gruesome ghouls with the help of some unexpected visitors. However, he discovers that he is no match for the unspeakable creatures lurking behind every door, and waiting beyond every corner. (Anchor Bay Entertainment) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 12
  2. Negative: 1 out of 12
  1. Reviewed by: Jeremy Zoss
    Thanks to Sam Raimi’s inventive style and Bruce Campbell’s hysterical performance, the horror-comedy genre has grown into a legitimate genre, but Evil Dead 2 will forever be the king.
  2. Evil Dead 2: Dead by Dawn never lets up, continually introducing new characters and adding new thrills and chills right up to the last frame… A terrific trip, although admittedly not one that everybody would enjoy taking. [13 Mar 1987, Calendar, p.6-14]
  3. In many ways even more hellish and stylish than its predecessor... A horror cult classic.
  4. Reviewed by: Staff (Non Credited)
    A deliriously cinematic experience for those with a taste for Grand Guignol, this is a relentlessly energetic nightmare world where quite literally anything can happen--and does.
  5. Reviewed by: Staff (Not Credited)
    More an absurdist comedy than a horror film, Evil Dead II is a flashy good-natured display of special effects and scare tactics so extreme they can only be taken for laughs.
  6. Reviewed by: Mike Clark
    Best scenes: Campbell pondering whether to squash her dismembered head in a vice, and a later quandary when he must shotgun his own dismembered hand. Moral: Pimples aren't the worst thing that can happen to your body. [11 Sept 1987, Life, p.3D]
  7. Reviewed by: Pat Graham
    The effects are just as delirious this time around, but the nightmare poetry has vanished, along with the sense of archetypal purpose and narrative inevitability that held the jack-in-the-box original together.

See all 12 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 30 out of 30
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 30
  3. Negative: 0 out of 30
  1. Dec 26, 2013
    Evil Dead II is proof that Sam Raimi and Bruce Campbell were the gods of low budget filmmaking, proof of the incredible intelligence and stupidity of the horror genre. Evil Dead II is among the best horror comedies ever made. No much needs to be said from Raimi's spot on direction and Campbell's iconic, ridiculous parody of the action hero, Evil Dead II combines ludicrous amounts of gore with ludicrous amounts of hilarity, what more could you need? Expand
  2. Jun 16, 2014
    Evil Dead II: Dead By Dawn is a breathtaking part 2, worthy of expectations from both fans and critics about the sequel of the original renowned movie. Bruce Campbell returned as a sole survivor after the event in The Evil Dead, and this time he is even better with unpredictable, fearsome performance, which precisely matched Ash's mysteriously dangerous psychological behavior when he had his arm chopped and his girlfriend decapitated. Concisely speaking, Sam Raimi's terrifying direction, successfully combined with Campbell's breathtaking acting, produced a somewhat better horror cult classic with a higher level of blood, gore and visual elements that would leave viewers forever scared **** Expand
  3. j30
    Nov 9, 2011
    Horror films don't get much better than this. Perfectly balances slap-stick comedy and horror. It's hard to believe the director of Spider-man Sam Raimi got his start here. My favorite horror movie by far. Expand
  4. Nov 11, 2011
    This is a staple of our Halloween season in my house. My daughter and I watch it every year and absolutely LOVE it! Creepy yet cheezy and a whole lot of fun to watch! Our favorite scenes are when Ash battles his own hand. Tons of Blood and Laughs! Expand
  5. Oct 13, 2013
    Maximum visceral impact is what "Evil Dead 2" is all about-- and it delivers. The brilliance of "Evil Dead 2" is found in its psychotic blend of over-the-top gore, and it's fantastic sense of humor. Not a sequel so much as an elaborate do-over, "Evil Dead 2" amps up the ghastly laughs to generally thrilling results. As in the first film, director Sam Raimi lets out all the stops and plays on almost every cinematic trick in the book. Although the movie is obviously indebted to any number of sources, the film has an infectious energy all of its own.

    After a high-speed recap and continuation of first film's ending, Ash (Bruce Campbell) ventures out to that same lonely cabin for a romantic weekend with his girlfriend (Denise Bixler). There he discovers the same tape recorder again. When the voice reads a translation of the "Book of the Dead," a vicious evil force awakens in the woods, and rushes into the house, and all hell breaks loose once more. Despite "Evil Dead 2" being more of a rehash than a sequel, it's the tone of the two movies that are significantly different. While the original is more of a conventional horror movie, the sequel ventures into full-blown surrealism. While both movies contain moments of humor, "Evil Dead 2" raises the comedic stakes.

    Campbell's performance shifts to match the needs of the humorous script, and Ash is now all swagger, spitting out one-liners and taking on the forces of darkness with style. The overall intensity and old-school effects give the film a lovable quality that high-tech movies just can't provide nowadays. An acknowledgement to Mark Shostrom's prosthetic makeup and the camera work of Peter Deming and Eugene Shlugleit. Vivid, utterly unique, and quickly paced, ''Evil Dead 2'' is one of the goofiest, goriest movies this side of the grave.
  6. Apr 22, 2013
    Quite similar to the first film and it pretty much follows straight on from where the last one finished up, and while the special effects have improved I think the first one is just that tad better. Definitely still entertaining enough and Ash provides most of the laughs, but it was a little more on the corny side and almost more of a comedy this time around, which wasn't always a bad thing either. Now I'm pumped though because I've seen both the originals and all prepared for the remake!! Expand
  7. May 18, 2013
    I don't get it, I just don't get. I read everywhere that this was an awesome movie, Empire says; from what I believe are user votes, that this was the 46 or something best film out of 500. I know that doesn't entirely mean that it is that good just because a magazine says so. But this was so interesting, I had to watch, and when I did, I was so confused. So from what I can tell this is the first horror movie to include intentional laughs in it, even before scream. So I thought: well this will be fun to watch. When it was done though, I had this feeling of me just not understanding why people love this movie so much. Personally I think the last one was okay, it definitely scared me at certain parts and was real gross. The same can be said for this; in my opinion. There're moments where it's being funny, more so than the last one, but only at one or two moments. This is probably most appreciated by those who really love horror, or just understand film a bit more than I do. Until I do understand, this film will be listed as: okay, in my book. Expand

See all 30 User Reviews