Evil Dead II: Dead by Dawn, 1987 (Script)
Director: Sam Raimi
Availability: Easy (available on DVD from Anchor Bay Entertainment)

What October would be complete without the penultimate example of modern horror? Combining scares with laughs with blood-a-plenty, Evil Dead II really pushed the limits of what horror fans came to expect. Before Peter Jackson had New Zealanders assaulting zombies with a lawnmower, Sam Raimi had Bruce Campbell semi-surgically attaching a chainsaw to his arm, in place of a severed hand that had become possessed.

Full of great camerawork and special effects, Evil Dead II is a quicker-paced, funnier take on the same story offered up in the series’ first film, but still offered up a lot of great scares in between the laughs (unlike Army of Darkness which, while still a great movie, was a pretty far cry from the “horror” element of the earlier entries in the series).

I’ve probably seen this movie more times than any other (except Dawn of the Dead), probably a dozen times alone with Ryder. It was, after all, one of our first bonding moments, watching a rented copy of Evil Dead II together from West Coast Video/Couch Potatoes. Still, it remains a staple in my collection and is a great go-to movie if I’m alone or have a group of likeminded friends over. And for those of you that have somehow avoided the gore galore, any entry in the series can be found quite easily at even the most mainstream of video rental stores.

Groovy. (You know I’d end on that note, right?)