A department store employee messes around with
an old magic book. Soon, he ends up being time transported back
to old England.
The employee goes off in search of a magic book that will transport
him back to the present. Saying a magic chant, he accidentally
brings the dead to life.
Our hero, and his old English buddies, battle and defeat the army
of the dead. The employee is sent back to the future.
Co-Writer/Director Sam Raimi's, ARMY OF DARKNESS, is a fun, fast
paced, semi-gory hallucinatory Fantasy, Comedy, Fantasy, Adventure.
Bruce Campbell (The Adventures of Brisco County, Jr.) is delightful
as the tongue-in-cheek hero. Campbell, who's worked wirh Director
Raimi before in such films, as "Evil Dead" and "Evil
Dead II", among others, brings fun, tongue-in-cheek delivery
to lines like, "Give me some sugar, baby" and "Good,
bad, I'm the guy with the gun."
The supporting cast, including Embeth Davidtz, Marcus Gilbert,
Ian Abercrombie, deliver colorful and entertaining performances.
Director, Raimi, seems to bring out the best in actors.
The Director of Photography, Bill Pope, delivers some powerful
screen visuals. Particularly good are shoots of an army of the
dead leaving a graveyard.
The film's Music is bold, heroic, and fully orchestrated. Joseph
LoDuca gets the credit.
Some scenes feature great stop motion animation of skeleton's,
bringing to mind Ray Harryhausen's work in the classic, "Jason
and the Argonauts". These are my favorite scenes in the film.
Director of Visual Effects, William Mesa, and Introvision International,
Inc., seem to be the responsible parties.
Director Raimi works in some cute touches. In order to activate
a black magic book, Campbell is told he must recite the words,
"Klaatu barada nikto", the same words that Patricia
Neal uses to deactivate the killer robot in the Sci-Fi classic,
"The Day the Earth Stood Still," (1951). Pretty cool,
Alert viewers will notice Bridget Fonda in a small role as Campbell's
present day girlfriend. It's hard to say why she appeared in what
amounts to a cameo, but hey, it was probably a fun set to be on.
ARMY OF DARKNESS should be rather watchable for many Sci-Fi Viewers.
Those with weak stomachs, or who don't appreciate sick humor,
may be turned off.
If you liked ARMY OF DARKNESS you
may enjoy THE
TIME MACHINE and/or TRANCERS 4.