The Best Sam Raimi Films (And How To Watch Them)

The Best Sam Raimi Films (And How To Watch Them) ...

The multiverse of Madness is fantastic to see Sam Raimi transform his unmistakable, dazzling visionary talent into a comic book movie once more for the first time since he helped revolutionize the genre with his Spider-Man trilogy. What most enjoyable about Doctor Strange is its ability to integrate some of the most macabre stylistic elements that the filmmaker is best known for inventing with the Evil Dead films.

While combining some of the best horror movies and comic book blockbusters of all time, Sam Raimi has tried his hand at almost every genre you can think of, often combining some into a unique blend. Choose by streaming or digitally renting, or physically purchasing our picks for Sam Raimi''s best movies, starting with the franchise that brought him the map.

The Evil Dead Movies (1981-1992)

An unassuming young man (Bruce Campbell) and his friends awaken unintentionally with a mysterious and grotesque book called the Necronomicon, completing a bloody battle that eventually drives the hero back to the Middle Ages.

Why are they some of Sam Raimis'' best films? Sam Raimi, a writer and director, combined the horror-comedy of 1987s Evil Dead II and brought his cartoonishly macabre vision to the fantasy adventure genre, with Army of Darkness all of it assembling a cult favorite TV show, several video games, a surprisingly fantastic 2013 reboot, and a fourth installment coming to HBO Max in 2022).

Shudder, stream The Evil Dead. Buy/Rent The Evil Dead on Amazon. Buy/Rent Evil Dead II on Amazon.

HBO Max. Buy/Rent Army Of Darkness on Amazon.

Get The Evil Dead and Evil Dead II on Blu-ray on Amazon. Get Army Of Darkness on Blu-ray on Amazon.

Crimewave (1985)

A plucky, average man accused of murder in a crowded chair recalls his painful and terrifying experiences with the real culprits: a pair of lunatic exterminators (Brion James and Paul L. James) on a deadly, aimless rampage.

Why is it one of Sam Raimis'' best films: In his follow-up to The Evil Dead (which he co-wrote with Joel and Ethan Coen), Sam Raimi changes his mind and embraces Crimewave, an electrifying, manic noir sequence, that often feels like a cartoon captured in live-action.

Tubi is streaming crimewave on Amazon Prime. Get Crimewave on DVD/Blu-ray on Amazon.

Intruder (1989)

On what they discover will be their last overnight shift, the stock crew at a small grocery store learns that there is a spoiled guest among them who is determined to make everyone happy last night.

Why is this one of Sam Raimi''s greatest films? While he had no creative involvement with this popular 80s slasher, Sam Raimi does have a role as meat department worker named Randy in Intruder, which was written and directed by his friend and frequent collaborator Scott Spiegel, and also features Bruce Campbell in a brief appearance at the end.

Shudder''s Stream Intruder. Purchase/Rent Intruder on Amazon. Get Intruder on DVD/Blu-ray on Amazon.

Darkman (1990)

After an incident involving a group of violent individuals leaves him grotesquely burned and virtually unrecognizable, a fine scientist (Academy Award nominee Liam Neeson) uses a revolutionary synthetic skin of his own invention to temporarily disguise himself as anyone of his choice to exact revenge on his enemies and reconnect with his wife (Academy Award winner Frances McDormand).

Why is this one of Sam Raimi''s best movies? Long before he was chosen to lead the Spider-Man films (which we will talk about next week) Sam Raimi made his superhero movie debut with a film of his own, not based on any pre-existing comic books called Darkman, a highly unique sci-fi action thriller in both concept and style... that also features Bruce Campbell in a brief appearance at the end.

Buy/Rent Darkman on Amazon. Get Darkman on DVD/Blu-ray on Amazon.

The Hudsucker Proxy (1994)

Tiim Robbins, a bright-eyed, but naive business school graduate, is quickly promoted from his position as a mail room attendant for a major manufacturing company to president unaware of the fact that it was all part of a stock market scam in New York City in the 1950s.

Why is this one of Sam Raimis'' best movies? While he did not direct this upliftingly fast-paced screwball comedy, Sam Raimi does have a brief comeo in and also collaborated with his friends Joel and Ethan Coen on the script for The Hudsucker Proxy, which features Bruce Campbell in the supporting role as a narrator.

Buy/Rent The Hudsucker Proxy on Amazon. Get The Hudsucker Proxy on Blu-ray on Amazon.

The Quick And The Dead (1995)

A mysterious and beautiful lady with a knack for sharp-shooting (Academy Award nominee Sharon Stone) stumbles into a poor county governed with an iron fist by a cruel, wealthy tyrant (Academy Award winner Gene Hackman) and participates in its gun dueling tournament in an attempt to dethrone him.

Why is it one of Sam Raimi''s finest films? After focusing on horror, slapstick crime noir, and superhero films, Sam Raimi approached a Western with The Quick and the Dead, one of the genres most visually unique and cheekily humorous scenes, from a screenplay by Simon Moore. Bruce Campbell was supposed to have a brief role, but he was dropped out.

Netflix is streaming The Quick And The Dead. Purchase/Rent The Quick And The Dead on Amazon. Get The Quick And The Dead on Blu-ray on Amazon.

A Simple Plan (1998)

A family man (Bill Paxton), his brother (Billy Bob Thornton) and their friend (Brent Briscoe) discover a case with millions of dollars in the hidden remains of a plane crash while walking in the woods. They try to keep it for themselves until complications arise.

Why is it one of Sam Raimis'' best movies: In one of his most earnest and grounded films, director Sam Raimi develops a spine-tingling, intense suspense thriller out of A Simple Plan, which earned Academy Award nominations for Thornton''s performance and Scott B. Smith''s screenplay, which he adapted from his own best-selling novel.

Buy/Rent A Simple Plan on Amazon. Get A Simple Plan on DVD on Amazon.

For Love Of The Game (1999)

A veteran major league pitcher for the Detroit Lions (Academy Award winner Kevin Costner) recalls through flashbacks the most crucial moments of his athletic career and his friendship with his girlfriend (Kelly Preston), whom he may also lose today to a new job in London.

Why is this one of Sam Raimis'' best movies? With For Love of the Game, a captivating and structurely distinct story based on Michael Shaara''s novel, Sam Raimi tries his hand at both sports movies (or baseball movies, more accurately) and romantic dramas.

Starz buys/nudges for love of the game on Amazon. Get For Love Of the Game on DVD/Blu-ray on Amazon.

The Gift (2000)

Cate Blanchett, a widowed mother and fortune teller with extraordinary capabilities, is asked to assist with the investigation of a mysterious disappearance of a young woman (Katie Holmes) only to suspect her own existence is in jeopardy.

Why is it one of Sam Raimis'' best movies? In what might be described as a return to his horror roots, director Sam Raimi draws out of The Gift, which is one of the best Cate Blanchett movies, written by Billy Bob Thornton and Tom Epperson.

Stream the gift on Amazon Prime. Get The Gift on DVD on Amazon.

Sam Raimis Spider-Man Trilogy (2002-2007)

A young, intelligent man (Tobey Maguire) is given extraordinary abilities by a radioactive arachnids bite, which assists him in protecting New York City from a vengeful businessman dressed as a fantasy creature (Willem Dafoe), a disgraced scientist with four extra mechanical arms (Alfred Molina), a desperate thief whose body becomes formed of sand-like particles after an accident (Thomas Haden Church),

Why are there some of Sam Raimis'' finest movies? In his first major return to superhero movies (which also proved to be very influential in the genre), director Sam Raimi brought his own stunning manner with his trilogy of Spider-Man movies, each of which includes a brief, but hilarious comeo from Bruce Campbell.

Sam Raimis Spider-Man Trilogy is now available on Amazon. Get Sam Raimis Spider-Man Trilogy on Blu-ray on Amazon.

Drag Me To Hell (2009)

A young loan officer (Alison Lohman) refuses a mortgage extension request from an elderly lady (Lorna Raver), who then confronts her with a curse that makes her the target of a cruel, ancient demon that threatens to expelling her into eternal damnation within days.

Why is it a one of Sam Raimis'' best movies: In his big return to the horror world, director Sam Raimi takes Lohman through the same kind of splatterific taunting he subjected Bruce Campbell in the Evil Dead moves, with Drag Me To Hell, a grotesquely frightening, playfully hilarious, and kind of brutal B-movie he co-wrote with his brother, Ivan Raimi, who deserves a sequel in the eyes of some.

Hulu: Stream Drag Me To Hell. Buy/Rent Drag Me To Hell on Amazon. Get Drag Me To Hell on Blu-ray on Amazon.

If you like Sam Raimi, imagine that the release of his first Marvel Cinematic Universe novel, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, only made you more happy to see what he is doing next. He now in pre-production is his adaptation of Patrick Rothfuss'' fantasy novel, The Kingkiller Chronicle, and hopefully his dystopian thriller, World War 3, which was first announced in 2016.