Bruce Campbell as Ash, I don’t think there’s a better performance to end Halloween Horror Fest on.
While he’s had quite a storied career, this piece will mainly focus on his most well known character, featured in “The Evil Dead,” “Evil Dead II” and the third picture in the trilogy, “Army of Darkness.”
His performance is one that fits the tone throughout all three movies, and if I had to sum his acting up in one word, it would have to be energetic.
What I mean is that every time he’s on screen, Campbell brings a ton of energy, regardless of what’s happening, be it serious or humorous. The result is that his character instantly becomes the center of attention and easily the most memorable.
Naturally, this fits extraordinarily well with Sam Raimi’s horror/action/comedy pictures, which are delightfully over-the-top, wild, bloody and creepy. Campbell completely embraces this style, too, as its easy to tell that he’s having a lot of fun with the role of Ash.
Also important to Campbell’s work in the three pictures, though, is how likable he makes the character. Throughout the series, Ash ranges from being a coward, to a brave fighter and even just plainly being an egotistical asshole.
However, Campbell plays the character with the right amount of charisma, charm and toughness to make him into a memorable hero that an audience can’t help but root for.
I also have to give credit to how Campbell was able to evolve the character over the trilogy, especially since the first picture was played more seriously than what came after. Just as Campbell was able to play the more intense version of Ash in the sequels (Evil Dead II almost serving as a remake), he was also able to make the character more grounded in the first installment.
No matter what version of the character was on screen and regardless of which movie it was, though, Campbell consistently made Ash a good protagonist that fit perfectly with the world that Raimi created.
Because of his fantastic screen presence, Campbell’s work is one that endures the test of time.