This movie does not simply star Bruce Campbell, this is “Bruce Campbell -The Movie”. Aside from ‘Evil Dead’ fame Mr Campbell has made quite the author of himself, with his favourite subject, himself and life experiences forming the basis for two self mocking novels ‘If Chins Could Kill’ and ‘Make Love the Bruce Campbell Way’.This movie continues the trend when he is recruited in real life to fight off a resurrected Chinese deity by an avid fan who believes he possesses the qualities of the heroic monster-fighting figures he plays in his movies. Naturally Campbell’s personality is quite the opposite as he portrays himself as a burnt out, life failing actor whose general persona revolves around looking after number one.
The movie’s plot is pretty much non-existent outside the above synopsis and in true, self-indulging fashion it’s effects and acting is intentionally as bad as the B-Movies it mocks. Campbell’s character is played the only way he seems to know how, and is well up to his usual amusing standards! Quite simply he is Ash – so much so that I wonder how much acting went on in Evil Dead, or simply put, was it really Bruce Campbell vs the Army of Darkness!
Now I would like to think that Bruce’s attitude towards his career, fans and respect for the B-Movie genres he an iconic part of is deliberately exaggerated, however, it seems to suit him so well you would have to be literally Bruce’s biggest fan not to see an underlying truth into his reluctance to accept his crown as king of the B-Movie.I genuinely believe he was waiting his life waiting for the big break that never came, a subject material which was candidly approached in his semi-autobiographical ‘If Chins Could Kill’. This is what makes this movie such a genre success, and whilst it’s true, it’s not going to appeal to anyone who doesn’t know, either Bruce, or the whole genre of movies he is associated with (but then I’m pretty certain this wasn’t intended to be the big break he’s been waiting for!), it should appeal to fans willing to poke-fun at a genre of movies we all have grown to love, and let’s face it, defend against outside criticism.
Overall there is little more to say about this movie. As I’ve said, this really is an extension of Campbell’s more literary works rather than the latest movie starring him and so if you are looking for a gory glorious return to previous works then you won’t find it here.