Bruce Campbell: 5 movie rankings that IMDb got wrong

Photo: Bruce Campbell ("Ashley 'Ash' J. Williams") stars in EVIL DEAD 2.. Image Courtesy Lionsgate Publicity
Photo: Bruce Campbell ("Ashley 'Ash' J. Williams") stars in EVIL DEAD 2.. Image Courtesy Lionsgate Publicity /
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3. Running Time

Sorry, IMDb but you got this ranking all wrong. Running Time deserves to be in the upper echelon of Campbell’s films. While this 1997 hidden gem is not one of his most popular selections, it is one of his best efforts.

His character Carl is released from prison and immediately plans his next heist job. Before he can assemble a crew to perform this last score, he accidentally reconnects with his old high school flame, Janie, who is now a hooker.

Thus, beginning the action in this “one take” neo noir. Carl and his gang prepare to rip off a laundromat that just so happens to do business with his former residence, the jail. Instead of everything going as planned, the attempt is botched resulting in some casualties and Carl having to be on the lam from the authorities.

He makes his way to Janie’s apartment where the two have a very moving scene about what drove them apart all those years ago. It is at that moment, when you see the potential that Bruce has for being a bona fide romantic lead. His performance is comparable to a young Humphrey Bogart or Robert Mitchum in terms of depth and intensity.

If you haven’t seen this Josh Becker directed film, rectify that immediately. It is worth it.

4. My Name Is Bruce

Why are we ranking My Name is Bruce ahead of Army of Darkness? Because there is something inherently madcap about this meta classic. We like the notion of the actor playing a parody of himself.

There are so many priceless moments and inside jokes in this comedy that Bruce Campbell fans will immediately recognize. The basic premise is that an ancient Chinese demon named Guan-Di is accidentally awakened by some teenagers trying to make out in a graveyard.

All hell breaks loose when he starts terrorizing the small Oregon town of Gold Lick. Enter Jeff, super Bruce Campbell fan to the rescue. In order to save his fellow residents, Jeff takes it upon himself to kidnap the best Deadite slayer ever because we all know that if you can fight a demonic presence in a movie, you can definitely decimate one in real life.

Of course, this Campbell is inept and far from being Ash Williams. Sure, his performance is over the top but that’s what makes it so enjoyable. This Bruce Campbell is a narcissistic idiot who drunk dials his ex-wife in the middle of the night and gets his pooch hopped up on hooch.

The escapades that are prevalent in this Campbell directed and Mark Verheiden scripted production are worthy of a 1940’s fish out of water, screwball farce. Believe it or not, it takes quite a bit of comedic skill as an actor to play a character based on you that isn’t you.