A great director can be defined by at least three main criteria; they have complete understanding of the film technology available, they are able to translate the script visually on film, and they know how to work with actors to make them avoid becoming caricatures of themselves. Say hello to Sam Raimi.
Sam Raimi is the epitome of the Hollywood filmmaker's dream. He started making films with his BFFs Bruce Campbell and Rob Tappert and brothers Ted and Ivan back in high school in the backwoods of Michigan. After high school they begged, borrowed, and stole to make a little horror movie called Evil Dead and eventually sold it, where it is now heralded as one of the best cinema horrors ever.
They went to Hollywood, where Raimi made a bunch more movies with ever increasing budgets, reaching A-list ranking by helming the very profitable original Spider-Man trilogy and his newest work, Oz: The Great and Powerful which should be an interesting take on the Wizard of Oz.
Raimi has managed to avoid the burn-out phase which generally occurs happens upon hitting the high of Hollywood. He has maintained his loyalties to those that have helped him pursue his dreams and maintained working relationships with those that shared in making Evil Dead and has never forgotten where he came from.
Raimi's signature trademark is the '73 Oldsmobile Delta 88 that he casts in near every movie and has become the fun of a neat drinking game on the side. And most of the time, despite studio executives protests, he always tries to find a role for brother Ted or BFF Bruce. That's true loyalty right there. Oh yeah, he was also a driving force behind TV's Xena, Princess Warrior and Hercules as a side project when he wasn't making films.
Being an admitted fan of Raimi's, and to celebrate the release of Oz: The Great and Powerful, here are Raimi's films ranked from worst to best...