If there were a Mount Rushmore of horror directors, Sam Raimi would be there as he has directed some of the most iconic horror films and recently announced that he wants to direct a Stephen King film. The filmmaker became a household name thanks to that evil Dead series, and he became known for his shocking cliffhanger twists in the films’ final moments.

This trademark also flowed into his non-horror films, whether they were westerns or superhero films. Raimi didn’t invent the shock-twist ending that follows a soothing moment, but he arguably perfected it, and his endings make for some of the most memorable moments in movie history.


10 A Simple Plan (1998)

Hank, Mitchell and Lou in the snowy forest

The mid to late 1990s saw Raimi exploring other genres outside of horror, and between westerns and sports films, the era has cemented him as a go-to-genre director. A film that ran entirely outside of Raimi’s wheelhouse was A simple plan, a neo-noir crime thriller inspired more by the films of his friends, the Coen brothers. But Raimi beat the Coens at their own game as the film is a grueling tale of desperation and things only get worse after two opportunistic brothers try to hide $4.4 million in stolen cash.

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The film ends humiliatingly with one of the brothers forcing the other to kill him and the remaining brother burning all the money. While it’s not your typical Raimi breath-taking twist, but a natural conclusion to the story, it’s still shocking and surprisingly emotional for the director.

9 Spider-Man 3 (2007)

Harry Osborn in Spider-Man 3

Sam Raimi led the original Spiderman trilogy, and during Spider-Man 3 doesn’t hold the perfect superhero landing, it has an interesting ending. As A simple planthere is no evil Dead-Similar exciting twist that happens in the last 10 seconds before the credits roll, but the 2007 film does some surprising things in the last five minutes.

Harry Osborn is shockingly killed, although it seemed like he would be fully redeemed and live on, but he suffers a fate similar to that of his father in the very first film from 2002. Then, although the film ends with them dancing slowly, it is implied that Peter and MJ don’t actually end up together. And with Peter from Tobey Maguire appearing in it Spider-Man: No Way Homethe character’s explanation of what happened in his life was still extremely vague.

8th The Fast and the Dead (1995)

The Marshal is hanged

The fast and the dead was Raimi’s first major film to be a real departure from horror, but his frenetic energy and the way he uses the camera and the Western genre make it a perfect marriage. The snap zooms, dolly shots and comical violence breathe new life into the typically slow genre. And along with those signature moves, Raimi didn’t forget an ending full of shock value either.

In the last few minutes, it flashes back at a young Ellen trying to shoot the rope before her father is hung but shoots him in the head. She then kills Herrod in a standoff, shooting him in the eye and blowing his head off just before riding nonchalantly into the sunset.

7 Spider-Man (2002)

Kirsten Dunst in Spider-Man

Spiderman had the highest-grossing opening weekend of all time when it was first released in 2002. The web-slinging, comic book characters brought to life, and compelling soundtrack made it an event film like no other. But more impressive than anything is that Sony has actually allowed a major blockbuster to be full of Raimi’s exquisite yet niche hallmarks, and the ending is no exception.

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The end of 2002 Spiderman is shocking not because it’s so humiliating or because of its violence, but because it undermines expectations. After spending the entire film pining for Mary Jane when she finally admits she loves Peter, he rejects her and devotes his entire life to her spiderman, and then swings heroically through New York.

6 The Bad Dead (1981)

Wicked dead end

The bad death established the style of Sam Raimi. So much creative filming and comedy violence is thrown into the film, but it also includes the first of many of Raimi’s shocking twists and turns, which sees the film end on a huge cliffhanger.

While everything goes wrong The bad death, Ash eventually defeats all of the Deadites, surviving the night and escaping the cabin. All seems quiet, but literally in the last 10 seconds an invisible demon attacks Ash from behind before turning black. Raimi has consistently outdone himself with terrifying twists in each of his films, but the in The bad death is the most imaginative. Corresponding grinderRaimi shot the sequence by sprinting through the forest and hut with the camera.

5 Army of Darkness (1992)

Ash in the future in Army of Darkness

Army of Darkness is the third film in the evil Dead series, and it’s set in the Middle Ages after Ash was teleported there at the end Evil Death II. By the end of the 1992 film, thinking he’s returning to the present, he miscalculated and Ash wakes up in a post-apocalyptic future.

The film’s twist has that typical heartbreaking feel, but it’s not quite as great as Evil Dead II ends despite higher production value. While it still surprises viewers, it still repeats the twist of the second film, only it teleports into the future instead of the past. But it still leaves the door open for evil death 4and who doesn’t want to see Ash fight Deadites in a crazy max-like world.

4 Darkman (1990)

Last Shemp to walk through a crowd in Darkman

Corresponding CBR, dark man is a result of Raimi not getting the keys Batman, when in response he created his own dark superhero film about a masked vigilante. The film follows a doctor who seeks revenge for a lab explosion that left him permanently disfigured. Much like the first Spiderman movie, end dark man just sees the hero give up his life and fully embrace his new alter ego dark man is much darker, more depressing and very much like a Greek tragedy.

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After Peyton realizes that he and Julie cannot live normal lives after being disfigured, she runs away from her, putting on a realistic mask and blending in with a crowd so she can’t find him. But what’s even more shocking and ridiculous is that Peyton’s mask looks a lot like Bruce Campbell, Raimi’s longtime friend and collaborator who plays Ash in the role evil Dead Series. Campbell has appeared in almost every Raimi film, but this is by far the most creative. And it was a great excuse to do sequels with Campbell, but sadly that never happened.

3 Drag Me To Hell (2009)

Christine drags me to hell

drag me to hell is a criminally underrated film in Raimi’s filmography, and during the evil Dead Movies get all the attention, the 2009 popcorn flick is scarier and funnier than the popular comedy horror series. And while some may think the ending is derived from some of Raimi’s other films, drag me to hell was written in the ’90s when the filmmaker was in his element.

The film’s ending lives up to its title as Christine is literally dragged to hell by demons on a train track. It’s particularly shocking because not only did she and the audience think the gypsy curse was lifted, but Clay also wanted to propose to her.

2 Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness (2022)

Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness Doctor Strange looks at Clea with his third eye

Last few seconds in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is Raimi by the numbers, but it’s undeniably so much fun. Shortly after the hero saves the day and all is well with the world and the multiverse, Stephen Strange falls to the ground in pain and the third eye opens on his forehead.

The scene doesn’t miss a beat as it is also accompanied by Danny Elfman’s soundtrack with layered, disturbing string arrangements. It plays out very much like the end of drag me to hell, as Strange falls to his knees, unable to fight a supernatural force. But it’s the perfect finishing touch to an MCU film that was surprisingly terrifying and full of Raimi’s signature shots.

1 Bad Death II (1987)

Ash shoots down a winged Deadite in The Evil Dead II

Evil Death II is one of the most iconic horror movies of all time and while the first movie is great it looks so amateurish compared to its sequel. In the film, Ash becomes a true hero, embracing the signature shotgun he calls his “boomstick”, and the main villain is Ash’s own demonic severed hand. But what turns it from a great horror film into an unforgettable classic is the shocking ending.

Ash is teleported to the Middle Ages, but before he knows what happened, he kills a winged Deadite with his Boomstick. Knights then chant “Hail!” as Ash realizes what has happened and watches in fear. Of all the shocking endings of Raimi, Evil Death II has the biggest belly punch ever.

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