In High Fidelity, Rob and Barry are talking about a film, and keep calling it Evil Dead 2. But they are clearly referencing Army Of Darkness, which came after Evil Dead 2 in Raimi's ED franchise.

Rob: (VO) What did Laura mean last night when she said, "I haven't slept with him yet"? Yet! What does "yet" mean anyway? It means you're gonna do it, doesn't it? Or does it? (At the record store)
Rob: Just come on. What would it mean to you, that sentence: "I haven't seen Evil Dead II yet"?
Barry: Well, to me it would mean that you're a liar. You've seen it twice. Once with Laura -- oops -- and once with me and Dick 'member? We had that conversation about that guy making Beretta shotgun ammo off-screen in the 14th century.
Rob: Right. But let's just say that I hadn't seen it. And I said, "I haven't seen Evil Dead II yet." What would you think?
Barry: I'd think that you're a cinematic idiot and I'd feel sorry for you.
Rob: All right. But from that one sentence, would you think that I was going to see it?
Barry: I'm sorry, Rob. I'm struggling here. You're asking me what would I think if you told me you hadn't seen a film that you have already seen. What am I supposed to say?
Rob: Just listen to me. If I said to you --
Barry: "I haven't seen Evil Dead II yet", yes!
Rob: Would you get the impression that I really wanted to see it?
Barry: Oh, uh...well, you couldn't have been desperate to see it, otherwise you'd have already gone.
Rob: Right. I'm not going to see that movie. (After a pause, Barry looks up again.)
Barry: But the word "yet."......Yeah, you know what? I get the impression that you wanted to see it...otherwise you'd have said you didn't want to go.
Rob: But in your opinion, would I definitely go?
Barry: How the f..k am I supposed to know? Probably.
Rob: Why?
Barry: Because it's a brilliant film! It's so funny and violent and the soundtrack kicks f..king ass. I never thought I'd say this, but can I go to work now?

(^ Source)

This seems unlikely to be just a mistake because it's repeated throughout the scene (not just a single reference), and the writers and producers (including Cusack) are real-life nuts for accuracy on this sort of issue, especially in a film where they are supposed to be obsessed, knowledgeable geeks.

I'm looking for answers that quote sources (writer, producer or actor), not mere opinion or Web Chatter.

  • Except that in the original book it was Reservoir Dogs that they were discussing. It seems likely that the film's producers have substituted a film that is more recognisable but also has "geek credentials". – user7812 Nov 24 '15 at 23:07
  • 1
    Yes, but given the high level of accuracy they wanted for these characters, it is still a mystery why they misquoted the name of the film. Regardless of what the book had, the question is about the (seeming) gaffe in the film, considering the intention of the producers to show these guys as knowledgeable geeks. – user27684 Nov 24 '15 at 23:08
  • If it doesn't make sense, it's gotta be a gaffe. As much as we'd like to think it would have been spotted, it simply hasn't been; as disappointing as that is to accept. There's no reason for this mistake to be deliberately in the dialogue. – John Smith Optional Nov 24 '15 at 23:19
  • 1
    Technically, they could've had the conversation about Army of Darkness while watching ED2. – Peter Nov 25 '15 at 0:20
  • 1
    @Peter I thought that, but the reference to the soundtrack feels more likely to be army of darkness to me... – ping Nov 25 '15 at 23:35

I'm going to take a stab at this even though its been a long time since I've seen any of these movies.

First of all, Rob and Barry are two pop culture snobs geeks who pride themselves on being able to come up with the perfect playlist for any situation or topic. As such it is very likely that they are familiar with the fan debate over the topic of how Evil Dead 2 fits into the series of Evil Dead.

I'm fuzzy on the details of said debate, but basically what I remember from reading years ago is that the movie Evil Dead 2 is actually a remake of the original Evil Dead movie and NOT a sequel to Evil Dead. As such, Army of Darkness is actually the first sequel in the Evil Dead series and therefore would officially be "Evil Dead episode 2".

So by saying he hasn't seen Evil Dead 2 yet, I supposed he's trying to be ironic in the fact that there are, in a sense, two Evil Dead 2's.

  • I've downvoted. The OP was specifically after some sort of canon quote/interview/reference from someone involved with the film. Fan-speculation is comment-worthy, but not an answer to the question asked. – user7812 Nov 25 '15 at 0:09
  • @sanpaco - I appreciate the answer but a) I would really like an official source for an answer if one exists, and b) while I am aware of the debate myself, ED2 only 'recaps' ED in the first part of the film (pared down to just two characters) and then the rest of the ED2 continues from where ED ended. I don't think the claim that it's a remake has ever been valid, tbh. – user27684 Nov 25 '15 at 0:09
  • 6
    @DanielStowers I can appreciate that people differ on the remake vs sequel debate, in fact that was kind of my point. I think that while people refer to this as a movie mistake, it is actually done on purpose to show how Jack Black's character refer's to Army of Darkness as Evil Dead 2 in a geek snobbish refusal to acknowledge the existence of the actual Evil Dead 2. This adds to the humor in that he picks such a terrible example to use for his analogy because of the fan debate. Anyway, I appreciate that this isn't an official source and I'm happy to remove my answer if it isn't helpful. – sanpaco Nov 25 '15 at 0:19

Evil Dead II ended with Ash, with his car and shotgun, landing in the middle ages. Strictly speaking, the existence of the Army of Darkness film does not appear to be required for this conversion in High Fidelity to take place.

  • How does this answer fulfill the questions requirement for quotable sources, not just web chatter? – JohnP Oct 17 '17 at 16:32
  • 4
    The question does not make a case for why the conversation has to be about Army of Darkness. The question assumes that the High Fidelity conversation is about Army of Darkness, but provides no reason to accept that premise. – jsh_197 Oct 17 '17 at 16:38
  • 1
    In ED2 on the loose pages of the Necronomicon there's a picture of Chainsaw-DB-Ash discharging his weapon. He asks what it is. She says, "1300AD, they call this man the Hero From the Sky." That's the 14th century. Pedantry: check. – Mazura Oct 18 '17 at 5:03

I think you're looking at this the wrong way.

Evil Dead was the original. Evil Dead II: Dead By Dawn was the direct sequel (beginning exactly where Evil Dead ended), and Army Of Darkness was the direct sequel to Evil Dead II, again beginning exactly where the previous film ended.

ED1 was released in 1981, ED2 was released in 1987, and AoD (aka "ED3") was released in 1992.

High Fidelity was released in 2000. As such, all 3 ED films were released in the past, in the High Fidelity universe.

It is most likely that the bit of the conversation about ED3 ("We had that conversation about that guy making Beretta shotgun ammo off-screen in the 14th century") occurred after they viewed ED3, or possibly after ED2 in speculation of the inevitable sequel due to the way the movie ended. There was no need for Barry to expand on exactly when he made that statement.

Also, the entire conversation relies on hypotheticals ("What would it mean to you, that sentence: 'I haven't seen Evil Dead II yet'?"). As such, the conversation revolves around that one movie, and there really is no need to specify the fact that ED3 had already been released. Barry was asked about one specific movie, and the majority of his responses (save that one line) were directed at that one movie. The conversation is meant to flow naturally, and not intended to be overly specific or detailed.

So, in short, I don't think you're going to see a "canon" answer to this, because there's really no need for anyone to have asked the question.

  • There's enough canon in ED2 to discuss him living in the 14c at-length. The 3rd movie played in my head for 5y before it came out. It just wasn't as funny. – Mazura Oct 18 '17 at 22:04
  • My use of the word "canon" was meant to address the OP's desire to find a canonical answer to his question, but your comment hammers home my point; he wasn't actually referring to AoD in that conversation. – Johnny Bones Oct 19 '17 at 13:05

You must log in to answer this question.