There are few films that highlight special FX artist which makes the documentary Invaluable: The Story of an Epic Artist (2014) such a special treat. Director Ryan Meade has crafted an elegant love letter to artist Tim Sullivan who was the man behind the horrifying creations seen in Sam Raimi’s Evil Dead films. Meade has cobbled together an impressive collection of interviews from various associates of Sullivan’s from the Evil Dead films to give an honest look at not only a talented artist but a unique group of indie films from dedicated friends and film makers.
What’s most impressive about the film is the fact that Meade has managed to interview Sullivan at conventions, at original locations of the films, at his own studio and a wide variety of other areas. Meade’s also managed to get a great many interviews with such names as Bruce Campbell, Ellen Sanweiss, Betsy Baker, Ted Raimi, Scott Spiegel and Robert Kurtzman, to name a few. Although Sullivan rarely works in film today, his artwork can still be seen all over the place as he continues to work. The film not only delves into Sullivan’s past, but looks at his present through his convention visits and continue adoration from fans everywhere.
Meade even gets a look at some of the original props used in the films which have rarely seen the light of day outside of the films. Meade has a way of not only crafting a love letter for horror fans but also an in depth look into an influential artist whose work still intrigues and fascinates to this day. This is a well done film that both horror fans and general artists can enjoy.