This week, I decided to scroll through the new releases on my Netflix account and came across the film “The Raven.” This movie, which came out in 2012, takes place during the final days of the famous poet Edgar Allan Poe’s life.
In Poe’s final days, a crazed madman commits a number of horrifying murders throughout Baltimore that are inspired by Edgar Allan Poe’s works. Consequently, a Baltimore detective then enlists Poe’s help with solving these murders and capturing the killer.
While the actual storyline of “The Raven” may sound somewhat interesting and possibly exciting, the movie itself definitely does not live up to any expectations. Although this movie may have had a few exciting scenes, they certainly did not make up for the rest of it.
As I was watching “The Raven,” I felt that it was trying too hard to be an action or horror film. Throughout the movie, there is way too much unnecessary gore and blood spattering that reminded me of the movie “300.” And while this type of gore worked for “300,” it certainly did not work for “The Raven.”
Next, this film also attempts to use graphics and angles like zooming in on bullets. This reminded me of “Wanted,” but these just seemed out of place and forced.
In all honesty, the only time that this movie uses necessary graphics is when a scene has CGI ravens, which the filmmakers made sure to use to the point where the motif of the ravens became painstakingly obvious and honestly annoying.
As the film and its progression were lacking, so was its cast. The part of Edgar Allan Poe was played by John Cusack. While I am a fan of a number of Cusack’s other works, I am definitely not a fan of this one.
I felt that he was not very convincing as the famed Poe. Cusack seemed to have a certain kind of demeanor and even tone of voice that just did not strike me as Edgar Allan Poe’s. Throughout the film, it felt to me as if Cusack was not playing Poe.
Instead, he seemed to have just grown an unfortunate goatee, put on a long dark coat, and memorized some poetry.
The rest of the cast of “The Raven,” which included Luke Evans, Alice Eve and Sam Hazeldine, also lacked certain qualities that just made their portrayals unconvincing.
In the end, I would not really recommend watching ‘The Raven’ unless you’re looking for a forgettable movie just to kill some time. John Cusack undoubtedly has a number of much better movies out that I would suggest watching well before this one.