So when I first heard about “The Raven”, it was via a promo poster that was handed to me at Comic Con 2011. At first glance, I knew it had to have something to do with Edgar Allen Poe, the greatest poet of all time. At least in my opinion. Little did I know that within just a few hours of being handed that promo poster, that I would have the pleasure of meeting the main cast and director, themselves. Once I heard I was one of the few picked to get into the poster signing, and that I would be face to face with one of my all time favorite movie idols, and “The Raven” main star John Cusack, I could not friggin believe it. I mean c’mon, “Say Anything” next to “The Breakfast Club” are probably the best 80’s movies EVER. And when I think of a particular 80’s iconic movie moment, I always think of John holding up the boombox to get his girl’s attention in “Say Anything”. And with that said, when the time came to meet the cast, not only was I impressed with the poster I was given and really liked the visual art involved, but the cast were so cool. I have to admit I was nervous meeting John Cusack, but he put me at ease right away by saying hello right off the bat, asking my name and shaking my hand while telling me thank you for coming out to see them. Seriously? John Cusack thanking me? I told him that I have always been a huge fan of his work and that I looked forward to seeing this movie (still in production at the time), and he smiled at me and thanked me again! Such a cool guy! Then I met costars Alice Eve, of “Sex and the City” and “Entourage” fame, and Luke Evans of “Clash of the Titans” and “The Immortals” fame, both of which were incredibly gracious and just as kind as John, asking me where I was from, and how my experience at Comic Con so far was. Although the movie was still in production, I was already pretty excited about it and did some research intermittently during and after filming, and was surprised to know that although it was a fictional movie, it actually involved some fact as well.
After seeing this movie for myself, I was so happy to realize that John did not let me…I mean us, down! His version of Edgar Allen Poe was smart, passionate, and I dare say the closest to the real thing (at least after the research I have done). Although I am a fan of gore, I was worried that this R rated movie would over do the gore of course. I mean it is Edgar Allen Poe, one of the fathers of dark and horrific literature. But there were really only a few scenes that were gory, and it was not overdone, which was a relief considering how most movies nowadays rely on this to get crowds. Alice Eve’s performance as Edgar’s love interest was also believable and heart felt at times, whether it be in Edgar’s arms, or buried in a coffin for days at a time before her rescue. And Luke’s performance as the main investigator in charge of solving a series of grisly murders fashioned after Edgars stories, yet with his help was also his best performance yet as I was not very impressed by “The Immortals” or “Clash of the Titans”. My only negative critiques of this movie was that certain situations involving the murder plots, and systemic reduction of suspects seemed too coincidental or contrived, and at times didn’t make any sense. As well as the fact that the entire plot happened too fast, and I would have liked to have seen character development more, such as the love affair between Edgar and Emily which was actually a secret in the movie. The art and costume direction was stylish and impeccable, as well as the location shooting which I am told actually took place in Romania and Serbia. But most likeable, again was the actual historic references to the real Edgar Allen Poe, so this film was not purely fictional. So to our DM friends and family, go check it out!