Premise: A serial killer has turned some of Edgar Allan Poe’s most popular stories into inspiration for murder in an attempt to push the struggling writer back into his art.
My Review: It seems to me that the scathing reviews for The Raven had to have been written by people who are unfamiliar with Poe, as I cannot see any fan of his work not enjoying this film. The story cleverly integrates Poe’s work, meshing story and content in a meaningful way; the self-aware reference of fiction meeting reality is both bold and artful. The acting is excellent (John Cusack and Alice Eve are brilliant), the use of tone stunning, and its personal take on Poe’s death and the enigmatic “Reynolds” well done. There were some issues with the pacing, with not enough tension in some places and short lulls in others, the villain is a little predictable, and Poe starts off as far too unlikeable a character, but such issues are far from fatal. I had hoped the writers would have found a way to integrate Poe’s unfinished work, “The Lighthouse,” instead of pushing Poe to finish his life writing other, fictitious works, but all in all, the film is a solid must-see for Poe fans. I rate The Raven four out of five stars.