For any longtime fan of Edgar Allan Poe, a film about the famous poet hunting down a serial killer is not only cheesy, but unrealistic.
So it wouldn’t be shocking to find a harsh critique of James McTeigue’s “The Raven” by fans before they actually sat down and watched it. Had they done so, they would be surprised to find themselves on the edge of their seats of this whodunit flick.
With the mysterious last days of Poe’s life before his untimely death as their basis, writers Ben Livingston and Hannah Shakespeare create the story of the poet searching for a man who has not only kidnapped his fiancee, but is also a serial killer whose crimes are reminiscent of his famous stories.
Actor John Cusack takes on the role of the famed writer. While people should not go into this film expecting a historical portrayal of Edgar Allan Poe, Cusack’s stellar performance is enough to look past the fact that the character is hardly based on the real thing.
Cusack’s top notch acting in “The Raven” is fortunate as he pretty much carries the mediocre performances of the supporting characters who either couldn’t match Cusack’s acting skills or were just there.
A perfect example is Poe’s fiancee (played by Alice Eve) who is merely a prop in the movie to move the story along, which is good considering her lifeless acting.
One man who manages to hold his own with Cusack is Luke Evans’ character of Emmett Fields, an inspector assigned to the case who chooses to partner up with Poe due to his unique perspective on the crimes.
Evans perfectly plays the inspector determined to find the killer and grows obsessed to the point where it nearly kills him.
“The Raven” is the perfect film for any thriller movie buff, but don’t go into it with high expectations.