Connect with us

Kansai Scene Magazine

Film

The Raven

If you fancy some Halloween chills of an old-school nature, Edgar Allan Poe isn’t a bad place to begin. The American writer is best known for his dark tales of grisly deaths, but he’s also credited with the invention of the detective genre, and it’s the blending of these two that inspired this movie.

A detective called to a crime scene thinks it rings a bell with Poe’s short story Murders in the Rue Morgue, where two women have been murdered by something not-quite human, leaving one almost headless and the other stuffed inside a chimney.

He decides to bring Poe in for questioning, but Poe is pretty useless right now, as he’s a penniless drunk wandering the streets and longing to be with his lover Emily.

A second murder takes place, this time inspired by The Pit and The Pendulum. It helps if you have a knowledge of Poe’s stories, but all you need to know about this one is it involves a cell that has a deep pit below and a sharp, slowly descending blade swinging overhead. At the time it was published, this story was popular for its lack of supernatural elements; the narrator focuses on the sounds, smells and feelings of a real-life situation to share his terror, so expect that to be reflected onscreen.

While the detective is scratching his head over the latest murder, pretty Emily is threatened. Now Poe has good motivation to sober up and figure out who the killer is, why he’s doing the deeds and how to stop him.

It may be useful to know that Poe’s titular work here, The Raven, was published in 1845, just four years before Poe died. It’s a poem about a man who is visited by a spooky raven, that can only croak the word ‘Nevermore’ at him. Poe himself had a mysterious ending in real life; he was found wandering the streets of Baltimore in someone else’s clothes, delirious and needing a hospital. The cause of his death is still unknown.

A good blend of gothic fiction and fact from the director of V for Vendetta, and a solid lead in John Cusack, this would make a thrilling start to any Halloween weekend.

[box]110 mins
Mystery, Thriller
Director: James McTeigue
Starring: John Cusack, Alice Eve, Luke Evans
Showing at: Toho Cinemas, OS Cinemas[/box]

Continue Reading
Advertisement

More in Film

  • Film

    Selma

    By

    Ava DuVernay, Biopic, 128 mins, Jun 19 Starring: David Oyelowo, Carmen Ejogo, Tim Roth, Lorraine Toussaint,...

  • Film

    Tomorrowland

    By

    Brad Bird, Adventure, 130 mins, Jun 6 Starring: Britt Robertson, George Clooney, Hugh Laurie, Raffey Cassidy...

  • Film

    Dying of the Light

    By

    Paul Schrader, Thriller, 94 mins, Jun 6 Starring: Nicolas Cage, Anton Yelchin, Alexander Karim, Irene Jacob...

  • Film

    Mad Max: Fury Road

    By

    George Miller, Action, 120 mins, Jun 20 Starring: Tom Hardy, Charlize Theron, Hugh Keays-Byrne The odds...

  • Film

    The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1

    By

    Francis Lawrence, Adventure, Jun 5 Starring: Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Woody Harrelson Another adventure...

Featured

Advertisement

Advertisement

Advertisement
To Top