The Raven (2012)

The Raven
Director: James McTeigue
Writer: Hannah Shakespeare, Ben Livingston
Cast: John Cusack, Luke Evans, Alice Eve, Brendan Gleeson, Kevin McNally, Oliver Jackson-Cohen, Jimmy Yuill, Sam Hazeldine
Seen on: 9.5.2022

Edgar Allan Poe (John Cusack) is not what one would consider a successful writer. Barely making enough money, poverty exacerbated by a drinking problem, he has really nothing but a bit of infamy. He would like to marry Emily Hamilton (Alice Eve), and she him, but her father Captain Hamilton (Brendan Gleeson) disapproves. When a mother and daughter turn up murdered just like in one of of Poe’s stories, the suspicion of the police fall on him at first. Especially when another body turns up. But Poe can convince Detective Fields (Luke Evans) that he is not to blame. Instead, they team up to find the killer before he can use another of Poe’s stories.

Although the film is loosely inspired by some circumstances of Poe’s life, you should not make the mistake of thinking it is any way, shape, or form realistic. It’s the fever dream version of Poe’s last weeks of life. Unfortunately, it’s not a particularly interesting fever dream.

The film poster showing Edgar Allan Poe (John Cusack) walking fiercely, gun in hand. In the background behind him stretch a pair of red wings in which we can see a crying woman, a dead body and men looking fiercely.
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Toby Dammit (1968)

Toby Dammit is one of the short film segments of Histoires extraordinaires
Director: Federico Fellini
Writer: Federico Fellini, Bernardino Zapponi
Based on: Edgar Allan Poe‘s short story Never Bet the Devil Your Head
Cast: Terence Stamp, Salvo Randone, Marina Yaru

Toby Dammit (Terence Stamp) is a rising star. His turn as Hamlet just brought him fame and accolades when he heads to Italy to do an Italowestern take on the life of Jesus. But Toby is drugged out of his mind and he didn’t come alone – the devil in the form of a little girl (Marina Yaru) followed him. At an award ceremony where Toby is laudated, things start to get really out of control.

Toby Dammit was shown as the pre-film to Cuadecuc, vampir (review follows) and I didn’t pay it much attention beforehand. But it turns out that it is a really cool short film, well made, with a sense of humor and a great Terence Stamp. I’m actually kind of disappointed now that they didn’t show the entire anthology (three directors taking on three different Poe short stories).

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Short Movies at the /slash Filmfestival 2012

In this post I’m going to sum up all the short films that were shown during this year’s /slash Filmfestival. [And I just wanted to point out that two of those short films were from Austria and they were both awesome. So, yay for Austrian film makers!]

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