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Review The Raven (2012): More than enough to be enjoyed especially if you love the whodunit genre.

genre: thriller, crime, mystery

The Raven is being compared to the latest version of Sherlock Holmes featuring Robert Downey Jr. for obvious reasons. Here is a shocker, I liked this more than both of those Sherlock Holmes movies put together. Say what? Let me explain.

While I can't disagree that The Raven is flawed it still is the better picture. For one thing, there was an actual mystery to be solved. It avoids to fall into the trappings of focusing on action and adventure sacrificing the story element. That the mystery itself takes it's time to build up and is a bit uneven in it's execution should overlooked and appreciated. But I understand the criticism. I thought it was good to show who Edgar was and how he stood in life. John Cusack in my opinion did a fine job in showing hints of the complex personality that was Poe. However I do agree that they should have added more depth to the character. And for example show why Edgar Allen Poe was such a brilliant writer or at least try to give some insight of his dark thoughts. But I guess there is only so much you can put in a movie. Another positive element was the scenery and atmosphere. Baltimore at night was misty and spooky. What better place to have a serial killer running around. The premise where Edgar is asked to aid the police in their investigation is a nice touch. Since Edgar Allen Poe is the inventor of detective fiction after all. Real tension starts the moment Edgar's girlfriend gets kidnapped. And then things start to become real interesting and entertaining. The identity of the killer is kept secret for a long time. However it never reaches the level where huge shocking twists and turns are revealed especially since there is a lack of red herrings to throw the viewer off course. Which is something that one would expect from a movie like this. Although the ending does offer some surprises of which one maybe is a little predictable but so welcome. Having seen a lot of whodunits and giallo's I have learned to accept certain plot developments and characteristics. The Raven in that aspect doesn't differ too much from those which is a good thing. But it does ask of you to suspend disbelief more times compared to other genres. It might not be the scary horror epic many people had been hoping for. Still as a total package there is more than enough to be enjoyed especially if you love the whodunit genre.

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