Upcoming Flix Spotlight: The Raven

Relativity just released this eerie-looking new poster for The Raven. Now, I still prefer this teaser poster that was released last July. I just think that one is much more creative and so brilliantly creepy. This new one isn’t not bad, I kind of like the subtle raven design on the title, but the wings reminds me a bit of this Constantine‘s poster.

Unfortunately, I also learned that this movie’s released has been pushed back from March 9 to April 27. No reason was given for this delay, which is a bummer as I’ve been curious about this for some time.

I’ve always been fascinated with movies about writers and lately I’ve been watching quite a few of them because Gregory Peck has played a number of writers roles, from novelist, journalist to screenwriter.  The title of the film refers to a narrative poem by Poe that was first published in January 1845. Per Wikipedia, it tells of a talking raven’s mysterious visit to a distraught lover, tracing the man’s slow descent into madness. So no, it’s not a remake of the 1963 horror comedy of the same name starring Vincent Price and Peter Lorre.

Here’s the official synopsis:

In this gritty thriller, Edgar Allan Poe (John Cusack) joins forces with a young Baltimore detective (Luke Evans, Immortals) to hunt down a mad serial killer who’s using Poe’s own works as the basis in a string of brutal murders. Directed by James McTeigue (V for Vendetta, Ninja Assassin), the film also stars Alice Eve (Sex and the City 2), Brendan Gleeson (In Bruges) and Oliver Jackson-Cohen (Faster).

When a mother and daughter are found brutally murdered in 19th century Baltimore, Detective Emmett Fields (Evans) makes a startling discovery: the crime resembles a fictional murder described in gory detail in the local newspaper—part of a collection of stories penned by struggling writer and social pariah Edgar Allan Poe. But even as Poe is questioned by police, another grisly murder occurs, also inspired by a popular Poe story.

Realizing a serial killer is on the loose using Poe’s writings as the backdrop for his bloody rampage, Fields enlists the author’s help in stopping the attacks. But when it appears someone close to Poe may become the murderer’s next victim, the stakes become even higher and the inventor of the detective story calls on his own powers of deduction to try to solve the case before it’s too late.

Director McTeige with Cusack

I’m intrigued by the story and James McTeige is the director of the stylish and compelling V for Vendetta, so this is quite promising. I think Cusack isn’t a bad choice as Poe, though I’m more familiar with his romantic/whimsical side in things like High Fideliy, Serendipity, etc. From what I heard at the Comic-Con panel, he seemed quite well-versed on Poe, which is always a good sign. There’s also Brendan Gleeson, whose presence is always welcome in any film.

One major highlight for me in this is Luke Evans, the dashing Brit I’ve been watching for some time. He played Zeus in this Fall’s Immortals, but he wasn’t given much to do there but look good in his barely-there mystical outfit. I think he gets to flex his acting muscles on this one as he has a more prominent role here. My pal Ted astutely suggested a few times would make a great James Bond when it’s time for Daniel Craig to retire his tux. I absolutely concur! 🙂

Here’s the latest trailer from a few months ago, as soon as they released the newest one I’ll swap it:



P.S.
Thanks to a tip from my friend Dezzy from Hollywood Spy, The Raven was filmed in Eastern Europe, mainly Budapest, Hungary and Belgrade, Serbia.

I also heard on NPR a few weeks ago that the Poe’s Historical Museum in Baltimore is in danger of being closed down as city leaders have chosen not to subsidize it (per LA Times). Perhaps an interest in this movie might help save Poe Museum?

What do you think folks? Does this one interest you?

Scene Spotlight: Great Winter scene in New York City – Serendipity

Greetings from New England, everyone! As it’s snowing last night in New Hampshire and we’re driving to New York City today, it makes me think of some great Wintry scenes in the Big Apple. Clearly the list is endless but for some reason one that I had in mind was the various Wintry scenes in Serendipity. It’s one of the more enjoyable rom-coms out there that still holds up with repeated viewings. Despite some of the inherent cliches and schmaltzy-ness, somehow John Cusack and Kate Beckinsale’s sweet chemistry just works. I didn’t even mind seeing Molly Shannon who’s kinda irritating at times as Beckinsale’s best friend. Jeremy Piven is pretty funny as Cusack’s BFF though, but one of the most enchanting co-stars in this movie is definitely the NYC setting.

From the beginning scene of their ‘meet cute’ during Christmas shopping (with Eugene Levy as the hilarious Bloomingdale’s salesman) all the way to the Wintry scene ending at an ice skating rink, New York City was nothing short of magical! No matter how cynical you are (and yes, you can predict the ending halfway through the movie), you’d be hard-pressed not to go ‘awwww’ watching these two finally being reunited with the gorgeous snowflakes all around them.

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Well, what are your favorite Winter scene(s) in movies?

Oldies but goodies? High Fidelity

TGIF, folks! Just a few more hours before the workweek is over and I tell you three things I’m excited about this weekend:

1. My BFF is returning from Indo tomorrow after being home for over a month!
2. The AVATAR in 3D free-screening I’ll be seeing tonight at 7 – with sincere hope it’ll blow me away more than the recently released teaser trailer.
3. High Fidelity DVD

I’ll update y’all on #2 on Monday, so I’m going to suspend my two-cents of the trailer until then as well.

John Cusack as a record store owner
John Cusack as a record store owner

Now, as for #3, what’s to get excited about this one? Well, I’ve been wanting to see it ever for a while. And then I came across these posts: Top 25 Romantic Movies For Guys and Top 10 Chick Flicks Guys Like not too long ago. Of all the flicks on the list, something about this movie caught my attention. Not sure what it is exactly, as I’m not even a John Cusack fan. The lure of great dialogue & one liners plus great music certainly is a factor, but perhaps I’m just tired of the stereotypical chick flicks with predictable endings and banal over-sentimentality. From what I heard and read so far, this one appears to be neither. And the fact that it’s based on a Nick Hornsby book makes me want to see it even more. I quite like his book adaptation About a Boy, even if it stars the king of rom-com, Hugh Grant.

For those who’ve seen this, what are your thoughts on High Fidelity? Is my enthusiasm over this flick justified? No spoilers please …