The Raven

Cast: John Cusack, Alice Eve, Oliver Jackson-Cohen, Luke Evans, Kevin McNally, Pam Ferris, Sergej Trifunovic Director: James McTeigue Time: 111 minutes Genre: Horror Age Restriction: 16 V Release Date: May 04, 2012 What it's about:

In this gritty thriller, Edgar Allan Poe joins forces with a young Baltimore detective to hunt down a mad serial killer who's using Poe's own works as the basis for a string of brutal murders.

When a mother and daughter are found brutally murdered in 19th century Baltimore, Detective Emmett Fields 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.

Realising that a serial killer's on the loose, Fields enlists Poes help in stopping the attacks. When it appears that 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 and solve the case before it's too late.

What the critics thought:

"Without narrative guts, this not-so-thrilling thriller proves a bloody disappointment."
- Matt Stevens, E! Online

"What's of slightly greater concern than the movie itself is just what the hell has happened to [John] Cusack's career."
- Geoff Berkshire, HitFix

"The story has its moments, and yet there is something about this tale of a serial killer's patterning his crimes on Poe's most gruesome works that doesn't completely satisfy."
- Mick LaSalle, San Francisco Chronicle