Tuesday, August 11, 2015


The Raven Movie Review

Edgar Allan Poe fanatic Dr. Richard Vollin (Bela Lugosi) saves the life of Jean Thatcher (Irene Ware), but seeks vengeance when Thatcher's father, the local Judge, forbids the doctor from pursuing his daughter. When criminal on the run Edmond Bateman (Boris Karloff) appears at Vollin's door asking for facial reconstructive surgery, the doc makes Bateman's face a hideous mess.

Eye can't look

Vollin promises to fix his face only if Bateman agrees to help kill the Judge, using, of course, the Poe-inspired torture devices Vollin created. This 1935 film is pretty much every bit as cool as the description sounds. The level of celebrity of both Lugosi and Karloff at the time this film was made truly cannot be understated, and the decision of Universal to pair them was a no-brainer.


The performances are a bit of a mixed bag here--Lugosi is pretty much Dracula again, only toned down a bit in the creepy and amped up a bit in the rage. Karloff's performance is more interesting, as he brings the bizarre charm of Frankenstein's Monster and combines it with a desperate struggle of vanity versus doing the right thing. Unfortunately the rest of the performances in the film are forgettable. The movie hits a lull it seems to have a hard time escaping, and at just over an hour long this is really very unfortunate--one wishes they would have focused on more elements of the works of Poe to advance the story. This is a wonderful film visually. The images are dark and scary, and the devices--particularly the bedroom--are effective. This is a classic horror film starring two of the greatest the genre has ever produced, and while it has its flaws, it really is a must see for horror fans.

 On A Scale Of One To Ten: 7

The Raven Movie Trailer (This is fan made, but it's actually pretty good)

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