I hadn't seen it for about ten years and as the full moon came beaming through my apartment window late last night, it just felt right to indulge in some Proyas Gothic excellence.
The question still taps away at all our doors, namely would the film be the cult classic it became without the Brandon Lee tragedy? That's a tricky one to answer because we all deep down have a morbid curiosity about us, especially with films and their stars. This is why I got a lot more from re-watching the movie after a very long period of time, namely that it may have drew many of us in years ago because of the tragedy and heart aching back story to writer James O'Barr's birthing of Eric Draven the character, but it can now enthral, thrill and shatter emotions of its own accord.
The Gothic art design and the soundtrack are emo personified before such a label was invented, Lee is lithe and skilful and serving notice to what a talent we were robbed of that fateful day in March 1993. The villains are a roll call of go to guys for such roles, Kelly, Wincott, Todd, while Ernie Hudson fronts up as good cop personified. And finally Proyas, struggling with the budget even before Brandon's death, that he manages to create this world of perpetual bleakness, but still offer hope and beauty - the latter via tracking shots, pull aways and intricate frame shots of a tormented Draven, shows him to be a purveyor of considerable skills.
All told, The Crow (1994) deserves to not be thought of as a cult classic, but just as a classic, period. 9.5/10
The Blu-ray is not worth the upgrade, stick with the S/E DVD folks.
on 27 September 2009
Finally, I can watch the Crow in all its widescreen glory.
OK, it isn't the sharpest HD picture I've ever seen, but it's the best I've ever seen this movie and it really made it better for the wait. The picture could still benefit from a complete re-master, but that could take years, if ever and if you want to enjoy this movie in widescreen, with 5.1 DTS and a handful of various extras, this is well worth the upgrade from the DVD.
The interview with Brandon Lee (his last recorded interview) has a few ominous moments and there are some interesting behind the scenes looks.
The movie has dated a little, but it's still a nice Gothic revenge flick which Tim Burton would be proud of. I'm one of the few who likes everything Alex Proyas has made and this is a good solid start for his body of work.
on 13 November 2003
This was definately one of the best movies of the 90's. The story revolves around Eric Draven an underground rock musician who, along with what was his very soon to be wife, was murdered on Halloween. His fiance was brutally raped and beaten, and later died in hospital, while Eric was stabbed, shot twice and thrown out of a three story window.
Exactly one year later, Eric is ressurected by a mysterious crow so that he can take out the revenge his death prevented him from having. He is given the strenth of ten men, the power of invulneribility and sight of the crow. Throughout the movie the crow guides him to the wereabouts of the four wrong doers so that he can put "the wrong things right."
Everything about this movie just oozes quality (even thought the plot is just the reworking of the basic revenge story, but with a supernatural twist). Brandon Lee is just superb as Eric Draven, throughout the film you can see his anguish and rage towards his murderers because of the beautiful life they denied him with his true love. You can also see him going slightly insane due the powers given to him. Ernie Hudson, David Patrick Kelly and Michael Wincott are all also excellent as their respective characters, but it is Lee who steals the show, this young actor would have become a major star after the release of this movie were it not for his tragic death. He is charismatic likable and overall very convincing.
This DVD package is much improved over the last one, with the sound and picture quality given a very good and welcome re-hash. Other extra's include a featurette, commentary from writer and producer, profile of James O'Barr, who created the comic on which the movie was based as well as a comparison of the movie in its old and new format.
The Crow is an excellent, excellent movie, and still is today one of the best comic book adaptations out there, i recommend this movie to everyone as i think it should be seen by as many people as possible, as it is one of the most touching movie's out there.
on 2 April 2016
It's often forgotten that this is a comic book movie. I have to say it ranks as one of the best comic book movies committed to film. Overshadowed by the death of Brandon Lee, playing a man who returns from the dead. A young couple are murdered and the man's spirit returns from the dead. That's about as complex as the story gets. Led by the crow he haunts the midnight black streets, which remind me of the rain drenched streets of Bladerunner and Tim Burton's Gotham City. The visual design is superb, shadows stab the city streets and we swoop high or low for well visualised camera shots. The style evokes the rapid shot changes of comic book reading, better the The Hulk ever did with its artsy cutting style. The actors and make up make them seem like the drawn exaggerated comic book characters. Helpfully the characters are not well drawn, making them seem dream like and ephemeral. In all his speeches about death and rebirth you can't help but feel a sense of foreboding in Lee's pronouncements. I'd argue this is one of Alex Proyas's best films and a must watch for comic book movie fans.
on 3 February 2003
By now everybody probably knows the story of The Crow, but to recap, its about a rock musician and his girlfriend who are murdered on halloween. One year later, Eric Draven (Brandon Lee) returns from the grave to seek revenge.
The film on this special edition looks terrific, with much better picture and sound than on the previous DVD release.
It's a 2 disc set with quite an array of extra feature. On the first disc is the film in widescreen (the original DVD was full screen)with exceptional picture clarity and colour, and gorgeous sound (the soundtrack is good too!!) There's a featurette which is longer and more informative than the usual five minute back slap you normally get. A selection of deleted scenes, and some extended scenes, which do add quite a different tone to some of the sequences. A commentary is also on this disc.
Disc 2 is split into two section - 'video' and 'art'. Under video, you get the full screen version of the film; a commparison between widescreen and full screen; and, most poignant of all, the last interview with Brandon Lee, who talks about not knowing if your goint to see another full moon, or the sun rise the following day! Spooky!
The art section, has a documentary with John O'Barr, the artist and creator of The Crow, boy has he had a hard life! Poster artwork and production design and storyboards.
Overall this is a great package at a good price, which I cannot recommend highly enough.
on 18 January 2015
I won't talk about Brandon Lee,
many people have covered that far
better than i ever could. But i reckon
Brandon had to laugh a bit when filming
playing a guitar,on a ledge,with buckets of
rain for company! in costume!
I blinked,i had the blu ray,Amazon just
WORKS,plain and simple.
The Crow is an adaption of a then-little-known graphic novel of the same name by James O'Barr. There was much hype and anticipation surrounding the film, however, unfortunately all this was overshadowed by the tragic death of star Brandon Lee (son of legend Bruce Lee) prior to its completion (Lee was accidentally shot by a loaded gun during filming and later died from his injuries).
While the tragedy hangs over the film (which was completed and released with permission from Lee's family, with a double standing in for Lee for the few remaining scenes the actor hadn't done), this is still an incredible, albeit haunting piece of film-making.
The story begins when rock musician Eric Draven and his fiancée Shelley are brutally murdered by a gang of thugs on "Devil's Night." One year later, Draven rises from the dead and under the watchful eye of a mysterious crow, dons leather, barbed wire and "Kiss-style" clown make-up and seeks revenge on and his and his fiancée's killers. The powers of the crow have made Draven immortal and with increased senses and super vision; able to stalk the streets and catch his victims completely unawares.
The film raises many controversial moral questions and while you are sympathetic to The Crow character, the ease he picks off his victims and the complete lack of emotion he shows when carrying out the terrible deeds is eerie. However, by no means does that mean that the film condones such behaviour; it's definitely used more as a "What If?" scenario (i.e if what happened to Draven happened to you and you could come back and seek retribution with no repercussions, what would you do?). Again, you don't necessarily agree with his tactics, but you can feel his pain and understand why the reborn Eric Draven can seemingly act without conscience.
The addition of the little girl Sarah, adds some more human emotion to proceedings and shows a more softer side to Draven's Crow persona.
It should also be noted that this is a truly mesmerising performance from the late Brandon Lee. On this evidence, he could have gone on to have one hell of a film career. He completely engulfs himself in the role and owns every scene he appears in, just like Heath Ledger does as The Joker in The Dark Knight (again, another film etched in tragedy due to Ledger's passing just after its completion).
While the story is very simplistic (it actually needed "fleshing out" as the original graphic novel had less characters and less of a "story arc"), the film is well-acted (not just by Lee, but by a fine supporting cast) and beautifully shot. The action scenes are also superb and many scenes play to a thumping heavy metal soundtrack.
Please be warned, though that this is not a typical "comic-book movie." It's a very bleak affair, shot in darkness and some would argue, writhing in misery and tragedy. However, it's engrossing from start to finish and had me close to tears in places. It is now one of my most favourite movies of all time, comic-book- based or otherwise.
I would give the film 4 out of 5 stars, but the DVD as a whole 5 as the extras are great. There are deleted scenes, the last-ever interview with Brandon Lee, and interview with creator James O'Barr and more.
on 22 August 2014
Great Story and marvellous acting by cast, with plenty of superstition and ideas would make this a grand classic that is different, having you thinking all the way through. story is about two people who are killed, so when Eric and Shelly meet their brutal demise by some dark shady characters. Time goes by than exactly one year later Eric is brought back to life, given superhuman strength and vision so he can have his revenge, that is going to be paid out in the fullest under the eye of a mysterious crow, who watches from afar, must give him credit he played his part very well. These nasty evil little killers are going to get what for and not expecting their fate is now doomed which is coming up next. So what are you waiting for, got the movie yet, don't forget the popcorn to go with it. I rated this an A grade plus for the brilliant entertainment that will hold your interest throughout the entire show, Come along and relax in your chair with your feet up and watch this fabulous movie that is worthy of all credits given. Enjoy!
on 14 May 2004
I must have seen the original countless times. Although I haven't got any 'goth' tendencies, I must say that the dark and hypnotic aspect of this film had made enormous impression on me.
Even though the film is incomplete due to Brandon's early demise, the upgraded version gives some hints of what could have been! Elements such as the character of 'Skeleton Cowboy' were omited as was an extensive storyline about Eric(Brandon) and Shelly(Sofia Shinas). However still a unique masterpiece!
A must see for everyone who hasnt seen it! The enhanced version does not have subtitles which is rather odd!
on 20 October 2002
Having heard so much about the Crow online I was eager to sample this slice of movie-making genius. Initially apprehensive as the intro sequence progressed I was soon engrossed in the tragic tale of Eric Draven, Shellley Webster and the former's revenge on the thugs who murdered he and his girlfriend on Devil's Night - the day before their wedding. Directed with panache by Alex Proyas, the first half hour is a tour de force of rage and emotional destruction as Eric is ressurected and re-lives the horror of realising his beloved girlfriend was raped and murdered. The fantastic sequence where he falls about his derelict apartment while flashbacks of the slaying punctuate his agonised actions sent a shiver down my spine, aided in no small amount by the classic soundtrack.The next hour progresses from Eric's crazed power-trip as he realises his awesome powers, to his renewed sadness at glimpsing Officer Albrecht ( Ernie Hudson's )memories of Sheeley's slow death in hospital to his cold, clinical execution of T-Bird and Skank and the final adrenaline fuelled, desperate battle with Top Dollar on the church roof as the storm rages behind them. Superb. The emotional range is heart-breaking, the action stylish and spectaculer and the character of Eric, played with confidence by the late Brandon Lee, is a piece of great art in itself for his portrayal of the vengeful spectre. And even after the initial wow factor of this amazing action flick its deeper emotional residue will remain far later.Its message an ironic epitath to Lee and his fiance Eliza's own tragedy. "Buildings burn, people die. But true love is forever..." The best!