Director: James McTeigue
Stars: John Cusack, Luke Evans, Alice Eve, Brendan Gleeson, Kevin McNally

There has to be a filmmaker out there capable of turning the life of the enigmatic and haunted author Edgar Allan Poe into a solid movie. Anyone other than James McTeigue, the middling director who somewhat impressed with V for Vendetta (2006) and then totally screwed the pooch with the insipid action pic Ninja Assassin (2009); with The Raven, he and his cohorts ruined all Poe lovers' hopes and dreams.

Turning Poe into an 1800s spin on Alex Cross isn't a terrible idea, especially when you mix in the whole "killer uses Poe's stories as inspiration" angle. But the problem is that, instead of going for a David Fincher/Seven kind of creepy sheen, McTeigue opted for Guy Ritchie's Sherlock Holmes aesthetic, but with more blood, added pendulums, and none of the fun. Not even a reasonably entertaining and swag-increasing performance from John Cusack, as Poe, can shake the dullness.