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Is It Garbage? The Crow 1994

Every 36 year old with a pony tail will tell you how “totally awesome” The Crow is. They will rant and rave about Brandon Lee. They will tell you all about the “kick ass soundtrack” the movie has, but they’ll never really give you a clear cut answer why they think the movie/actor is so “epic”. So, I have to ask. Is it garbage?

There’s no doubt that The Crow left a lasting legacy, with 3 direct sequels (mostly straight to DVD), a TV series, and a remake that’s been in developmental hell for years. None of which lived up to the hype and fanfare as the original.

Let’s examine the facts.

Title: The Crow
Starring: Brandon Lee, Ernie Hudson, Bai Ling
Released: May 13, 1994
Premise: The crow brings back the spirit of a rock musician to avenge his own death, as well as the rape and murder of his fiancée.
Money: 50 Million+
Critics: Generally Favorable.

The Good: Highly stylized visuals combined with a soundtrack that complements the action on the screen. Brandon Lee gave his best performance to date. Mainstream enough to appeal to a larger audience. Perhaps the first “comic book universe” that really stood on its own. At times the special effects were OK.

The Bad: The superficial plot doesn’t really hold up. One dimensional characters did nothing for “world building”. Fan boys would not tolerate that in todays market. At times the special effects were bad. The screenplay is a mess.

The Ugly: There’s no doubt that the films audience was “enhanced” by the mystery and lore surrounding Brandon Lee’s on set death. Add in the mix the mysteries surrounding the death of his father, famed martial artist, Bruce Lee, and there’s your audience. The post-death changes made to the film played a major factor when it came to the critical reception of the film. The lacking screenplay was enhanced by the legend of Brandon Lee’s death, a memorable soundtrack, and a moody complementary score.

Is it garbage? NO. Truth be told, it’s a pretty cool movie. The performances, music, stylish action sequences, charismatic leading man, and fantasy/supernatural tale of revenge, all come together in a way that complement each other, but also do a great job hiding some of the flaws of the movie. It’s the rabid fanboys who insist on the movies overwhelming epicness that bring the movie down. It’s good. It’s maybe even a little better than good, but it’s not exactly a great cinematic masterpiece.


Disagree? Leave a comment below.


  1. Tyler Howell, December 6, 2017:

    You messed up the title you wrote Is It Garbage? The Crow 1997 but in the article it states The Crow was released in 1994 the title is a bit confusing but it was a really good article

  2. Azzurra Nox, December 7, 2017:

    I actually refused to see the movie when it was first released, despite the fact that my mother had rented it. Seeing someone made up with all that makeup on the cover, somehow made me feel like the movie would be cheesy, and usually overhyped movies are just that, all hype.

    However, I actually decided to watch the movie four years after it was released when it played on TV. And that moment changed EVERYTHING. I loved the storyline of star-crossed lovers that die and a year later the boyfriend is resurrected by paranormal means and takes revenge on all the ones who did him wrong. I was sixteen so the notion of “Real love is forever,” was romantic without being cheesy (cause after all this couple was DEAD! Tragic!). I’ve always been a horror fan, so the deaths/paranormal aspect lured me even more. Then of course, Brandon Lee was just very convincing as a brooding rockstar with a broken heart ready to seek vengeance. Then there was the soundtrack….it was PERFECT in every way. Not to mention that the lead villain Top Dollar was just as charismatic as Eric Draven, so you couldn’t help but like the villain cause he was smart and had a mission. Bonus: My Life With the Thrill Kill Kult performs in the movie and there’s Tony Todd. So, as a horror fan and goth aficionado, this movie was and still IS my favourite movie ever. Cause sometimes all a movie needs to deliver thrills and the underlining message that love can overcome anything (even death) isn’t such a bad thing either.

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