The
 Vincent

PEREZ
Archives

 
USA

84 minutes

1996

 

 

Synopsis: The latest incarnation of the crow, a mythical creature of vengeance, is Ashe, a mechanic who is brutally murdered when he and his young son witness a drug-related execution. Sarah, who encountered the original Crow, explains to Ash upon his return to life that he is back among the living to settle scores so his soul can rest. Haunted by flashbacks of the gang's murderous attack, Ash and his feathered friend - the guardian angel of a crow that flies and watches over him - wend their way through a decidedly unangelic City of Angels to hunt down and destroy gang members, one by one.

******

Stephen Holden, NY Times: 
"Ashe is a man of few words, but what he says carries some weight. ''Pain is my power,'' he roars seconds before mobilizing his avian allies. You can only feel sorry for Mr. Perez, a promising European actor who looks excruciatingly uncomfortable in his Alice Cooper-meets-the Joker makeup and speaks in a thick French accent."

Critic John Marshall:
"Perez's version of the lead character is a lot different to Lee's as in a lot more human. His character tends to be a bit nervous towards becoming what he really is."

Dallas Morning News:
"Dank atmosphere oozes out of every corner, chugging motorcycles vanish into walls of colored smog... Mr. Perez's painted visage haunts the camera."

Michael Dequina, The Movie Report:
"
The main villain, Judah (Richard Brooks), is a huge bore; Perez's thick French accent makes a lot of his yelled dialogue incomprehensible; and there's always the feeling that we've seen this all before and done much better."

Owen Gleiberman, EW:
"
Since Lee, like his late father, Bruce Lee, had a feral screen presence, his magnetism only heightened the film’s macabre irony. It was as if we were watching an actor haunted by his own death. Vincent Perez, who follows Lee’s lead in the sequel, has no such charisma. He’s wearing the same Marcel Marceau-meets-the-Joker makeup, but there’s nothing going on beneath the teary spectral mask.

Michael Rose, Mysterious Universe:
"Perez is a respected actor, but he flounders here giving a stilted performance that never clicks. Ashe was never given a chance to be his own character and never amounts to more than a man with a distracting accent reciting terrible action movie dialogue while dressed as Brandon Lee."

Laura Clifford, Reeling Reviews:
"I've got two words for this sequel -- totally irrelevant. I believe this is the first time I've been aware of Miramax grabbing for cash rather than quality.
Vincent Perez may have the right look, especially after his character Ashe is painted by grown up tatto artist Sarah, but his delivery is flat and it's no surprise that he just doesn't have the moves Brandon Lee had."

Joe Leydon, Variety:
"Perez strikes all the right poses, but he lacks the self-assured grace and self-deprecating humor that Lee brought to 'The Crow.' To be sure, Perez is in a no-win situation here: There’s no way he can compete with the audience’s memory of an actor who died in an on-the-set accident while playing the same role, and who has the near-mythic stature of a promise forever unfulfilled. Still, Perez might have done better if he’d had the opportunity to develop a give-and-take with a more animated co-star. "

Movie Magazine International:
"Perez has enough presence to share the screen with Catherine Deneuve in Indochine and Isabelle Adjani in Queen Margot, and he definitely looks the part, with his KISS-style makeup, motorcycle and leather duster jacket."

JoBlo.com:
"I will start by saying that I’m a huge Vincent Perez fan. He’s usually a very competent thespian but here he’s lost. His performance is too theatrical and he has lots of trouble with the levels the character goes through. Sadness, insanity, anger - all those emotions are played very big."

Peter Stack, SF Chronicle:
Vincent Perez now stars as Ashe, a murdered man who embodies the mythic Crow to return to life to avenge his death and that of his young son, Danny. Perez just doesn't fly. The late Lee was no Laurence Olivier, but he had warmth, an embracing humanity, even a smile now and then. Perez comes across as a guy struggling to prove himself in acting class."

Jeff Vice, Desert News:
"
Pope, who graduated from music videos, has no idea how to direct an action scene, or a dramatic one, for that matter. Many scenes drag on, seemingly to showcase the film's soon-to-be hit soundtrack. He also makes the huge mistake of letting his actors play things fast and loose. Consequently, on top of Perez's hilarious cheesy performance, you've got Iggy Pop aping Jack Nicholson and Brooks mocking Ving Rhames."

People Magazine:
"The original, 1994 installment of The Crow profited from the notoriety surrounding the death of its star, Brandon Lee, during filming. This lame sequel has no such lack of luck, and it can hardly succeed on its merits, unless the sadomasochism crowd turns out en masse. Perverse violence, none of it interesting, and perverse sex, none of it sensual, fill this movie, as does the mumbo-jumbo mysticism that blighted the original. Perez, a bargain-basement Antonio Banderas, is brought back to life after he and his son are murdered by a gang led by Pop, the lapsed punk rocker, who looks even geekier than usual in his biker vest."

Dallas Morning News:
"Dank atmosphere oozes out of every corner, chugging motorcycles vanish into walls of colored smog... Mr. Perez's painted visage haunts the camera."

Adam Smith, Empire magazine:
"The script steals from 'The Dark Half' for its conclusion, Perez lifts liberally from Jack Nicholson's Joker, while the only other performance worth noting is Iggy Pop having manic fun as the drug-addled gangster, Curve. But what really stymies this sequel is the lack of the melancholic air of loss and mourning,"

Alan Jones, Radio Times:
"Vincent Perez
replaces the late Brandon Lee as a murder victim resurrected from the dead to confront his killers in this shameless rehash of the darkly uncompromising original. Lacking the tragic resonance and strong performances of its Hammer-styled predecessor, director Tim Pope's sequel, again based on James O'Barr's cult Gothic comic strip, plays like an extended pop video and quickly becomes a rock-blasting, S&M-posturing endurance test."

Martin Liebman, Blu-ray.com: 
"The Crow: City of Angels, released about two years after the original, was a commercial flop, barely recouping its budget through domestic ticket sales and floundering not because of the absence of Lee and Proyas but primarily because of a weak script and a rushed feel. It isn't without a few positive merits - primarily thanks to relatively strong performances by Vincent Perez, Iggy Pop, and Richard Brooks - but it barely passes muster as a worthwhile theatrical film, often looking and feeling like a picture that would be more at home as a direct-to-video release."
 

CAST

Vincent Perez........Ashe Corven
Mia Kirshner........Sarah
Richard Brooks.........Judah Earl
Iggy Pop...........Curve
Vincent Castellanos...........Nemo
Ian Dury...........Noah
Tracey Ellis.............Sibyl
Thomas Jane.........Spider Monkey
Thuy Trang...........Kali


CREDITS

Directed by............Tim Pope
Screenplay by.............David S. Goyer
Based on the Comic Book Series and
Comic
 Strip by.............. James O'Barr
Photography by...........Jean Yves Escoffier

Music Score by..........Graeme Revell
 

US release date.......August 30, 1996.
 

 
 
 
 
 
 

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Click on photo below for
Blender Magazine article

* * * * *

director.gif (905 bytes)What was really interesting about casting Perez is that he is his own man. He's not your usual sort of action hero. The guy is completely beautiful; yet, he has this sort of sinewy quality that Brandon had."

******

vletter.gif (1289 bytes)"I loved making this film. I loved all the mystery of the character, all his pain - coming to accept the fact that he's actually dead - and all the symbolism and ritual in this role. I guess because I find so much that is mysterious and ritualistic in filmmaking itself. In a way, it's almost mythological, the process of acting on film. And I've always been a big Joseph Campbell fan.''

"I thought about whether this production might be cursed, and then I realized that the crow brings peace in many countries, in Asia and in India. The symbol of the crow is very positive. And I don't believe in bad luck. We're just making a movie. For this movie I'm bringing my own world, just as Brandon Lee brought his to the first. I think the first 'Crow' was more Edgar Allan Poe, while my 'Crow' is a mixture between Jim Morrison and Hamlet. When I said that, everyone seemed to be happy with this flavor I was trying to bring to the movie."