Murders In The Rue Morgue / The Black Cat / The Raven :Three Edgar Allan Poe Adaptations

To talk of three of the greatest horror adaptations of their era, it seems to not do them justice. You also probably do not care for my opinion on said classic (I love them all!) MURDERS IN THE RUE MORGUE, THE BLACK CAT, and THE RAVEN are three essential titles to any horror film lovers collection. Edgar Allan Poe. Universal Pictures, stars Bela Lugosi, Boris Karloff, directors like Robert Florey and Edgar G. Ulmer.

The films are packed with the talent and the draw is obvious and silly for me to over state. Add in that this is Pre-Code studio horror and well its win win. Jeez I could sell this ice to eskimos! But you dear, discerning reader. You care less about this (as you know it) You care more for this. What you are more interested in is this. Are the discs worth my money?

THE DISCS

Well the answer is yes. The Raven looks the best of the three. The 2K hasn’t made it sing but it has made it robust again. The DVD flattened everything out and this now creates a texture of light and shadow. The Black Cat is served best by that HD on the other two. It did well on DVD and that has persisted across the formats. I like the cinematography a lot and here it is legible. God we needed that! Murders in the Rue Morgue is flatter and lacks a punch but it is above the DVD so that makes it essential to buy for the fan.

THE EXTRAS. 

So there are very good. good and ok. I will say that the Very good is outweighed by the good but its really very good.  Gregory William Mank commentary on RUE MORGUE is exceptional. He knows his stuff. Detailing the production and the artifices in detail and intelligence. Samm Deighan commentary on THE RAVEN is a close second. I love Deighan knowing probes. Punching point after point and keeping you enthralled. Lee Gambin Cats in Horror is third. Brilliantly comedic and serious, with panache and Gambin should possibly develop this into a series! Kat Ellinger American Gothic, navigates the films in a textured, if not short, analysis.

SPECIAL TWO-DISC BLU-RAY EDITION:

  • High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) presentations for all three films, with The Raven presented from a 2K scan of the original film elements
  • Uncompressed LPCM monaural audio tracks
  • Optional English SDH subtitles
  • Murders in the Rue Morgue Audio commentary by Gregory William Mank
  • The Black Cat Audio commentary by Gregory William Mank
  • The Black Cat Audio commentary by Amy Simmons
  • The Raven Audio commentary by Gary D. Rhodes
  • The Raven Audio commentary by Samm Deighan
  • Cats In Horror a video essay by writer and film historian Lee Gambin
  • American Gothic a video essay by critic Kat Ellinger
  • “The Black Cat” episode of radio series Mystery In The Air, starring Peter Lorre
  • “The Tell-Tale Heart” episode of radio series Inner Sanctum Mysteries, starring Boris Karloff
  • Bela Lugosi reads “The Tell-Tale Heart”
  • Vintage footage
  • New Interview with Critic And Author Kim Newman
  • PLUS: A 48-PAGE collector s booklet featuring new writing by film critic and writer Jon Towlson; a new essay by film critic and writer Alexandra Heller-Nicholas; and rare archival imagery and ephemera

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