Some time ago, Ashe Corven and his son Danny were killed when they stumbled across a pack of drug dealers murdering a fellow dealer. The dealers work for Los Angeles drug kingpin Judah Earl. Local tattoo artist Sarah, who has great knowledge of the crow legend because of what happened with her late friend Eric Draven, has been having dreams about Ashe and Danny. One night when a crow leads her to the scene of the murders of Ashe and Danny, Ashe appears before her. The crow has resurrected Ashe, so Ashe can go after Judah and his right hand man Curve. With the guidance of the crow, Ashe starts killing off Judah's men one by one, on his way to Judah. Written by
Many people who claim to be crowfans say that this film isn't what the Crow is all about but they don't bother to explain why. Many of those people only like the first film and nothing else. While the first movie is my favorite film, it's sequel is certainly worthy of the Crow title and upholds the mythology set by the first film.
This movie could have been better than it was, however. 1/4 of the movie was left on the cutting room floor. Alternate dialogue. Alternate endings. The very good fight/death scene of Kali was actually a great scene beforehand. She doesn't die as soon as she is thrown out the window, but there is some additionally dialogue that expands both her character and the character of Ashe.
When a powerless Ashe falls from grace at the end of the film, rather than Danny's ghost telling his father that "if you stop now, we can never be together", Danny tells Ashe that "it's time to go" but Ashe refuses because he can't leave Sarah to die. With that, Danny turns his back on his father and we don't see him for the rest of the film. This scene solifies Ashe's internal conflict in a very tragic, heart-breaking manor.
What internal conflict you ask? Ashe was torn on whether or not he should complete his mission and join his son in the afterlife or stay with Sarah in the world of the living. You weren't aware of this in the film? It was really only hinted at in the current version. So it all ends happily right? Ashe, Sarah, and Danny are cross into the land of the dead and we have one big happy family, right? Wrong. In the original version, Ashe doesn't go back because his crow is too...well, dead to carry his soul back to the land of the dead. So he is forced to walk the earth separated from those he really loves.
COA was originally a more depressing take on the themes of the first film. There was less similarity in story. Saldy, many scenes were cut for no reason and the ending was changed to make the film more hollywood. What could have been a great film with a great story turned out to be a visually impressive film with vague bits and pieces of a story. It didn't have the deep emotional story of the first because it didn't try to. It was a rather depressing drama of a hero who succeeds and fails at the same time. A different take on the Crow.
But the complaints of the story being too similar does ring true here. Mostly because the stuff that made it different was cut. The makers were probably afraid of fan backlash. Ironic, huh? Vincent Perez was AWESOME as Ashe. I like Brandon Lee better, but Perez manages to give a good performance of a man who contemplates what exactly to do with the second chance he's been given. He also has the insanity thing going well for him. He's different from Brandon Lee/Eric Draven. Standouts from the supporting cast are Iggy Pop and Thomas Jane. Jane's strip club scene was hilarious and Iggy gives a badly written role more energy than it deserved. His scenes with Vincent were great.
There were downsides besides the ones I just mentioned. The movie lacked the good action sequences of the first film. There were a few stand outs but that's it. I was displeased that they never showed Ashe's wounds heal up. The final confrontation between Ashe and Judah should've been longer. The CGI in the movie was terrible. Judah should have been savagely picked apart when he was attacked by the crows, not disappear into nothing. The girl who played Sarah could get extremely annoying at times and the early scenes that focus on her are quite boring. It takes a bit too long for Ashe to get painted up and start on his mission. Why some of the crap scenes were left in and some of the good parts were cut out is a mystery.
Oh and for those who complain about this movie disrespecting Brandon Lee, how do you figure that? Really, I'd like to know. I've heard that this movie was done for money...all movies are done for money. Yes, even the first Crow.
All in all, COA does have serious problems and an annoying plothole or two, but it is far from one of the worst movies ever. See it if you liked the first film and you're looking for an alternative story with the same themes.
Current Version-6 If the original footage was left intact-8.5 or 9
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