The first movie had a kick ass sound track, amazing special effects, and a whole lot of heart and soul. It seems like after Lee died whoever got a hold of The Crow property just decided to halfass paint up some dude's face, off someone's girlfriend and start murthering bad guys.
The hair gets shorter and the reason for the face paint gets dumber. Our leading man (snicker) is wrongfully executed for the murder of his girlfriend. They strap some kind of bondage mask on him and after roasting him that somehow caused him to have scars that look like the classic face paint. To be honest I can't remember much of it because it was so awful. One neat factoid: Rob Zombie was originally slated to write, direct, and supervise the music. But he didn't because of differences with producers. So now its a shitty movie that will live on forever, great job.
For the next iteration in the series our avenger is a heap of white trash named Jimmy Cuervo (Edward Furlong), no seriously that's his name. He is in love with a pretty Indian squa and there's some kind of Romeo and Juliet shit going down. Also Tara Reid's fake breasts and Tito Ortiz are bumbling baddies in this one. Furlong whines his way through the entire movie, not quite intimidating enough to be offing anyone. Its pretty awful.
I was abroad when Stairway to Heaven aired so I had never seen it. At the time the only copy available was a rental copy off of Amazon.com, the kind that is normally sold to Blockbuster at a high price so they would have to rent it a few dozen times to start making a profit. So my options were: pay $230 for a VHS cassette or never see it. I figured I wasn't missing much. Although it does have that mysteriously ethnic fella (Mark Dacascos) from Brotherhood of the Wolf who can play anything from Mexican to Native American to Chinese and knows kung fu.
We live in the future and the entire series is now available on Netflix. I have to say I am pretty underwhelmed. Not only is this series fraught with awkwardly jammed in lines from the first movie but it has some of the poorest continuity and plot I've ever had the misfortune to observe. They bring back Sarah. Her haircut drastically changes between the first three episodes. There are 22 episodes, by the third one a major plot device is The Crow needs a job. They must have cashed in their entire music budget on Crystal Method's "Coming Back" because that shit plays on just about every episode. Here's an example of how hard they try, its very cute:
The source material is awesome, shucks I can recall reading one comic where there's nonstop gunslingers and dead bodies (The Crow: The Dead Time). I don't understand why so much crap is produced and given James O'Barr's seal of approval. I hear they're "rebooting" the series soon. Let's hope for the best.