Saturday, December 17, 2011

Marvel Media Mania: Blade II

Blade II is the 2002 sequel to Blade. Wesley Snipes and Kris Kristofferson reprise their rolls but the rest of the cast is new.

Right off the bat, I'll tell you that this film suffers from sequel-itis. In trying to differentiate itself from the first film or "take things to the next level" it loses its heart, style, and passion. Honestly, I saw this film when it came out but I didn't remember one thing about it until I rewatched it recently.

Sure, we still have Wesley Snipes in kung-fu action taking down vampires... but why do we care? Sequences seem to be designed to be "cool" not because they have any purpose, such as the motorcycle sequence in the beginning.

The story opens with Blade searching for Whistler, who, somehow survived his memorable suicide from the first film. This is never really explained at all - one huge example of the plot holes in this film. Apparently Whistler didn't kill himself and became a vampire. Then the vampires captured him and held him captive for two years, torturing him and then putting him in stasis chamber blood vats to heal so they could torture him some more. Blade rescues him and gives him a serum and then the rest of the film he doesn't act like a vampire at all. Really? That's all it takes? Because the vampires have been searching for a cure to their weaknesses such as sunlight... turns out, all they needed to do was use Blade's serum!

The plot of the movie involves super-vampires, which are hunting regular vampires and turning them into super-vampires. Blade agrees to help the vampires hunt the super-vampires (called Reavers). While the reavers have a cool design, they're primarily treated as mindless thugs. Once again, I didn't care about them, nor did I care about any of the vampires. A special-ops vampire team called the Bloodpack is introduced but they're all cardboard cutouts - style but no substance. Blade forms an attraction with one vampire, Nyssa, but, once again, I didn't care about that at all. Plot twists don't seem surprising or even interesting at all. In almost every regard, this film falls flat.

Now, that's not to say that this film is completely without merit. The special effects are okay, the action is fine, and I did like the very end when Blade shows up to take out the vampire he let go in the beginning. Scud has the best line in the film when Blade comes home and he says, "The Dark Knight returns!" referencing the Batman storyline by Frank Miller.

Ultimately, this film is a mere shadow of the first one. It lacks the charm and style that made the first film memorable. Unfortunately, it's not the worst Blade movie....

1LR Review - 9 out of 20 - It's a Miss!

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