Review by Gordon Justesen
Wesley Snipes, Kris Kristofferson, Jessica Biel, Ryan Reynolds, Parker Posey,
Dominic Purcell, Triple H
Director: David S. Goyer
Audio: Dolby Digital 5.1, DTS ES 6.1, Dolby Surround
Video: Anamorphic Widescreen 2.35:1
Studio: New Line Cinema
Features: See Review
Length: 123 Minutes (Unrated), 113 Minutes (Rated)
Release Date: April 26, 2005
you ready to die, Blade?"
was born ready, motherf***er."
When the character
of Blade was first introduced in 1998, audiences were given a new reason to
cheer for the anti-hero. The vampire slayer, known to everyone as "the daywalker"
has sliced and diced his way through numerous enemies, not so much as a means to
save the human race, but as a way of striking back at the very species who made
him the man he is. He just manages to save humans in the process.
Blade was a blazing introduction to the character, as he fought against the
vampire gods. Then came 2002's Blade II,
a superior and incredibly fantastic follow up that had Blade up against the
creature race known as the Reapers, which even vampires were in fear of. Both
films carried a fantastic visual style and went all out in terms of good old
bloody action, mixed with fantastic effects.
Now Blade has
returned for one final hunt in Blade:
Trinity. While I may have to rank this as three out of three, this
installment is nevertheless a furious piece of extravagant entertainment. Wesley
Snipes gears up in the trademark black suit, and David S. Goyer, writer of the
first two movies, takes the director's chair this time around, presiding over an
outstanding landscape of action and effects, along with a high dose of humor to
go along. The one thing one will have to accept is an over-the-top plot.
The movie begins in
Iraq, where a team of vampires, led by female Talos (Parker Posey), explore an
ancient temple. They are in search of the first and most powerful vampire of all...Dracula,
whose body is rumored to lay somewhere within the tomb. He is there, indeed, in
the form of a grisly looking demon monster, making Tim Curry in Legend
seem more like Big Bird.
hero, Blade (Snipes), is doing what he does best; slaying some vampire ass. But
what starts as a normal battle for Blade takes an unexpected turn when one of
his victims doesn't burn like other vampires. The victim turns out to be a
human, leading Blade to discover that he has been set up, by the same gang of
renegade vamps who just discovered Dracula.
The incident is
caught on camera and sent to the FBI. Blade then becomes a wanted man by the
feds. He is soon captured, and is confronted not just by the FBI, but the
vampires who set him up. It seems that there's some conspiracy between the two
to put Blade away for good.
He then gets a
surprise rescue from a band of fellow vampire slayers known as the Nightstalkers.
The two leaders are former vampire/resident wisecracker Hannibal King (Ryan
Reynolds) and Abigail Whistler (Jessica Biel), the long lost daughter of Blade's
longtime mentor (Kris Kristofferson) who recently perished during an FBI raid.
Blade doesn't what any help from what he sees as nothing more than rookies, but
the two insists, since Abigail wants vengeance for her fathers death, and
Hannibal's previous experience as a vampire could help in there attempt to
destroy the purest of all vampires.
Dracula is actually
a shape shifter, able to shift into the human form of Drake (Dominic Purcell).
Talos and her team are able to bring Dracula back to power by having him feed
off the countless corpses they have stored in a lab (a plot point which was cut
out of the first movie—see the deleted scenes area on that disc). This will
allow him to regain full power and plot a vampire takeover of the entire world.
The rest of the
movie is basically an array of extended fight scenes and shootouts, each of
which pack the same fantastic punch that the previous two flicks delivered.
Snipes is a physical marvel as always, but I must say that I was more than
impressed by the physical qualities of Ms. Biel. I know she got a great workout
running away from Leatherface, and she has come into this fight in a lean, mean,
sexy fighting machine mode.
The true scene
stealer of Blade: Trinity is Ryan
Reynolds of National Lampoon's
Van Wilder, and who can also be seen in the current remake of The Amityville Horror. Reynolds was whipped into incredibly ripped
shape for this part and does plenty of butt kicking. However, it's his comedic
side is that takes hold in just about every scene he's in.
Usually if an actor
utters a series of cheeky one liners, they tend to irritate and not always be
the least bit funny. Not the case here, and I would give a sample of them if
there clean enough, which they aren't, which is mostly why they get such big
laughs. I guess it also works since the last two movies were very dark, and didn't
have time for lots of jokes.
So while Blade:
Trinity can't quite measure up to the impact of its predecessors, it remains
a damn good installment and, should this mark the end of a trilogy, makes a more
than fitting farewell. The action is as enthralling as always, the look and
design is visually intoxicating, and the frequent humor perfectly reflects the
ridiculousness of the storyline.
fellow review slayers...it's been a terrific ride!
New Line's top
quality of their DVD production has always been displayed in the Blade
movies. The first two discs were all around incredible, and the disc for Blade:
Trinity is nothing short of drop-dead fantastic. The anamorphic picture
ignites with a sharp-as-a-"blade" image and an outstanding array of colors,
which is a key part in the look of the three movies. The sets look astounding,
and the effects sequences are prime examples of what the DVD format was created
for. A massively superb job from New Line!
After the roar and
fury of the first two movies, there really wasn't any other route for this
release to take but that of high superior sound quality. Both tracks, the 5.1 EX
mix and, especially, the explosive 6.1 DTS ES track are guaranteed to rock your
speakers to the floor. Every possible sound element, from music to dialogue to
action/explosions is given grand treatment. Needless to say, one of the most
fantastic sounding discs you'll ever come across.
New Line executes
Platinum Series brilliance with a locked n' loaded Unrated 2-disc package. Disc
One contains both the unrated and R-rated versions, 2 commentary tracks; one
with cast and crew including castmates Jessica Biel and Ryan Reynolds and
writer/director David S. Goyer, the second with selected production crew
Disc Two carries
the rest of the firepower, beginning with "Inside the World of Blade: Trinity",
a sixteen-part documentary that traces production, an alternate ending, a
lengthy blooper reel, trailers for this and additional New Line releases.