Tuesday, January 04, 2005

Blade: Trinity Sharper Than The Second But Duller Than The First

The third in the series, Blade: Trinity, stars Wesley Snipes, Dominic Purcell, Jessica Biel, Ryan Reynolds, and Parker Posey with cameos by Kris Kristofferson, Triple H (yes, the wrestler), and Natasha Lyonne.

IMDB Plot Summary:
Wesley Snipes returns as the day-walking vampire hunter in the explosive third and final film in the Blade franchise, Blade: Trinity. When the Vampire Nation hatches a plan to frame Blade in a series of brutal killings, he must join forces with the Nightstalkers, a clan of human vampire hunters, in an extreme battle in which the trail of blood leads directly to the notorious vampire legend, Dracula.
Here's the thing, you know this isn't going to be a masterpiece. The first one, Blade, is a classic. The second one, Blade II, is pretty much a bust. This one, at least in quality, falls nicely between the two. It's much lighter, even going so far as to include humor. (Pretty much every time Ryan Reynolds is on the screen I was laughing at something he said or did.) It's also nice to see Blade get some help. One tenet of this series has been Blade's isolation. He works alone and that's the way it is. Seeing him have some company, some fellow hunters, is nice. Seeing him have Jessica Biel as a fellow hunter is very nice.

My initial reaction to this movie's trailer (way back this is) was that it looked to me like Underworld only with Jessica Biel instead of Kate Beckinsale. Blade:Trinity is a bit more than that, and a heck of a lot better than Underworld. It has a better, simpler plot and a better feel to it. Underworld just seems too dark and pale in comparison, making the comparison a poor one. Then again, if that was my first reaction upon viewing the trailer, they needed to redo that trailer and get me to not immediately compare it to Underworld.

As for criticisms, I have a few. The movie didn't really reach me or draw me in. Throughout I felt like I was watching a movie. I wasn't very involved with what was going on and it didn't pluck any heartstrings or command my rapt attention. It just didn't. But then, as I initially stated, you know this isn't going to be a masterpiece. So if you're just there for the ride, so to speak, to have a good time, relax and enjoy whatever they have to present to you, it's a pretty good action movie.

Something or, more accurately, someone else -- Parker Posey. I am not a huge Parker Posey fan, though I do not dislike her either. In my book she falls under the "alright" category. Seeing her "vamped out" and goth was pretty cool but she just doesn't strike me as a vampire. She just doesn't. I would have been much happier with another actress in that role. I had trouble taking Parker Posey seriously as the head vamp (second to Drake of course). I don't know if that's just me bringing my preconceived notions to the movie or her failing to impress me as a powerful vampire leader. I can't distinguish between the two. All I can say is that I wish someone else had been cast in her role.

By the way, continuing in my favored wrestlers-turned-actors category (e.g. The Rock, Rowdy Roddy Piper), I liked Triple H as a vampire. He didn't have all that much screen-time but what he had was good. He fit in. Him I could believe as a vampire minion. Easy. Plus, when he has a fight scene with Ryan Reynolds, he throws in some wrestling moves. I thought that was hysterical and excellent.

Last gripe, and I'll be deliberately vague here. The ending annoyed me. Given what happened at the end, I'm not sure if there's anywhere else to go with this series. Granted someone somewhere said this was the final in the series but should they wish to go on, it seems like they've painted themselves into a corner. Maybe that's deliberate. Who knows.

All in all, a good action movie. Nothing to write home about but certainly worth a viewing if you like action movies, vampire movies or the first Blade movie.

ALAN'S MOVIE RATING: Rental or Cable-Worthy.