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"Blood: The Last Vampire"

Directed by Chris Nahon.
Written by Chris Chow.  Based on a comic book, manga or bad idea.
Starring Gianna, Allison Miller, Colin Salmon and Liam Cunningham.
Release Year:  2009
Review Date:  7/12/09

Folks--

As some of you know, I occasionally see a movie trailer so bad that I HAVE to see the final film only to see if I can pad my Hard Vice stats.  Sadly, "Blood: The Last Vampire" is bad, but it wasn't total dogshit.

"Blood: The Last Vampire" is bad because nearly everything that went into it comes out as a stupid fucking idea.  Stop me if you recognize this plot--a vampire hunter named Saya (Gianna) is a half-human, half-vampire warrior who has been fighting against vampires for years.  Using a sword and the help of The Society, a group of people bent on exposing and killing previously-mentioned vampires, Saya goes to a U.S. military base in Japan to find the most evil, most vile leader of the entire vampire race...a woman named Onagin who is able to kill people just by looking at them.  With the help of an American teenager (Allison Miller), Saya goes about her business of slaughtering bad guys.

"Blade" did it better.

Directed by the genius that gave us the atrocious Jet Li actioner "Kiss of the Dragon", "Blood" has a bad script, strangely bad special effects, a visual style that is nonsensical and a lead actress that is stuck in the worst of spots: English appears to not be her first language, but the film is done mainly in English.  Lop onto that the fact that Gianna is supposed to be playing a HALF human character, so she should have HALF a soul, but her performance is stiff as a board and isn't helped by the talent surrounding her (i.e., no talent at all).  The action scenes are choreographed by a legend in this category, Corey Yuen (he has done the choreography for many of Jet Li's films), but the camerawork, the blood-splatter effects, and the wire work either look too flashy, too fake, or too stale.

Where this film avoids Hard Vice status comes in the final 20 minutes, when Saya's father is shown in flashback fighting off Onagin's army of strangely-not-vampire soldiers...I love the Asian idea of bad-ass old guy fighters, so that sequence was pretty cool to me.  And, I laughed out loud during a line Saya gives to the American teen, when she tells the American "It's 'our' war.  Run away.  Forget everything", as if a person could forget seeing vampires for the first time or run away to downtown Tokyo to avoid seeing more of them.  Terrible.

Terrible, but not the bottom.  Avoid this movie anyway.

Rating:  Rental

 

Comments?  Drop me a line at justin@bellviewmovies.com.

 

Bellview Rating System:

"Opening Weekend":  This is the highest rating a movie can receive.  Reserved for movies that exhibit the highest level of acting, plot, character development, setting...or Salma Hayek.  Not necessarily in that order. 

"$X.XX Show":  This price changes each year due to the inflation of movie prices; currently, it is the $9.50 Show.  While not technically perfect, this is a movie that will still entertain you at a very high level.  "Undercover Brother" falls into this category; it's no "Casablanca", but you'll have a great time watching.  The $9.50 Show won't win any Oscars, but you'll be quoting lines from the thing for ages (see "Office Space"). 

"Matinee":  An average movie that merits no more than a $6.50 viewing at your local theater.  Seeing it for less than $9.50 will make you feel a lot better about yourself.  A movie like "Blue Crush" fits this category; you leave the theater saying "That wasn't too bad...man, did you see that Lakers game last night?" 

"Rental":  This rating indicates a movie that you see in the previews and say to your friend, "I'll be sure to miss that one."  Mostly forgettable, you couldn't lose too much by going to Hollywood Video and paying $3 to watch it with your sig other, but you would only do that if the video store was out of copies of "Ronin."  If you can, see this movie for free.  This is what your TV Guide would give "one and a half stars." 

"Hard Vice":  This rating is the bottom of the barrel.  A movie that only six other human beings have witnessed, this is the worst movie I have ever seen.  A Shannon Tweed "thriller," it is so bad as to be funny during almost every one of its 84 minutes, and includes the worst ending ever put into a movie.  Marginally worse than "Cabin Boy", "The Avengers" or "Leonard, Part 6", this rating means that you should avoid this movie at all costs, or no costs, EVEN IF YOU CAN SEE IT FOR FREE!  (Warning:  strong profanity will be used in all reviews of "Hard Vice"-rated movies.)

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The "fine print":
All material by Justin Elliot Bell for SMR/Bellview/bellviewmovies.com except where noted
1999-2009 Justin Elliot Bell This site was last updated 07/12/09