Saturday, 13 April 2013

Blade II (2002)

Before Guillermo del Toro found mainstream recognition with his two Hellboy films, he directed the second of the Blades.  This second installment is far more entertaining than the first, probably because it's simply a better film.  The first 5 minutes are more creative and dynamic than the entire first film; the cast are a lot better, and at no point do vampires try to be day-walkers by wearing sun block!

Wesley Snipes seems to have settled into his role a little, and doesn't seem as stilted as he did in the first film.  Surprised as I was that Luke Goss was great as Prince Nuada in Hellboy 2, I wasn't aware that del Toro had used him before; he was very convincing as the mutant vampire Nomak.  And he's not the only surprise; Cat from Red Dwarf (Danny John Jules) features as a vampire in the first half of the film!  I was a bit disappointed that Tony Curran wasn't used more though; he's great as Marcus in Underworld Evolution and wonderful as Vincent van Gogh in Doctor Who.  Ron Perlman is Ron Perlman playing a vampire, and is therefore quite cool. So the standard of acting is a significant improvement from the first film.

The plot was one of the (highlights is too strong a word given the inconsistencies I didn't like) lights of the first film, and there is no disappointment here either.  A more consistent and engaging story, and even a little twist; David S Goyer showing that he is continuing as an inventive writer worthy of his plaudits.  I have quite a soft spot for Vampire mythology movies (Underworld and Evolution are real guilty pleasures), so I was rather disappointed by the first Blade; happily Blade 2 belongs to the guilty pleasure pile, helped by creative direction a smart story and a pretty decent cast.