Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Blade (1998)

As a gigantic Guillermo Del Toro fan I’ve seen Blade II probably a dozen times, and while it doesn’t reach the heights of Pan’s Labyrinth, The Devil’s Backbone, Shape of Water or his Hellboy movies, it is a classic action horror movie that I fully intend to see several more times. I had seen the first Blade at least once a decade or more ago but had little memory of it, other than the the reflexive movie snob move of calling the the sequel the good Blade movie and dismissing the others as trash. I’m still a little bit of a movie snob, but I’m way more open to trash than I once was, and on this rewatch I’m willing to admit that Blade is first class superhero/horror trash (while still preferring Del Toro’s entry in the series).

In the age of the PG-13 blockbuster, it’s hard to wrap my mind around the fact that the first successful (read: good) Marvel adaptation featured a club full of vampires at a rave getting a blood shower within the first 10 minutes of the film, leading into the first fight sequence. And that sets the tone for the movie. It’s incredibly violent but very effective. The fight scenes are all well staged, the info dump scenes were minimal and unobtrusive. For the most part the exposition and lore are worked into the film in a natural enough way. The dialog is silly at times, but that’s forgivable. The special effects work with the exception of the big fight scene at the end where the skeleton ghosts tear their way out of the pureblood vampires that are slated for sacrifice.

Highly Recommended.

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