Blade: The Ultimate Collection

Blade: The Ultimate Collection

As David S. Goyer puts it, there aren’t many good sequels, and even fewer good third films. This proved to be enough inspiration for the screenwriter of the Blade films to instil all three with the right quotient of fun, action and adventure without losing focus on what makes this Marvel Comics’ protagonist engaging. Goyer admits to reinventing vampirism as a more scientific mythology instead of supernatural, introducing it as a virus that mutates the body and allows procreation. It also allows for Pomeranians to become immortal bloodsuckers, as evidenced in Blade Trinity. The first film establishes the titular character (played by Wesley Snipes) as our hero, a "Daywalker” born with half-human/half-vampire blood seeking revenge for his mother’s vicious murder during childbirth. With a rave-meets-CGI in a dark alley-type setting, its fantastical plot and pre-Matrix effects do the job setting up the franchise but oddly enough, it’s inferior to its heirs. Blade II was lucky enough to catch the eye of Guillermo del Toro, who admits to watching anime and music videos in order to make a much scarier "comic book movie.” Visually, it’s on a whole other level than the other two, as del Toro introduces a new breed of bloodsucker called Reapers, whose mutation involves a face that cracks open to reveal protruding jaws. If del Toro’s sequel is the scarier, artier instalment, then Goyer’s directorial debut with Trinity is the class clown. Casting sarcastic pretty boy Ryan Reynolds (to take the edge off the darkness) and Jessica Biel (to up the sex factor) as a pair of vampire hunters that join Blade in the ultimate battle against Dracula. But besides a few good jokes and much cooler gadgets, it’s difficult to respect the casting of Dominic Purcell (Prison Break) as Vlad the Impaler, which really drags down the cool blood farming facility. So wooden and jock-ish is Purcell that even wrestler Triple H, his oafish goon, looks good. Those three should account for this box set but tacked on, and not even inside the fancy box, is Blade: House of Chthon, starring Sticky Fingaz of Onyx as Snipes’s descendant in what is a painfully unwatchable TV movie of the worst kind. It features a slashed budget (read: decapitation results in gushing blood, not hi-tech dissolving ashes), stiff and/or histrionic acting and a dreadful plot that completely ignores the fact that in Trinity Dracula is killed, which should technically rid the world of all vampires. (Alliance)