Thursday, May 31, 2007

Bloodrayne...a decent reign

Bloodrayne - Uwe Bowl - 2005 - 5/10


Uwe Bowl continues his quest to make every videogame into a movie. Kristanna Loken is Rayne, a dhamphir (half human, half vampire) set out to take revenge on the powerful vampire who raped and killed her mother. Joining her are three veteran vampire hunters led by Vladimir (Michael Madsen) and flanked by Domastir (Will Sanderson) and Katarin (Michelle Rodriguez). The only way to defeat her father, Kagan (Ben Kingsley) is to collect the powerful vampire talismans that will make the ultimate vampire - a rib, an eye, and a heart. Together the three "amulets" will help vampires overcome the greatest dangers - daylight, water, and the cross. As the band fights their way through human armies in league with vampires, monks guarding the amulets, and treachery, blood splatters everywhere. As our protagonists search out the amulets, behind the scenes, Kagan and Elrich (Billy Zane), Katarin's father, jockey for power. Who will get the amulets? What will they do?


Frankly, I liked the movie. After getting terrible reviews and being torn apart by imdb viewers, I expected a pretty weak movie. What I got was a sort of bastard of Indiana Jones, Dracula, and Lord of the Rings. Looking at the production details, you can see that Uwe Bowl was constrained by the meager 25 million dollar budget as the action scenes are sometimes weak and cheesy. At the same time, especially when using her katars (not sure that's the right terminology), Loken is pretty bad ass. The vampire fight scenes arent half bad either. But most of the scenes seem slow and overly simple for a movie that has its options limited down to swords. As a general rule, besides just the fight scenes, things seem to come too easy - perhaps Bowl's vigilant adherence to the videogame. But some things seem to almost resolve themselves. But the acting (despite a godawful script), especially the veteran actors is really solid - Madsen, Kingsley, Zane, Udo Kier, Geraldine Chaplin, Meat Loaf and then the new actors are equally strong as Loken is very good here, as is Michelle Rodriguez and Will Sanderson. However, the script and the cheesy action scenes prevent the movie from going to the next level, and even reaching the "Underworld" level. Towards the end the movie tries to clean things up, perhaps a little too hasty and a quasi-love between Loken's Rayne and Sanderson's Dormastir is essentially introduced in the last few minutes and seems fake and hollow - there wasnt really much of a hint beforehand. So the movie is good, but not good enough to really sink your teeth into it.


If it's on tv, and nothing else is, its a decent flick.

If you liked this movie, watch...
...Van Helsing

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