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Review Blade II (2002): Guillermo del Toro manages to even scare the bejesus out of vampires!

genre: comic book adaptation, fantasy, action, adventure, super hero

For a long time I considered Blade II to be one of those rare sequels that was bigger and better. However after having viewed it again I think this is not the case.

It's still good but I don't think it's necessarily better than the original. The tone and style is very different and Guillermo del Toro definitely has put his own stamp on it. For the most part that is a good thing since you do get a vastly different viewing experience however one could argue that Blade II is more eye candy with very little substance. The main plot is simple and in service of the action and spectacle as it should in films like these. But there are some plot elements that will raise your eyebrows should you be inclined to think about them. For example a certain character who died in the original is brought back in this sequel. The way it's done is so unbelievable and convenient that you begin to wonder why the character was killed off in the first place. Don't get me wrong I was happy to see him return. Still it kind of messed with the rules that were established. Another thing that doesn't make sense is the fact that Blade and the vampires temporarily strike a truce so that they can focus on the new enemies called Reapers. Nomak (Luke Goss) , the main villain of the story, calls Blade out on this by asking him if the enemies of his enemies shouldn't be friends? Actually Nomak is a far more honourable enemy than for example Deacon Frost. He is not exactly super evil. The only thing that is bothersome is the fact that he can turn humans and vampires into Reapers who are far deadlier than normal vampires. I am sure that if Blade actually had taken the time to properly talk to Nomak, while drinking some herbal tea and eating some cookies or something, they would have been able to come to an agreement. But of course Blade is too pumped for action and doesn't hesitate to deal with Nomak the only way he knows how.

In the midst of all this Blade has to lead a team of elite vampires who were trained to kill Blade. They are called The Bloodpack. They sure look menacing but are they truly? Amongst them is none other than Donnie Yen who apparently was signed on to do the fight choreography. Unfortunately he is incredible underused and doesn't get the chance to show of his martial arts skills properly. Real shame. Leader of The Bloodpack is Reinhardt played by Ron Perlman. I don't think I have ever seen a show or film with him in it that isn't interesting. He is one of those actors that has a demanding presence which is no different here. But here he truly enjoys playing a bad guy. There there is Nyssa who is supposed to be Blade's love interest. This relationship comes out of nowhere and like many things in this film is very convenient. I liked her. But apart from one fight scene with Blade she is not given that much to do. 

The action and spectacle is top notch most of the time. But it also has some very horrible CGI effects in for example the fight between Nyssa and Blade. For some reason they decided to put in CGI versions of them. Had they been doing flips or super high jumps then maybe I would have understood. Here they were just clashing swords something they seemed very capable of doing that on their own. It looks so fake and will make it hard to take it seriously. However the design of the Reapers is masterfully done as they are truly creepy and scary.

Overall Blade II is very much on par as the original where we get to see Snipes as Blade kick ass. He is immensely cool in this and therefore I refuse to believe that he is the one who supposed to have sabotaged Blade Trinity. But more on that when I review that film. A must watch if you haven't seen this before.


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