Monday, June 29, 2009

BLOOD: THE LAST VAMPIRE - derivative, plotless nonsense

BLOOD: THE LAST VAMPIRE had potential, making the final product even more tragic. In post-WWII Japan, half demon / half human Saya (Gianna Jun) teams up with the mysterious "Council" - an ancient and semi-official organisation dedicated to fighting the forces of darkness - to avenge her human father's death at the hands of a particularly vicious vampire - Onigen. Sound a little like BLADE? That's because it is a little like BLADE, except with a female lead, low-tech weaponry, no boning, and massive plot holes.

In fact, the gaps in the plot were so gaping that the whole experience was rather surreal. Several times I thought I'd nodded off for 10 minutes and missed a bunch of stuff - but no, it was just repeatedly non-sequitor. Things just happen ex-nihilo - characters turn on other characters with no discernible motive or cause. There is no build up towards anything - no progression toward some form of resolution - no real character development.

A love story is thrown in there, and just as suddenly thrown out. Demons appear out of nowhere, without any warning or reason, triggering another poorly animated fight scene before the next aimless plot moment. Characters drive along cliff-top roads for no good reason, going nowhere that we know of, only to act as a prop for random high speed sword slashing.

At one point, a demon chases an airplane with the main character in pursuit. We don't know why. We don't know who or what is on the plane, why the demon is after it, or how the main character knew the demon would be there. What is more confusing is that the demon has wings, and thus has no need of aerial transportation. These weird "how did they know that?" and "why is this happening?" and "that doesn't make sense..." moments maintain a sense of almost complete disconnectedness in the audience throughout.

Thus the film "progresses", jumping from vampire to vampire, eventually reaching a climax that was so deus ex machina and anti-climactic that I walked out to go to the loo believing it to be a dream sequence midway through the film. I piss, come back, and to my utter confusion find the credits rolling. WTF? **THAT** was the end?? Ya woh? Nothing actually happened!

So, overall, this is one to miss. The only semi-entertaining moment was when I realised the Army General in the first third of the movie was actually Larry Lamb, Peggy's errant ex in Eastenders, explaining his piss poor American accent. But that, and an uneasy sense of confusion and disorientation, really wasn't worth the eight quid fifty I paid to get in. Two thumbs down.


  1. I was surpised to see this being made into a live action film. The original anime is only 40 minutes long, so I can imagine the story has been stretched pretty thin.

    Looking forward to The Thirst a lot more.

  2. Weirdly, not only did it seem stretched, it seemed as if they'd cut a bunch out of it too. It was as if there was a plot sequence hidden on the cutting room floor, and that all that was left was a random sequence of the old ultra-violence.

    When's The Thirst coming out?

  3. No UK release date yet but in the US mid July. Probably already on mininova, but hey, what am I saying?!