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Blade: Trinity (15)

Review by: Jack Foley | Rating: One

DVD SPECIAL FEATURES (EXTENDED VERSION): Disc One: Commentary One with writer/director/producer David Goyer, Ryan Reynolds and Jessica Biel. Commentary two with writer/director/producer David Goyer, producers Peter Frankfurt and Lynn Harris, cinematographer Gabriel Beristain, production designer Chris Gorak and editor Howard E.Smith. Animated menus.
Disc Two: Daywalkers, Nightstalkers & Familiars: Inside the World of Blade: Trinity (16 featurettes). Goyer on Goyer – The Writer Interviews the Director. Alternate ending. Blooper reel. Galleries. Trailers.

CINEMA VERSION: Daywalkers, Nightstalkers & Familiars: Inside the World of Blade: Trinity (16 featurettes). Goyer on Goyer – The Writer Interviews the Director. Alternate ending. Blooper reel. Galleries. Trailers.

HAVING been forced to endure a toothless Summer, due to the highly inept Van Helsing, vampire fans should be able to find solace once more as their favourite butt-kicking slayer returns for another slice of blood-soaked attitude and mayhem.

Blade: Trinity marks the third and possibly final film in the Marvel Comic series chronicling the attempts of Wesley Snipes' eponymous vampire-human hybrid to rid the world of Dracula and his like.

But far from being the barn-storming finale we might have expected, Trinity suffers from a testosterone overload which threatens to outstay its welcome.

What's more, its central villains - including old Dracula himself (played by Dominic Purcell) - lack any real menace, appearing more camp and comic than threatening and scary, and undermining the overall tone as a result.

It comes as a complete contrast to Blade 2's Creapers, who managed to disgust as well as chill, despite casting Luke Goss as the main villain, and which benefited from Guillermo Del Toro's distinctive style behind the camera.

That said, there is still plenty of fun to be had for the Friday night popcorn brigade, not least in Blade's new accomplices - Jessica Biel's Abigail, daughter of Kris Kristofferson's Whistler, and Ryan Reynolds' wise-cracking former vampire, Hannibal King, who both represent the Nightstalkers, a new form of ally in the war against the fanged ones.

The premise centres around the re-emergence of Dracula and the inevitable threat he poses to mankind, yet plot plays distinctly second fiddle to the set pieces, which come thick and fast.

Hence, when we're not witnessing Snipes' kicking five bells out of vampires, then it's Abigail or King getting in on the action, and twirling all manner of nifty weapons to boot (not to mention wise-cracks).

And for the most part, it's impressively staged with several of the fight sequences getting the pulse-quickening; but there is also a tendency to overcook the special effects, while the pumped-up soundtrack lends each set piece the feel of an MTV video.

The action remains the best thing about the movie, however, as it comes at the expense of any substance and almost leaves audiences feeling as empty and drained as one of the vampires' victims.

What's more, it's difficult to fathom why Dracula has been so poorly represented in recent movies, with Purcell failing to register any sort of impression as the supposedly mightiest vampire of them all.

His face-off with Blade isn't the high-point we might have expected and ends the movie on a slightly under-whelming note - especially since series writer-turned-director, David Goyer, simply cannot resist the temptation to leave the franchise open for a possible return.

Snipes, too, turns in a particularly one-note performance, seemingly content to pass on any franchise possibilities to his two young proteges (who would probably do well on their own).

Blade: Trinity is just about worth seeing for any fans of the series and does deliver its fair share of thrills. But if you don't go in expecting too much, you might just have a better time.




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