Blade II (2002)

DVD Cover (New Line Studios)
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Overall Rating 68%
Overall Rating
Ranked #855
...out of 21,302 movies
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Connections: Marvel: Blade

A rare mutation has occurred within the vampire community - The Reaper. A vampire so consumed with an insatiable bloodlust that they prey on vampires as well as humans, transforming victims who are unlucky enough to survive into Reapers themselves. Blade is asked by the Vampire Nation for his help in preventing a nightmare plague that would wipe out both humans and vampires. --TMDb
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Review by Crispy
Added: March 13, 2011
After the success of Blade, there was no question that the sword-wielding vampire hunter would grace the silver screen a second time, and he does so in grandiose fashion.

I'm afraid I'm going to have to begin this review with a decently heavy Blade spoiler, so if you're one of the five people who haven't seen the original movie, skip this paragraph. So yeah, Blade has spent the last two years trying to hunt down Whistler, who was apparently to far into the change to die from the self-inflicted gunshot wound. The vampires have been keeping him unconscious in a vat of blood and moving him all around the world, but Blade is eventually able to learn his whereabouts by torturing a rather flamboyant vampire with a motorcycle tire at full throttle. Although the antidote Dr. Jensen created in the last movie successfully cured him, he's none to happy to see Blade's new arms technician, a young punk named Scud, meddling about with his life work. However, before he has the chance to put his boot up the young whippersnapper's ass, the trio soon find a pair of vampires have infiltrated their base with a completely unexpected message: the vampire lord Damaskinos is actually asking for Blade's help. It seems that the viral properties that allow vampirism to spread through bites has evolved to create an even deadlier predator: the reaper. Reapers feed on vampires, and like with the original strain, a bite victim soon transforms into one itself. However, with the exception of the first reaper, Jared Nomak, the offspring are basically feral and have a voracious appetite. After Damaskinos informs him that it's only a matter of time before the reapers decimate the vampire population and begin feeding on humans, Blade reluctantly takes command of the Blood Pack, a deadly squad of vampire warriors that, ironically, were originally assembled to kill the Daywalker himself, to eradicate this new threat.

In short, Blade II is everything I wanted and more when going into a movie like this. Unlike the last movie, where Blade killed more familiars than vampires, the reapers are a definite threat to everything they face. In the very first encounter they're shown to be borderline indestructible, surviving attacks that would drop a normal vampire without even batting an eye. Add in the animal ferocity inherent in the creatures' feral nature, and you have a group of villains that are not only worth watching, but will raise a hair or two on the back of your neck. Likewise, my other complaint last time is also addressed, as Blade and the Blood Pack use a very nice mixture of guns, swords and martial arts. Snipes in particular finally gets to show off his martial arts, as Blade gets into quite a few fist fights with Nomak that are an absolute blast, as the more realistic fighting are balanced very nicely with superhuman, impossible feats of agility.

One of Blade's greatest strengths were the performances delivered, and the sequel keeps the trend going. Snipes and Kristofferson bring the same quality they did last time, and Norman Reedus' addition as Scud fits in beautifully. His chemistry with Kristofferson is particularly noteworthy. On the Blood Pack's side of the table, we have Ron Pearlman bringing his A-game (enough said) and Matt Schulze, who was particularly entertaining as one of the more belligerent members. Pearlman and Snipes play off each other incredibly well, and the former's calm, taunting condescension is a huge reason those scenes are as great as they are. The rest of the Pack were more tertiary characters, with the exception of that mandatory female character, Damaskinos' daughter, Nyssa. While Leonor Valera's performance easily topped the last mandatory female character's, she was likewise outshone by her costars. The character that truly makes the movie for me personally is Jared Nomak, as Luke Goss plays the part to perfection. Nomak is certainly a villain, but whether he's actually evil or just a victim of his condition is a matter worth questioning, and Goss handles both sides of the character beautifully, even letting just a little bit of actual acting sneak in when no one was paying attention.

I know I'm in the minority here, but for my moneyBlade II bests the original hands down. It may not be as gritty, but it solves all the little problems I had with the first movie while staying on point and delivering the superhuman action movie I wanted to see. 8.5/10.
Lucid Dreams #1: Lucid Dreams - added March 13, 2011 at 5:04pm
Best in the trilogy. 8/10
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