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Deep in a remote desert, vampire leaders are resurrecting Dracula, the horrific creature who spawned their race. Now known as Drake, this awesome vampire has unique powers that allow him to exist in daylight. To make things even more difficult for Blade, the vampiric leadership launches a smear campaign against him, targeting him as a murderous monster and sendingthe FBI after him. After Blade and his mentor, Whistler, have an explosive showdown with FBI agent Cumberland and hismen, it's evident that the Daywalker will need some assistance. Blade reluctantly teams up with the Nightstalkers, a group of human vampire hunters led by Whistler's beautiful daughter, Abigail, and the wisecracking Hannibal King. While their blind scientist Sommerfield works on creating a final solution for the vampire problem, the Nightstalkers launch a relentless series of battles against Dracula's gang of the undead, led by the powerful vampire Danica Talos and her fanged acolytes Asher and Grimwood. Ultimately, Blade finds himself taking on the greatest vampire of all time, as his own fate and that of humanity hang in the balance.
For more about Blade: Trinity and the Blade: Trinity Blu-ray release, see Blade: Trinity Blu-ray Review published by Brian Orndorf on July 7, 2012 where this Blu-ray release scored 2.5 out of 5.
Starring: Wesley Snipes, Kris Kristofferson, Jessica Biel, Ryan Reynolds, Parker Posey, Steve Braun
Director: David S. Goyer
» See full cast & crew
Blade: Trinity Blu-ray Review
The Goyer Touch of Death
Reviewed by Brian Orndorf, July 7, 2012
While some movie trilogies shine like a diamond, most tend to peter out by the second sequel. Think "Spider-Man 3," "RoboCop 3," and "Beverly Hills Cop 3." "Blade: Trinity" is a classic example of a franchise running at top speed into a brick wall for its third installment, collecting a series of dismal ideas, poor characterizations, and iffy filmmaking ability into a glacial, joyless enterprise that essentially ignores what made the previous pictures connect with audiences. Although ripe with potential, "Blade: Trinity" is a trainwreck set to a booming soundtrack, turning vampire hunting into a screen chore while it almost intentionally torches the macabre groundwork laid down by the first two features.
After losing the battle for humanity to Blade (Wesley Snipes) numerous times, the vampires, led by Danica Talos (a woefully miscast Park Posey), have called upon their ultimate weapon, Dracula/Drake (Dominic Purcell), to destroy their archenemy and engineer a solution to the troubled bloodsucker takeover of the living. Losing partner Whistler (Kris Kristofferson) after being framed for murder by Danica, Blade finds help from further police and vampire interests in the form of Abigail (Jessica Biel) and Hannibal (Ryan Reynolds), a pair of warriors part of a larger resistance movement known as the Nightstalkers. Armed with high tech weapons and the makings of a virus intended to obliterate the arrogant vampire nation, Blade and the Nightstalkers launch an assault on Danica and Drake, coming face to face with ferocious demon powers and temptations during this final showdown between the superheroes and an army of fanged parasites.
The worst thing to happen to "Blade: Trinity" is David S. Goyer, who just happens to be the man directly responsible for bringing Blade to the big screen in the first place. Accepting his chance to helm a big-budget feature for the first time, Goyer seems overly excited to stuff the film with ideas he's been sitting on for ages, regardless if they fit the framework of "Trinity" or not. He's like a kid in a candy store, introducing weapons, villains, and new heroes, leaving a disturbing lack of focus to the feature, wrecking any prayer for narrative momentum. The idea of Dracula as an antagonist for Blade is dripping with potential, yet Goyer doesn't have much in the way of vision for his movie, leaving the effort disjointed and bizarrely inert. Despite the creator's enthusiasm to roll around in this vampire sandbox, "Trinity" is a disorganized picture that flies in the face of what was accomplished in the previous sequel.
Of course, "Blade II" was directed by Guillermo Del Toro, a geek-approved filmmaker who put a sticky sense of horror back into this comic book-based character. Del Toro also treated the material with respect, even questing to bring an epic feel to what is basically a martial arts extravaganza occasionally interrupted by bloodsucking freaks and light mythmaking. "Trinity" casually trashes everything Del Toro worked hard to achieve, finding Goyer replacing ghoulish fun with heaps of numbing blow-em-up material and clunky editing. And it's not just the fight sequences that lack a sense of timing, but static dialog exchanges as well. It feels as though Goyer is sloppily trying to cover deleted story points, as sequences aimlessly bounce across the frame without much reason. "Trinity" is a fragmented and headache-inducing experience right from the start, when, in actuality, a "Blade" film shouldn't feel like that until the last 20 minutes. The movie opens with a noisy, bafflingly conceived opening credits sequence and it just gets worse from there.
Another criticism comes with the title. The picture is called "Blade: Trinity," yet our friendly neighborhood vampire killer is hardly the focus of this sequel. It's almost hilarious to see Snipes standing around in the background, waiting for something to do as Goyer tends to the individual interests of the Nightstalkers (Hannibal being a former vampire slave, while Abigail deals with her place as Whistler's daughter), or his incessant need to have everybody strut around in slow motion. Blade isn't the main character of "Trinity," which is confusing to the franchise, leaving the viewer with a participation gap the first two films were careful to avoid.
And who decided that Dracula, that king of kings when it comes to nightmares and brutality, should be played by Purcell in a manner that resembles an Eastern European nightclub bouncer? "Trinity" can never quite overcome that critical casting mistake.
"Trinity," unexpectedly, is also something of a comedy, with the Nightstalkers led by Hannibal King, nicely played by compulsive jester Ryan Reynolds. The actor is here to have some fun, and his ad-libs work for the most part due to his snarky delivery and general ease with playing a macho vampire hunter. Reynolds saves "Trinity" with his special timing. Faced with the likes of Posey as a chic vamp goddess (who can't spit out her dialog while wearing oversized vampire teeth) and Blade "coochie-cooing" an infant, we'll call this an easy lay-up for Reynolds, but his presence is welcome. If Goyer had the gumption at the time to spin-off the franchise and make a sole Nightstalkers movie (which, to be honest, is all "Trinity" really is), that would've been the best idea to come out of this unsteady franchise yet.
Blade: Trinity Blu-ray, Video Quality
The AVC encoded image (2.35.1 aspect ratio) presentation looks very crisp with some minor filtering, befitting a movie shot with an enormous amount of visual effects and post-production tinkering. Fine detail is quite good, with the viewer able to examine the nuances of the costuming and vampiric menace, with facial close-ups displaying satisfying textures. Gore zone material is also very clean and direct. Colors are strong, balancing a colder palette of cityscapes and evening adventuring with brighter interiors, enjoying a more direct appreciation of various hues. Grain is subdued but evident, while a few noisy patches remain in lower-lit locations. Some banding is detected. Skintones are accurate and invitingly gothic, while blacks run a little too thick at times, darkening out distances and intricate shadow play.
Blade: Trinity Blu-ray, Audio Quality
The 6.1 DTS-HD MA sound mix is a noisy sonic experience, with a ripe representation of body blows and booming beats. Soundtrack selections cause the greatest concern, sounding a touch too hot at times, smothering dialogue exchanges and sound effects, although the music carries an exhilarating force when needed, triggering a pleasing low-end rumble with throbbing techno and rap tunes. Locked in horror mode, and the track provides a clean range of voices and various levels of urgency, with satisfactory separation and a commendable frontal force preserving exposition needs. Surrounds are geared more toward atmospherics and chaos, finding action sequences working directional activity to satisfaction, with the mix taking advantage of the whooshing weapons and sizzling vampire bodies. Echo is well preserved, while scoring remains lively and supportive.
Blade: Trinity Blu-ray, Special Features and Extras
Blade: Trinity Blu-ray, Overall Score and Recommendation
For the finale, "Blade: Trinity" crumbles into a thousand tiny pieces. Characters introduced are quickly forgotten, what little logic there is (and should be expected of a "Blade" film) falls completely by the wayside, and there's an odd, almost impressionistic ending that neither provokes nor answers any questions about the resolution. Goyer was simply the wrong man to set loose in this world, and now the once promising "Blade" franchise has been crippled permanently by his unfortunate, misguided tinkering.
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Blade: Trinity Blu-ray, News and Updates
• Blade & Blade: Trinity Announced for Blu-ray - March 15, 2012
New Line and Warner Home Entertainment have announced the Blu-ray releases of Blade and Blade: Trinity. Wesley Snipes (Demolition Man) stars in the action series as the title character, a half-human/half-vampire avenger who spends his nights trying to eradicate ...
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