Blade II (2002)

blade iiIMDb

This is a pretty good sequel. Blade II has the same gory violence and random humor that made the first one so enjoyable to watch. It also puts its own twist on vampire lore by creating a new type of monster: the reaper. Reapers are genetically engineered vampires, who are stronger and thirstier than their predecessors. Sunlight is still deadly to them, but not much else is. Blade must team up with his blood sucking advisories to defeat their common enemy.

From there the movie is pretty typical. Lots of violence, betrayals, semi-hatched relationships, and impressive action sequences. I don’t really have much to say other than it was fun to watch, but really just more of the same after Blade. Norman Reedus, now of The Walking Dead fame, joins the cast as Blade’s new partner. He’s basically a vampire hunting Daryl Dixon, so I guess he’s been typecast?

Rating: B

As I’ve said previously in this blog, the best sequels don’t just make a louder version of the first one. The best sequels take the characters in new directions and improve on what was done well in the original. This sequel to the surprise vampire hunting film Blade, does what all sequels aspire to do, be better than the first one.

Wesley Snipes returns as the moody vampire hunter Blade. His second outing as the half human half vampire hybrid is a lot of fun. I really enjoyed the fact he had to join up with the hated vampires in order to defeat an enemy that was a threat to both of them, the Reapers. The Reapers are deadly creatures that feed on vampires and humans alike turning all they feed on into Reapers themselves. They are immune to garlic and silver, and can only be defeated by sunlight, so quite a challenge compared to the original vampires Blade has spent his whole life killing. Blade reluctantly agrees to join with a group of vampire assassins, the Blood Pack, and help them eradicate this new threat.

This is a gory action film and there is probably nobody better than Guillermo Del Toro to bring it to the screen. He is really good at the action and horror scenes, but is also able to craft a decent story rather than just fill the screen with lots of action and blood. I also really liked some of the cool weapons that were designed for this film. The UV ray bombs are particularly cool.

The supporting cast is surprisingly good and has some faces people should recognise. Kris Kristofferson returns as Blade’s weapons maker, Whistler. His return to the series raises some questions about his allegiances as he was thought dead at the end of the first movie. Daryl Dixon himself, Norman Reedus has replaced Whistler as Blade’s primary source of weaponry and is particularly wary of Whistler’s return. Del Toro regular Ron Perlman also shows up as an outspoken member of the Blood Pack. His interactions with Snipes are one of the film’s highlights. 80s boy band member Luke Goss, also appears as the leader of the Reapers, Nomak.

I enjoy this film a lot whenever I watch it. It is a comic book film for adults. It has gore, horror and awesome action. Snipes is a charismatic lead who owns the role of Blade now after playing him a second time. His fight scenes are great. I forgot how much I enjoyed this film.

Rating: B+

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