I CAN SCARCELY BELIEVE IT! Doesn't AVS save anything older that a year? I could not find that amazing intitial thread, but for those who have interest, my initial review:
Blade Trinity, aka Blade III, the third of the popular comic book adaptations to the screen, effectively nails the coffin on this series by explicit proclamation but also through the more reliable means of poor box office performance and pronounced decline in the quality of the offering.
In the present outing we are treated to a "best of bits that have worked (not worked) in every action flick for the last ten years" compendium. AT LEAST TEN YEARS! It is an apparent attempt to catalog and regurgitate every hackneyed, overused, overripe sequence that Hollywood must by now keep in computer program form which only awaits the triggering of the "refreshed reordering" button to constitute "anew", ie., different ordering of the same old stuff.
The writing is lazy, weak and just brimming full of the typical disingenuous injecting of dramatic tension and interpersonal conflicts manufactured from thinest air. Dialog, when not downright utterly inane, has not the merest echo of verisimilitude and is dreamt of only in the well-closeted psyches of teenage miscreants under the heading of "false clever bravado that will never see the light of expression", but here it serves only to alienate us from the proceedings and set in relief that we are not a part of the world conceptualized here.
IF YOU HAVE NOT SEEN IT, THE FOLLOWING WILL REVEAL CERTAIN ASPECTS OF THE FILM.
May I just give overview of the first two sequences of the (extended version of the) film to buttress the above? Without penetrating too deep, I think our arc-of-expectations is fairly cast by those opening moments.
First scene: out from credits we have two copters overflying a desert region, which overlay informs us is Syria. Modern day we presume because of the modernness of the copters and because we are not told otherwise. Copters are circling a scattering of ancient pyramids. With a flourish of staccato LFE chop, they put down. Insert shot of boots hitting the ground. Pan upward. We see badass one outfitted against the nuke holocaust, machine gun in tow, face obscured by impenetrable face shield. One turns toward the sun and gives it the finger, no one else notices. Crew of six or so ascend the pyramid face. Intercut one crouched in the interior, the others observing. He removes a stone, they descend a stone stairway. Electronic handhelds depict a figure below and just like that, a monster hand comes from out of an antlion-like sandtrap. Suddenly lights are strobing, we see some horned head bellowing -- what did our explorers wake up?!! Omagosh!!
Now I ask, how many times have we seen ALL THIS JAZZ? The copters coming from each side of the frame flying over the camera. The pan from the boots, the handhelds which have mapped the whole interior. Even the monster looks like a reject from the "Yicky Thing That Resided In The Lagoon" from the FIFTIES no less!
This is not to mention that it establishes a pattern of unbelievability that nothing in the movie dispels. I am at pains to point out that especially with comic book fare, great attention to verisimilitude and mindfulness of detail MUST be attended to, to draw us into the fantastic. This is primary, paramount and essential.
Here we have an ancient edifice exposed in the desert, it's historical significance immeasurable, a National treasure of inestimable proportions -- there are no excavation crews, no troops protecting it, no international contingent assembled for its study -- it is just sitting there like it had been deposited by CGI.
Then the hand out of the earth. HOW MANY TIMES DO WE NEED TO SEE THAT?! I could recount its inclusion in Carrie or more recently RE2, but it has seen a billion manifestations, we are all quite familiar.
The monster later tells us they should not have woke him up, but what did they do to wake him up? Enter? Didn't the archaeological diggers do that? Or again, are we to assume only this crew has ever discovered this conspicuous piece of history.
I know it must seem as if I am belaboring an already stillborn bit, but this is the first scene! Our expectations are now set and are never again to be challenged.
We then go from the inexplicable strobing of the monster reveal to a talk show setting. What are these people talking about? I defy anyone to make sense of this gibberish. This has got to rank amongst the worst conceptualizing/execution of dialog EVER. I am even somewhat mystified about what they were shooting for.
The host introduces his guests as a book writer so-and-so and "Chief of Police so-and-so". First of all, even locally, we WILL ALWAYS be told what city or entity he is Chief of Police of -- to not do so introduces falseness and smacks us in the face with unreality. Talk show host goes on to ask author if he studied under two disciplines. He responds "Yes, and for a reason..." -- he was not prompted for what follows, it feels totally unnatural, looks staged, is poorly acted. Author proceeds undaunted talking about human health. Then! -- holy non-sequiturs Batman! -- talk show host is asking what this all has to do with vampires -- AND! AUTHOR EXPLAINS! -- no set up, no foundation, makes no sense anyway in his explanation. We suddenly then truncate comments of author and turn to Police Chief, who is also asked about vampires -- not the obvious question of what is he doing there at all. Chief makes joke, host deadpans -- it is not funny, but we are supposed to think his not finding it funny is funny. It is not.
I watched that scene over about four times. I cannot think of a worse example of screen writing or acting for that matter. It has the feel of a scene where all the essential exposition has been excised. Makes no sense. What is it doing here? What world does it reveal to us? Why are they talking about vampires -- has there been some mention in author's book or recent incident in Police Chief's city? My guess is that the script writer threw this in because it looks similar to crap we've seen a million times and he never expected we might question what this means. Worse, he may have had no idea what it meant himself, but was never prompted to question its inclusion here because plot or story just seems extrinsic to this whole project.
These were the first two scenes. It improves only slightly as we are treated to more action and LFE to console us in our mourning the death of the once noble and venerable Blade series, the bereavement of plot, script and acting.
To be fair, some of the action scenes are impressively mounted, did require some modicum of planning and are somewhat stylish, but some of the fight sequences, notably one involving Triple H are shockingly pathetic and appear to be the type of thing you would see in an extra feature -- the actors blocking out the actions they will be performing in telegraphed, stylized, non-contact gestures. These scenes are even complete with the idiotic looking whiff punches that strike only air. You would think a pro wrestler would be well versed in fake action, but he is the worst of the lot here, his stubby limbs jabbing pathetically at space like a tethered toddler.
I had nothing but contempt for the Ryan Reynolds character whose strained, painful attempts at schoolboy insolence -- repartee with an edge (OOOOOOH!) -- seem nothing but awkward, ill-fitting, poorly adapted to this setting and should have embarrassed him straight out of this project. All other attempts at stylish knowing winks at the audience fall flat in complete rigor the moment of inception. To wit the bit when the captured Reynolds predicts his imminent rescue to the very moment, then has to backtrack, by saying "This is awkward, got a cell-phone?" to his captors when the rescue fails to materialize exactly on cue. Rough stuff.
I would however herein like to counter the assertions that I read prior to this DVD purchase, that the soundtrack was limp and not punchy enough. WRONG! Dead wrong. This flick has LFE galore and some of the punchiest, most dynamic, percussion driven hip-hop centered offerings I've yet encountered (DD 5.1). It hardly takes a break from solid, authoritative bass content and as such, since that is my main delight in a movie such as this, I am elated I ignored what I'd read and purchased this gem.
If you are like me and don't mind so much the idiotic, inane and even irritating elements of plot, writing, acting, dialog, trite storyboarding, etc., etc., etc., as long as yer ears get pummeled, then this may be one for you. Highly recommended. Don't say I didn't warn you about that other stuff though.