Blade II (2002)
Directed by: Guillermo del Toro
Premise: A sequel to the 1998 film. In this film, one of the vampire houses recruits Blade (Wesley Snipes) to help them fight a new, more monstrous strain of vampirism that threatens to infect the entire world.
What Works: Blade II is the rare sequel that surpasses the original film. It delves deeper into the vampire world and Blade’s relationship to the vampires is complicated by his new allegiance and by his relationship with Nyssa (Leonor Varela), a vampire warrior he becomes friendly with. Like the original, this film has its share of interesting characters and stylized action, but here the film maintains a higher level of tension as the relationships and the allegiances become much more complicated. By the end, Blade II achieves something rare in its genre: the picture has a conclusion that is both satisfying to action fans and has a strong emotional weight to it. Director Guillermo del Toro brings his own creative vision to this film and makes it a unique entry within the Blade trilogy and within the comic book and vampire genres.
What Doesn’t: The film brings back Whistler (Kris Kristofferson), who was killed off in the first film. The film’s reasoning is very sketchy here, but it happens early in the picture and actually plays into the rest of the story and is ultimately forgivable.
DVD extras: Isolated score track, deleted and alternate scenes with commentary, documentaries, director’s notebook, art gallery, music video, video game guide, DVD-ROM features.
Bottom Line: Blade II is crossover film that will appeal to fans outside of the comic book and horror genres. It delivers for fans of the original film but it also does the duty of a sequel and brings the conflicts and characters to the next level.
Episode: #135 (April 1, 2007)