Plot: What’s it about?
Blade (Wesley Snipes) has hunted down vampires in the cloak of darkness for as long as he can remember, trying to save mankind from the vampires’ blood lust. He has stayed in the shadows, hidden and hunted without being tracked, so he isn’t used to being the prey. But now he faces a new perspective, as mankind has been made aware of his presence. He isn’t hailed as a hero however, as mankind has been told he is a monster and has killed over a thousand innocent people. Now even the FBI is on his trail and this manhunt is thanks to the vampires, who reached out and painted this horrific portrait of the hunter. Soon, his base is demolished and Whistler (Kris Kristofferson) is killed in the assault. Just when Blade seems to be too down to come back, he is contacted by an elite squad of vampire hunters known as the Nightstalkers. Abigail (Jessica Biel) is part of the group and she also happens to be Whistler’s daughter. Even with the added manpower and firepower, can Blade prevent a vampiric virus from turning mankind into slaves?
Blade was awesome. A movie that flat out rocked, with wicked action, cool visuals, and a fantastic soundtrack, just a kick ass motion picture. Blade II was passable, but seemed worse than it was by comparison, since the first film was such a success. If the downward trend continued with Blade: Trinity, this third installment could end up as a total bust. Wesley Snipes returns in the lead role of course, with series veteran Kris Kristofferson at his side, but new faces surface here as well. The new stars include elite level hottie Jessica Biel, fish out of water Ryan Reynolds, and professional wrestler Triple H, quite an eclectic mix. But does the combination of familar and fresh help Blade: Trinity avoid the sequel curse? No. This is the kind of movie you watch once and soon forget, thanks to a lack of polish and depth within the writing. The basic premise is decent, but the details fail to pull us into the plot and as such, the experience is lessened. But if you just want to see some vampires and Biel’s incredible presence, then Blade: Trinity is worth a rental.
Video: How does it look?
Blade: Trinity is presented in 2.35:1 anamorphic widescreen. As this is a dark, but very detailed film in terms of visuals, I had some doubts about this transfer, but with New Line behind the wheel, I shouldn’t have been worried. The image here is crisp, clean, and well detailed, with no real problems to mention. A couple minor instances of edge enhancement aside, this transfer looks excellent and given the dark visuals, that’s impressive work. New Line has used a pristine source print here, which means no nicks or debris are evident, so the other elements are never hampered. The colors seem lush and natural, as they should be and flesh tones look normal, no inconsistencies to make note of there. The real praise belongs to the contrast however, as black levels are rich and refined at all times, which is vital in the film’s dark visual scheme. This one is not quite perfect, but it is close enough to deserve immense credit, so fans should be thrilled.
Audio: How does it sound?
This set includes dual surround options in Dolby Digital EX & DTS ES tracks, so both camps should be pleased here. This is a nice balance between subtle presence and power, as both sides of the coin are explored and with excellent results. The surrounds don’t always assault the senses, but they are used very well and create a lot of atmosphere, which is important as well. There are scenes that let the speakers open up and rock the foundations, but the tracks also handle the smaller touches with ease. So you won’t always be shaking from the bass, but you will always be immersed within the movie, thanks to these effective tracks. No issues with dialogue either, as vocals remain clear and well placed from start to finish. In case you’re curious, I give the edge to the DTS track in this case, but both options more than deliver the goods. This release also includes English and Spanish subtitles, should you need those.
Supplements: What are the extras?
If you want the inside scoop on this picture, then you’ll want to listen to both of the audio commentary tracks found on this release. David S. Goyer heads up both sessions, one with stars Ryan Reynolds and Jessica Biel, the other with members of the technical crew. The cast track is brisk and has a lot of humor, while the crew track is more focused and leans toward production insights. So a nice mixture of anecdotes and technical data, which is sure to please fans. A total of 90 minutes of behind the scenes material is found in Inside the World of Blade, which is divided into sixteen featurettes. This material can be overly promotional at times, but there are ample reasons to check out the featurettes, to be sure. You’ll see the cast train for the fight scenes, learn how the film’s visuals were attained, and hear some humorous interviews to boot. This release also includes a blooper reel, an alternate end sequence, and the film’s theatrical trailer.