Sunday, May 08, 2005

Vampire Hunter D (2000)

Lone Wolf versus Band of Bastards

Genre: Adventure Action Vampire Horror Thriller Animé (USA, Japan, China)

Starring: Hideyuki Tanaka (X; Riding Bean), Koichi Yamadera (Ghost in the Shell; Cowboy Bebop: The Movie)

Directed By: Yoshiaki Kawajiri (The Animatrix; Ninja Scroll), Tai Kit Mak, Jack Fletcher

Overview: A vampire hunter is commissioned to rescue a woman from the grips of a powerful vampire, in competition with another team of hunters.

The acting was standard Animé: that Korusawa touch of melodrama, the cocky comic hamminess from time to time. If you like it, you'll like this, if you don't, you won't. The serious moments however, were very well done.
Rating: 7

Cinematography: The images were hauntingly dark and brooding, the animation was top quality; the fight scenes had all the slow motion to enhance the effect. The gore was good, the points of view were innovative, even the "special effects" like the 'vampire sight' of blood vessels under the skin and the look of the explosions really made for a grand visual spectacle.
Rating: 8

Script: This was well written, no doubt. It’s not one of those go-around-killin’-vampires kind of hunter movie. There’s some real intelligence in the words of the characterization between two of the competing hunters and as the story unfolds we really learn about the world and the motivations.
Rating: 7

Plot: The plot is vastly different from the kind of movie you would expect The overview lends way to a common plot, but the characterization and the alternate plotlines really carry the plot to it's end, rather that are constantly supported by the trek to the final scene. This is amazing. Intelligent and original, this story is more than "rescue the princess, kill the bad guy". Amazing.
Rating: 8

Mood: The mood was the thing. High Gothic arches, Dark zombie night attacks in crumbling overrun cities, creepy characters with strange powers and twisted creations. Death and mayhem in a futuristic world stuck in a Dark Ages / Renaissance architectural world. Honestly one of the best settings and moods out there.
Rating: 9

Van Helsing got nuthin' on this guy...

Overall Rating: 78% (Hauntingly Good)

Aftertaste: This takes me back to my younger days. It is one of the better Animé movies out there, I find. Sure it’s no Akira, no Grave of the Fireflies, but it’s damn good, and real fun, while still remaining serious in its attempt at storytelling. Recommended to fans of Animé.