Blade is one of the cooler comic book adaptations to hit the big screen. Introduced in 1970 in Tomb of Dracula, Blade has moved from series to series (Dr. Strange, Nightstalkers) over time before settling down in a short-lived series with the title Blade: The Vampire Hunter. Given their difficulties making movies involving their flagship characters like Spiderman and the Fantastic Four, it's not surprising that Marvel decided to take advantage of the popularity of the comic book character.

Blade (Wesley Snipes) is a vampire with certain genetic mutations that enable him to withstand direct sunlight (thus the nickname Day walker) and dine at the best Italian restaurants (no problems with garlic), but still possesses all the "good" qualities that vampires have (superhuman strength, third for blood, etc.). Deacon Frost (Stephen Dorff) is a human-turned-vampire megalomaniac with ambitions of taking his rightful place at the top of the food chain. To achieve his goal, Frost goes to great lengths to decrypt ancient vampire texts and comes up with a scheme to become the vampire blood god and unleash an apocalypse. Like in the comics, Blade must save the day before it's too late for humanity.

Rather than depict the history of Blade's origins in one swoop at the beginning of the film (which most movies based on comic book characters do), his origins are brought out gradually during the course of the movie in a way that it is naturally intertwined with the plot. I think this was one of the best moves the film makers did, and in general I think it's a great way to introduce a new comic book super hero to the big screen.

Even though the movie runs at 130 minutes, it doesn't feel long and there are plenty of action scenes and visual effects to engage the audience. The plot is tolerable, and the acting by Snipes and Dorff is adequate, though a lot of the dialogue comes off as cliche-d at times. I thought the blood-letting scene in the end was really cool and overall, the effects were terrific. Definitely worth your money.

Movie ram-blings || Ram Samudrala ||