Running time: 85 mins (approx)
Certification (UK): 18
UK release date: 26th June 2009
Watched on Sky+ Sunday 4th July 2010.
PLEASE NOTE: THERE MAY BE SPOILERS IN THIS REVIEW.
This is a live action remake of the anime film of the same name produced in 2000. Unfortunately I haven’t seen that version of the story which I believe is much shorter than this. The setting is Japan on 1970, the United States are fighting the Vietnam War and the story involves a US Air Force base, a general’s daughter and a demon slayer.
Saya, a four hundred year-old skilled samurai, is sent to the Kanto High School in an American military base. She is sent by the Council, a secret society that has been hunting vampires for centuries. Saya has the appearance of a teenager but is the tormented half-breed creature with the soul of her human father and the powers and need of blood of her vampire mother. She is obsessed by the powerful demon Onigen that killed her father. In the base, Saya saves Alice McKee, the daughter of the General and commander of the base, from the attack of several vampires. When the General is killed by a member of the Council, Alice runs to the hotel where Saya is lodged. They join forces and escape to the countryside to find Onigen.
The fight sequences in this film are very well done, plenty of blood as the samurai swords go to work. There is some special effects work here that really does not look good; in fact it looks quite dated. Having said that, good work from the main actors, Gianna Jun as Saya, Allison Miller as Alice McKee, Liam Cunningham as Michael Harrison, JJ Feild as Luke, Koyuki as Onigen, Yasuaki Kurata as Kato Takatora and Larry Lamb as General McKee.
The original film is about 48 minutes long, this version is about double that. Unfortunately in lengthening the story the writers seem to have lost a lot of the energy from the original. This is what I’ve read. So, over all, good fight scenes, not so good special effects and a slightly turgid script. Not really recommended, but the fight scenes are worth a look.
My score: 5.4/10
IMDb Site: http://uk.imdb.com/title/tt0806027/
Official Site: http://www.sonypictures.com/homevideo/bloodthelastvampire/