Tuesday, August 3

Movie Review - Bloodrayne 2

    And we're back to Bowl again, this time with Bloodrayne's sequel, Bloodrayne 2 - this is going to be a long one folks. Unlike several Bowl sequels, Bowl also directed this one, and oh boy does it show. Natassia Malthe is replacing Kristanna Loken (who had "scheduling conflicts") for the title role . This movie also takes place in the wild west and has absolutely nothing to do with the first movie or either games. Just like the first Bloodrayne movie comes with the Bloodrayne 2 game for the PC, this DVD comes with the first Bloodrayne for the PC. Also worth noting is that the majority of the movie's scenes are too dark to see anything because Bowl still has no idea how to use lighting.

    Before I get onto the movie itself, there’s one thing I really should mention. This DVD won’t let you fast forward or rewind…ever. This is especially frustrating while trying to review since if I miss part of a hilariously bad line, I have to start the whole scene over to get it. This is only worsened by the fact that the scene selection is very poorly set up, and it always skips to the middle of a scene rather than the start of it. Even so, it’s annoying enough when you can’t fast forward through the stupid FBI warning messages, but when you can’t skip to a specific scene that you want to watch or show somebody – SOMETHING IS WRONG. It's also worth noting here that the DVD's default setting shows the closed captioning for the hearing impaired, but that’s not really a problem.

    Anyway, this movie starts with a bunch of pictures set to lame music just like the first one. The pictures have absolutely nothing to do with the movie, except that both the movie and the pictures are in the Wild West.

    We then have some guy walk into the shot and stop.
    "Deliverance, this is it," he says. Apparently Deliverance is a town, so my first question is why would someone call their town Deliverance? I could believe it though, considering how strange town names can get. Looks like the town's missing though.

(didn't think there was snow in the wild west)

    What I don't understand is why this guy's shouting "Howdy" to nobody. Also, why he's speaking in a modern accent rather than even trying to speak like someone from the 1800s. Anyway this dumbo is a reporter for the Chicago Chronicle and he starts interviewing the mayor. The mayor talks like some talk show host as he keeps rambling on about how Deliverance is going to be a key city in America's future thanks to a coal mine and the railroad that's being built…right. The reporter asks if anything "wild" is going on, and the mayor says no. Apart from learning how boring this town is, we learned nothing in this scene.

    We then cut to a family eating supper. A horse is whining in the background. Anyway, the father goes outside with a shotgun thinking a bear is causing the horses to wine. We then hear [strange whooshing] as the mother and two boys look around in what's supposed to look like fear. The mother wanders out and the boys hide under the bed. Yeah, cause nobody will think to look under a bed that's in plain sight of the front door. A mysterious figure casually walks inside (we haven't heard any screaming). The figure sits on the bed, gets up, and then sits on a chair. Why? Did Bowl forget to give him directions?
    "Are you sad children?" The mysterious man asks. "Do you miss your mother and father already? Don't worry, you'll join them soon enough." Two more dudes walk in, head straight for the bed, and pull the two kids out. OK first of all, how were they supposed to instantly know where the kids were? Secondly, why didn't this mysterious man just take them himself, and thirdly, if the kids are screaming,
    "Let go,"  then why didn't either of their parents make a sound? Actually it's more like they're saying "let go" in their outside voices than screaming. It's also worth noting that this movie has been incredibly slow so far.

    We cut to the town in the morning with a misspelled subtitle [toolsl clanging]. "So the Railway's coming to deliverance" The reporter says as we watch two people working on the railway. We then see a horse riding for no apparent reason. It's so nice to see that this movie's editing is consistent with the last Bloodrayne - filled with short, pointless and out-of-order scenes that make no sense. We then cut to a bar at night where the sheriff introduces himself as the only person to talk in a western accent so far. Well...he tries to talk in a western accent anyway. He talks about how he loves his shotgun before heading out.
    "Goodnight folks. Lock up tight, you hear? With all that's been going on, best be careful," the sheriff says as he leaves. With all that's been going on, what? The mayor explained earlier that it's a quiet, innocent town that's going to be the bright future of the nation because of the railroad. What's going on? I haven't got the impression that anything's been going on in this town besides the railroad and a coal mine. And if the sheriff was referring to the family that was kidnapped earlier, how the frick would he know considering that family lived in a distant farmhouse? Anyway, we see the reporter telling the mayor that if he doesn't find the "wild" in the west soon, he's getting fired. This must be the reporter's defining character trait, because his personality has been quite inconsistent so far.

    We then cut to another family which is, um...kidnapped by the evil gang from earlier. Who is this family? No idea until...ok slow down please. The bartender from earlier is punched out, and the gang brings the family outside as they scream. Interesting strategy considering there are only three of these dorks as far as I know, and they’re in the middle of a town. I must also ask how they stood outside the daughter's window since it's on the second floor of a bar that doesn't have a balcony. The sheriff comes out after a full minute of screaming, showing us how lousy he must be.
    "That's far enough!" The sheriff sort-of shouts. "This here is a good town, and I'm the law here young fella." One must note that with his grey hair the leader of the gang doesn't look the least bit young. He pulls out his pistol and points it at the bad guy. Why didn’t he just point that shotgun he loves so much at the bad guy, especially when he WALKED OUT THE DOOR WITH IT! The sheriff then shoots the dude several times as he hisses and walks toward the sheriff.

    The bad guy then bites the sheriff in the neck, revealing that he's a vampire.

    The reporter then introduces himself to the bad guy.
    "Tell me, is telling stories your reason to live?" the vampire cowboy asks
    "Then bear witness to the greatest story ever told." No, this isn't the greatest story ever told; it's boring, stupid, and already full of plot holes. The bad guy and the reporter than walk into the mayor's house as the screen fades to black.

    We are finally introduced to our title character, 17 minutes in. This time, she's played by Natassia Malthe instead of Kristanna Loken, and while Natassia looks more like the Rayne from the games, she's not as good an actress; think about that for a second. She's riding on a horse to a crappy western tune that will become the movie’s main theme. The scene also includes pointless slow-motion shots because Bowl loves overusing slow motion in this movie. She stops at the house where the first family was apparently kidnapped. She pulls out one of her special blades as she continuously calls out their names. The blade seems to keep switching directions between shots, showing how brilliant the film's continuity is. She finds the parents dead on the ground and the children are missing. Some random dude walks up and she threatens him with her blade at his groin.

    "You'd better have something interesting to say mister," she threatens. WHAT? If he walked up to you like that he's probably going to tell you what happened, so why are you threatening him?
    "I think this may be the work of Billy the Kid and his gang," He tells her. What, you mean you’re taking the infamous Billy the Kid and turning him into a vampire. That's both lazy and stupid. He shows Rayne a newspaper article about homesteads being raided and she lets him go. He offers to team up with her, but she says,
    "I ride alone." Right, even though she worked with others in both games and the first movie (only half the time, but still.)

    Rayne rides off toward the town and arrives at night. She's greeted by a gang of three or four men who hit on her, but she ignores them and walks by. We then cut to the bar, which is quite active at the moment. The mother that was dragged out of the bar earlier is still serving, what? Some sort of indication that she was spared when the other children's parents were killed would have been nice. If they were just going to kidnap the children, why not sneak in and kidnap them without the parents knowing? As of now I am very confused about "Billy's" plans, and for what’s supposed to be a simple action movie that is not a good thing. After some jerk (I’ll just call him Mr. Jerk for now on) tells a story and shoots the reporter's glass, Rayne walks in and heads straight for the bartender. She takes a shot of whisky and enjoys it, despite being a vampire. Mr. Jerk slaps her butt, and she kicks him down to the ground. Apparently they've met before and she's been hunting for him. Why didn't he recognize her then, and why did she agree to playing cards with him and his buddies? I thought she was looking for her friend's children, so why is she wasting her time with these fools? I have absolutely no idea what's going on or what the point of this scene is. In the poker game, Rayne beats Mr. Jerk’s full house with four aces, and he calls her a cheating b!&@#.

    Rayne and Mr. Jerk settle their dispute outside with a duel, where Mr. Jerk talks about how he's killed 17 people. He then shows his teeth, revealing that he's a vampire. OK, so we have a gun duel with two people that can survive being shot, how exciting...not. This only confuses me even further since he doesn't realize she's a vampire even though vampires can usually smell whether someone's a vampire or not. Needless to say, Rayne wins by using a pointless slow-motion shot, and apparently her bullets had holy water and garlic in them, killing the vampire pretty much instantly. OK, so wouldn’t the water vaporize from the intense heat from the gun, ‘cause bullets are usually hot when they’re shot from a gun. Also, garlic doesn’t kill vampires, they just hate the smell. Anyway, Mr. Jerk’s two friends try to shoot her but she shoots them both, also using slow motion. The sheriff, who’s now a vampire, shoots her gun and sentences her to a hanging. He knocks her out and they lock her in a cell.

    The reporter – who’s getting MORE ANNOYING EVERY TIME HE SPEAKS - meets Rayne in her cell and talks about his newspaper job again. Do we really need to hear about this again Bowl, must he blabber on about his job every time he meets someone new? Rayne asks who the bad guy is, and the reporter tells her that Billy sent him. He explains that Billy uses the reporter to write his story. Another prisoner butts into the conversation and explains that Billy is building an army. The prisoner then rips the reporter's paper and accidentally shows his brimstone necklace. Rayne reveals that she's also brimstone and they exchange information. The reporter is writing down...wait, wasn't his paper just ripped up? What's he writing on? The prisoner talks about how Billy doesn’t' need blood to regenerate, and that he must be a really old and powerful vampire.

    "I figure he's got 30 vampire cowboys, I reckon." I figure and I reckon mean the same thing - whoever wrote this doesn't understand English. The brimstone man than rips the paper from the reporter again. The reporter then pulls out another notepad, reminding us how unfunny and utterly pointless this character is. The three of them figure out that Billy is quietly taking over the town of Deliverance while trying to make it look normal until the railroad is complete. He will then use the railway to create hundreds of vampires and take over the west. OK, seriously, I'm now 40 minutes into the movie and hardly anything has happened. So far, all we've had is two family kidnappings and a gun duel. As crappy as the first movie was, at least crap happened in it.

    Anyway, several of Billy's men barge into the jail and pull the brimstone guy out. We then cut to Billy terrorizing the kidnapped children. He picks a girl and pulls her over to his chair. She keeps screaming until he sings a lullaby. Somehow this makes her relax; yeah, I'm just as confused as you probably are. He bites her neck as the other kids watch. A shot of the kid's neck not only shows a bright red substance that looks more like cranberry juice than blood, and two bite marks that are somehow distanced from the very fake blood. I guess the makeup crew wasn’t paid enough for this.

    We then cut to the brimstone man being hung while Rayne watches from her cell. No idea why I should care since we barely knew him. They now bring Rayne out while the sheriff is telling the mayor why he should be involved.
    "It gives me a hard-on to see you s#!%ing your pants," the sheriff says. What kind of? Why do we need to hear this? I know the sheriff is a vampire now, but why has he changed into a total bumhole since he turned? Michelle's father in the first movie was turned into a vampire and yet he was still trying to stop Kagan from taking over. I'm by no means an expert on Vampire mythology, but you'd think the sheriff would at least retain some of his core values, yet here he instantly turns into the biggest jerk you'd ever meet. Anyway, the sheriff forces the mayor to read the sentencing, which begins,
    "For the crimes of starting a ruckus." Yeah, because starting a ruckus is a very serious crime that always warrants a hanging.

    Rayne slips out of her handcuffs and flips as someone shoots the noose's rope before the lever is pulled to hang her. What? Who? How did she know that...never mind. The bartender tosses Rayne her blades and she kills three bad guys - including the sheriff - until someone finally shouts
    "Shoot her!"
    Holy crap, they waited a full 12 seconds before reacting? These must be the dumbest bad guys I’ve seen in a while, movie or videogame. She dives into a body of water – it’s too dark to tell whether it's a lake, pond or river, but I don’t care at this point. Billy's gang looks like their disco dancing as they fire away at the water. Billy then executes the bartender for assisting in Rayne’s escape. The bartender's wife stands with her mouth wide open, but she looks more like she's mentally retarded than she does shocked or distressed. Rayne swims out of the body of water, where she's greeted by the man she met at the farmhouse earlier. He offers his friendship and says that he burned down the railroad station, but we never see any evidence of that. Apparently during the production the train platform actually burned down, and this was Bowl’s only excuse for not showing it again…weak.

    We then cut to a shot of two Indians in a boat that we'll never see again; every western needs a completely pointless shot of Indians, right? After that, we cut to Rayne lying down as the cowboy is taking care of her. He tells Rayne that she's been shot several times, not that Rayne wouldn't know that anyway. She says,
    "I need blood."
    "What?" the cowboy replies.
    "Blood will help me heal."
    "You're a vampire?"
    She then explains that she's a Damphire and why that allows her to survive things that would kill normal vampires. Yeah, um… sunlight would still kill any normal Damphire, as would the whisky she drank earlier or the water she swam through. She doesn't mention the vampire artifacts from the first movie, so if you haven’t seen it you’d think that Bowl is breaking every vampire rule in existence. Anyway, the cowboy suddenly slices his arm open and spills a liter of his blood on Rayne's mouth. What the frick? She just explained that animal blood would work, so why didn't he just find a rabbit or something? Uwe Bowl, you can't just have a cowboy frickin mutilate himself simply to save someone he barely knows. Beyond that, this scene is just friggen messed up.

    Moving along, the two of them decide to gather a few extra fighters. They first arrive at a church featuring one of the most insulting movie preachers I've ever seen. Seriously, he talks about how gut-yanking fear is the only way to the lord.

    He also happens to be like one of those TV preachers that demands money for salvation. Yes, he's a wanted man according to the poster the cowboy gave Rayne, but this is still insulting. Anyway, they convince this abomination to help them out.

    The three of them travel to their next fighter, where Rayne seduces some guy lying in his bed. She ties his wrists to the bed, exciting him further until she points her gun at his mouth.
    "I want your full undivided attention," Rayne says, which was rather pointless considering she had his undivided attention since the moment she strutted in. She asks if he wants to kill vampires, and he excitedly shouts,
    "Yeah!" OK, this laughing dork needs to die and I've only known him for thirty seconds. If someone offers to help you take out a bunch of dangerous opponents with insane laughter and shouting, you'd have to be absolutely desperate to accept it. For the rest of the review, I’ll be calling the cowboy that rescued Rayne “Cowboy”, the false preacher “Abomination”, and the other guy “Dorkface.”

    The four of them ride off to a cabin where Cowboy reveals the garlic covered silver bullets he brought. Again Bowl, garlic doesn't hurt vampires; they're just really sensitive to the smell. In that sense, Rayne should be bothered off by the garlic too. They also ask Abomination to give them a blessing, even though they personally witnessed how much of a liar he is. If either Rayne or Cowboy had half a brain, they'd realize Abomination’s blessing would be counter-productive if anything. Rayne also gives the others a brimstone necklace each, and they don't have any questions about this. I don’t know about you readers (if I have any readers,) but I’d certainly have questions about being given a brimstone necklace.

    The gang of four arrives at Deliverance at night.
    "Billy the Kid, this is Brimstone calling you out!" Cowboy says. The townsfolk watch as a gunfight ensues. Finally some action, not that it'll be good. A few shots are fired back and forth, and several vampire bad guys are blown away. Rayne also kills one by throwing her blade into his chest. Now we get some walking. Yup, what's supposed to be a climactic battle now has minutes of walking. Gah, even the action scenes are frickin slow. Rayne and Cowboy both wander into the buildings while Abomination and Dork are still hiding outside having the most pointless talk I've ever heard in any movie.
    "So why do they call you slimebag?"
    "They call me slimebag?”
    "Let's go."
    Seriously, what the frick was that? Why bother bringing up a nickname for absolutely no reason, and in the middle of a gunfight no less? This isn't character development, funny, or sensical - it exists solely to slow down the fight even more. Moving on, Rayne finds the children after stabbing another vampire. She opens the door only to trigger a trap that will hang all the kids. She grabs onto the rope to stop this from happening, but does nothing further about it. The weight she's holding up obviously weighs more than her, so how is she holding it up? Billy is also in the room, and proceeds to bite one of the kids that Rayne knows from the farm near the beginning of the movie. This is the closest the movie has to an emotional moment.

    Inside the bar, the reporter and the mayor convince all the adults to help fight the vampires. Abomination and Dork are held up by a gang of vampires from behind and above. They decide to fight the vampires anyway and shoot several before Dork gets mowed down by a gattling gun, all in slow motion of course. These vampires need the gattling gun because? Anyway, Cowboy helps from the side and kills off several more vampires as Abomination runs away with one bullet wound. The three remaining vampires chase him, completely ignoring Cowboy even though he shot a few of them. How did they not notice? Anyway, the mayor shoots one vampire before getting pwned himself, and Abomination takes out a cross and pretends to pray before pulling a knife out of the cross and stabbing another vampire in the chest. The third vampire kills Abomination, and then the adults finally come out of the bar with their guns to help out. The bartender's wife aims her gun at the vampire for over five seconds before firing, yet even though the vampire watched her the whole time he didn't shoot her with his already drawn revolver. Holy crap these vampires are frickin stupid.

    After a minute of Billy’s pointless talking, Rayne cuts the trap's weight and saves the kids. We finally get our fight between Rayne and Billy, where Rayne only uses one of her knives for some stupid reason. She is kicked out the window and punched a few times. He then starts a long bad guy speech at the adults as they all just watch without firing a single shot. OK, so not only are the bad guys stupid, but the good guys are too. Why did they all decide to help fight the vampires if they’re just going to stand there? Rayne stands back up and finally pulls out both knives. Billy also pulls out two knives, and they charge at each other. They clash once and both of Billy's knives break. After Rayne taunts Billy a bit, she spins around trying to hit him with her knives. OK, this is beyond silly now, I’m watching a ballet with arm blades and white haired cowboy vampires – there’s no way anybody but Bowl could have taken this seriously.

    Eventually, Billy pulls out his guns. Before he pulls the triggers though, Cowboy mows him down with the gattling gun. How'd he move it on his own? Never mind, the movie's almost over. Rayne Stabs Billy with a broken shovel, finishing him off.
    Yeah, that was the climax. About three minutes worth of shooting in 15 minutes – can’t get much lamer than that.

    The next morning reveals that the reporter is the new sheriff, even though his involvement in the climax amounted to rallying up the adults then staring at the lame duel between Rayne and Billy. Rayne rides off toward another town that's apparently having vampire trouble too. Cowboy suggests that he rides along, but Rayne ignores him and rides off. That's a bit rude of the title character, don't you think? Cowboy starts giving the reporter the most awkward motivational speech I've ever heard.
    "Life is like a penis. When it's hard, you get screwed. When it's soft, you can't beat it."
    The reporter is dumb enough to reply with "I gotta write that down." And there you have it, the last words of the movie.

    So what did I think? I thought this was even worse than the first Bloodrayne movie and had even less to do with the games. It tries to be scary - it isn't. It tries to be funny, but it ranges from dull to painful. The main actress is even blander than Loken was, and the supporting cast ranges from annoying to forgettable. The single worst part of the movie is how incredibly slow and boring it is. It fails as a western, it fails as a vampire film, and it fails even harder as an action movie. To sum up this crapfest...

Billy the Kid is a vampire who kidnaps children and wants to take over the west using a small town called Deliverance. Rayne, also a vampire, tracks him down but is arrested after "causing a ruckus" and is sentenced to a hanging. Rayne escapes and gathers up several others to help take Billy and his gang down. They kill all of Billy's vampires and save the town, then Rayne rides off to solve more vampire problems.

    There, I just summed up the whole movie in four sentences, how pathetic is that? The first movie was by no means good, but at least stuff happened in it. Heck, the first movie was entertainingly bad for the most part. Even the director's commentary was boring, and the first movie's commentary was friggin hilarious. Reviewing this movie felt like more of a chore than any other movie review I've done on this blog yet (Garbage Pail Kids was more of an endurance test of pain than a chore.) The DVD case's tagline reads "Heart-stopping Adventure," but the only heart stopping going on here is the audience suffering heart attacks as they keep yelling "GET ON WITH IT!" So without further to do, here’s my two word review.

Unbelievably boring.

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