Awfully Good: Blade: Trinity

Everyone's still reeling from DEADPOOL's ginormous box office. But what about the first time Ryan Reynold's played a smart-ass comic book character who couldn't stop talking?

Blade: Trinity (2004)

Director: David Goyer
Stars: Wesley Snipes, Ryan Reynolds, Jessica Biel


Blade must team up with younger vampire hunters in order to take down OG bloodsucker Dracula.

The first BLADE set the standard for modern comic book movies, dumping the cheesy superhero model of the early 90s and paving the way for X-MEN and other higher profile properties. Guillermo Del Toro's BLADE II took that charge and ran with it, upping the action and Gothic horror elements with the vagina-mouthed Reapers. So it's only fitting that BLADE: TRINITY close out the series with the most epic entry imaginable.

No, I'm kidding. It delivers a stillborn assfart of a film that embarrasses everyone involved and their relatives.  

No, don’t mention GREEN LANTERN to Ryan Reynolds! Not this week!

Not only did BLADE: TRINITY suck the lifeblood out of the franchise, it also quashed any hopes David Goyer had of transitioning to a successful director. The third film is shockingly bland and boring, devoid of any semblance of style or visual interest—things both former movies had in spades. I don't know how you make a BLADE movie tedious, but Goyer manages to do it. However, as easy as it would be to pin this all on the writer/director, it's clear the real blame lies with someone else: Wesley Snipes. Snipes, so badass in the original film, is a wet blanket here, completely smothering every scene he's in and going through the motions in some of the laziest fight scenes of his career. You can feel the actor's utter hatred for the cast, crew and the movie itself in every frame. It makes for a truly odd and painful final product, a BLADE movie where Blade clearly does not want to be there and where everyone else feels the same.

On some days it was hard to even get Wesley Snipes to deliver his lines standing up.

Apparently Wesley Snipes was unhappy with the direction of the film and the choice of director and made the shoot a living hell. According to co-star Patton Oswalt, Snipes spent every day smoking weed in his trailer, refusing to come out and forcing them to shoot most of BLADE: TRINITY using his stand-in. (If you watch the movie knowing this, it becomes incredibly obvious.) You can blame Ryan Reynolds' non-stop barrage of one-liners and snarky comments on this as well; since all they could get from Snipes was deadpan reaction shots, Goyer just had Reynolds come up with "the worst jokes and puns" to fill in the gaps and make Blade look like an ass. Eventually, the tension between Snipes and Goyer turned physical, with the lead actor only communicating with the director through Post-it notes—Post-it notes signed "From Blade." 

I guess it's a miracle this movie was actually released at all.

Ryan Reynolds based his character's personality on Deadpool and his physical appearance on me. 

One of the things Snipes no doubt hated about BLADE: TRINITY was the inclusion of the Nightstalkers. Perhaps sensing the franchise's impending doom, the studio decided to bring in hot young actors, including Ryan Reynolds and Jessica Biel, to serve as fodder for a potential spinoff. With his unending string of smart-ass comments and meta commentary, Reynolds' Hannibal King is probably the most entertaining part of the movie and definitely feels like a precursor to Deadpool. (The actor has admitted to borrowing from the Merc With A Mouth for this movie.) His partner, Whistler's daughter Abigail (Jessica Biel), feels like the movie's desperate attempt to be hip for younger audiences—a vampire hunter who makes MP3 playlists of "dark core and trip-hop" and listens to them on her iPod while fighting. The rest of the Nighstalkers team gets so little screentime  they might as well not be there. Patton Oswalt is their nerdy tech guy and Natasha Lyonne plays a reject from THE MATRIX who has a young daughter solely so the crew has someone to rescue in the end. (Lyonne's character is also blind, which would be a fine instance of diversity if they didn't make her the one manning security cameras and obliviously walking past bad guys.) Who wouldn't want to watch a spinoff movie based on this crew?

"Hi, I'm Dracula... Stop laughing!" 

The other wildly disappointing character inclusion is Dracula, played by Prison Break's Dominic Purcell. "Drake," as the movie sadly refers to him, is probably the lamest incarnation of the classic vampire character ever, and that includes Gerard Butler in DRACULA 2000. Ryan Reynolds gives this long-winded speech about how badass Dracula is supposed to be—then the movie immediately cuts to Dominic Purcell walking down the street, looking like a Persian nightclub owner wearing gaudy jewelry, eyeliner and a V-neck shirt so deep it should count as indecent exposure. Dracula's supposedly amazing powers are never fully explored. Apparently he's really fast and can make his fingers super long. He can also transform in to other people, although we only really see that ability one time, when he infiltrates the Nightstalker hideout and ends up hiding from a blind person who can't see him anyways. Dracula and Blade only meet one time before the end (in a hilarious scene in which he steals a baby and tosses it at our hero) and their final showdown is a total letdown. The original vampire's final form is a pretty cool makeup effect, but he disappointingly spends most of his time as a human engaged in a very generic, slow and boring swordfight. Honestly, the only memorable Dracula moment in BLADE: TRINITY is when he visits a goth store and is dismayed to see they sell Dracula vibrators. Nothing must sting more than seeing your legacy ridiculed in dildo form.

Drake also has a henchwoman in Parker Posey, who gives a great bad performance as a trashy vampire chick with big hair and even bigger penis envy. (That's a legit character trait, by the way.) There's also WWE star Triple H as the main heavy, who spends half his time with a girly Pomeranian dog and the other half making homophobic comments about assrape and people looking at his dick.

They always said Muffin's bark was worse than her bite. This time she'll show them. She'll show them all...

All these various characters and baggage makes for a terribly constructed film, and with Snipes' sporadic involvement, much of the plot makes zero sense. First, the vampires dig up Dracula, claiming his blood can make them all daywalkers, although this is never really mentioned or dealt with again. Then their big plan is to frame Blade for murder and wage a PR campaign against him. (Literally, they trick him in to killing a human and Parker Posey films it on a camcorder and sends it to TMZ.) This could've been an interesting subplot, but once Blade gets arrested, all the cops are vampires anyways and this thread is also quickly abandoned. And then there's the much hyped vampire "final solution," which ends up just being a blood farm where they keep humans and harvest their red stuff. (It's also already a deleted scene on the first BLADE's DVD, so now Goyer is just recycling his own stuff.) I think my favorite part of the movie is that the password to shut down the entire farming operation is simply "harvest." There aren't even any numbers or special characters in there! 

This is a real punch from this movie.

Perhaps worst of all, this is a comic book action movie with barely any action in it. It's truly bizarre—there's not one memorable sequence or interesting set piece, just a bunch of random scenes where people punch henchmen with no flow or excitement. And these few measly fights are executed terribly, filmed with bad blocking so no hit or kick actually looks like it connects. The only things memorable in BLADE: TRINITY are parts that are unintentionally funny. Like a super serious training montage where Jessica Biel uses a radar gun to track her bow and arrow so you can see how much deadlier her archery is. Or Ryan Reynolds getting chased by vampire dogs and tossing them out of a building.

I'm beginning to think this movie has a message for the audience… 

The end of BLADE: TRINITY is confusing and disappointing, but if you really want to see bad, watch this alternate ending where the Nightstalkers have to fight a werewolf. Man, now I wish this movie had gotten a spinoff.

Some of Ryan Reynolds many, many one-liners, plus a couple of the rare times Blade actually speaks in this movie.

Vampire dogs, the best Blade moments, and the worst fight scenes.

Ryan Reynolds' six pack and Jessica Biel taking a sad shower.

Always bet on black! Buy this movie here!

Take a shot or drink every time:
  • Ryan Reynolds has a one liner and/or Wesley Snipes looks annoyed at Ryan Reynolds
  • A punch clearly doesn't connect
  • Someone says "dick"
  • The movie confuses Syria and Iraq
  • Blade says "Use it"
  • A character just happens to record a video message the day she died 
  • Wesley Snipes uses incorrect grammar (i.e. "How do you pay for all this operation?" or "I'll just enjoy it better.")
Double shot if:
  • Vampire dogs!

Thanks to Patrick for suggesting this week's movie!

Seen a movie that should be featured on this column? Shoot Jason an email or follow him on Twitter and give him an excuse to drink.

Source: JoBlo.com



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