* (out of 5)
January 6, 2006
Kristanna Loken as RAYNE
Michelle Rodriguez as KATARIN
Ben Kingsley as KAGAN
Michael Madsen as VLADIMIR
Matt Davis as SEBASTIAN
Billy Zane as ELRICH
Will Sanderson as DOMASTIR
Studio: Romar Releasing
Directed by: Uwe Boll
BY KEVIN CARR
Like the coming of the apocalypse, a film by Uwe Boll has certain signs of disaster. First, of course, it’s directed by Uwe Boll. Never a good sign. Those who thought “House of the Dead” couldn’t be outdone in terms of crappiness only had to wait until the release of “Alone in the Dark.”
The second sign of the stench coming from “BloodRayne” was the fact that it wasn’t released by any major studio. Not that I have anything against independent distributors, but usually this is a bad sign for a “major” release.
The third sign was that “BloodRayne” was not screened for critics. Of course, one might think that the studio didn’t expect any positive reviews for a sword & sorcery vampire flick. And they were right.
“BloodRayne” is another land mine in a field of Uwe Boll video game adaptations. This genre itself is a mess, anyway, with very few decent releases historically. Count “Resident Evil” and “Mortal Kombat” as good flicks. The rest are crap. And Uwe Boll does nothing to change that.
“BloodRayne” is a prequel of sorts for the popular video games of the same name, which I haven’t played. Maybe the film would have made more sense if I had. But considering how this film is put together, I think not. It tells the story of Rayne (Kristanna Loken), a half breed vampire who starts off as a carnival sideshow only to escape in order to kill her father (Ben Kingsley), the king of the vampires. Michael Madsen, Matt Davis and Michelle Rodriguez play vampire hunters who are trying to get their hands on Rayne to fulfill a prophecy that will overthrow the vampire rulers.
Are you following me? Don’t worry. I saw the whole movie, and there are still tons of scenes that don’t make sense. “BloodRayne” makes me wish that “Mystery-Science Theater 3000” was still on the air. This would be perfect for them.
Some might be tempted to call Boll a visionary director for his liberal use of continuity, scene order and basic common sense. But I would rather chalk it up to him being an idiot. The film starts out with scenes told out of order and random flashbacks. Characters are introduced in the middle of speeches by people in other scenes in other timeframes. It’s really a mess. A hilarious mess, but still a mess.
I do have to hand one thing to Boll. He manages to cast a film with some good names. However, each person in their respective roles seems to be holding their nose as they perform, just picking up a paycheck in these troubled times. I don’t really blame the actors, because they have no control over the disjointed storytelling that haunts Boll’s movie.
Still, the acting is pretty bad. Rodriguez struggles to hide her urban accent that she’s so well known for. She attempts a British accent, but never quite succeeds. At least Michael Madsen (who looks like he came off a four-day drinking binge for this film) just spits out his lines in a monotone. Billy Zane actually adds some comic relief by speaking his lines with utter disdain. The only one who seems to take the movie seriously is Loken, who is sexy enough but not a great actor – at least not in this film.
Sure, there are some okay moments, like the now infamous scene with Meat Loaf as a big time vampire. Although his wig is laughable, he’s surrounded by Romanian prostitutes in the scene. Word is that Boll found it cheaper to hire real prostitutes than actors.
We can only hope that Boll will spend more time hiring prostitutes in the future than making any more movies.