Check-out Station: Blood-C: The Last Dark (you killed my Kill Bill)
I’m very neutral towards the Blood series in all its incarnations. Usually it’s one of those things where I find the setting and the characters generally uninteresting, but I stay for the gore. And I’m not that huge a fan of gore in my anime either. Blood just does it so well. And it’s not just about how they kill, but who they kill. Everyone. And without remorse. So when I watched the TV series that set up this movie, I wasn’t terribly surprised or disappointed. I found it barely decent overall. But I had higher expectations for the movie, because it looked like it would cut past most of the garbage that hampered the TV series. Does it? Kinda, but it also comes with its own set of unique problems.
Note: I don’t believe you have to watch the TV series to get something out of the movie. Things are certainly explained decently enough for you to get Saya’s point in doing what she does. But I will be talking about the movie as if the readers have seen the series beforehand. Besides, I honestly don’t think the series makes much sense anyway. I’ll also try to avoid too much in the way of spoilers for one. It is just a movie of less than 2 hours length.
Blood-C: The Last Dark is the movie continuation and conclusion of the TV series. It starts off six months after horrifically, comically and exquisitely manic and gory ending of the series. When Saya was betrayed by Fumito, he succeeded in royally pissing her off. So I came in expecting Saya to go in hard with this movie. And she hardly does that honestly. Aside from chasing down a man who appeared to be an Old One and brutally murdering him – NICE – she spends the first thirty minutes of the movie just asking questions. Ninety percent of her interaction with the movie’s cast is in the form of questions. I can understand Saya’s willingness to not trust anyone at this point of her life (matter of fact, she really shouldn’t have had a reason to trust anyone this entire movie), but it came across as a cheap, and not very subtle way of trying to explain things to the audience. I’d rather have good, tight exposition, than a stiff, phony sounding conversation between Saya and her newly found allies.
Speaking of her allies, they’re a rather bland crew. A group whose sole power seems to be kids with amazing hacking ability… and that’s about it. Oh wait, there’s a guy with a car, too! Saya’s allies are really just a collection of people for Saya to learn to trust. It’s so paper thin, it’s sad. The only really enjoyment I got out of any of them was seeing Saya’s near twin, Mana. Oh and she’s one of the THREE super hackers in the group.
The movie itself is peppered with some decent skirmishes, but none of the action really impressed me. There’s betrayal thrown in there. And I’ll just say that Saya should never drink a beverage she hasn’t prepared herself, ever again. And the plot is really just a journey from point A to point B once the hackers have uncovered the secret location of resident Big Bad Evil Guy, Fumito. And worst of all, I found the ending to be void of a real climax. Fumito just deflates it completely. It doesn’t help that I found his motivations eerily similar to a character’s in the horrible video game, Resident Evil 6. Essentially, a series of horrible actions done in the name of love. Love? Really? By the end I just didn’t get this film or its motivation.
I wondered at the conclusion if Blood-C would have been better served doing things differently. The movie could have benefited greatly from an extension of narrative, scope and motivation. Similarly, I think Saya’s original betrayal in the TV series could have been shortened into a movie with similar results, and a fraction of the boring downtime and fluff that plagued it. But I’m perfectly comfortable with the reality that they’ll never do that. Just like I’m comfortable with this being a mediocre movie with not much going for it. Even when I think about the stuff that I normally like from something in the Blood metaverse.
Though one positive realization has come to me. I really need to finish xxxHolic.