Having escaped the many horrors of her village, Saya Kisaragi vows to hunt down the monster responsible and make him pay with his life. As she tears through flesh and bone for her vendetta, she encounters SIRRUT, a group of ingenious hackers, who enlist Saya to help them defeat a common enemy—someone she knows all too well.
Unfortunately, the path she follows is paved with tragedy, as once again, Saya faces betrayal at the hands of those she has come to trust. With her back against the wall, the fearsome monster slayer must fight with all her strength and skill if she is to overcome this final mission and exact vengeance.
Ah, Blood. To put it basically it was animes equivalent of Buffy the vampire slayer. Starting off from the fairly decent Blood: The Last Vampire movie and then moving on to the mediocre but well received Blood+ series. And then our dear old Clamp decided to try a hand at giving the blood series a new look. Enter Blood-c, a name which gave me a bad feeling from the get go. A series which suffered from abysmal storytelling, over-exaggerated gore which looked more comical than disturbing, characters with little likability and it says a lot when you can say that half the series can be
skipped without anything significant being lost.
Now we have Blood-c The Last Dark, a title which still makes no sense even after having seen the film. So let me answer the first question you have. Is it better than the tv anime series? Honestly, yes it is. But considering the quality of the tv series that isn't really something hard to accomplish. Despite that it still remains a poor film. Starting with story. Much like the tv series, a large amount of the film feels like padding. We are treated to a familiar vampire fight on a train which in turn causes Saya to meet the members of a a group called "Surat" which happen to be teenagers.(Naturally) From this moment on the plot progression comes to a complete halt. For well over forty minutes we are shown mainly the overly out of place comical characters of Surat. But then plot kicks in gear again and remembers what it's supposed to be focusing on and we are treated to an action scene and really that's about it. This supposedly inspires one of the members of Surat to get their ass in gear and direct Saya to the end boss. (Which apparently is a building that nobody can find despite it being clearly viewable from the coast of the city.) From that point on all the characters of Surat are rendered completely worthless. They don't appear again except for the epilogue and they don't effect the plot in any way. The finale is rather disappointing and anti-climatic. I had hoped that the writer would have learned from the tv series that twists that come out of nowhere for shock value is not good storytelling. Apparently they didn't. It really says a lot when they take the time to create a giant monster which in turn is defeated in a single strike within moments. Overall a large amount of the story feels unnecessary and plot points such as the curfew placed on minors are dropped with little explanation or exploration.
I cannot say the art was bad. However I can say I was underwhelmed by it. If you were keeping an eye on anime news then you would know that this movie received a grant from the government so there was no reason they couldn't go all out with the animation. Still I didn't see anything truly impressive. Honestly the quality was similar to that our the currently ongoing psycho pass in my opinion. This is just speculation but either all that cash went into the characters exaggerated reactions and cg or it might be the reason Production I.G has seen a sudden increase of productivity with anime series.
Sounds is something I can't comment on as I didn't take much notice of it. Though if I had to derive an opinion based on my watch I would deem it forgettable.
Characters are something of an oddity. Saya has traded her annoying bubbly carefree personality from the tv series for a more stereotypical broody cold type. There really is not much to say about it. Our main antagonist is a jumbled mess. Mainly because he has little to no focus in the film at all. He appears briefly at the beginning, briefly at the middle and then at the end. So his motivations remain confusing and nonsensical. The rest of our characters is where the movie spends most of it's time with which to me is rather odd way of using your limited time. This is because of the pointlessness of these characters to the main story. The members of Surat hold no purpose in the story besides two instances of telling her "Go here to find Fumito" and justifying a silly twist at the end. In retrospect that time spent developing them could have been better used to develop our two main characters seeing as they are the ones effecting the actual story and most need fleshing out. Also I really need to point out again just how out of place these Surat members are. They act much like characters in a sitcom and clash greatly with the atmosphere of the story itself. You can't exactly show us Saya killing a monster brutally and expect us to brush that off and enjoy comic relief. On that note, a loli learning to type on a keyboard with her feet is the most ridiculous thing I have seen. I mean even someone who isn't that into computers can tell you that not many computers allow you to use two keyboards at the same time, also no computer lets you type into two windows simultaneously. So that really makes typing with your feet a pointless skill.
Really I feel sad for the blood series. If only a competent writer was hired then maybe something great or at least fairly enjoyable could have came out of Blood-C. But here I am watching an hour and forty minute film with a bored look on my face
IG and CLAMP definitely had the potential to turn this trainwreck of a series around for the better. The finished product? Nothing but bitter disappointment about how a great piece, Blood: The Last Vampire, could be turned into this.
The issues definitely begin in the characterisation. Nobody is interesting. There is no emotional attachment to any of the struggles they go through, and we 'care' because the movie tells us to. Fumito definitely had the potential to be a remotely decent villain, but even there we are let down.
The animation is mixed, but overall it is fairly negative. Much similar to the series Blood-C, the
majority of art enjoyment comes from the monster design - and while a lot of what appeared is clearly rehashed from Blood+ and the entire Blood series (if you dare group them together), it is still the high point. For the remainder of the scenes, the animation is carefully guised to look pretty with that distinct I.G. style, but with some inspection the flaws are gaping. The CGI scene? Lets not go there.
The plot itself made no real sense. The concept was clear, but the whys and hows of it were significantly lacking. There is no resolution, or even understanding, of the events that transpire and why we should be interested in them. Watanuki appears simply as CLAMP fanservice, in a drawn-out sequence which was really unnecessary.
Blood-C has concluded to be a trainwreck of a project. With I.G. having input, one would have hoped for a return to the glory days of Blood: The Last Vampire. However the final project is nothing short of ridiculous, and while it is a definite improvement from the series it is still not cutting remotely close to average.
Honestly, before watching Blood-C: The Last Dark I had no familiarity with the franchise. Sure, I saw a couple of episodes of Blood+ on TV, but that’s all, so the only reason for me to watch this film was that my friends invited me to a convention, and it was shown there. And this film turned out to be crap. I decided to write this review but delayed submitting it for two months before I finally got a chance to marathon the Blood-C television series to get a better grasp of the plot. And guess what, now I think that the film is even more
of crap than I initially assumed, therefore, I’m submitting this review mostly unchanged.
The setting of the film is undetailed and lazy. The creators are trying to bring a dystopian feel to it: Japan is ruled by a corrupted government, the Internet is heavily censored, and underage people are not allowed to stay late on the streets without any adults accompanying them. However, it is never stated why the things are this way. How did the political situation change and why is the government trying to restrict the freedom? Y’see, censorship is like outright speaking “We have stuff we don't want you to know”, and there are a lot of much better ways to hide the truth. Like spreading rumours, gossips and crazy theories that will make actual facts look like yet another lunatic fantasy, for example. The only reason we have this setting clumsily established is that the writers wanted to introduce the good guys as a resistance, freedom fighters trying to overthrow oppressive and unjust regime, and it hurts how uncreative and forced this is.
And yeah, those freedom fighters… Here, have a look at this roster: a crippled mentor type of a guy in a wheelchair; his secretary; a tough-acting guy and his geeky friend, our comedic relief duo; and a token loli, who is a also a hacker. They’re clichéd as much as most secondary characters are, so they’re neither really interesting nor irritating. Excluding the loli one, and let me explain why. She is a hacker so good that she actually uses two keyboards simultaneously and types on the second one with her feet. Y’know, there is an anime called Battle Programmer Shirase, the protagonist of which is, well, a programmer and he can move his fingers so fast that he has to use six keyboards to keep up with his speed. This is stupid, but in insanely awesome kind of way. And loli typing with her feet? No, that’s just dumb. There can be a thin line between these two examples of ridiculous anime stuff, but I stand my ground here.
So, the plot. Meet our protagonist, Saya. If you haven’t watched the Blood-C television series, all you’re going to know about her is that she wants revenge for some unclear reason. She wants to kill Nanahara Fumito, a powerful man who has big influence in Japan. Saya accidentally runs into Hiiragi Mana, a resistance member I haven’t mentioned earlier, during the attack of a vampire monster kind of thingie in an underground train. Saya saves Hiiragi from the monster and escapes from the police with the help of Hiiragi’s resistance friends. Then Saya meets up with Mogari Kuroto (mentor guy in a wheelchair) and learns that they have a common goal as resistance wants to end Nanahara’s oppressive rule. Also, Mogari has some personal feud with Nanahara, so he is just as fuelled up with revenge as Saya.
As you can see, the opening of the story is pretty generic. However, it’s packed with action scenes and I have to admit that those are pretty good. They are well animated (putting aside my personal hate for CG vehicles), exciting and thrill inducing. The beginning of the film is really fun to watch on the big screen. But when the story slows down a bit… Oh, boy.
First of all, Saya and Hiiragi. As I have already mentioned, Saya wants revenge. That’s her whole character and it’s uninteresting. On the other hand, Hiiragi is her opposite. While Saya is cold and introverted, Hiiragi is cheerful and friendly. While Saya wants to kill the antagonist, Hiiragi wants to find her father (a plot thread that ends in a rather pathetic but nevertheless amusing way). When these two are talking, it’s painful to listen to because it always follows “Hiiragi is trying to make friends, Saya doesn’t give a thing” formula. This routine gets old very fast and eats up a big chunk of the film.
Secondly, the plot. It quickly deteriorates and stops making sense. I can turn a blind eye on some things because there is always a possibility that I don’t understand them due to my unfamiliarity with the franchise, but there are still a lot of moments when the stuff happening on screen is illogical, confusing or just pure bosh. I especially like how the film treats hackers as if it’s still the Nineties, when people believed that if one smashes buttons hard enough, he will break a card reader lock wirelessly with his mobile phone. Also, there is a cameo appearance by a character from another CLAMP work, but needless to say, this cameo is utterly pointless.
The last fight is disappointing, to say the least. And the ending of the story is… I have no words to describe it. When the film ended, I found myself sitting in the middle of a cinema driven to a nonplus and feeling irritated and angry. A lot of plot threads are unresolved, and after watching the TV series I can say that the writers didn’t even bother to explain or address any loose ends left hanging in it.
As a result, The Last Dark is a bad film. It’s bad if you haven’t watched the TV series because the film’s plot is confusing and makes no sense. And it’s even worse if you did watch the series because the film still makes no god damn sense and doesn’t fill the gaps in its prequel. There is only one redeeming quality in it: action scenes. The director, Shiotani Naoyoshi-shi, is quite good and knows his deal (you can check out currently airing Psycho-Pass series to see what he is capable of, when a competent writer is aboard). Thus, if you want a mindless eye candy kind of a film, The Last Dark can pass as your choice; otherwise, well, excuse me.
I'd like to firstly recommend everyone to watch the Blood-C specials because they summon up the series really well. The specials go straight to the point without leaving behind important information. The feeling you get after watching it will help you when you watch the movie directly afterwards.
Ofcourse if you saw the series then even better. I saw it as well, yet bcs it has been so long since, I watched the specials and it helped me remember every feeling.
Do you know how it feels to be betrayed and lied to? Have you ever hated yourself for what you believe happend because of you?
picture it. Try to stand in her shoes.
I admit that in the series her character may be very annoying, hell even I thought so at times. But in the movie they made up for it.
Some say there is no character development, well I think they're wrong.
In the beginning of the movie Saya is cold, you can't blame her after what happened. Gradually she changes yet stays herself.
Whats diffrent? She found someone like her. No, not a 'monster' but a person.
That person as well changes into a stronger someone because of the person's encounter with Saya.
Saya seeks for revenge but in the end is it really as she thought it was?
Watch the movie to find out what happened in the end. Find out the truth behind all these masks. //Nothing is as it seems.\\
Overal the sound was alright actually. It wasn't wrongly added in a disturbing way. They mainly added it where it was needed for the tension.
So overal a 8/10 for me.
aaah Clamp and IG did an amazing job as is expected, definetly a 9 out of 10.
The animation is beautifully done and the monsters I have to say are discustingly amazing!!
The exesive use of blood is indeed still there but hey once you start it off like that, why not finish ;D
The movie actually has a great story and it goes straight to the point: her revenge.
As for the title: "The Last Dark", I think they actually explained that in the end of the movie when Fumito 'explains' a few things about Saya.
So be sure to look out for that :D
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