"We Hate to Rain on Their Parade, But. . ."
BLOODRAYNE is a low budget vampire adventure set in Romania about 280 years ago. If someone is willing to be entertained by BLOODRAYNE, at least a little bit, in the end, it’s just not meant to be.
First off, BLOODRAYNE has the outlines of a good script, but not the substance. Also, some of the acting is lackluster. Finally, the filmmakers don’t know how to competently shoot their action scenes, including plenty of sword fighting. For example, practically all the action scenes are shot with lots of pseudo-flashy editing and confusing, distracting close-ups. They are so bad that it’s hard to tell what’s really happening most of the time.
One could perhaps cover up the first two problems, but this third problem probably will doom the movie to almost total oblivion. In fact, this third problem, instead of making the action scenes exciting, eventually just makes them tedious and even annoying. It’s no wonder, then, that so many critics and fans have called this movie’s German director the worst director working in the business today.
This is sad because the director actually seems like a nice, friendly, funny, and intelligent guy. In fact, at the premiere screening, he started humorously criticizing the major Hollywood studios controlling the movie business.
“I hate Hollywood actually,” he told the crowd before the screening. “The distribution companies are basically liars and crooks.
“There’s no independent company now,” he added, citing Paramount’s buying of the live action studio of DreamWorks. His movie, BLOODRAYNE, is being distributed by a new company, Romar Entertainment, owned partly by actor Billy Zane of TITANIC. Romar hopes to offer filmmakers a more fair deal where there is no inflated print, advertising and marketing budget (because the filmmakers and the producers provide that funding themselves) and where the filmmakers apparently can own the rights to the movie totally, following its theatrical run.
The story of BLOODRAYNE is straightforward, but a bit complicated. Kristanna Loken (TERMINATOR 3) stars as Rayne, the half-vampire, half-human daughter of Kagan, an evil vampire ruling Romania, played by Ben Kingsley. Rayne hates her father because, when she was young, he later raped her mother and murdered her while Rayne was watching. Because she’s half human, Rayne only craves the blood of animals and evil vampires. She also aims to kill her father, who has amassed an army of human thralls to do his every bidding.
Another enemy of Kagan is Vladimir, a leading vampire killer who thinks Rayne can be the one person who can kill Kagan and end his reign of terror. Vladimir and his small army team up with Rayne to accomplish this very task. Their plans prove to be even harder than they think.
Properly done, this story could have been exciting, and perhaps even uplifting. Regrettably, the filmmakers throw in a couple unnecessary subplots. Their premise is also split into at least two rather than one. The weaker premise dilutes the moral, spiritual and dramatic power of the stronger premise. Furthermore, as noted above, some of the acting is lackluster, and the action scenes are not properly shot and edited.
Finally, though the basic story has some positive moral and spiritual elements, the filmmakers load it up with gratuitous gore, some strong sexual content, female nudity, and an unsatisfying ending morally and theologically speaking. In fact, the filmmakers dilute the explicit Christian content in their movie with this ending and other, similar missteps. Thus, the moral victory that Rayne achieves, if you can call it that, is not a total one, nor is it a Christian one. It could have been those things, however. That is why the movie ultimately is so disappointing.
Happily for the director’s next career moves, all of these problems can be fixed easily. And, MOVIEGUIDE® has the best script and film doctors in the business, if we do say so ourselves. That’s why we urge everyone to get, read and study copies of Publisher Dr. Ted Baehr’s book, SO YOU WANT TO BE IN PICTURES (1-800-899-6684 or www.movieguide,org). Dr. Baehr and his team are also available on a consulting basis. Both the book and this availability are important parts of this ministry’s mission to redeem the values of the entertainment industry, including its production, aesthetic and entertainment values.
(PaPa, B, C, O, FR, Ho, VVV, SS, NNN, A, M) Strong, but mixed, pagan worldview with some moral and Christian content (including positive references to Christian icons and a monastery), but mixed in with some occult elements (including a scene with a fortune teller who uses Tarot cards to read heroine's future) and elements of false religion and pagan superstition, and also undermined by a faulty pagan ending with an unsatisfying resolution that contains moral and theological problems, and undermined by far too much blood, some gore, strong sex, brief lesbian homosexual elements between female vampires, and explicit nudity; no foul language; excessive violence includes some action violence like fist fights and sword fights and arrow kills, but plenty of spurting blood, gaping wounds during battle scenes, vampires attack people and each other, and brutality; strong sexual content includes briefly depicted lesbian vampires, depicted fornication in one scene, implied rape, and evil villain is surrounded by semi-nude and nude women in one sequence, strongly implying they've been having an orgy; plenty of upper female nudity in one sequence, plus a shot or two of full female nudity; alcohol use; no smoking; and, people fight tyranny but suffer very heavy and brutal losses and betrayal.
BLOODRAYNE is a low budget vampire adventure set in Romania about 280 years ago. The Rayne in the title refers to the half-human daughter of Kagan, an evil vampire ruling Romania. Rayne hates her father because, when she was young, he murdered her mother. Because she's half human, Rayne only craves the blood of animals and evil vampires. She aims to kill her father, who has amassed an army of human thralls to do his bidding. Kagan’s other enemy is Vladimir, a leading vampire killer who thinks Rayne can be the one person who can help end Kagan's reign of terror. Vladimir and his small army team up with Rayne to fight Kagan. Their plans prove to be even harder than they think.
Properly done, this story could have been exciting, and perhaps even uplifting. Regrettably, the filmmakers throw in a couple unnecessary subplots. Also, some of the acting is lackluster, and the action scenes are not properly shot and edited. Finally, though the basic story includes some moral and even Christian content, the filmmakers load it up with gratuitous gore, strong sexual content, female nudity, and an unsatisfying ending, both morally and theologically speaking.