Dec 042020

Blade is far from perfect and has moments that scream 1990s in its editing but I do like Snipes in the lead and the movie as a whole was somewhat entertaining, warts and all.




Genre(s): Action, Horror, Fantasy
Warner Bros. | R – 120 min. – $24.99 | December 1, 2020

Date Published: 12/04/2020 | Author: The Movieman

Directed by: Stephen Norrington
Writer(s): Marv Wolfman & Gen Colan (characters); David S. Goyer (written by)
Cast: Wesley Snipes, Stephen Dorff, Kris Kristofferson, N’Bushe Wright, Donal Logue, Udo Kier, Arly Jover, Traci Lords, Sanaa Lathan

Features: Commentaries, Featurettes, Theatrical Trailer
Slip Cover: Yes
Digital Copy: Yes
Formats Included: 4K, Blu-ray
Number of Discs: 2

Audio: English (Dolby Atmos), French (Dolby Digital 5.1), German (Dolby Digital 5.1), Italian (Dolby Digital 5.1), Spanish (Dolby Digital 2.0), Czech (Dolby Digital 2.0), Polish (Dolby Digital 5.1)
Video: 2160p/Widescreen 2.39
Dynamic Range: HDR10
Subtitles: English SDH, Czech, French, German, Italian, Polish, Spanish
Codecs: HEVC / H.265 (4K), MPEG-4 AVC (BD)
Region(s): A, B, C

Warner Bros. Home Entertainment provided me with a free copy of the Blu-ray I reviewed in this Blog Post.
The opinions I share are my own.

Note: The screen captures were taken from the Blu-ray disc and sized down (to add color to this review)
and do not represent the 4K Ultra HD transfer.

THE MOVIE — 3¾/5

Plot Synopsis: A half-mortal, half-immortal (WESLEY SNIPES_ is out to avenge his mother’s death and rid the world of vampires. The modern-day technologically advanced vampires he is going after are in search of his special blood type needed to summon an evil god who plays a key role in their plan to execute the human race.

Quick Hit Review: Blade was released in 1998 when the only comic book movies were four Superman and Batman films each, with varying quality, and before the onslaught of comic book adaptations. This film was also on the forefront for the more adult-oriented audiences with an R-rating, something that was unique and now becoming a bit more mainstream thanks to the Deadpool movies and Birds of Prey (to an extent, the latter performed poorly at the box office).

The film does at times feel like something out of the 1990s with its  style and in one instance, during a sequence when Blade is following another car, director Stephen Norrington used this odd, choppy editing and fast-forward motion that comes across pretty dated and out-of-place cheesiness that doesn’t exactly match the tone, at least until the end. And in terms of the finale, and understanding this was 22 years ago, the CGI was ridiculous, to the point it takes away from the ending’s effectiveness, though in fairness, the over abundance and reliance on visual effects today can be distracting.

All that being said, Wesley Snipes fits the role so well and showed how good of an actor he once was before he, like many other veteran actors, fell into direct-to-video territory. He commands the screen alongside Kris Kristofferson playing the badass Whistler with a great “death” (quotes since he returns in the two sequels), N’Bushe Wright serves fine as the female lead and Stephen Dorff made for a intense enough villain.



The two-disc release comes in a standard HD slim case with a semi-reflective slip cover. Inside is a redemption code for the Digital HD copy. All features from the original Blu-ray has been ported over.

Audio Commentaries:

  • Actor/Producer Wesley Snipes, Actor Stephen Dorff, Writer David S. Goyer, Director of Photography Theo Van De Sande, Production Designer Kirk M. Petruccelli and Producer Peter Frankfurt
  • Composer Mark Isham (w/ isolated score)

La Magra (14:08) – This featurette breaks down the blood god Frost’s summons.

Designing Blade (22:31) is on the look of the character and world culling from the comic books but also giving it a unique look and style.

Origins of Blade: A Look at Dark Comics (12:10) – David S. Goyer, Stan Lee and others discuss the darker, more mature source material.

The Blood Tide (20:02) is on the religious theology surrounding blood and its symbolism.

Theatrical Trailer (2:09)



VIDEO – 4¼/5

Warner Bros. releases Blade onto 4K Ultra HD presented with a 2.39 widescreen aspect ratio and given a 2160p high-definition transfer. I did a quick comparison with the included, and older, Blu-ray and I did see a difference, the 4K picture not only is sharper with more grain and noise on display, but the colors seem to be evenly distributed and less splotchy, especially for the numerous dark scenes. In that vein, the black levels do look nice with no evident bouts of aliasing or artifacting making for a good looking video transfer.

AUDIO – 4¾/5

The disc comes with a new Dolby Atmos track, a slight upgrade over the original DTS-HD Master Audio 6.1 track from the Blu-ray. There was a slight difference in the two, of course the Blu-ray audio was already great and the Atmos one is also fantastic, providing good depth with each vampire Blade slaughters to the club blood sequence early on, the music effectively pumping through each channel with the LFE getting a fine workout.



Blade is far from perfect and has moments that scream 1990s in its editing but I do like Snipes in the lead and the movie as a whole was somewhat entertaining, warts and all. The 4K Ultra HD release comes with great video and audio transfers and ported over the bonus features from the previous Blu-ray release.

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