Friday, August 25, 2006

Can Hell Sing?: Van Helsing

I must lead into this review with a soul bearing preface: I have a severe weak spot for Kate Beckinsale. If you are a straight man, you will understand. It's just a simple fact that she is a beautiful woman. That said, let's move on.

I did not see Van Helsing in theaters, as the FDA had already removed it from film. I Netflixed it (shameless promo for which I am not getting paid: Netflix rocks your face). When the disc arrived, I received more than my fair share of snide remarks from friends and loved ones, which meant this had to be a winner.

Well, even I have my limits.

I will not say this movie is all bad. It has two things going for it: Kate Beckinsale and...well...ok, Kate Beckinsale is all the reason you need. She is why I saw both Underworlds twice.

The special effects were good...sometimes. Othertimes you wondered if these people realized the budget they had for this movie.

The acting is, for the most part, funny? Hugh Jackman (Wolverine, and that's the only role he ever needs) plays a James Bond/Shepherd Book warrior monk Van Helsing with a cutting wit and wavy locks of hair. He is the only sensibly dressed person in the movie, as Kate Beckinsale's Anna Valerious thinks a corsette is body armor.

His comic relief (which is a staple in an action B-movie) is played by David Wenham. Davie does a nice job, though sometimes you are confused to the point of laughter by the plot shifts.

Ahh, the "P" word comes up. Is there a plot in this movie? Does there need to be? I actually think the writer should be commended, as I did not see the twists he pulled out of thin air in this epic quest. I won't sully the experience by listing them all here. Needless to say, it's a trip.

I can tell you one thing...Dracula is in the movie, and he ain't so great. Played by the veteran actor Richard Roxburgh (M:I 2) he prances around the scenes with a come-and-go accent and a short temper. I was never sure if I should be excited to see him when he appeared.

I wouldn't even list this movie if not for one thing: The extras. I know that shouldn't affect a movie's rating, but their was a blooper reel, and it gave me newfound respect for Mr. Jackman. He fumbles his lines, his accents, trips on his feet, and giggles like a schoolgirl. It's magic. In fact, watch that even if you don't watch the movie. It's just as entertaining.

So at the end of the day, what does Van Helsing rate on a scale of one to ten? That's an easy answer.

Kate Beckinsale.

No comments: