Blade: Trinity – Can Ryan Reynolds wash his mouth out with soap please?

If you can ignore three things, then Blade: Trinity isn’t that bad. First, ignore the worst voiceover narration ever during the opening and closing scenes. Then, cover your ears for any scene with Kris Kristofferson unless you’re researching examples of the term “phoning it in.” Finally, walk right past the inconsistency of technologically advanced super-warriors not installing a burglar alarm. Maybe I’ve finally mastered the art of setting my expectations low enough to be pleasantly surprised, but aside from those elements I had a fairly good time watching the movie. The action sequences are satisfying, there’s a refreshing lack of gore for gore’s sake, and it moves along at a good clip. You even get a couple of good one-liners.

For those not familiar with the Blade oeuvre, I will bring you up to speed. Blade is a vampire-human hybrid who hunts and kills vampires. This time, he has two people to help and so they are a trinity. There, you’re caught up.

Unfortunately, one of those helpers is Hannibal King, played by Ryan Reynolds with a truly awful beard. King hunts vampires in order to get back at his ex-girlfriend, vampire Danica Talos (played by Parker Posey in a role that I hope paid well because it’s painful to watch.)

Hannibal King is one-third of the trinity, but all he seems to do is get stabbed and kidnapped, all the while making vulgar comments about his former honey. When a man says nasty things about a woman in a movie and the woman is truly bad, which Danica Talos really is, then I’m probably supposed to feel like it’s ok because she’s the Bad Guy. But there are hundreds of ways for the Good Guy to express how much he hates the Bad Guy and everything she stands for without being so misogynistic. It’s one of the things I love about Tomb Raider. Lara Croft’s enemies don’t call her “that bitch” or anything worse, they call her Lady Croft. Hannibal King needs to take a lesson from those folks.

At this point, you’re starting to wonder why I said this was an enjoyable movie. So let’s move on to the other third of the trinity: Abby. Wow. We love Abby. She is a true ass-kicking warrior woman on a mission to destroy evil blood-sucking vampires. Who can’t support that? Although we are subjected to the apparently inevitable scene of the badass woman warrior in the shower, overall the film’s creators allow Abby to be her own person. They set her up to take cues from Blade, but they don’t take away her humanity and make her his clone. She still has a hug for a child, or a pat on the head for a friend who is shackled in a dungeon. Jessica Biel is a little wooden, but she gets the job done. While Hannibal King is getting strangled by his ex, Abby is knocking down vampires in hand to hand combat.

Abby is in good company. Haili Page‘s Zoe was assigned the role of Helpless Child Kidnapped by the Bad Guy, but I don’t think she got the memo. Her response to a vampire asking if she wants eternal life is “My friends are coming to kill you.” Natasha Lyonne plays her scientist mom Sommerfield, who synthesizes viruses and lightly mocks the “sighted people” for needing a computer display to follow her explanation. Zoe and Sommerfield don’t get a lot of screen time, but they get enough to fill out the Blade universe with real female characters. This is quite a contrast from Underworld and Ultraviolet, where there’s really just one woman.

It’s a shame that I can’t edit Hannibal King out of the movie, since his commentary is enough to knock Blade:Trinity from a potential 3 stars to a final rating of 2 stars. Treating the women you like with respect while hurling ugly insults at the woman you don’t like doesn’t quite cut it.

This post was originally published on Heroine Content, a feminist and anti-racist movie blog that ran from July 2006 to May 2012.

2 thoughts on “Blade: Trinity – Can Ryan Reynolds wash his mouth out with soap please?

  1. Sophia

    Hi. I totally agree with your views on Blade Trinity. Ryan Reynolds was a waste of space, whilst Jessica Biel did manage to kinda pull off the role of the female protangonist.

    I’m currently doing a A-Level Media essay on the representation of women in Blade Trinity and in horror as a whole. I have to get different opinions of the role of women on horror from different people and I was hoping you’d be able to help me.

    Sophia x (btw, loving the site, its really helped me out)

  2. Jose Angel Lopez

    Dude, I saw the movie a thousand times and the one thing, well, 2 things that fucked up the whole movie was ryan reynold and the other was that they screwed wesley snipes from his main role in the movie.

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