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Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust review

Do you choose who you fall in love with, or does your heart? In September 2001, two hearts that shouldn't be together are taking a chance... for love.

Directing this 103 minute by animation/action/adventure/fantasy/mystery/sci-fi is Yoshiaki Kawajiri.

Some of the voice cast is: Andy Philpot as D, Mike McShane as D's Left Hand, John Rafter as Mieier Link, Matt McKenzie as Borgoff, Pamela Adlon as Leila, Wendee Lee as Charlotte Elbourne, John DiMaggio as Nolt, Alex Fernadez as Kyle, Jack Fletcher as Grove, Mary Elizabeth McGlynn as Caroline, Dwight Schultz as Benge and John DiMaggio as Marchira.

A young lady named Charlotte Elbourne is abducted by a vampire noble known as Meier Link. Charlotte's father hires D to find her, and if necessary, kill her if she's been turned into a vampire. Meanwhile, Charlotte's brother hires the Marcus brothers to go out and find his sister. Both D and the brothers race to find Charlotte, knowing time is not on their side. Unfortunately, Meier Link has some obstacles the hunters will have to fight their way through if they want to catch up with him.

After watching the first Vampire Hunter D (1985) flick, the fans shouted out for more and their voices were heard. So, in 1997 the powers that be started getting another film into production. This time around they based the film off of the third novel in the series called Demon Deathchase, which was written by Hideyuki Kikuchi. Here's a weird fun fact for ya, when the film was released it was only in English and premiered in 6 American theaters. When it came time to catch it in Japan they got to watch the English version with Japanese subtitles.

The story that writer Yoshiaki Kawajiri put together was good. Sadly though, it just didn't have much of a punch to it. It ends up being an average story that doesn't stick with you when it's over. It does shine a bit more light on D's character, so you get to know a little more about him. I think that was my problem with the story. It highlights a bunch of different characters and events, but never really goes anywhere with them. You come across a few characters that seem important somehow, but then poof, they're gone. It ends up feeling like something is missing from the story. 

The playthrough is good, and has the same pace that the first one had. It's not that it's slow, it just has a very relaxed pace, even during the fight scenes swords just flow... and people die. Unfortunately, the fight scenes are pretty quick and only have some blood flowing when everything's over. So don't expect a-n-y gore with this one. Also, the voice cast did good, but no one really stands out or anything.

Yoshitaka Amano did the design for the main character D, then animation director Yutaka Minowa come in to match up Amano's art style with the rest of the characters. After it was all put together you have some killer looking animation that flows smoothly from scene to scene.

Overall, as a Hunter D fan, I liked this one and everything looked great. However, I have to say, even though the sequel looked better, I think the first one is still the best. Either way, this is one to check out.

It's rated R for violence

4 stars