Tuesday, 2 June 2009

Blood : The Last Vampire.

Since the live action version is on its way to theatrical release shortly which stars Korean popular actress Jeon Ji-hyun (전지현) of the hit series My Sassy Girl, as Saya, the protagonist, I have forgotten how the original anime is like, so I decided to re-watch it today. Released back in 2000, directed by Hiroyuki Kitakubo and produced by Production I.G., the anime version is popular for breaking new ground by being filmed almost entirely in English, with Japanese subtitles. Also, rather than the conventional method of using animation cels, the entire film is completely digital and animated with CGI. It is also irritatingly dark as it uses very low light settings. On first watch, I thought someone adjusted the setting of TV. The story took place at the Yokota Air Base, Fussa, few months before the Vietnam War. Saya is a pre-adolescent looking vampire who works for David, an agent from Red Shield Organisation which objective seems to be hunting down vampire beings. It is hinted that Saya is at least more than hundred years old and she is one of the last remaining original group of vampires. Her objective is to hunt down the Chiropterans, another type/group of vampires which could change their physical forms and need to drink human bloods for survival. The movie did not reveal whether Saya needs to drink blood too but she appears to be immune to sunlight. The Chiropterans infiltrate the societies by resuming human forms, whether as a child or adult but are gruesomely bat-like in their original appearance. Both Saya and the Chiropterans possess superhuman physical attributes. In order to kill a Chiropteran, since it is capable of recovering from any wound very quickly, Saya has to use a katana and slash them with a single blow, in order to instantaneously cause copious amount of blood lost to ensure instant death. After dispatching one at a train station, David informs Saya that he has received instruction for both of them to investigate Yokota High School located at the air base after a series of death due to apparent suicides. David needs to ensure their destruction before hibernation. Together with a terrified nurse, Mahiko Amano, Saya begins to battle not only two Chiropterans as originally presumed but three as another which disguised as a hostess bar mama-san joins them in the battle at the High School, which incidentally is having a Halloween Party. In the end, Saya managed to kill all but the conclusion is open ended as Saya is shown dripping some blood of her own onto the final, dying Chiropteran, I am not sure up to now what that suppose to mean. Amano survives the entire ordeal but no one believes her as all records and evidences have been removed. As the radio announces that the Vietnamese Liberation Front Army has attacked the American Blake base and all Yokota base personnel are ordered to fly to Don Hoi immediately, Makiho returns to her office, wondering to herself whether Saya is still around and still fighting demons, "just as we humans continue to kill each other."

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