Rise: Blood Hunter


Rating 3

Written and Directed by Sebastian Gutierrez

Starring Lucy Liu, Michael Chiklis, James D’Arcy, Carla Gugino, Margo Harshman, Cameron Richardson, Marilyn Manson and Robert Forster

Sadie Blake (Lucy Liu), a young newspaper reporter, is raped and murdered when investigating the activities of a secretive cult, but wakes in the morgue to discover that she is now a vampire-like creature, neither dead nor alive and craving human blood. Discovering that she cannot die by any normal means, she sets out on a quest to kill those responsible. In doing so, she crosses paths with Clyde Rawlins (Michael Chiklis), an alcoholic police detective who is pursuing an obsessive investigation into the murder of his teenage daughter.

‘Rise: Blood Hunter’ gets off to a very bad start. Following a pointless cameo appearance by Robert Forster, we are treated to some truly cringe worthy soft-core “girl-on-girl” action involving Lucy Liu and Cameron Richardson. It is wholly gratuitous and serves no purpose whatsoever, other than providing a bit of cheap titillation for the boys. I feared the worst, but with that nonsense out of the way, the film settled down and became surprisingly effective.

The influences are blatant – ‘Blade’, the Quentin Tarantino/Robert Rodriguez school of filmmaking. There is nothing new here, but it moves along briskly and the two leads are rather good. I have not particularly liked Lucy Liu in anything I have seen her in previously, so it was a pleasant surprise to find that I enjoyed her performance. I liked Michael Chiklis in ‘The Fantastic Four’ and he is equally as likeable here.

The film has a 36% rotten rating at Rotten Tomatoes from 14 reviews. Its box office gross was under $3 million, of which just $114,000 was grossed during its limited theatrical release in America. Writer-director Sebastian Gutierrez also wrote the screenplays for ‘Gothika’, ‘Snakes on a Plane’ and the Hollywood remake of ‘The Eye’.
It was produced by Sam Raimi's Gost House Pictures.

Review posted 28 December 2008


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