Van Helsing

Not recommended. I liked the idea of this movie, that Van Helsing, the infamous vampire hunter from the novel Dracula, was actually a monster hunter who tracked down vampires, werewolves and monsters of all sorts. But the execution was just a motley concoction of absurd action sequences and rambling expositional details. It seemed that there were so many special rules in this world that had to be explained, that it bogged the story down. Before every action sequence we are treated to quickly spoken dialogue by an indigent who explains all the special rules so we can make sense of the behavior that is about to follow. When Van Helsing tries to get the Frankenstein monster out of Transilvania because he is the key to Dracula’s diabolical plan, we are told that he used Transilvania horses on the carriage because they are the fastest on earth and can outrun werewolves. We hear this because we have seen how easily the Wolfman runs, jumps, and catches people. But then the vampires and Wolfman catch up with them halfway anyway! Whatever. One interesting twist was that the Frankenstein monster turned out to be very human, indeed humane. They show him having read a Bible and he quotes the 23rd Psalm when captured by the vampires for their elaborate plan. We see that he has a faith relationship to God, which makes us very sympathetic toward the monster. Unfortunately, this idea is never explored which wasted the potential transcendence of the story. It was all rather silly.

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