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Stick to being Selene

Richard Chittick

I’ll agree that this movie is loud, but I won’t agree that it deserves anywhere close to four stars.

All the mixed-baggage “Van Helsing” carries is disastrous, and I’m not saying that just to contradict Kimberly.

While Kate Beckinsale steadily typecasts herself as an action actress who only stars in movies featuring both werewolves and vampires, I say stick to the ones that are exclusively gorefests.

For that matter, I’m happy to report that “Underworld 2” is currently in production, and Beckinsale is reprising her role as Selene in it.

I’m not going to peg “Van Helsing” as worthless or anything, but it isn’t very good.

The special effects seem tired and dull and the spins they put on classic stories like Frankenstein and Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde seem contrived.

The comedic elements littered through the movie are getting “Van Helsing” compared to the “Mummy” movies in a few reviews, even though the “Mummy” movies were actually funny.

This movie has nothing in common with the “Mummy” movies and is instead a Transylvanian translation of “XXX.”

You know what’s going to happen long before it happens, and if you can buy into the special effects and action, you just go along with it.

I liked “XXX,” except for maybe the avalanche scene where Xander Cage outruns an avalanche and then survives it by grabbing onto a fairly flimsy antenna tower that doesn’t collapse when the building next to the tower does.

“Van Helsing” is nothing but the avalanche scene. A lot of people and things are falling or flying and a lot of digital animation enhances the way it all looks.

Lead characters Gabriel Van Helsing (Hugh Jackman) and Anna Valerious (Beckinsale) survive stupid, harsh falls that would pulverize the average person’s spleen into oblivion.

And every single rope swing the various characters find themselves on leads to a safe landing, even if it’s through a two-story-tall stain glassed window.

There are some silly twists thrown in to spice up the relationship between Count Dracula and Gabriel Van Helsing, but some of the most crucial aspects of those twists are never explained.

I can’t go into any greater detail, because I’ll give away the ending and I tend to get hate mail when I do that.


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