SAYAnara Halloween!- Blood: The Last Vampire Simulwatch [31st October]

WMD

Railgun
To close out the spooky October simulwatches we have Blood: The Last Vampire.

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An exercise by Mamoru Oshii at Production IG to showcase new talent in the anime industry whereby they gave up and comers the chance to take the reins in all areas of production to produce something new and this 45min feature was the result!

IIRC Kanji Kamiyama, who went onto make Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex and Eden of the East wrote it but the character of Saya actually came from a story submitted by Junichi Fujisaki (who also went on to write on stand alone complex) and was inserted into Kenjis script and a new franchise was born!

We shall intend to watch this piece of anime history on Halloween itself but if you cant please watch afterwards and drop you thought in the thread anytime from Halloween onwards!

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"What do you mean you'll be watching late?!"
 

João Gomes

Thousand Master
Can't find this for sale anywhere (admittedly only looked real quick) - is everyone in possession of the dvd/blu ray or is anyone streaming?

I remember watching this as a kid and not finding it very fun, but that was when, wonder what I would think now!
 

WMD

Railgun
Can't find this for sale anywhere (admittedly only looked real quick) - is everyone in possession of the dvd/blu ray or is anyone streaming?

I remember watching this as a kid and not finding it very fun, but that was when, wonder what I would think now!
DVD is £4 on amazon

Blood - The Last Vampire [2000] Blood - The Last Vampire [2000] [DVD]: Amazon.co.uk: Yûki Kudô, Saemi Nakamura, Joe Romersa, Rebecca Forstadt, Stuart Robinson, Akira Koieyama, Tom Fahn, Fitz Houston, Steve Blum, Paul Carr, Dave Mallow, Hiroyuki Kitakubo, Yûki Kudô, Saemi Nakamura, Akira Sato, Mamoru Oshii, Mitsuhisa Ishikawa, Ryuzo Shirakawa, Yukio Nagasaki, Katsuya Terada, Kenji Kamiyama: DVD & Blu-ray
 
Oh man, why do I feel like Saya's gonna grab me by the face and pick me up off the ground after reading that opening post? 😅

Other than Kamiyama being a writer, I didn't actually know any of those facts about Blood, @WMD, so I've learned some new things about it already. 😯👍

Nice one.
 
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Vincentdante

Railgun
Heheh great title @WMD! Looking forward to finally watching this.

You should just come back with your thoughts on that thread whenever you can dude. Any insights you might have on the lore of the series in relation to the whole Nasuverse would be invaluable.
Sure can't hurt, I was all ready to lore dump the whole root of the world, counter force and the three shiki as well :p. If anyone would have been interested in my mad ramblings of course
 
Sure can't hurt, I was all ready to lore dump the whole root of the world, counter force and the three shiki as well :p. If anyone would have been interested in my mad ramblings of course
That was exactly one of the things that I was hoping for with the GoS simulwatch, lots of talk on the lore from anyone in know. I for one will definitely look forward to your ramblings then heh.
 

WMD

Railgun
Blood: The Last Vampire

I'd forgotten how good this was. Theres not a wasted frame in this film. The opening on the train is so chilling and stunningly animated. The use of light is especially effective. The monster transformations look great and creepy as all hell. The character designs in general were all very cool.

The film is especially effective at show dont tell and gets lore and exposition done visually without the need for the film to stop and explain everything. It helps make it so well paced. It just zips by!

I'd also forgotten the odd moments of humour sprinkled in. So of the nurses facial expressions were very funny.
 
Finally watched this filum, having somehow resisted the temptation by the posters twenty years previously and since. I do wish I'd watched it earlier, it is certainly beautifully animated and the use of lightning and mood really is excellent, and that is saying something coming off the back of our GoS simulwatch, which excelled in those exact departments.
The film is especially effective at show dont tell and gets lore and exposition done visually without the need for the film to stop and explain everything. It helps make it so well paced. It just zips by!
I thought so too on the pacing, as it all seemed spot on for the overall short story.
So of the nurses facial expressions were very funny.
That one scene with her eyes wide and jaw to the floor had me cracking up!

It also for me had a very Western arty horror movie aesthetic/feel to it, and I don't think that's due to the American base or characters (at least not on a conscious level).

Random thoughts:
  • Saya's face in her last scene was so much compassionate for the scowl she'd worn throughout the movie otherwise; was she in fact just being compassionate, or was it to keep the monster alive for research?
  • We're certainly only given a taste of the potential story here (was this movie followed up by a manga (or novel was it?) as Oshii had planned if I recall correctly? Or was Blood+ the heir to its set up?)
  • This is the only depiction of American forces happily showing a civilian a mugshot of an acquaintance in a photo labelled Vampire & dated over a century prior, with nary a thought to redacting either.
  • I need to get meself Blood+ somehow! I certainly enjoyed this and Blood-C enough to know I am very likely to be a fan of that very well rated series.
 

Professor Irony

CYBER FUNKER
Moderator
I’ve not seen Blood in a good number of years, but I always liked the OVA - I don’t think there’s a huge amount to it, but it’s great to look at (definitely does have a western vibe to it, maybe they had one eye on the overseas market?) and it does enough to suggest a much more realised world beyond what it shows us in its brief runtime. To me, it’s kind of the perfect b-movie.

Not to throw them under the bus, but the two sequel/spin-off anime series never appealed to me as much as this one did. I’d have much preferred if the subsequent shows had stuck closer to the visual style of the OVA, and retained the mid-century Cold War setting, as it’s very unusual for anime. The use of what appears to be blurred out stock footage of US troops in Vietnam during the end credits kind of suggests that was where the story would have been headed next and I’ve always been a bit disappointed that isn’t what they did with it (even though I think Blood+ does allude to the Vietnam war in flashbacks).

The OVA feels like a real achievement in terms of digital production too. You can spot a bit of CGI in use for things like buildings or furniture during more complicated tracking shots, but it’s used to fantastic effect, while still remaining subtle enough that the digital elements never call attention to themselves. While I’m not sure if this absolutely the first non 3D-CG anime to be fully produced without the use of traditional cel photography, as an early example, it’s streets ahead of what many other studios were doing at the time. It seems like a lot of creators struggled to adapt to using this new technology in the early 2000s, but Production I.G. nailed it straight out of the gate.
 

Lordhippos

Stand User
So I didn't realise it was Halloween yesterday and I also neglected to remember this was going on, therefore I am sorry for being a little late to the party, but it's only a day so I figure it should be OK!

I think for it's time this would have been a real technical marvel, a lot of stuff made in this era would really have aged badly compared to this, I still think this looks pretty damn good even now. Some slightly funky facial expressions aside, I think the film did a really good job of blending all of the elements together that it had at it's disposal.

This certainly would have been a good Halloween themed film to watch on the day with all of it's own Halloween things going on, but never mind I am not into Halloween that much anyway.

I am a sucker for some good backstory/lore/worldbuilding, and sadly I think this production missed the mark really on any of that. However with 45 minutes to run it rejected the idea of wasting any time, and instead we just had action sequences going from one into the next. I applaud the film for at least focusing on one area, it could have tried to do too much with too little time, which would have been worse.

On balance I think I would probably give it a 6/10 for the overall thing, it lacked a little in some areas I'd like to have seen more had the movie had another 45-60 minutes to tell us about things.

Some side-quest observations:

The sword she stole had a sign saying not for sale, but that doesn't mean stealing it is expressly forbidden.

This isn't the first vampire tree camper we've had lately eh @Geriatric hedgehog ? 🤣

She mentioned that anyone who saw the full form of the vampires had to be killed to the teacher/lady. But that would have included the same teacher she was talking to. I'd have been sweating a bit if I was her 😅
 

Vincentdante

Railgun
I totally meant to watch this yesterday but while waiting for the TV to be available I thought I would play Crusader Kings for about 30 mins. Then 30 mins later it was 3am somehow :p

So this was a good movie, it had some great animation, cinematography and was well directed. The plot was very straight forward though as it's really just a series of events at the end of the day. It hints at a few things which weren't explained like why Saya can't attack humans so it's clear the story is meant to continue.

Overall I enjoyed it, but it was mostly surface level story telling so I don't really have anything else to say.
 

Lordhippos

Stand User
I thought I would play Crusader Kings for about 30 mins. Then 30 mins later it was 3am somehow :p

Paradox games are like that! Are you playing 2 or 3?

The one I've played the most is EU4, which according to Steam, I have 3700 hours on 🤣

To be fair though EU4 has been out for a long time and I normally dip back in on the expansions.
 

Vincentdante

Railgun
Paradox games are like that! Are you playing 2 or 3?

The one I've played the most is EU4, which according to Steam, I have 3700 hours on 🤣

To be fair though EU4 has been out for a long time and I normally dip back in on the expansions.
I'm playing CK3.

I have become the king of Ireland and the goal is to have an Irish ruled United Kingdom lol. I invaded Northamptonshire as I had a claim to it but alas plans were foiled when the holy roman emperor decided to back England so I immediately withdrew. Then my son and heir was killed in another war which was started by his fiance some minor duchy in central europe, she turned out to be quite mad when she got any kind of power and declared war on a much bigger duchy and was immediately wiped out. So now my Grandson is set to become the next king of Ireland but is also the current vassal of this strange european ruler. It will be fun to see where that goes lol.

I actually bought EU4 on the recent steam sale. But after playing the tutorial I just wanted to get back on CK3 tbh lol.
 

Lordhippos

Stand User
I do enjoy CK and the antics you can get up to in it, I like how picking your life focus also gives you random events and things.
It's a lot of fun especially to play in Ireland and unite the counties.

EU4 you basically need the expansions to make it good, and then I think it has a higher barrier to entry than CK3 does in particular, but I love it all the same, and once you get going on it the game just becomes 2nd nature really. HOI 4 however I never really got on with.
 

D1tchd1gger

Baka Ranger
Can't add too much, being late to the Halloween party!

The story fairly zips along and whilst there's plenty of questions left the immediate story is pretty clear without much need of further explanation. Saya, the titular Last Vampire, kills people for some shady government types, but it's quickly revealed that it wasn't a person and then on to the next mission. **** goes down, Saya eventually wins the day. The end.

The art and animation mostly holds up and action is pretty good.
 
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