Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust - Reviews

VivisQueen's avatar
Jan 22, 2008


The same people who brought you brought us Ninja ScrollVampire Hunter D: Bloodlust a few years later - and it's obvious. On the plus side, this means visual delights abound; on the minus side, the movie is in essence a recycled idea. You'll get the same sort of pacing, same sort of structure to Ninja Scroll, just a darker tone and upgraded graphics. However, this doesn't destroy the overall entertainment value of the movie, because what it does, just like its predecessor, is to keep things simple and clean. It doesn't delve too deep - after all, the point is to rack up that death toll like nobody's business - but it provides just enough genuine surprises in the plot and a non-cliché ending to keep our brains as well as our adrenaline glands working.

This is the show Devil May Cry so desperately tried and failed to be, with impossible stunts like bikes riding up the side of a wall, a vampire's cape deflecting massive shells, and kick-arse females in tight outfits. The movie packs enough into a short space of time so that, despite the very average movement of the plot, it never gets mind-numbing. Fast paced and with glorious set pieces, there really isn't much not to like - just not much to positively admire either


You can't tell this was made in 2000, because, almost a decade on, it still rivals most of the anime being churned out now. The colours are clear and crisp with plenty of detail to be found in shading and tones and, er, the gore - yes, definitely watch out for the gore. Movements outside of fights were as best as Bloodlust's era could allow, which meant it looked great even by today's standards. Whilst the action sequences were highly inventive, the primary use of cuts to give an impression of speed meant you didn't actually get to see characters move as such during fights. Instead, I would say the main visual treats were the stylish imagery and clever camera angles dotted throughout. For example, D silhouetted against the moon atop a hill is a gorgeous image; I wouldn't mind that as a wall scroll in the least. In terms of animation, Bloodlust is simply bold and beautiful.


I have only watched the English dub, and so far haven't felt need to switch to the Japanese (which is rare on my part). The American voice acting suffered from pacing issues here and there as per usual, and D sounded like Keanu Reeves on sleeping pills. Other than that, the voice actors did a decent job. Leila intrigued me the most with her husky tone and she probably had the best lines in the entire show; Meier Link - surprise, surprise! - had a seductive British voice. The soundtrack, with its high strings and low bass line and was always appropriately creepy, especially in the opening sequence where it helped set an excellent tone.


None of the characters, not even D are actually interesting or memorable. Leila Marcus has the skin-tight outfit and a very distinctive American voice going for her, Borgoff Marcus is just big and butch, Meier Link is a vampire with a cape and a posh accent, and, when it comes to blandness, D gives Neo from The Matrix a run for his money. Bloodlust's central character is a walking cape whose sole purpose in life is to do the ‘lone wolf' routine.

So why did the characters still work? Because they suited the story to a tee. Just as with the plot, they were a means to an end, a way of giving the audience a slick show that entertained without shaking up our ideas of the world in any way. I presume the creators figured that too much character development would cost them the excellent pace they had established, and I am bound to agree. Characterisation was limited to making the cast feel sufficiently real, but it was easy to assume what drove most of them just by looking at them.


Everything in this movie is as good as it needs to be to make this film decent. Bloodlust is a must for action junkies and highly unlikely to disappoint those looking for a break from the usual brain food. Think of it as a short version of Claymore, only with a minimally-characterised cast and better looking fights. Not to mention that, with animation like that, Bloodlust is not going to age anytime soon.

6.5/10 story
8.5/10 animation
7/10 sound
6.5/10 characters
7.5/10 overall
PhdInCartoons's avatar
Mar 13, 2013


Pretty boring story, but you won’t notice. If you actually sit down to think about what goes on it isn't that good. You will not be paying attention to the story line though. It looks very good. 



Excellent, a visual feast. By far the best thing about this film. It feels very crisp and there are some really nice character designs. The action sequences are also handled very well. 



The music is very appropriate to the tone of the film, and adds to the atmosphere that the rest of the production is working towards. The dub is ok, its is not a translation so you do not get phrases which make no sense or there isn't too much lost in the way of cultural exchange either



Full of stereotypes. The characters are all very thin and there is not much by the way of a surprise. Once the characters are introduced you immediately get a grasp of who they are what they are going to do or even say. The rest of the film is let down by its performance here. 



A decent watch. I would recommend this to any fan of the vampire/mild-horror genre. It is very good to look at and there is enough storyline to keeep you awake. Entertaining. 

6/10 story
9/10 animation
7/10 sound
4/10 characters
6.5/10 overall
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ADOS1975's avatar
Mar 26, 2022

Leaps and bounds ahead of its predecessor, 1985's Vampire Hunter D!  This sequel sees a bigger budget, better production, cleaner character designs, a grander musical score and superb animation and visual effects.  The plot is very action packed and keeps the viewer more than entertained, engrossed and attentive right through the entirety of its 1 hour 41 minute run.  One plot pitfall, however, is that of the attraction of Meier to Charlotte... or is it Charlotte who is attracted to Meier?  This matter is never resolved throughout the entirety of the film and we never learn exactly why or how this attraction exists in the first place.  A few other minor shortcomings of this film are its sound quality and character design.  While the movie's sound effects can be deafening, its spoken dialogue is undeniably muted in comparison.  Viewers watching this movie on a home system will most likely find themselves adjusting the volume many times throughout the movie's run.  And, while this rendition's characters are much more clean, polished and proportionate than the 1985 version, some of the characters, chiefly Meier and Charlotte, also suffer from the same flaws (disproportion and unattractiveness) as the previous incarnation.  All in all, Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust is a must see for any Anime/Manga, vampire fans and comes highly recommended by this viewer.

p.s. I LOVE the red and black color scheme of Carmilla's castle!

9/10 story
10/10 animation
5/10 sound
9/10 characters
9.5/10 overall
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Pyrehydra's avatar
Jul 5, 2018

Now I'm not exactly the biggest fan of this type of movie, but it was overall decent. The animation was probably the best thing about it with a decent soundtrack. The story was somewhat cliché and the most interesting about it were the villains they killed off early. Decent but nothing to brag about. Would make an okay movie to watch with friends. 

7/10 story
6/10 animation
7/10 sound
5/10 characters
6.5/10 overall
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jugemxjugem's avatar
Mar 16, 2013

Being a huge vampire (and mythology in general) fan this was a must see for me. Naturally that meant going into this movie I was skeptical due to my past experiences with vampire themed anime and must see titles (most were a huge let down). But this movie surprised me and I got so much more out of it that I expected.

As the title suggests the story follows a vampire hunter named D hired by a desperate family to bring back their daughter Charlotte who was kidnapped by a vampire named Maier. The family also hired a group of bounty hunters the Markus Brothers, who oddly enough have a female member named Leila and she becomes one of the main characters in this story. Early in the movie there’s a scene where D and Maier fight and Charlotte screams her kidnappers name worryingly . Could that mean she really loves him??????

The movie is set in a post-apocalyptic Earth. The technology is a bit uneven , weapons aren’t as developed as other stuff like binoculars , which is weird since nothing gets as much money and improvements as military does in our world. Seems like horses are the only animals that survived and they are also been part artificial.

I saw the movie as much more than your average let’s kill Dracula kind of movie. It has a lot of layers. The main theme is differences and how those differences affect our lives . D is a dhampir half-vampire, half-human. That caused his life to be extremely difficult. Both sides cast him out and don’t want anything to do with him no matter how many good things he has done in the past humans still despise his appearance.  Another theme the movie handles in the form of Leila’s life is dealing with traumas caused by someone who’s a difference race, religion or nationality. Being a person who saw war and am living in a place where people still have a lot of stereotypes towards foreigners or neibor  countries  took  Leila’s journey very personally . On top of all that comes forbidden love that combines both those themes.

The way this movie is drawn and animated just blow me away. Growing up I played a lot of Castlevania and  Ayami Kojima is one of my favorite artists ever and her style has a lot of similarities with the way this movie looks. The musical score of the movie is decent to good, it gets better towards the end and helps increase the enjoyment of the best scenes in the movie.

 The characters in the movie aren’t equally developed. Leila  , D and Maier get personified more than the rest and you can develop opinions on them , even care for them at some point. Rest of the cast is there to fulfill a certain role in the plot , the only exception is perhaps D’s parasite who had me laughing a few times. Another let down were a few fighting scenes that didn’t look as great or end oddly..

?/10 story
?/10 animation
?/10 sound
?/10 characters
9/10 overall
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