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Vampire Hunter D (1993)

Art House & International and Horror movie directed by Carl Macek and Toyoo Ashida

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Vampire hunting in the distant future is kinda old fashioned

  • Jan 24, 2006
Pros: See what D faced before Bloodlust

Cons: Erm...choppy editing...or something

The Bottom Line: ...Who names their kid Doris anyway?

Plot Details: This opinion reveals minor details about the movie's plot.

People seem to get confused when one mentions Vampire Hunter D because if they’ve heard of it, chances are they’ve heard of the second one, Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust. This, however, is Bloodlust’s predecessor – the movie that gave D the Dunpeal vampire hunter life.

It’s dark. Quiet… The only light from the moon and stars. Doris, a young girl who is out hunting down a few demons, strays too far and finds herself in the domain of a very old vampire named Count Magnus Lee. Bad mistake.

Not too long afterwards, she meets D, a half human, half vampire who is traveling along minding his own business. However, D is also a vampire hunter – very lucky for poor Doris, who’s been bitten by Magnus and is now to become his bride (as the usual story goes for us young women). She hires D to kill Magnus. It sounds simple enough here, except that Magnus’s castle is filled with freaky demons, Magnus’s daughter Lamika would like nothing more than to kill Doris, and Magnus himself has a couple of tricks up his sleeve when it comes to taking out D for good.

So who will live? Who will die? A few might take you for a loop – when it comes to these questions, no one is spared. But if D is only half vampire, how the heck is supposed to kill a full vampire who’s been around for thousands of years?

Ok, now this movie is a straight out 3 star movie. The animation was not that good, but I am able to overlook that fairly easily given when this was made (way back when, folks), so it looks a lot like it should for that time period – even though I thought that Lamika and Doris were both ugly, Doris looked slightly better with her hair down. Plot? The plot was okay. I mean, to me right now there’s really nothing new about a vampire wanting a bride, and what with the old Dracula tale, I don’t think it was all that new when this was made. What made it more unique were the characters. D especially with the whole look he had going on, and both he and Lamika are vampire offspring, which usually doesn’t happen (seeing as vampires are dead and all).

So what sucked? Oh good gravy – the music! I don’t know if they kept the music from the Japanese version on the English dub, and even if that’s the case, it’s still horrible. It’s so anti-climactic all the time – even in places where it needed to be dramatic. The music drove me nuts and needed serious replacement. Also, the pacing of this movie was pretty bad. It was really hard to pinpoint just what the deal was because it’s over an hour long, and was long enough to have things happen just the way they needed to, but there were just some odd bits in there… It was choppy. It jumped in the ways of time. It just seemed really uneven so that for it’s length, it seemed like it was moving way too fast. And yet as a whole, I suppose because of the lack of action for the most part, it seemed amazingly slow. It’s got to be the weirdest time warp I’ve ever felt while watching a movie.

Voice actors? Sadly, I had the dub, and while most of them were fairly good, D’s voice drove me nuts. I kept thinking of Lion-O from Thundercats. Having seen Bloodlust I wondered what D would be like here. I wasn’t happy. In Bloodlust he was more emotionless, monotone, but it really worked (I mean, look at the guy). Here he sounded, well, normal. And D is obviously far from normal. Though his actions in the movie itself denoted a more emotional side of D, his voice still didn’t work well with it.

There is some nudity and swearing, and buckets of blood and decapitation (entrails, brains exploding, things getting sliced completely in half, you name it), so don’t let kids watch this movie. It’s really not up their alley. At all. You, older and more mature as you are, can. It’s at least worth it to see D in his early years.


Oh, and no – we still don’t get to find out just where that weird face in D’s left hand came from, though it poses some interesting scenes in the movie. And it’s still a smart mouth (no pun intended).

Check out the newer (and better) Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust


Video Occasion: Good for a Rainy Day

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More Vampire Hunter D (1993) reviews
review by . October 25, 2010
posted in ASIANatomy
      VAMPIRE HUNTER D      I have been watching anime since I can remember or at least since I was able to get my hands on it many moons ago. This one in particular is one of my favorites of all time and regardless of what any one tells me this will forever be in my one of the best ever. I know that some will say that I like this film just because it is older and is widely considered a classic while others will say that I should not rate it so high because …
Quick Tip by . October 25, 2010
posted in ASIANatomy
I love this film, one of my all time favorites.
review by . August 09, 2003
posted in Movie Hype
Funny how the cover has nothign to do with the feeling of the movie. I know it was done like 18 years ago, but the color scheme is aqua,pink,navy,black,white, etc very dull, the characters look like they have been drawn by a kindergarden class, and the story isn't that interesting, honestly i got through half of it, and turned it off. I couldnt even finish the movie!   Watching this, all i could recomend is sticking to cheesy cartoons on tv, because they are highly more superiour to this. …
review by . April 14, 2002
As the movie opens, we find the young Doris running through the goth night, in between the sage. She raises her rifle and spurts hot rounds into the neck and head of a fierce night creature. The monster falls squirting streams of blood into the night air, as Doris' horse appears. With only half of its remaining head, the creature grabs the horse in the throat and begins tearing. Doris fires enraged shots, wildly destroying the remnants. Behind her, appearing from no where another night creature …
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Nicole ()
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Age: 27 Currently: Freelancing my butt off and querying my other novel, Blood for Wolves. Who likes seriously factured fairy tales? =D      Like books? Then take it from a real, live … more
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About this movie


D, a haunted half-human, half-vampire warrior, wanders the countryside of a feudalistic future, hunting his own kind while battling his own evil nature. Like a rogue samurai, the silent, solitary hero wanders into a small hamlet terrorized by the all-powerful Count, a monstrous vampire lord, and his demonic minions from a castle that casts a long shadow over the countryside. The Count has claimed the human Doris (who wields a mean cutlass herself) as his bride. D becomes her protector and--when she's captured by the Count's shape-shifting minions--her savior. Designed in slashes and sharp, angular images and directed with abrupt explosions of lightning-fast action,Vampire Hunter Dis violent and bloody in the mode of a samurai adventure. The sleek D is appropriately dark and quiet, cutting a mysterious figure, while the Count is a veritable demon of a vampire, a supernaturally powerful monster whose appetites know no bounds. The undercurrent of sexuality never spills over into the sadistic vein of so many "adults only" thrillers, but it is recommended for mature audiences.

The DVD features both English and Japanese language soundtracks with optional English subtitles. It also has a documentary featurette, deleted footage, and an artwork gallery by Amano among its supplements. --Sean Axmaker

Based on the novel D-YOUSATSUKOU by Hideyuki Kikuchi, VAMPIRE HUNTER D follows the exploits of the mysterious vampire hunter known only as D. Half vampire himself (Count...

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Genre: Action, Animation, Horror
DVD Release Date: October 17, 2000
Runtime: 80 minutes
Studio: Urban Vision
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