See, the really big competition in comic book adaptations at that time were the -- cough cough -- DC Comics incarnations of Batman Forever (1995) and Batman & Robin (1997) flicks in which director Joel Schumacher had largely taken a flamethrower to the universe and began dismantling any goodwill right-minded folks might have for what made a good comic book flick. While Batman Forever isn't all that bad, it certainly put the DC Cinematic Universe in a curious place ... but the God-awful Batman & Robin remains about a big a theatrical disappointment as was humanly possible at that time. Big names. Big ideas. All delivered with camp, pomp, and circumstance befitting 80's era soft-core porn. And it came from a major motion picture studio. Ouch.
But Blade kinda/sorta served to right the narrative ship.
With a script from David S. Goyer, director Stephen Norrington delivered a dark, noirish, adult comic book tale ... part Fantasy, part Horror, but all Snipes. And that would be Wesley Snipes, who brough the famed daywalker to life in a world that clearly needed an ass-whooping. Kris Kristofferson filled in the shoes of 'Whistler,' a kinda/sorta mentor to this new aged Man In Black. And Stephen Dorff, Udo Kier, and Donal Logue rounded out the cast in separately villainous roles.
Here's the plot summary as provided by IMDB.com:
"In a world where vampires walk the earth, Blade has a goal. His goal is to rid the world of all vampire evil. When Blade witnesses a vampire bite Dr. Karen Jenson, he fights away the beast and takes Jenson back to his hideout. Here, alongside Abraham Whistler, Blade attempts to help heal Jenson. The vampire Quinn who was attacked by Blade, reports back to his master Deacon Frost, who is planning a huge surprise for the human population."
At the 1999 Saturn Awards (sponsored by the Academy Of Science Fiction, Fantasy, And Horror Films), Blade scored two nominations: 'Best Horror Film' and 'Best Make-Up.' Though it failed to win top honors there, actor Udo Kier took home a trophy in the category of 'Best Supporting Actor' from the 1999 Fangoria Chainsaw Awards ... so that's got to count for something. Furthermore, actor Stephen Dorff won the title of 'Best Villain' at the 1999 MTV Movie + TV Awards, another nod that Marvel and director Norrington had certainly gotten something right on the screen.
As always, thanks for reading ... and live long and prosper!