Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Hellsing Ultimate Vol 4|
Genres: Action & Adventure, Horror, Anime & Manga, Animation
Sir Integra reluctantly invites Maxwell from the Vatican?s Iscariot Division to a Roundtable conference with the Queen. Integra desperately needs to collect any information regarding the Millennium, the remnants of a secre... more »
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"Who is it that guarantees your God's sanity?"
trashcanman | Hanford, CA United States | 10/01/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The fourth chapter of the anime at the very top of my current "drooling in anticipation of every release" title is finally here and it delivers. After some truly obnoxious and distracting humor took the black sails out the last volume, I'm happy to say that that this one is relatively goof-free, though not perfect. If you've ever thought that the characters of Hellsing are not the strong point, you are about to be schooled. While there is no shortage of gore and murderously exciting (though brief) action scenes, this chapter chooses to expand the story,raise the tension, and introduce a cavalcade of new warriors into the ring. The villains get their due this time around. In fact, the last ten minutes is nearly entirely devoted to a spectacularly mad speech given by the Millennium organization's leader, The Major; a man Alucard put down half a century ago during WWII. Millennium's goal is chaos. Bringing the world to it's knees starting with Britain by realizing the Third Reich's plan of a vampire army. "Hellsing Ultimate: Volume 4" gives us the declaration of war, and it's opening skirmish with Great Britain's defenders from the supernatural, the Hellsing organization.
The film opens with Alucard phoning Integra. Not to say hi, mind you, but to continue his taunting of his master about the human bloodbath she ordered in Volume 3. But it turns out that there is one human that the No Life King respects: the Queen herself, who he meets not for the first time at a roundtable conference including the Vatican's hated Iscariot organization. Yes, Father Anderson is in this installment as well. Never a bad thing. The meeting is interrupted by a messenger from Millennium. Now if there is one thing I have never, ever thought it is "Hellsing needs more catgirls". Sure this particular catgirl is a boy, but seeing that the character model is essentially Seres Victoria with cat ears, I'm calling it what it is. Alucard's reaction to said catgirl: blowing it's fu#*ing head off. Have I mentioned that that vampire is my favorite animated character of all time by about a mile? The Major describes him best: "immortal, invincible, undefeated , and almighty". He forgot "wicked cool and pure evil", but he is plotting to kill the guy so you expect him to omit a few praises. In Volume 4, the head vamp adds kamikaze pilot and possessor of God-like evil power to his resume. That's a good day for most any creature of the night.
My favorite thing about Volume 4 is the character on the cover. A nazi vampire girl who calls herself Rip Van Winkle, possessing a joyous personality and a love of singing triumphant old-time war songs. Her weapon of choice is an old-school single-shot musket. Why use a single-shot weapon? One is all she needs to destroy an army. She can guide the bullet's flight to take out as many targets as she wishes or hit the same target repeatedly, shredding even fighter jets to bits. But there is one thing she can't do; and that thing is keep her composure in the presence of the baddest vamp on the planet. Pity. I really loved that character and wished for better from her. But hey, we can plainly see that The Major has an entire freak show of brilliant-looking characters at his back so I expect future volumes to be insanely action-packed. Also of note is an Integra/Seres scene that seems to have come from a fanboy doujinshi. Not complaining, just observing.
As cool as this is, the pacing at the end is quite atrocious for such a short film. While this is the longest Hellsing OVA yet at around 55 minutes, when the last 15 or so consist of only a villain's speech and a slow supernatural torture scene that borders on rape than you imagine much more could have been done. This is pretty much a symptom of the main complaint which is pretty much the same complaint I would level at every volume of "Hellsing Ultimate". IT'S TOO DAMN SHORT! The wait for these is torture for me and the short length of each story keeps me perpetually frustrated that each DVD ends right when it's reaching critical mass. It keeps me lusting for more of my favorite ongoing anime, but it annoys me as well.
Well that's the skinny on "Hellsing Ultimate: Volume 4". It fails to reach the heights of the amazing Volume 2, but it isn't far off either. As far as the animated vampire-kills-nazis action/horror genre goes it won't get much better than this. If you haven't seen any of the Ultimate series than you have done yourself a disservice. These OVA's mostly kick the snot out the television series. If you don't wish to experience the same story as the original anime, start with Volume 3 where the action deviates from the established anime story and enjoy what is a far superior continuation of the first half of the television show's story, which got a little stale after the halfway point. Here's to a quick release for Volume 5!
4 1/2 stars, rounded down for an underperforming cover character. (sniff)"