Blood Hunters: Rise of the Hybrids (2019)

Posted in Reviews by - April 02, 2020
Blood Hunters: Rise of the Hybrids (2019)

A monster-martial arts mash-up from Vincent Soberano based on the story of the evil ‘Aswang’ spirits from Filipino folklore. For a 70-minute movie, you get your money’s worth: its packed with stabby, slicey vampire-slaying, with Soberano using a well-worn apocalyptic premise to showcase some exemplary, weapons-based Filipino martial arts sequences. The back-story feels slightly superfluous; something about the Aswang possessing magical blood which infiltrates the human gene pool, creating a hybrid army led by Naga (Temujin Shirzada), who goes full-on crazy and needs to be taught a lesson. The final assault on the Aswang lair takes up a huge part of the run-time and is filmed in an intimate and realistic way, taking visual and narrative cues from films like The Raid and Blade as well as comic books, featuring some neat graphical asides which act as a scene-setting device. It remains exciting and engaging because of its cast of martial arts experts, who each get their moment to go on the rampage; fighters like Sarah Chang, Monsour del Rosario, Ian Ignacio and Levi Ignacio, plus the UK’s very own Mayling Ng, who swings by for a brief throw-down with Chang.

AKA: Blood Hunters.

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Editor and creator of Kung Fu Movie Guide and the host of the Kung Fu Movie Guide Podcast. I live behind a keyboard in London, UK.

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