Highlander: The Search for Vengeance (2007)

Yoshiaki Kawajiri directed some of my favorite animes, Ninja Scroll, Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust and Wicked City. This one sadly doesn’t make the cut. This is not to say that it hasn’t some qualities, like excellent animation, some really inventive action scenes (the flashback with the fight on the airplane for example), but in the end it does feel like just another failed attempt to expand the Highlander mythos.

The first and biggest mistake of the movie is to connect the main character to the clan of the McClouds, which just makes you wonder how many of the extremely rare immortals just happen to be around them. There have been enough interesting cultures invaded by the Romans that could have provided the background for the main character, but utilizing the Scotts again is quite unimaginative.

The second thing that doesn’t work is the main character, who is just not very appealing, something which even the movie acknowledges. Trying to get revenge for nearly two thousand years seems kind of stupid and obsessive, even if someone killed your loved ones. At least his opponent tried, in his own megalomaniac ways, to be constructive.

The whole story takes place in a dystopian city in an post-apocalyptic landscape (I find these generic post-apocalyptic settings quite tiring and unimaginative), with flashbacks revealing the backstory of the two immortals and their battles through time. The movie isn’t really awful, just not very good either, especially considering the potential.

At times it looks like pieces of previous movies from director Yoshiaki Kawajiri have been hybridized with elements from Highlander movies, which makes it look good when you look at the singular pieces. Problem is, they don’t form a cohesive, satisfying whole, merely a watchable movie of average quality.