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Van Helsing - The London Assignment (Animated) (2004)

Hugh Jackman , Robbie Coltrane , Sharon Bridgeman  |  PG-13 |  DVD
3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (42 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Hugh Jackman, Robbie Coltrane, Alun Armstrong, David Wenham
  • Directors: Sharon Bridgeman
  • Format: AC-3, Anamorphic, Animated, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, Dubbed, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: Spanish, French
  • Dubbed: French, Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG-13 (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: Universal Studios
  • DVD Release Date: May 11, 2004
  • Run Time: 33 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (42 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0001CNRNY
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #111,170 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Van Helsing - The London Assignment (Animated)" on IMDb

Special Features

  • Van Helsing "Behind the Screams"
  • Animatic to Animation
  • An Interview with Hugh Jackman
  • The Making of the Van Helsing Game

  • Editorial Reviews

    Product Description

    On the winding and fog-enshrouded streets of London, the sinister being known only as Mr. Hyde terrorizes the city in a haunting spree of mayhem and murder. With the populace in a panic, the legendary monster hunter Van Helsing arrives in London on a mission to track down and capture the elusive Mr. Hyde. Starring Hugh Jackman as the voice of Van Helsing, this original animated film will thrill you with cutting edge visuals and non-stop adventure. Experience a Van Helsing adventure that takes place before the events of the blockbuster film!

    Van Helsing: The London Assignment is a wild and clever animated prequel, slightly more than a half-hour, to the live-action hit film about 19th-century monster hunter Dr. Gabriel Van Helsing. Set just before actor Hugh Jackman's dark hero heads off for battle with Count Dracula in Eastern Europe, The London Assignment finds Van Helsing attempting to stop Dr. Jekyll, and the latter's terrifying associate, Mr. Hyde, from their bizarre and bloody quest to turn septuagenarian Queen Victoria into a lovelorn girl again. While the widescreen artistry is often brutal, it is also breathtaking, especially in a fantastic chase sequence involving train cars. Besides Jackman, several actors from the feature lend voices to their cartoon counterparts, including Robbie Coltrane (as Hyde), Alun Armstrong (as Cardinal Jinette), and David Wenhman (as sidekick Carl). Special features include an incisive interview with Jackman about his character. --Tom Keogh

    Customer Reviews

    Most Helpful Customer Reviews
    11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars Typical of genre but good... November 25, 2004
    Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
    Reminds me a lot of just about all superhero cartoons. Interesting mixture of American animation and Japanese coloring and pencils, enhanced with computer animation (very cool!). The story is a little stretched, and doesn't make much sense (concerning the reason Hyde would want to make the queen younger; hello, he's still an old fart headed to a grave), but it held my interest and was nicely traditional but original.

    The dialogue is usually pretty clever, even Hyde gets in a few funny lines.

    The action is refreshingly American, meaning no stupid "action lines" in the background, or still action. Using Robbie Coltrane and Hugh Jackman (not to mention Dave Wenham) as primary voices added star power, and Jackman does a good job (you can feel his voice and personality overtake the animated Van Helsing).

    The special features (including a making of the game featurette, which shows them converting the movie story to the game, and some sweet action scenes; a making of the movie featurette, which is good enough to be included on the motion picture itself, even if Josie Moran is extremely irratating; the animatics can only be appreciated by animators themselves). The interviews with Hugh Jackman are a nice insight into the character of Van Helsing, as well as Jackman himself. Interesting stuff, even if a little "fluffy", as one reviewer put it.

    Overall, worth at least a rental (I bought it). A valuable addition to your collection of Van Helsing items, and fun to watch (over and over again in my case; 4 times in the rental period).
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    10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
    3.0 out of 5 stars Surprisingly Good July 6, 2004
    By Leanna
    Being a Hugh Jackman fan and having only recently heard about "The London Assignment," the short animated prequel to the film "Van Helsing," I decided to see what it was like. I must say that I was pleasantly surprised. The animation was better than I expected and much easier to watch than the animation in some of the segments of "The Animatrix." I also was intrigued by the story of Van Helsing's struggle against Mr. Hyde. It gave much needed background and meaning to the Paris chase sequence of the film and introduced viewers to Van Helsing's connection to Carl. I really wish that I had seen "The London Assignment" before I saw "Van Helsing" in theaters. However, the most enjoyable aspect of "The London Assignment" was the fact that the principal actors (Jackman, David Wenham, Robbie Coltrane) lent their voices to their respective characters. The dialogue was similar to that in the movie, especially between Van Helsing and Carl. :-)
    Also worth mentioning are the bonus features on the disc. There is a fairly good making-of documentary that is approximately thirty minutes long. It has plenty of snippets of cast/crew interviews. There is a *very* brief (as in three-four minutes:-() interview of Hugh Jackman as well as another short documentary about the making of the "Van Helsing" video game. The only truly "London Assignment"-related bonus feature contrasts the early storyboard sketches with the final product.
    Bottom Line: Entertaining for Hugh Jackman fans and "Van Helsing" fans. Definitely worth renting at least once, but I wouldn't go out of my way to buy it (well, not yet at least;-)).
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    10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
    2.0 out of 5 stars Better bonus features then features. May 11, 2004
    This is a 30 minute cartoon explaining why the movie "Van Helsing" begins in Paris with Van Helsing fighting Mr. Hyde. There is no need to go any deeper into the plot. What's worse than the plot is the animation, which is flat and looks cheep. It's so bad that the computer animated components stick out very badly in some of the scenes and clash with the backgrounds. If you are expecting quality along the lines of The Animatrix or HBO's Spawn series, lower your standards a bit. You will be less disappointed if you are expecting the quality of an after school special. The actors who play Van Helsing and Carl provide the voices for their animated counterparts which prevents the cartoon from being a complete waste of time. However, this was not directed by Stephen Sommers, but by former a story board artist, Sharon Bridgeman and it shows. The animation is stiff, but the backgrounds look good. The best thing about this DVD is the 30 minute feature on how they made the Van Helsing movie. It's far better then the cartoon. I can't recommend buying this DVD unless it's a freebie shrinked wrapped with the Van Helsing DVD when it's released. It's worth a rental if you have a coupon for a free rental.
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    3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Yet Another Monster Remix December 8, 2004
    Well, there's nothing unusual about turning a reasonably successful film into the centerpiece of a marketing campaign. So, naturally, there will be a game, action figures, tee shirts, and this time there is even an animated half hour short.

    The story this time is set as a prequel, although there really isn't anything that requires that you even know about the film. Prophecying the first 10 minutes of the film, this tidbit has the 'other' monster, Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde, walk out of Robert Louis Stevenson's pages and start hunting through London's streets (as a thinly disguised Jack the Ripper) stealing souls in order to restore Queen Victoria to her youth and make off with her. Van Helsing, of course, to the rescue.

    The action is furious, with train chases (trains seem to play an important part in this), balloon rides, trips through the sewers and the dark streets of London. Blood flies, damsels are distresses (and slain), rooftops are leaps, and, in general, a good time was had by all. The dialog seems to be mostly quips, wisecracks, and growls, but action films never really are about verbal communications.

    Animation is several notches above Snow White, but in some strange way the approach and animation style remind me of the Disney era more than they do of the Yu-Gi-Oh and Scooby era. For those of us spoiled by high end anime The London Assignment seems a bit dated artistically. So it's a good story with unexceptional artwork. And the wrong amount of violent - too graphic for the youngest audiences, and to lame for more mature viewers.

    There is a very good 'making of the movie' film included, but otherwise the extras are lackluster. My overall feeling is that this is an entertaining 30 minutes to rent, but not really worth the cost of keeping it around.
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    Most Recent Customer Reviews
    4.0 out of 5 stars VH - TLA
    Hey, what can I say, I grew up in the 1960's & 70's digging on old Unioversal Horror films. I liked it!
    Published 6 days ago by Bowman
    3.0 out of 5 stars Meh...
    The graphics of Van Helsing are nice, however, the story-line is a little weak and too short. I was hoping for a longer story with a little more dept. Read more
    Published 20 days ago by Amazon Customer
    5.0 out of 5 stars I hate animated films but I LOVED this!
    Typically, I hate anything animated. But as a huge Van Helsing fan I had to buy this. Really ended up loving it! Read more
    Published 3 months ago by ElaineSelene
    5.0 out of 5 stars Awsome movie
    Great prequel to van helsing. Great anime. Plus it's. Graat action. Hugh Jackmon. Did a excellent voice over. You guys will enjoy it
    Published 5 months ago by John Fedeyko
    5.0 out of 5 stars Super Animated TV Show....
    What can I say, I watch the original movie "Van Helsing" and this movie was every bit as good... Two thumbs up!!
    Published 8 months ago by Devils.Advocate666
    5.0 out of 5 stars van helsing fan
    I enjoyed the live action movie. this one is a good one to get if you like Hugh Jackman fan.
    Published 13 months ago by Kurt Mstoecklhuber
    4.0 out of 5 stars Light, enjoyable entertainment
    This is a great prelude to the feature film, "Van Helsing." This is also a good "flick" if you want a short, entertaining anime-type film for friends.
    Published 14 months ago by Rebecca H. Augustine
    5.0 out of 5 stars Van Helsing - The London Assignment (Animated)
    well i have the game on original xbox and the dvd and loved them both, so i figured i'd order this third dvd which is actually the prequel to complete the series. Read more
    Published 14 months ago by N. Jones
    4.0 out of 5 stars Great Animated Prequel For 'Van Helsing'
    'Van Helsing - The London Assignment' is a good animated short feature that sets the stage for us the viewers for the live action 'Van Helsing'. The film focuses in on Dr. Read more
    Published on October 23, 2012 by The Man With No Name
    3.0 out of 5 stars So-So Direct-To-Video Prequel
    Direct-to-video sequels are one thing, but this is one of the few times I've ever heard of a direct-to-video prequel. Read more
    Published on June 10, 2012 by Kooshmeister
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