Screen Gems/Lakeshore Entertainment/Saturn Films
Måns Mårlind and Björn Stein
Len Wiseman, John Hlavin, J. Michael Straczynski
Allison Burnett and Len Wiseman (story)
Kate Beckinsale,Stephen Rea
Michael Ealy, Theo James and India Eisley
When human forces discover the existence of the Vampire and Lycan clans, a war to eradicate both species commences. The vampire warrior Selene leads the battle against humankind.
The moment I saw the trailer for this movie my first impression was that it reminded me of Resident Evil which disappointed me. I am not saying there is anything wrong with Resident Evil but if I am seeing a trailer for an Underworld sequel it should have the vibe of it's predecessors not the vibe of an unrelated movie franchise. Initial vibe disappointment set aside I was also worried about the lack of Scott Speedman in the trailer, Michael was a pivotal character in the first movie and a main character in the second and after finding out that Scott Speedman wasn't in this movie but his character was I didn't want to see the movie at all. I of course came around when I found out that he might possibly be in the fifth.
Underworld: Awakening begins with Selene recounting the events of the first two movies and ending with the fact that the world is under Martial Law because humans have now discovered the existence of both vampires and lycans referring to them as the Infected. Queue in a montage of scenes and news reels showing what looks to be S.W.A.T clad men forcibly entering homes and exterminating anyone they discover to be "infected" amid riots and bombings and you get a pretty good idea of how crazy the world has become. Which is why Selene tells us that her and Michael are leaving tonight, leaving to go where the viewer doesn't know nor does it matter since both Selene and Michael don't escape, in fact Selene gets captured and entombed in a container of ice for twelve years while Michael's fate is unknown.
What is found however is a little girl who isn’t human with a mental connection to Selene. Why they have a connection is pretty obvious but I had a hard time even considering the factor until it was actually stated in the movie. Selene and Michael have a daughter, a twelve year old girl who is in fact a hybrid and the institution who had captured Selene want her, not only that but so do the lycans.
Underworld: Awakening was an unsurprisingly, fast paced action-packed movie filled with guns, head-slicings and the usual vampire versus lycan fighting scenarios. I found it vastly entertaining but entirely too short. The movie is a mere ninety minutes long and could have been lengthened and fleshed out with some much needed character development and world-building. We barely find out anything about Selene's daughter, how she came to be, how her life has been, we don't even get her name. We also don't get any explanation on how the world became to be the way that it is. How did the humans find out about lycans and vampires, how was it so easy for them to find most of the covens and lycan hideouts and why was the story moved from Great Britain/Europe to the USA? The location change made no sense to me and caused the mood to feel like a diluted version of the previous Underworld films in my opinion.
Still, despite these few failings if another sequel is made I will be seeing it because I am quite curious to find out what happens next. And if you're an Underworld fan don't miss out on the movie, I think you'll enjoy it, but don't expect it to be your favourite.