February 16, 2012

Underworld: Awakening (2012)

We haven't seen Kate Beckinsale in her form-fitting, shiny, Death Dealer sexy-suit since way back in 2006 (her 12 second appearance at the end of Rise of the Lycans doesn't count), and we have to admit that it felt mighty nice.

It's like running into a chick that you used to bang, who stopped banging you to go and bang a bunch of other people, and she says "Hey, I'm back! Let's bang." Sure she's older and a bit more used up and worn out, but Kate still looks good and definitely knows how to deal some death.

She also still knows how to deal out boners.

I've got some death for you to deal, luv.
UW: Awakening starts six months after the events of UW: Evolution. The Human World is aware that Vampires and Lycans exist now, and so they decide to "purge" them from existence. Selene gets captured, and hung upside down in a block of ice, naked. She's known as "Naked Subject 1." Thanks to "Jail-bait Subject 2," she's freed from her icy prison, still naked, mind you. Then she escapes from the Antigen (clever company name) building, and takes to the streets to, I don't know, survive.

You covered her up with CGI mist? Come on!
Turns out she has a Daughter (the aforementioned Jail-bait), who just so happens to be the only hybrid of her kind, and she must be protected at all costs... blah, blah blah.  The plot is weak sauce, so who cares. You already know what you signed up for when you bought your tickets to this one, so let's skip the mundane details.

The plot is awful and lacks depth, the dialogue is laughable and feels like its been rehashed from a bunch of old Starsky & Hutch episodes, and the slow-mo wire-fu flips and jumps are annoying. That being said, you don't go to see an Underworld flick for it's depth; you show up to see Kate Beckinsale mean-mug the camera 100's of times and kill things, with a healthy amount of sleek posing thrown in every thirty seconds or so. This movie, more so than any other in the Underworld series, is a huge example of style over substance. In fact, it's 95% style vs. 5% substance, and that's me being pretty generous.

She sure is a cute kid, and by cute we mean blood thirsty.
There's plenty of blood and violence to keep fans happy, and a ton of action, though so much of the action is so ridiculous and over the top that it becomes distracting, and even annoying after a while. I mean, how many times does Selene need to jump and land somewhere, only to take a minute to pose and stare off into space in her ever-so-menacing way? There's sliding too, and some very stylish crouching. Luckily for us, Kate looks good doing all of that, so it takes the pain away a little bit. Still, couldn't they make it less cheesy? Does everything have to be poorly rendered CGI these days? Kinda kills it.

What we did like, aside from Kate and the copious amounts of gory death, was the daughter. Now, India Eisley is 18-years-old, but she looks like she's 12. For that reason, we are going to avoid calling her hot or sexy, because even though she's legal, it really creeps us out to ogle her. What we will say is that her character was interesting, and though underused, provided most of the best parts of the movie, story-wise. Something about ferocious monster kids just makes us happy, and little Eve is plenty ferocious in this one.

Underworld: Pedo-Hunter is inevitable.
It was also nice to see a decent supporting cast in place too. Michael Ely and Theo James were good in their roles, as was Kris Holden-Reid. They didn't have much material to work with, but they at least worked it well and were fun to watch. Best of all was Charles Dance showing up as a Vampire Lord of some sort. It made us all the more excited so see him play Tywin Lannister in season 2 of Game of Thrones. He is a truly fantastic actor anf has a hell of an on-screen presence. Gravitas, even.

One question we do have is where was Scott Speedman? Michael was in UW: Awakening, but played by some other guy... was he too busy to show up for this one? Scott Speedman was too busy? Come on! LOL.

Thanks for holding it down, smooth black Cop. Congrats on not dying either. Progress.
With a very short running time, a lackluster script, far too much CGI and over the top acrobatics, and an ending that pretty much made us feel like this whole movie was nothing more than a set up for Underworld 5, UW: Awakening left us feeling a bit blah. It was a fun 70 minute bit of mindless action, but at this point in the series, can't we safely expect a bit more substance for our money? It fits fairly well with the rest of the series, but it just wasn't as good as previous installments.

Definitely worth a watch, the fourth installment in the Underworld series might just be its weakest; and we hated UW: Evoloution.


Why so Jail-bait?

1 comment :

  1. thin on plot (drawing a diagram to illustrate this is funny and ... really easy), heavy on gore, shame that we get bullied into watching this in 3D, it doesn't benefit the film in anyway. DId enjoy it anyway though.