REVIEW: "Underworld: Awakening" More Action-Packed Than The Rest
"Awakening" singles itself out from the rest of the films of the series by focusing less on the mythology that dominated the plot of the previous films. This installment is more action-packed, and with its fast-paced storyline and its cinematic shots and effects, it could be the best film of the franchise.
The film opens by rehashing the events of the first two films (the third one was a prequel). The war between the vampires and the lycans has been turned on its head. The existence of both has been discovered by the humans and they seek to eradicate them.
Vampire warrior Selene (Kate Beckinsale) and her hybrid lover Michael (Scott Speedman) are seeking to escape but fail. Selene is captured and remains frozen in a lab called Antigen.
Some time later she is mysteriously awakened and escapes venturing out into a world that is vastly different than the one she left behind. She returns to the pier where she was last with Michael and discovers that twelve years have passed since she was captured.
She begins seeing flashes of someone else's vision, which leads her to lycans (who are thought to be extinct) who are hiding. There she meets a vampire named David (Theo James) and what ensues are action packed scenes of Selene dueling it out with the lycans. She discovers that the flashes are not coming from Michael but from her twelve year old hybrid daughter Eve (India Eisley).
The film begins to enter a fast-paced plot after this. It is soon discovered that the lycans have fooled the humans into believing they are extinct in hopes of carrying out their master plan, in which Eve is the key.The rest of the film features certain twists that were at times unpredictable. The ending wraps up in a way that leaves room for another installment in the series.
The film effortlessly steps away from its mythology to deliver a quick, action-packed plot, which delivers a fresh feel setting it apart from the rest of the other films.
Its one plot fault is not portraying the other side's motive. Part of what made the other films strong was its ability to get the audience to sympathize with both the vampires and lycans. "Awakening" fails to do so. Instead, it focuses on Selene's fight with the lycans for her daughter.
Directors Mans Marlind and Bjorn Stein do an excellent job in the effects and action shots of the film. The 3D on the other hand falls flat.
Despite those flaws the film manages to come together in a way that makes it one of the better films in the series.
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