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|Index||493 reviews in total|
Just got back from watching it tonight, let me tell you, the first big
surprise was how how many people turned out for it, for a Thursday
night the place was packed as if Harry Potter had just come out, it's
been a while since my local theatre was like that.
Now to the movie itself. I liked the first one but this one was an improvement. Mostly because of Scott Speedman's character Michael. The last movie only gave us a glimpse into what he has become, and here we get to see him kick butt alongside Selene as what is pretty much an equal. Watching him fight and take-down werewolves was great.
The action scenes were bigger, with great direction and camera-work. the special effects are also great, especially the scene with their winged-nemesis pursuing their truck. Make-up is amazingly well done. It was refreshing to see that the werewolves were still practical make-up creations rather than CG.
There was also the added bonus of sex scenes. one where a guy is having fun with a couple chick vampires, and one between the two leads. we get to see most of Beckinsale's lovely figure (MILF is an understatement) but no direct frontal shots. ladies will enjoy much shirtless Speedman action.
The opening segment makes it worth a look, i definitely recommend it to anyone who liked the first or thought it had promise.
Let's face it. If you're going to see this movie, you probably enjoyed
the original and are looking for more. You want high doses of fight
scenes, vampire and lycan lore, blood, violence, and Kate Beckinsale
wearing leather or less. In short, this movie delivers all of the above
in great excess, so if you liked Underworld, you're going to like
Underworld: Evolution as much or more.
On the other hand, if you don't like blood, violence, action, mythology, or using a sword in a world full of guns, this movie is not for you, and it's NOT MEANT to be for you, so don't complain about it.
This movie surpasses the original as far as story development. We learn a good bit about each character's past, which helps justify all the extreme violence they engage themselves in. We're also introduced to some new characters and plot lines that add interest and new twists, rather than just rehashing all the familiar faces from Underworld.
This movie fails to get a 10 rating from me for the following reasons:
1) Not quite enough "stuff" to fill the time. Too many shots of Kate Beckinsale "looking intense". The movie could have been 10 minutes shorter if the number of these shots had been reduced from seemingly infinite down to 10 or so. Minor problem.
2) A few glaring continuity errors.
3) Too many flashback/explanation shots from the original Underworld. I suppose this is necessary so as not to alienate viewers who didn't see the original or who forgot it. However, this movie is obviously targeted to people who liked the original and want more, so give us a quick refresher and then hit us with new stuff. No need to keep providing Cliff's notes throughout the movie. Make us think a little!
4) There wasn't a standout power move comparable to the spinning/shooting through the floor in the original Underworld. Let's face it, half the people that went to that movie did so because that shot was in the trailer. This movie had lots of power moves, but none that stood out as the winner.
From beginning to end, my eyes didn't stray from the screen. I can't
remember the last time I saw a movie in the theater that I was so
A number of great performances from polished actors complimented some truly spectacular action scenes and plot developments and twists.
The title alone says exactly what the film accomplishes, as the story 'evolves' seemingly by the minute, and it never becomes stale or overtly contrived.
I found myself able to predict certain parts of the film, and even still in those instances, the events that unfolded shortly thereafter kept me from feeling disappointed in the very fact that I was almost certain of what was coming.
If the standard notion amongst avid movie buffs is that sequels rarely, if ever best their predecessor, 'Underworld: Evolution' defies that notion through and through. Much like 'Terminator 2: Judgement Day' was able to take a solid foundation from its predecessor and take it to a level where it became the standard for sci-fi/action films at the time of its release, U:E should become the blue-print for all werewolf and/or vampire action/dramas to come, or creature-related action/dramas in general, for that matter.
The pacing was very good, the dialogue was at times great, overall very fitting (and never poor), all questions a viewer could have possibly coming into the film are addressed and sufficiently answered, and some of the subtleties of the film, such as the appropriate use of brief flashbacks, kept the film from ever becoming confusing or difficult to follow, which I felt happened on occasion in the first film the first time I saw it.
Kate Beckinsale delivers a performance that shows she is a very versatile actress who just so happens to be strikingly beautiful, and Scott Speedman was more than just a little eye-candy for the ladies, delivering a performance that made me believe he was the perfect Michael Corvin far more than the first film. And the supporting cast around the two main stars were all equally up to the task, with many turning in performances that are likely to be career defining.
Hats off to Len Wiseman for living up to a last name that couldn't be more fitting. He never compromises his vision, and more importantly the story by trying to woo the crowd with over-the-top (Matrix-y) action scenes or gratuitous sexual imagery, as many directors do to try to win over their audiences, and yet the movie has some of the best action scenes the genre has seen in years, and a sexual chemistry between Selene and Michael that is very believable, and yet not over-done. Even in one very intimate scene between them, it is never excessive or tasteless.
I will likely go see this film in theaters again before it is out, and the only film I've ever seen in theaters twice was 'Batman' when I was 10 years old and the second viewing was for a birthday of a friend of mine at the time. I will also certainly be buying the DVD when it is released in an effort to support film-making at its finest. For anyone who liked the first film, you will most likely love this one as I did (do), and for anyone on the fence, you will likely find yourself joining us fans in rejoicing over this highly anticipated sequel. As for doubters of the first film, just give it a chance and you'll likely find that whatever your gripe was with the 'Underworld', 'Underworld: Evolution' does not suffer from the kinds of flaws you may have found the original to have had.
b/c I can only vote using IMDb's scoring system with whole numbers I am giving it a 10, but on a scale of 1 to 10 including halves, with 10 being the best, I give it a 9.5/10, whereas I give the first an 8/10
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Underworld Evolution is a film for fans of the genre - if you like it,
prepare for two hours of undiluted pleasure or, if not, then I suppose
all the epithets along the lines of 'boring, derivative, banal,
underwhelming tosh' are fully justified. Read on: if you are put off by
the description that follows, maybe this film is not for you and I've
done my job. If you enjoyed the first film in the series, or (as one of
the uninitiated) these tantalising glimpses of high-tech goth makes it
appeal, then read on - for the more you know about the mythology first
the better (since the film itself wastes little time explaining
Underworld is a dark domain where age-old enmity between Vampires and Lycans (werewolves) is played out with terrifying fury. Normal people are fairly peripheral to the plot (vampires have emergency blood transfusion type supplies to save the need to attack humans). Both sides are armed not only with traditional blood-sucking and flesh-tearing fang-capacity, but with all the gadgetry of customised guns and other scientific paraphernalia with which to track and kill each other. Here is no disneyfied world of a timid picture-book 'Dracula' hidden in a battered old coffin somewhere - these guys exult in state-of-the-art locking crypts, massive stone fortresses, and raids conducted with military precision. The film unashamedly boasts an adults-only certificate and has consummate amounts of nastiness, gore, head-ripping and scary battles as well as realistic dollops of sex.
Apart from the actual mechanics (such as reaction to sunlight, ways of causing death), the vampires of Underworld have little in common with their namesake in literature - a fascinating creature that slowly saps its victim of strength. Several other fables are instead interwoven, perhaps the most obvious being a Romeo and Juliet type love affair between the beautiful Selene (Vampire heroine, played by Kate Beckinsale) and Michael, the Lycan hybrid. There is also a Beauty and the Beast charm since both these characters display very human qualities at times, such as their tenderness towards each other and the desire to minimise suffering. We long for them to rise above the terrible disease that pumps in their veins. There is a 'Mad Scientist' type underlay with the development of specialised weaponry and the search for the pure strain (giving rise to Matrix-style battles) and, last but not least, Underworld borrows from the X-Men idea of mutations and stylistically from more polished films of a not dissimilar ilk such The Crow or Blade.
The name Selene means the moon goddess, who was known for her countless love affairs and also her purity. Her sister was Eos, the dawn. Michael is a Hebrew word meaning 'he who is like God'. But we're hardly interested in the psychology of plot structure and name-conundrums at this point, are we? The thrill comes from watching Beckinsale (Selene) in a leather catsuit kick ass all the way to the nemesis, or seeing the potentially very scary (and equally photogenic) Scott Speedman (Michael) show his gentle side as he gets her kit off, or actors of the calibre of Derek Jacobi and Bill Nighy play really cruel, vicious, malevolent creatures that haven't been toned down for the under-18yr-olds, or the inventive and bloody battles in fabulously Gothic settings. There's lashings of blood every few seconds; sex mixed with blood for the pervy; and tasteful, delicate sex to remind us we're watching something artistic and not downright depraved (even if we are). If anything, Underworld: Evolution delivers in spades what the first film only hinted at, yet keeping some of the best elements (Beckinsale's acrobatics, car chases and great sets) that set the original tone.
The plot is far from simplistic, so here's a reminder of what you need to absorb in the first few minutes in case you miss it or forget to take notes:
Vampire heroine Selene (Kate Backinsale), after dedicating most of her life to exterminate Lycans (who she believes slaughtered her family when she was a child), discovers she has been betrayed by her own kind. She teams up with Michael, a Vampire/Lycan hybrid (a human who has become infected with both viral strains). While on the run with her, Michael has to struggle to accept and understand his powers, and he longs to end the war between Lycans and Vampires.
Other important characters include:
Viktor (Bill Nighy) - a haughty, ostentatious vampire overlord with a very dark side (Selene awoke him prematurely from a long sleep to tell him of a Lycan offensive).
Marcus - the last surviving Vampire Elder, a Medieval Warlord. Mutated into a vampire from the bite of a bat. Felt compelled to raise Vampire warriors (such as Viktor) to control the Lycan horde. As he was awoken by the blood of a Lycan scientist ('Singe') however, Marcus has become one of a terrifying new breed.
William, brother of Marcus. He mutated into a werewolf (Lycan) from a wolf bite and thence populated the region with the violent Lycan beasts.
Alexander Corvinus (Derek Jacobi) is the first immortal, the genetic father of both Lycan and Vampire. The pestilence of the Great Plague of Europe had mutated within him to become the Mother Virus, which eventually became two separate diseases (Vampire and Lycan), as it was passed on to his sons Marcus and William.
The film traces the evolution of these characters but you do need to concentrate to get the significance of the heavy battles that are heaped one upon each other. The real question is, what will happen to Selene and Michael? The ending packs an emotional punch and paves the way for even more spectacular (and hopefully bigger budget) episodes. Stay to the end of the credits for some great heavy metal music.
Underworld: Evolution offers escapism that explores dark lusts, power, overweening ambition, blind dedication, and the purity of vision to surpass these. Just don't expect Shakespeare.
To start off, let me say that I'm a very big fan of the original. I
think it did everything right; having a nice Gothic overtone, great
characters, an original, intriguing and in-depth plot, fun action and
an overall script that never once felt dull. Oh, and of course...it had
Kate Beckinsale in tight leather, hehehe. Now does this sequel contain
all these qualities that made the original so good? Personally, I'd
have to say no, I don't think it did. Was the movie necessarily bad?
Also no. It was highly entertaining but not that good of a movie
STORYLINE: The story in this film was no where near as good or developed as the original. As it starts off with a war scene in the past, I found myself really enjoying it. We find out a little about the Corvinus family and the origins or Marcus, who was the very first vampire, and his brother, who was the very first Lycan. But after we witness these scenes and learn these few minor plot details, the story development pretty much comes to a dead stop. Honestly, nothing really happens in this movie. It's all just action and really nothing more.
CHARACTERS: The lead characters were good. Selene and Michael didn't exactly have any development but that's okay because they were developed enough in the first film. But what was slightly developed was their romance, which the first film seemed to be lacking. We really got to feel the connection between them and how much they really cared for each other. And it was great to see Michael show off his new hybrid abilities and kick some booty along the way. He was a lot cooler in this film than in the original. The new vampire leader, Marcus, was also pretty damn cool. He had a very sinister appearance, especially with the devil-like wings, and didn't seem to have any sympathy at all as he brutally disposed of anyone who got in his way. In the original, we had Lucian, who was a well developed bad-guy character and I actually found myself caring for him. Marcus, on the other hand, didn't strike a cord with me at all. He looked cool, sure, but besides that, he had absolutely nothing going for him and I really didn't care what happened to him. All the other characters in this film were also very undeveloped as well. We really knew nothing of them and as a result, felt unsure whether we should like them or hate them. So that's a major issue.
ACTION: The action, most the time, was very enjoyable. And I stress MOST of the time, not ALL of the time. There was some really fun action and fight sequences and a nice amount of blood and gore thrown into the mix. So it definitely does manage to entertain the action buffs. But then, at times, the action began to feel annoying as it got extremely repetitive. It was like they just kept replaying the same action scene over and over and just tweaked it a little in order to pass it off as a different scene. This was a problem because the whole movie seemed to base itself on action, rather than story, and the action wasn't even all that good.
ATMOSPHERE: Another good thing about this movie would have to be the scenery. Yeah, I know that's not really important in the movie, but it really did help with the overall experience. There were beautiful mountain landscapes, snowy woods, old style castles in ruins and gorgeous red colored twilight skies. So I think it actually helped a lot in setting the atmosphere and gets points for great eye candy.
OVERALL: The first film was an action-horror movie with a great original storyline. This sequel, on the other hand, felt more like a series of left over action scenes that were taken out of the first film. I think watching the two films back to back will make a great overall experience. But as a stand-alone, it doesn't quite work. It's fun for sure, but that's about it. It's not even remotely close to being as good or better than the original in any way.
I haven't seen a sequel this good since Terminator 2! They really went
back in history to give so much more storyline, or just added to the
original story in such a clever way. They also did a great job in
out-doing the killings from part1! I was so intrigued by this movie I
felt like I got my moneys worth in the first twenty minutes :) . The
director did a great job of bringing you into his "underworld". Every
part of the story line was pleasantly unexpected. I like that Celine's
love for Michael wasn't the only important part of this story anymore.
It isn't mostly centered on love like the first one, however it is all
there, from love, to the long history, to time jumping.
I wouldn't recommend watching this if you haven't seen part 1! But I would recommend watching the whole series! Very Awesome. Cant wait to see part 3 if they make it.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
As a fan of the first movie, this was a absolute and utter
disappointment. I was skeptical when I first heard about a sequel, and
now it seems that when Kevin Grevioux disappeared from the project
without any form of explanation, so went all the chances it had of
being good. I truly wanted to enjoy this movie, and envy those who can,
but there were just too many faults here for me to look past.
The plot is first of all much too rushed, and if you haven't watched the first movie, it is hard to grasp, despite all the flash backs, that are quite clumsily conveyed here. The characterization of Selene takes a 180 degree turn, and not for the better. When she in the first movie was portrayed as a cold and efficient warrior, she here seems more like a female version of Lethal Weapon's Martin Riggs. She is also in the true spirit of the awful Mummy Returns revealed to have a past with the vampire world as a human, as well as much more powerful as a vampire than we were first led on to believe. This was a development that quite efficiently killed all hat was good or interesting with her character, and the ending when she is turned into some sort of super vampire that can match a hybrid and stand in sunlight, drives the final nail in the coffin.
She also has zero chemistry with Speedman's character, who's most interesting lines are "Jesus Christ", and obviously have no bigger role than to serve as her object of rescue and the second part in one of the most anatomically incorrect and random sex scenes I've ever seen.
The movie is all in all too much full of contradictions and suffering from a faulty script to be even remotely interesting. A grand example is how Markus, the other hybrid, gains Selene's memories when drinking her blood. Speedman's character also does that, but yet, we see no sign of him experiencing the same. Or, how it is explained that Markus, the first vampire, becomes a hybrid simply by drinking lycan blood since he is a Corvinous. Should not his brother William, the first lycan, then also have become a hybrid when killing and eating vampires (as it looks like he did plentiful)? Or my favorite, when Michael turns out to be wanted by the police as a dangerous criminal, despite that he to my recollection did absolutely nothing that would warrant that in the first movie, as well that while Selene cannot take being stabbed in the shoulder without passing out (first movie), a shot in the gut only makes her angry.
I also find it quite irritating that up until the release, there were many things speaking for a return or at least small featuring of Michael Sheen's character Lucian, who also was a favorite for many; to have it all ending with what seems like a double in a body bag. The actor's state as the lead's (Beckinsale) ex, who is now also married to Wiseman, offers a rather discouraging explanation for this.
The violence is gory and unnecessary, the action scenes badly filmed and confusing and the gracious nudity just tasteless. Wiseman has some incredible talent with making movies look good, but he should in my opinion keep away from the script and contract Grevioux again for the next movie, if there is one, and see if he can salvage what is left from this mess.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
This movie was lame and very laughable. I went to see it with a bunch
of my friends, all of who are fans of the original one. There are so
many reasons that this movie sucked that I forget more than half of
them. I forget most of the plot holes, inconsistencies to the first
movie, and random crap that was randomly put into this movie just to
try to give some importance to everything but was too important but
some how forgot to be mentioned in the first movie.
First of all, the sex scene? That was random, stupid and I almost burst out laughing. Not only was it a random and unneeded scene, used just to make little teenies be like "OOH NAKED!!", but in addition to that...The positioning of their bodys?? Do they really expect us to believe that he's having sex with her?? Well, not unless he's having sex with her bellybutton! Speaking of nudity and sex, the random scene where that guy is piling up the bodies of the nude girls, shown just so they can better show that they have a naked lady in the movie. That scene was also stupid and pointless, again, just to make little teens say "OOH BOOBIES!!" and therefore it's a good movie.
Secondly, it was like a big hour and a half long fight scene. Don't get me wrong, I love fight scenes, especially big ones, but the choreography of these fight scenes just sucked.
Then there was the bridge, that broke twice in the castle. First she blew up the ceiling, which fell down and broke the bridge. Didn't the bridge break AGAIN when the helicopter came down? Oh and its a good thing that the rope is strong enough to pull down a helicopter and has no quick-release. Oh and also that guy that was next to Selene on the bridge when William came out of the shadows, grabbed the other guy, and shot him...Why the hell did he turn into a werewolf? Werewolfs SHOOT you and suddenly you turn into one?? Let's not forget "Hmm...lets bring my dead-boyfriend's body with us...y'know, just for sentimental reasons...and in case he happens to randomly come back to life he can help us". That was too lame and too predictable. I rolled my eyes when it showed him coming back to life. And then he tore off Williams head...the other time someone tore of a werewolves jaw. O yay, we can tear of heads left and right because it'll be "wicked cool!" I liked how Selene didn't remember the little pendant thing until she pushed the little button thing on it, and a little 1/4-inch little jagged edge came out. You needed that little edge there in order to remember it?? Wow, you have a suck memory.
How come the helicopters blades were still spinning after it crashed? That was extremely stupid. And the way she pushed Markus and he just sort of floated back into them. Or was that supposed to be slow motion? Either way it looked lame. And don't you like the way the bridge led PERFECTLY to the helicopters blades, and below the bridge there were supports for it right NEXT to were the helicopter crashed? Wow, they have really good aim not to knock out those supports while crashing.
And I like how now just stabbing a werewolf(in front of that exiled guys home) kills them. Y'know, it's easier when you're trapped...just stab them, with probably what was just a stainless steel knife.
Oh and there was the EXTREMELY LAME line of Selene: "What will I become??" Old guy: "The future". I almost laughed there as well...seriously, that is one of the lamest lines I've heard. This movie makes me think of an extremely-high-budget B-movie.
There are plenty of other reasons but those are the only ones I can remember right now as to the lameness of this movie.
Selene (Kate Beckinsale) wishes to expose the truth about the death of
Viktor to the first true vampire Marcus (Tony Curran) that is
hibernating. However, Marcus has already awakened and wants to release
his savage Lycan brother William (Brian Steele), who has been
imprisoned for centuries. When Marcus tries to get the medal possessed
by Lucian from the hybrid Michael (Scott Speedman), Selene decides to
visit Andreas Tanis (Steven Mackintosh), the exiled official historian
of the covens, to understand his interest. When Selene and Michael meet
Tanis, they disclose the truth about their bloodlines, and later with
the support of Alexander Corvinus (Sir Derek Jacobi), Selene faces the
powerful and evil Marcus as the last hope left for the mankind.
It is very difficult to see good sequels, but "Underworld Evolution" gave me the sensation that together with "Underworld", they are one good movie split in two parts. The viewers like me that enjoyed "Underworld" will certainly like this sequel very much. My vote is eight.
Title (Brazil): "Anjos da Noite A Evolução" ("Angels of the Night - The Evolution")
What can someone write about a movie that has been so well discussed
already during the past weeks?! Everything has been said in reviews and
fan forums about the plot with Romeo & Juliet resemblances framed by
the secret war between vampires and werewolves, about the cast and
characters, about the movie's style & atmosphere, action, make-up and
CGI effects, camera shots, violence, love scenes & nudity. Underworld
Evolution's predecessor was above all underestimated in terms of what
potential it had to build up a solid fan base in a genre that
throughout movie history like no other has not only drawn people into
the theatres but also to conventions, fan clubs, signings and other
events. If we go back in time movies which threw together famous film
monsters like in "House of Frankenstein", "Frankenstein Meets The Wolf
Man", later in "Frankenstein's Bloody Terror" or in our days "Freddie
Vs. Jason", "Van Helsing" and "Aliens Vs Predator" were most likely
designed to squeeze the purse of the audience (which in most cases
without no doubt they successfully did) but never have withstood the
moviegoer's expectations for a long time. "Underworld" (2003) on the
other hand, a sleeper during it's theatrical release as treated with
neglect promotion wise in many countries has to be admitted that it
rightfully gained it's respect through mouth-to-mouth propaganda
resulting in DVD sales which soon exceeded the box-office results. The
movie built up a very solid fan base, people that keep talking about it
even after three years creating an under-world (sorry for the pun, I
just could not resist) like Star Trek, Star Wars and some other Sci-Fi
movies and shows have done before. So it is very possible that for the
first time in the horror genre "Underworld" and "Underworld Evolution"
really work as 'monster mash' movies.
With only some video clips on his reference list it is obvious that "Underworld" was a child of heart of writer / director Len Wiseman (together with writers Danny McBride and Kevin Grevioux). Only someone very dedicated and so confident can get such a project of the ground without having directed a single feature length movie before - get it produced, assemble a professional cast. And it paid out - with an estimated budget of 22 mill. it achieved an accumulated worldwide gross of more than 90 mill. US dollars. Plus, it activated a great number of fans which were dying to see more. Because of these fans there is a sequel they made it possible by buying the DVDs, watching Underworld in the cinema and kept talking about it, discussing it from the beginning to the end, throwing up questions, inspiring new story lines, etc. When seeing "Underworld Evolution" I believe that Len Wiseman and Danny McBride accurately meet the expectations of their fans in a very respective way. They stand true to the original in style and action and by not getting too pathetic love story wise. The storyline is not dumb and does not just follow the vampires vs. werewolves plot which it could have done. Of course it has some flaws, but nothing which can be not excused. As there is no perfect crime there is also no perfect plot. All stories have flaws even the real ones. And if we look behind the almost endless tour-de-action: there is the beautiful Kate Beckinsale who was the lead action heroine in the first movie and now, without loosing any of her screen presence, she leaves enough space for Scott Speedman who now plays a much stronger and more self-confident Michael Corvin. Bill Nighy is always an extreme pleasure to watch and it is amazing how versatile this man is. And of course there is the great Sir Derek Jacobi playing his part so wonderfully understated, yet so present, that it will be a hard task not to bring his character back in a future entry. Conclusion: If you have seen the first "Underworld" movie and liked it, and if you are allowed to "pervasive strong violence and gore, some sexuality/nudity and language" you won't be disappointed. If you don't like horror movies at all this one is not likely to change your opinion. When you consider this and buy a ticket you will get an action packed horror movie which can be watched for more than one time for several reasons. But see for yourself
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