Underworld Awakening (2012) Poster

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Just Not an Underworld Movie. . .
John Tucker19 January 2012
This movie was, at best, mediocre. The action was good, I suppose, but it simply wasn't as good as its three predecessors. The plot was underdeveloped and unsatisfying. Also, without Speedman, it was really just missing something.

The story was, quite simply, lacking. It's difficult to explain this film's shortcomings without spoiling it, but, to say the least, they ignored elements that could have made a good movie and skipped to rather simple, unsatisfying plot devices. This movie was also absurdly short, testifying to its lack of content.

In the end, it just didn't feel like Underworld. I would compare this to the way I felt about The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, and Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides - just an out of place fourth movie of a series. I really wanted it to be good, but it just wasn't.
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Amazingly Overrated!
wiseman98721 January 2012
Warning: Spoilers
I may be acting a bit rash in rating this film at 2 stars, but at the time of my writing, there are just too many shadow marketing reviews on this site to ignore. In a different situation, and if the first 2(3) underworld movies were not so good, I might rate this a 5.

New writers, new director/directors, different movie.

If you just want to see some cookie cutter CGI 'action' movie, then give this a look.

If you are a fan of the earlier movies, if you know the story of Selene, Viktor, Corvinus, and the rest, you will be disappointed. It is not as bad as the crazy changes they made to the highlander movies, but they just decided to forget the past films and do something new. Actually they decided to rip off a few other stories, none of which were good the first four times you saw them.

I am not going to go into every detail of what is wrong with this movie. For the most part, it is bad because it must be compared to the earlier films in the series. It just does not compare in any way. Acting, scenery, sets, writing, story, effects, all better in prior underworlds.

Aside from all I have said, the production value is high, and the movie is watchable.
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A big letdown from the original three with one serious plot hole
intp30 May 2012
Warning: Spoilers
I'm a fan of the original three Underworld movies, having bought all three on DVD, which I have watched several times each. After initially watching the third one, which I particularly liked, the first thought that occurred to me was, "I hope they make a fourth one". When I heard the announcement that # 4 was in the works, I was excited.

But to my disappointment, this movie was too much flash and too little substance. The fight scenes were moderately enjoyable but the storyline was just too thin. The 12-year gap, in particular, was a poor idea IMO. I, and I suspect other viewers of the original three movies, wanted to see what happened just after "Evolution". Also, unlike the first three movies, which developed an interesting back story and mythology about the two clans, this one was just one action scene after another, with too little character development and no substantive development of the mythology at all.

Having said all that, I still liked seeing Kate Beckinsale in action again. But my enjoyment was seriously dampened by one major plot hole, which makes it hard for me to re-watch this movie.

There are, of course, many plot holes, which have been discussed in other reviews. But the one plot hole that bothered me the most (and, surprisingly, I have been unable to find any discussion about it elsewhere), is the fact that, when Selene breaks free from Antigen at the beginning of the movie, all of the security guards (as well as the scientists she encounters) are human, even though, toward the end of the movie, nearly 100 percent of the staff appears to be Lycan. This illogical discrepancy was really hard to ignore.

I initially rationalized this discrepancy by the idea that Antigen, not wanting to reveal their "big secret" to the outside world, mostly used a human staff, particularly when dealing with any threat that could not be contained within the facility (where the risk that the general public could learn that the building was a Lycan haven would be a serious concern, particularly if dead Lycan bodies were found by the police, and/or observed by passersby). But that idea got thrown out the window by the fact that, when Selene openly attacks the facility near the end, virtually all of the guards-- including those outside the facility-- openly reveal themselves to be Lycans right away. And what happened to all of the human staff at the end? (The only human in the entire facility at the end appeared to be the one unfortunate woman scientist).

Maybe this shouldn't have bothered me so much, but it just seemed like nonsensical writing so that Selene wouldn't discover, at the outset, the "big plot twist" that Antigen was nothing more than a Lycan front, and intrusively makes the viewer realize how poorly thought out this story was, even though Len Wiseman is credited on the screenplay. Also makes it tough to re-watch without wondering, "why the hell is the entire staff human?" at the beginning.

If they end up doing a fifth one, I am hoping it will be more in the vein of the original three, with better, more thought-out writing and a stronger storyline.
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Joshua Brenner4 February 2012
Warning: Spoilers
I saw the movie in 2D but to be honest, the low rating was not because of the lack of 3D but rather that it was very disappointing. I felt like the movie had a good storyline but it only touched on segments of it rather than expand on it. The Cryogenics with a 12 yr gap did not make any sense. If the little girl was her daughter than how come she had no memory of giving birth. If the hybrid was a test tube baby she would have still come from somewhere, unless the female scientist who looked after the child was the real person who gave birth to her? Also, when Selene met with Thomas, he knew who she was and that she was responsible for killing elders but it didn't really touch on how he knew even though he acted like he was an elder which I do not think he was. As for me, the special effects were so/so but it was more like watching the first Matrix movie. The scene where she storms the office building and attacks the guards was very similar to scene in the Matrix. It did not really leave much for the imagination.

Towards the end of the movie where the bad guys get the upper hand and the plot of the movie, it is short lived. The ending of the movie was like when the Empire Strikes Back ended. Just when the movie was getting good, and they followed a lead to meet with her hybrid lover, the movie ended! Guess there will be another sequel! When the movie ended, I looked at my watch and realized that it was just under and hour and 1/2. There was so much more they could have done with this movie and cranked out another 20-30 minutes to complete the storyline.

It just seemed as if they filmed the movie in a couple of months. I do not understand how there was a budget of $70 million when the special effects seemed below par. Yet, Underworld 3, was budgeted around $35 million.

Naturally, Kate Beckinsale looked as sexy as ever, which probably the highlight of the movie.
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Meh.....Okay I guess
Filmaholic7823 January 2012
I'm not sure why this film seems to be getting fantastic reviews. I mean it was a good enough action flick but it didn't blow my mind. In fact it was a case of the same old stuff just done better. Brilliant to watch but not refreshing at the same time. The story was lacking in depth and character development and just felt like a filler for another sequel.

I don't want to be all doom and gloom about it because Kate really did kick some ass and looked good doing it too so as far as action and eye candy goes its great. But any fan of the series knows that the Underworld saga isn't stupid. They always paid attention to script and story and that was lacking here unfortunately.

I'm sure if you go and see it you wont be disappointed but just leave your brains at the door and watch the action commence.
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Not enough vengeance
leobeckons21 January 2012
For those who came in late, the Underworld series is all about the eternal enmity between the non-human species of Vampires and Lycans, the latter being an evolved race of werewolves. So far, we learned all about the centuries of bloodshed, and the absolute necessity for the 2 groups never to reconcile.

At the heart of the narrative is Selene (Kate Beckinsale), who was once the pride and joy of the Vampire army, till she fell in love with a hybrid (part vampire part Lycan), and began to question the ethics of her tribe.

Underworld: Awakening begins with a new development in the world that Selene and Michael inhabit. Thus far, the inferior human species has remained unaware of the existence of the other species. Now that covens and nests have been unearthed, paranoia strikes, and annihilation of non-humans becomes military priority.

Selene and Michael try to leave the area by boat, but both are captured and frozen in a lab, for research. When Selene awakens, she manages to flee from her prison, only to find that it is now 12 years later. Lycans are almost extinct, there is a weapon that she has, and her enemies want it for their evil purpose.

This installment of the Underworld franchise has the flimsiest plot, the least talented actors (except, of course, for Stephen Rea), and the most unsatisfactory climax. In fact, this has to be the first movie of the series that leaves loyalists not clamoring for more. The premise is so incredulous (and not in a good way), that you will stop trying to comprehend the sequence of events that leads Selene to the end of the movie.

To make up for the lack of a credible story, the makers decided to intersperse every second conversation with visuals of ripped heads, severed body parts and plenty of blood. The gore in the movie is not only irrelevant, but also added for shock value, or so it seems.

The icing on the cake is the presence of constantly flickering lights. The lab has them, the parking lots have them, the corridors have them - the civilized world does not seem to believe in proper lighting. What the audience is left with is a semi-hypnotized sense of being after sitting through all those lights.

Kate Beckinsale goes through all the motions of being Selene with the ease of a professional. She has done this to perfection before, but this time, she seems complacent, and bored. To give her credit, she has maintained her figure, and looks no different than the Selene who first made an appearance almost a decade ago (in the first movie of the series).

The very talented Stephen Rea plays a villain of sorts in the movie. He does look confused at times, as if he wonders why he signed the film. There is no sign of effort from any other member of the cast.

The music is more like stock music, and production value is inconsequential (there's nothing in the film except walls and piers). The fight sequences are not engrossing enough, and the spurting blood and flying intestines are distracting.

In short, the entire movie is a disappointment. If, however, you insist on watching Underworld: Awakening, avoid the 3D version, and maybe your headache will not be as bad.

On a more positive note, there is always the hope that the next movie will manage to regain the lost glory of the series.
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Doesn't Feel the Same, But Still an Enoyable Action Flick
Marter220 January 2012
Warning: Spoilers
When details finally came out about "Underworld: Awakening," my heart sunk a little. True, the second installment wasn't very good, and the third was a prequel, but I was still looking forward to seeing further adventures of the vampire, Selene (Kate Beckinsale). As it turns out, she's the only returning cast member. Everyone else is gone from the project, leaving her the one tie to a series (seemingly) well past its prime. "Awakening" also clocks in at under 90 minutes, making the first film's two hours seem like days in comparison.

The plot this time around is told to us in the form of exposition. After "Evolution," humans discovered that lycans (werewolves) and vampires exist, and decided to wage war against both mythical creatures. They decided that genocide was the only option, and all but wiped out both species. So, how did Selene manage to survive? Well, she was captured by some scientist folks who decided to keep her alive, but frozen, for the past twelve years. Michael (previously portrayed by Scott Speedman), her vampire-lycan hybrid lover, has presumably died.

So, you'll be unsurprised to find out that Selene eventually escapes from her prison, fits back into that catsuit that she has grown accustomed to, and begins trying to find out just what the world has become in her absence. Of course, she still believes that Michael is still alive, so she sets out on a quest to find him. Meanwhile, she's also getting random visions flashing in front of her. It turns out, as anyone who has seen Evolution will have assumed, she has given birth to a daughter, Eve (India Eisley), and the two are linked via their sight. She can see what Eve can see if they are close to one another.

The villain this time around is the head of the scientists, a man named Jacob (Stephen Rae). I suppose the humans are also the bad guys, as they want to kill any vampire they come across, although the one human whose name we learn, a detective named Sebastian (Michael Ealy), ends up helping Selene. She's also eventually joined by another vampire, David (Theo James). Lycans also still exist, and they end up becoming more frequent as the film progresses after a plot twist is revealed that you'll probably see coming from a mile away, if you haven't already guessed it.

There isn't really a central plot that's worth discussing. "Underworld": "Awakening's" screenplay reads as both lazy and very loose. It's hard to even reflect back on it and try to remember key moments. It doesn't care about secondary characters (they're plot devices), and it doesn't care for its main one all that much either, although Beckinsale's Selene does have to show a tad bit more emotion than in previous installments. But not much more.

Essentially, we're here for the action scenes, which serve both as the main material as well as the glue that holds it together. In what is probably the most action-packed and gory iteration in this series, "Underworld": "Awakening" certainly doesn't have many boring moments. There's no substance to the plot or characters, but if you're watching the fourth "Underworld" film, chances are you don't care about that kind of thing. You're here to see Kate Beckinsale in a tight leather catsuit running around, doing flips off walls, shooting at anything that moves, and doing it all with a blue tinge. You get that with "Awakening."

Initially, I couldn't quite put my finger on why I still didn't have a great time with this film. It did most of the things it needed to right, and was overall quite exciting. But it lacked substance, and I don't just mean in its story and characters. Even at its worst point ("Evolution"), the "Underworld" series has always maintained some depth to the world that the characters inhabit. An entire back story was mapped out, and we understood the history of both supernatural clans. "Awakening" seems dedicated to both ruining and ignoring all of that previous work.

Here is a film that's premise involves the destruction of the majority of both species' members. Presumably, artifacts and historical documents were also destroyed, rendering much of the back story unknown to the survivors. Those who do know, like a man named Thomas (Charles Dance), have no proof of it and have no need to bring it up. The world is no longer an "Underworld" one; instead, it's just a generic action movie with vampires and werewolves. All of the work that went into the crafting of this universe is destroyed with "Awakening." It almost seemed like directors Måns Mårlind and Björn Stein went with this story just so that they didn't have to include any depth, even if that depth is what made "Underworld," well, "Underworld."

Maybe I'm overthinking things. Like I said, you're watching "Underworld: Awakening" to see Kate Beckinsale in a bunch of physics-defying action scenes while dressed in her character's signature leather outfit. You get that here. The action scenes are slick and well-made, the lycans look better than they ever have before, and the ending sequence, involving at least three distinct battles, is satisfactory, even if the ending as a whole promises much more than it delivers. I did have a good time, even if this installment completely ignores all of the history and back story of its universe. This is a movie for the "Underworld" fans. If you're one of them, you'll have a good time here. Newcomers will want to start at the beginning. If you aren't a fan, this one has less depth and more action than earlier iterations, so make your decision accordingly.
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Action over writing (spoiler free)
al-russell21 January 2012
Warning: Spoilers
I'm generously giving this movie 3 stars simply because Kate Beckensale is so very hot in a black cat suit and because the action was impressive. Unfortunately, the writing was seriously lacking, which is pretty sad since I didn't go in with terribly high expectations in the first place. Without giving away any spoilers, the story was virtually non-existent. I'm not saying to avoid this movie altogether, just to know what you're getting onto, lots of flash and next to no substance. This is NOT on par with the original Underworld, nor Rise of the Lycans. Even Evolution was better, and that was pretty forgettable. Kate, however, continues to impress as Selene, though her age will belie her vampire nature soon if they keep making sequels. The amount of makeup on her face was actually distracting in this film, especially since there was no time set aside between beat downs for her to apply Ru Paul style cake. But, these are small matters. The real issues are related to the story itself and I'm trying to avoid mentioning specifics. Speedman's absence was sorely felt too, despite the infusion of a new piece of beefcake for the ladies.
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Very disappointed
mgelliott121 January 2012
Warning: Spoilers
I was excited when I found this movie was coming out. I saw all 3 movies again on DVD 2 times each to be fully prepared. I saw the movie right when I got off work on opening night (no matinée pricing, extra for 3D), and I was sorely disappointed. The 3D technology used all the gimmicks that I hate about 3D such as things flying at the screen. That is soooo 1950s. Parts of the 3D near the beginning made it look like I was watching a cartoon or some kind of animation. The inclusion of "humans" in the main story line really mucked this movie up. The other 3 movies were much more interesting in learning and understanding the cultures and issues between the Lycans and Vampires in this "Underworld" that humans knew nothing about. If you are going to go above ground, if Selene is now a day-walker thanks to Alexander Corvinus, if humans are involved, it is no longer an "Underworld" is it? Possible spoilers coming. I liked the new male vampire lead David for himself, but felt him playing against Selene made her look like a cougar even though there was no romantic interactions between the two. Don't get me wrong, she looked SUPER hot as usual, but he was way too young (or young looking) to be her male lead. The storyline seemed to have themes of every action and/or futuristic movie I have ever seen. This movie series should be like a serial, an evolving storyline, not more, bigger, badder to try to get butts in the seats. I enjoyed getting to know the previous characters, but sadly almost ALL of them are gone. I never got to know the new characters too well because the writing, directing and/or editing sucked. A Black cop? What a cliché. Black characters were used effectively in the previous films, but the cop in the new film was a mistake. Also the cop helping out the criminal, human killing vampire (just because she's hot) is also a cliché. Cops never abandon their responsibilities for fat smelly biker looking criminals with big hearts. Additionally, the cop was a known actor. This is a gimmick. They may as well should have added Sean Connery or Liam Neeson. Great actors, but gimmicks. Just like when Jessica Biel and Ryan Reynolds showed up in the 3rd Blade series. Selene is a death dealer killing Lycans. I was surprised when she killed certain people in the movie like when she dropped the guy out the window who SAID he'd saved her (she did not know at the time that he was lying). Also Selene was WAY more acrobatic (in terms of frequency and physical ability than the previous movies), I did not like this. The Godzilla sized Lycan was ridiculous. They never fully explained what/why was going on in the laboratory. There was inconsistency (in the other movies too) in the fact that when Selene shoots Lycans with bullets, they die. However, everyone else must use silver bullets? Shooting the floor of the elevator about to crash down on her? Rip off of movie 1. First, why did she not just get out of the shaft if she is THAT fast. Secondly, even though the floor was shot out that DID NOT (or should not) stop the circular disk from crashing into her and smashing her. If her skeletal structure is strong enough to withstand this, then what's the need to shoot out the floor. In fact, if she is immortal, other than sunlight (which no longer affects her), why the need to shoot the floor out of the elevator at all. In fact, if she IS a day-walker, like Michael how did they ever become known to the police. the story points out that the police were dragging people into daylight to see if they would burn. Michael and Selene do not have this issue. Michael can change at will. Wouldn't they just blend in and never be discovered? Finally, where are these movies supposed to take place? Hungary? Eastern Europe. Selene speaks a foreign language in this and other movies, but now she is suddenly in the United States with no explanation?. Where and why did she ever learn English in the first place.Oh...the daughter. According to IMDb she is turning NINETEEN this year! So much for playing a 12 year old.

The movie felt short and it also felt like a total setup for the next film which we'll have to wait, how many years for? Maybe never if enough folks don't go to see this. I like this series and will see the next one. True fans won't pass this by either. However, new fans keep things going. I doubt they'll be back.Note to the producers, for underworld 4 PREVIEW the script and the movie with the real fans, the folks that have seen the other 3 movies multiple times, not a bunch of tourists walking around Burbank looking for free passes.
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VERY BAD storyline, Very bad film, Very disappointed!
Dejan K20 January 2012
I LOVED the first three Underworld movies, but in all honesty "Underworld: Awakening" was for me a complete disaster. The first three movies were amazing because they made you think deeply about history, love, hatred, war, friendship, family, and other riveting themes; they encouraged critical thinking and connection making skills with all the powerful flashbacks and twists and turns that were within a strong plot-structure. But "Underworld: Awakening" failed to do any of these things.

The plot absolutely sucked; there's nothing original, and I don't even know what the point/theme was at all. Yes there are a few good twists in the movie, but they happen in like the last 30 minutes, and even here all we get to see is action and no real depth or explanation of the who, what, where, when, why, how? of the story. If humans are now the common enemy, then why on sam hill are vampires and werewolves still fighting? It doesn't make sense. Near the end, just as the story was getting good, I suddenly noticed the credits popping up. The movie was over. I thought, "Huh? It can't be over, it was just getting good!?" The film was also WAY too short. All of this taken together makes "Underworld: Awakening" more like an added TV episode than a major motion picture. I honestly can't believe 70 million was spent on this cop out. It would have been much better if they actually showed the fight between humans and vampires and focused on that instead of going back to a now pointless feud between vampires and lycans.

WHAT made "Underworld: Awakening" worse was the fact that the directors did not really connect this sequel to the other 3 Underworld movies: where are the flashbacks? Where's the dialogue? What exactly happened to the other characters in the earlier films, etc, etc? I know this will disappoint all of you die-hard fans like me who love the other movies, but truth hurts: the film was terrible.

The storyline was the worst part, I think. In the 1 hour and 30 minutes of the film, only about 20-30 minutes is spent actually talking. Selene only opens her mouth a few times, and nobody makes longer speeches which made the other movies great. If the film was really about Selene waging war against humans (which it wasn't) it would have been much better and an interesting story, but that wasn't the true plot at all.

To the Producers: "It was the STORY that made the Underworld series a success, not the action, but you failed to see that. Because there is VERY little dialogue in this one and A LOT of action, there is very little story here, which makes it very unlikely that ANYONE will remember this movie after watching it. If you want to make another Underworld movie, focus on the story, on speeches, on the intellect, on actual acting instead of crappy action I can see for free on a TV series." I hate to say this because I am such a huge fan of the series, but "Underworld: Awakening" is utterly forgettable. I was really disappointed, and if you're an Underworld fan you will be too. I don't think I'll watch it a second time.

My Objective Vote: 3/10

P.S. I think the people who rate this film more than a 5 either haven't watched the other Underworld films, were paid-off, or are insane. It just doesn't deserve anything more than a pass.
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Again the eternal fight between vampires and werewolves in this exciting but inferior follow-up
ma-cortes2 January 2013
Passable sequel that concerns again the eternal taking on between vampires and Lycans . This creepy and gore-soaked vampires film begins ten years after . Unknown to humanity, centuries old blood feud raged between aristocrat vampires and subdued legion of werewolves known as Lycans . The tale traces the confrontation between a ruling class of bloodsuckers and their onetime slaves, the werewolves . When human forces discover the existence of the Vampire and Lycan clans , a war to eradicate both species commences. The vampire warrioress Selene leads the battle against humankind . As a vampire named Selena (Kate Beckinsale) emerges as a powerful rebel who rallies the rebellious bloodsuckers (Theo James) to rise up against Doctor Jacob Lane (Stephen Rea) . She also discovers that she has a 12-year-old Vampire/Lycan hybrid daughter (India Eisley's character is referred to throughout the movie as "Subject 2" but credited as "Eve") . Selene is joined by Detective Sebastian (Michael Ealy) , in his struggle against the Lycans and his fight for freedom . Neverheless , the war was not as it had seemed . Soon the hunt would be on for his killer . As the war between vampires and werewolves get more personal and deadly , they decide to launch a full-scale attack on the hideout in order to extinguish the race.

This amazing movie packs frantic action , thrills ride , stirring fighting , graphic violence , excessive body count: 128 and is pretty entertaining . The film's release date is on the same day as Underworld: Evolution's, released six years earlier. The picture continues the characteristic of the series that the major supporting parts are played by well-known actors from the UK, in this case Charles Dance and Stephen Rea . Furthermore , there appears uncredited Wes Bentley . And is the first Underworld film not to feature Bill Nighy, Michael Sheen or Brian Steele . It packs large loads of guts and gore , there's a huge body count, this one actually knocks off an immense amount , several vampires and werewolves are staked bloodily in the chest, even more impaled with large claws. There's really savage decapitation, plenty of bodies ripped in scraps and half, including some of the most tears ever, that spill lots of blood and numerous get shot up with arcs . Most of vampires, Lycans and humans victims are relegated to being bitten in the throat and neck and the breathtaking fighting scenes are realized with magnificent special and visual effects as well as excellent make-up department . The film blends horror, suspense, struggles, rip-roaring action, terror and lots of blood and gore . Set design is of first class , settings are stylized, Gothic scenarios , and spooky and ghoulish atmosphere. Special effects are breathtaking , part of them are made by means of computer generator and part by make up . Bone-chilling and atmospheric musical score by Paul Haslinger and colorful and dark cinematography by Scott Kevan ; being the first film in the series to be in real-d 3-d and Imax 3-d . Spectacular and moving direction by Måns Mårlind and Björn Stein , though Jalmari Helander was offered a chance to direct. The interesting but mediocre screenplay was written by Len Wiseman , Kate Beckinsale's husband , who directed the former entries , along with Danny McBride and Kevin Grevioux . All actors and technicians participated in the previous outings , including , of course , Kate Beckinsale as a relentless action woman , being well replaced by Rhona Mitra in former entry titled ¨Rise the Lycans¨. Recommended to those who amuse those kind of vampires-werewolves films or those enjoy in general.
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Time to put a stake in it
MBunge23 January 2012
Warning: Spoilers
So, 6 years after the last time Kate Beckinsale donned a leather corset to play vampire warrior Selene and after making a 3rd edition of the franchise without her, the folks behind Underworld come back with a 4th go round which really does nothing more than prove they probably should have left well enough alone after the 2nd movie. With four people credited for the screenplay, it's not exactly a surprise to find Awakening is the worst written film of the lot and the addition of 3D can't disguise the fact that there's nothing visually new or interesting here. If you're a big fan of these films, you might just barely find this one to be passable. If you enjoyed the original, which was a good and solid little fantasy action flick, but noticed the decline in quality of the sequels, you'll find the pattern continuing here.

As the motion picture begins, the existence of vampires and Lycans has been uncovered by humanity and the result has been all-out war against the "infected". You think that'd be kind of a big deal and take the story in some new direction, but it's nothing more than a plot device. Selene and her hybrid vamp/werewolf lover Michael (not Scott Speedman) get attacked and Selene wakes up from suspended animation 12 years later in a lab. She thinks Michael is the one who freed her but it turns out to be their hybrid daughter (India Eisley) and no, they never even make an attempt to explain where the daughter came from. With the help of a human cop (Michael Ealy) and a new vampire sidekick (Theo James), Selene has to save her daughter. Not from the humans but from a Lycan scheme to create new super-werewolves, which sort of gets back to the whole plot device nature of humans knowing about the denizens of Underworld. It's not a new beginning for the series or anything like that. It's just the hook they needed to get this production off the ground.

If you saw Beckinsale in the first two Underworld movies, there's nothing here that will surprise you. Frankly, part of this film get dangerously close to outright fan fiction, such as when Selene revives in the lab and finds her traditional leather outfit just waiting for her to put back on. I mean, what scientific purpose was served by keeping her clothes around for 12 years? Beckinsale looks damn good, shoots a bunch of stuff and there's plenty of CGI Lycans and slo-mo action scenes. If that's all you want, have at it.

If you're looking for a good story, even one only as good as the first or second parts of the franchise, don't bother. Underworld wasn't exactly Shakespeare but by fantasy action standards, it was a reasonably intelligent and well put together tale. The sequel was a bit too wrapped up in its own mythos, but was still functional. The third movie was strictly by-the-numbers, though it did flip the dynamic by making the Lycans more heroic than the vampires. However, Underworld: Awakening is a morally confused mess.

One of the reasons why the "vampire as hero" thing works is by being very circumspect about the whole "needing to feed on human blood" thing. By downplaying that, vampires change from menacing predators to really cool hipsters with super-powers. So, the original Underworld largely removed humans from the equation and focused on the werewolf vs. vampire conflict and put Selene in the role of heroine by defending the only major human character in the story. She then uncovered and rejected the villainy of her own bloodsucking kind, cementing Selene's moral and narrative virtue. Selene may have been a vampire but she never seemed to need to feed on humans and was mostly on our side. That dynamic continued in the 2nd flick and the third cast vamps as medieval tyrants facing a courageous Lycan rebellion where, again, humans were largely left out of the fight.

Underworld: Awakening opens with Selene slaughtering a score of human soldiers and then kills some more when she escapes from the lab, including chomping a guy on the neck and feasting on his blood. She's not a good guy who's trying to protect people from bad guys. She's an at best morally neutral creature who's only trying to survive and the viewer is expected to side with her out of nothing more than misanthropic contempt for your fellow human beings. This film assumes there's something wrong with normal people trying to protect themselves from supernatural monsters but never explains what that is. It also doesn't help that the plot is one of those multi-writer efforts where different bits from different versions of the script wind up jammed together on screen. There are too many characters and too many scenes that should have been cut out or significantly changed.

There are so few female-driven movie franchises that it's a shame to see this one swirl down the toilet bowl. Beckinsale and the first Underworld deserved the attention and success they got, but it's time to drag these movies out into the sunlight and let them burn up so we can all move on.
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What just happened?
mad-bout-movies16 February 2012
Warning: Spoilers

I made a complete fool of myself when recommending this movie to my wife on the basis that the other Underworld movies were very good. My personal favourite being Rise of the Lycans. After about 15 minutes into this movie I realised it was completely disconnected from the other Underworld movies. The story is all over the place, I watched with disillusion as the movie went from one moment to many years later skipping all the sub plots that would have actually made a good movie, such as the war between humans, Lycans and Vampires. We just jump straight into a time when vampires are on the edge of extinction and Lycans are all but gone from the world. But even this is contradicted, if humans were so effective at wiping out Lycans and Vampires then how come an ultra secret top of the government organisation is run by the Lycans?!?!

Then there's the action sequences which IMHO were only added to be visually appealing, they didn't appear to move the story in any direction. There are times when Kate B empty's two of three clips on Lycans at close range and fails to even stop them approaching and then other scenes where she pops off three rounds from vast distances while sliding across the floor or jumping off walls and every single shot hits the 3 bad guys in the head.

These types of inconsistencies in both the action sequences and the story is what makes this a stand alone Underworld movie not deserving of the franchise. I was shocked by the 7.1 rating but I guess if you like watching a movie while parking your brain in your popcorn then you might enjoy it, if you've seen and enjoyed the other movies I suspect you may well find it incredibly disappointing.
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I am very disappointed.
grierjs5 February 2012
Warning: Spoilers
There was a time when I like the Underworld series. The first one had a good plot, solid acting, and added something to the mythos, even as it borrowed from the White Wolf universe. The second one was... tolerable at best. It was worth watching, at least, which is more than I can say for Rise of the Lycans. That was a total waste of time.

Despite the general downhill trend, I decided to check this one out in the theater. Boy, was that a waste! If the writers couldn't come up with a better villain than a steroid abusing werewolf, they need to go back to the drawing board. There are so many things they could have done with this scenario. We could have seen the Abominations come to the forefront, for one, as their strengths would have made them very difficult for the humans to kill.

Instead we see the Lycans taking the place of the Vampires (which I thought was alright, except for the whole Dr. Jeckyll and Mr. Werewolf bit), the Vampires have all turned into a bunch of little sniveling wimps, and we are once AGAIN left wondering just what the hell is the Abomination even doing in the movie!! Yeah, I said it! The Hybrid is supposed to be some kind of immensely powerful beast capable of taking down even an elder vampire. This is something referenced multiple times throughout the series, and yet every time a hybrid gets into a fight, they get their head stomped in! In the first movie, Michael got smacked down by the elder, who is later killed by (da da DAH!) Selene. In the second movie, Michael once again gets punked, but at least he made one kill before the day is once again saved by (dah dah DAH!) Selene! Now in this, the fourth in the series, presumably focused on the hybrids, Michael gets punked even worse right at the start! They could have had him at least take out a few of the guys coming after him before he got knocked on his backside and put on ice! Sure, the little girl does alright. No better than Michael ever did, but at least she got a kill in her first screen outing. It seems to me that the only tough characters in these films are the females.

My point is this: if the hybrids are supposed to be the "future," and the Lycans and Vampires are both scared to death of them, WHY don't we see more of their abilities?! Why are we left disappointed time and time again? Why do the writers insist on making the hybrids do little more than turn blue and roar a few times before getting the crap beat out of them? If you writers have nothing better to do with the hybrids, TAKE THEM OUT OF THE SERIES. They are, to this point, little more than a near worthless sidekick, and they add almost nothing to the story outside of being the target for aggression from both sides.

I gave the film 3 starts because it at least had good special effects. Beyond that, it's a flop. Predictable plot, mediocre fight scenes, and a villain that made me think Bruce Banner had been bitten by a werewolf. If this is the direction the series is headed, I am done with it.
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Great Action
Floated223 October 2013
Having just watched Underworld Awakening and not being an avid fan of the previous films in the series (not watching them), my stance on this film may not be as accurate as to those whom have seen the entire films in chronological order. However then I am reviewing this film based on this one solely. I thoroughly enjoyed, found the action top notch, well directed and fast paced. I know some of the complaints are due to the thin story but I did not mind too much. Yes a better story could have made the film better but I enjoyed the mother-daughter relationship and how and what they had to do in order to save her, and her whole escape plan. Kate Beckinsale is great as Selene as well as the other supporting actors. The Lycans and vampires were an interesting take in this, as well as the final scene involving Selene having to fight the giant Lycan. The 3D was believable and so were the gimmicks. For an action movie, it delivers.
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Action movie that felt like an episode of a TV show
Naciak20 January 2012
Warning: Spoilers
No Michael, just some crazy kid who looks like a girl from 'The Curse'. Only one kiss (in flashback!), one semi-Sexy naked Selene scene, and that's all 'eroticism' in there. The whole script was probably like 10 pages and half of it was pain grunts. The police, the time frame, the afraid vampires - poor confused story. Bloody, some killing methods were hilarious. 3D worked really well with all the jumping, walking on walls, blood on camera, fire, etc. They left the story very open at the end and that's why it felt like an episode of a TV show also the movie seemed very short, expect more Underworld movies if this one makes profit. But I got to see it for free and free is always good! :)
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Underworld: Underbaked
patrickmmc22 January 2012
Like most here, I'd have to say that I was pretty excited to see a new Underworld coming to the screen. My excitement was quickly snuffed out by disappointment from the very beginning and all the way up through the very end. This movie was full of undesirable 3D gimmicks, poor and sloppy use of CGI, and a weak story line. Once again, we've been given a film that was quickly thrown together for an additional squeeze on the franchise name, and a final milking of the of a reasonable fan base. This film didn't last more than 1.5 hours, leaving the audience with an underdeveloped story line and cast of characters. I wasn't too happy with a majority of the character selections. No one seemed to fill their role well. The acting/directing was mediocre at best. As for the CGI, many of the scenes seemed like a under-budgeted video game rather than a well designed special effect. Rest assured, this film will not win any awards and we've probably seen the last installment as this film just seemed as though it was coming for it's last breath of air before going under completely. At best, you can add this one to the long list of pop-corn entertainers best viewed on a rainy day when nothing better is available to do.
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hussein_hbk22 January 2012
why is this film made in 3D,i have no idea.so many of the films made today are introduced in 3D with no what so ever need..(only AVATAR were that much great in 3D). The story in this part is very weak.i expected a more convincing script than this one.the idea of being captivated in a frozen form and waking up after a certain amount of time is already worn out. Kate Beckinsale gives a good performance but the film and the screenplay didn't help much,at some times i felt the script was naiive. the movie's duration was very short,i felt it was an episode for television not a full movie. i expected more of this film but i didn't get what i was expecting.
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Waste of time - awful.
jonathan parker2 April 2012
I quite recently discovered the underworld franchise. Generally not that fond of the fantasy genre, I liked the first 3 movies because they had something fantasy movies often lack; a good story.

Watching this fourth episode I was very disappointed. No story, no twists and turns, just fighting without purpose. The characters are not developed and you feel totally emotionally disconnected to whats going on. There's not even a connection to the previous episodes.

My advice is: stay away from this movie. Watch the previous ones one more time or do something else.

This is completely waste of your time.
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Very fast paced action! Loved it!
srsachan20 January 2012
Warning: Spoilers
Well! I loved the movie as I was entertained! Isn't that is why we watch movies, for me movies should be entertaining first whether they can satisfy the critic's or not. This part is very fast paced u never get bored for a minute, its is action truly underworld style. Sometimes its very hard for me to believe that how movies like twilight(Boring love story and action nothing to speak of) work so well at the box office and underworld doesn't. Maybe its a personal choice of viewers. But if i have to rate vampire movies i would certainly rate Underworld(any part) higher than any of the twilight movies. Overall this movie is for those who liked previous parts of this movie! So enjoy the confrontation between VAMPIRES, LYCHANS AND now HUMANS!
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Amazing movie
Michael DiPalma20 January 2012
I have been a big fan of all the underworld movies. I believe the story is amazingly well played and its never a "you are left wanting more" film. I have read a few reviews of this film from people saying that it lacks story line/plot. Which I cannot believe. Every Underworld movie brings something new to the scene. One review said there was a 'dull' breakout intro kinda feeling like 'resident evil' style. First off, this is incredibly wrong. This movie (and all other underworlds) LACKED any dullness. Yes, Kate Beckinsale is incredibly gorgeous eye candy and the effects were amazing. But I'm not entirely sure where someone can come off and say this lacked story. In my opinion, the people saying this are people who think "Jessica's body" had a good story line. Underworld always leaves it off with such a twist or an ending that leaves so much room for whatever and has the potential to go in any direction. This movie was well played and directed. People saying they 'didn't get the little girl thing' obviously didn't pay attention to dialog or the EXPRESSION on Selenes face. Please, if you are a fan of underworld, or Kate Beckinsale, don't miss out on an amazing film because some people can't understand something that's not spelled out in perfect cliché. Cliché... something Underworld has yet to bring to the table. Awesome job everyone. Keep it up.
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Best Underworld Movie Ever and Better Than The Rest Combined!
swt840820 January 2012
I just joined this site today purposely to write this review. This movie was incredible! I haven't seen so much action packed into a vampire movie ever. It's the best movie I have seen since HUGO and it was just great. I was at the edge of my seat in so many of the fight scenes. Selene is back and stronger, faster and more kick ass than ever. The movie is just great. I hope all fantasy, action and adventure directors take notice of what happened. I didn't think the script was all that great but the action sure made up for it and the story was decent too. I can't wait till the next one. By the way don't waste your money on the 3D. It is not that noticeable and the movie is a dark movie anyways so it was just a waste to see it in 3D but other than that the movie is so good. I had no idea how great it was. The smile on my face when I left the movie and even during the fight scenes was nuts. I can't wait to see this again and then own it on blue ray! Anyone who doesn't like the movie clearly wasn't seeing what I witnessed. Again I can't wait to see this again. I'm excited because not many movies make me want to buy the tickets again and throughout the whole movie I kept thinking this is a great start for 2012 movies should start. Oh and Kate Beckinsale looked even better in this movie than the rest!
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newcareers4522 January 2012
Warning: Spoilers
I love all the Underworld movies. Awakenings was okay, but not great. There was a lot of action, but there were a lot of missing details and chronologically it did not make sense. If Selene was pregnant, she would have known it. It seems to me that the uprising against the lycans and vampires did not happen straight after the last movie. There would have been a lag in time. Also, if her daughter was cloned, the writers did not explain any of that. Also, just even alittle bit more of the history before mankind started to "cleanse" the world would have made more sense. The other movies were much better than this one at giving more detail. It appears as though Michael is back and that there will be a next Underworld as per the ending of this movie.
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Thanks a lot
Fmy Fmy15 February 2012
Really thanks a lot for the makers of this movie. Couldn't imagine more to ruin the reputation of a good trilogy. I think, even these modern video games' in game videos are far better than this movie.

There was no "oh what comes next?" question in my head. Just watched meaningless fights. You were getting excited while watching the fights in former series. There is no need to talk about characters who toss cars around like toys and can't even break the wall. Selene's and the werewolves final fight was really stupid. Selene who did unbelievable things just waited in the corner of the room like a cat. The big bad wolf was just tossing Selene around.

Even if I would consider this movie as not a sequel, it still would be an under average scored one.

Maybe it would be harsh but I would consider Underworld: Awakening in the same category of Twilight Saga for being a bad vampire&werewolf movie.
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The final battle...
Thanos Karagioras16 February 2014
"Underworld: Awakening" is the fourth movie of the Underworld series and in this one we watch the battle between Vampire and Lycan clans against the humankind when humans discover the existence of them. We also watch how Selene who is the leader of them against the humans plans to win this battle and how this is going to happen.

I really liked this movie because of the plot and the storyline of it and because of the cast and their interpretation. For one more time Kate Beckinsale was outstanding, the interpretation of Theo James as David was really nice such Stephen Rea and Michael Ealy also were.

Finally I have to tell you that this movie is really unpredictable and if you have seen all the previous movies of Underworld you just have to watch this one, and I am sure that you will love it.
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