Underworld Series Part 1: Series Review

Considering the appropriate amount of time has passed and they feel comfortable popping out another Underworld movie in October I thought this was a solid time to talk about the Underworld Series. I always liked these and instead of shitting on everything like a Canadian Goose with explosive diarrhea I figured I’d do a more positive review. Also I felt doing the series was a better choice than just doing one of them considering they tie together so cleanly. Keeping this fact in mind though, there is a solid “separation” between the first and second pairs of movies in the series. This is soon to become a 2-1-2 split when the next one comes out later in the year but for the purposes of this review we’ll stick with the 2-2 split. The first two follow each other on a time line basis, one coming right after the other in the continuum of Underworld. For these reasons (as well as the fact that doing all four in one review would be way to long) this review will be in two parts and will take up both review uploads this week; the first two will be covered here, and the other two will be uploaded on schedule in a couple days. Now, let’s get into it.

The series starts with Underworld, otherwise known as the Vampires VS. Werewolves movie before it was switched with one portrayed by angsty teenagers that don’t have any emotions besides uncomfortably constipated. Our main characters are Selene, the resident vampire character we follow through the series, and Michael Corvin, the child of legend who will find the sword of almighty power to slay Ganon. Wait, no that’s the wrong child of legend. My bad. Mike is basically the only human descendant of the progenitor of fucking everyone important in these movies. Mike and Selene go on adventures to figure out what the hell is going on, and in the process, Mike becomes a Lycan after he gets bitten by Lucian, the bad guy everyone thought was dead. Mike get shot with some liquid silver bullets, because thats a thing, and has to be bitten by Selene so he can be both Vampire and Lycan and the silver won’t affect him. In the end most of the bad guys die and everyone can live happily ever after except for the main characters because they’re being hunted by both sides now. They kind of got the short end of the dick on that one but they’ll make it work.

The second movie, Underworld Evolution, picks up right where the first left off. Mike and Selene are on the run and have to fight there way through this and that bad guy to stop the only Vampire that looks like a fucking bat from breaking his Lycan brother out of solitary because he’ll just kill everything. They go in search of Marcus, the Vampire trying to free his brother, meeting him several times along the way, during all of which Mike and Marcus just beat the shit out out of each other. The penultimate fight between the two however, Mike gets impaled and is seemingly dead, and Selene must go finish the journey on her own. Finally we reach the showdown between Marcus and William (the brother), and Selene and, towards the end, Mike who it turns out isn’t actually dead. This ends in a win for the good guys as Mike tears Williams head clean in half, and Selene throws Marcus into fucking helicopter blades.

There are a lot of great things in these movies once you get past the opening scene of the first  trying to convince people to drink whilst rock-climbing what with the side-by-side Cliff Bar and Bacardi product placement. The fight scenes we get early on are a little movie standard but I choose to ignore that considering what they built from it. The initial fire fight set up many plot points for the coming scenes and even future movies like the discovery of UV rounds that are now being used against the Vampires. This is great because there’s never a pointless fight scene that isn’t setting any plot points or doing something important which I like personally. Also later in the films they get to stray away from the over standard “the main characters have plot armor and all bullets just miss them” cliché because it doesn’t matter if they get shot with regular bullets because they’re immortal so fuck it, make them look like a fine swiss cheese.

These movies also do something very well that I’ve talked about in the past and that is pacing. Considering the two movies average just under two hours run time, the pacing is quite good compared to most other movies. This is mostly due to the fact that the Underworld series does something most movie franchises are seemingly afraid to do anymore which is tell a good fucking story and make multiple movies to do so. Most movies now-a-days have no patience at all, they just want to crowd the van with everything and hop the boarder all at the same time hoping they make it across without being blown to bits. THIS IS IMPORTANT. Sure it may take a lot more work, god forbid, but sometimes its necessary in order to tell a great story, and Underworld does this magnificently.

Backpacking off of that previous point, Underworld goes the extra mile and gives us backstory. Not only do they explain it well and make sure we get the full picture by the end of the movie, but they then give us a whole movie (Underworld Rise of the Lycans) to go even more in-depth and give us the FULL full picture. It once again drives the stake home that forethought and planing went into this series that just doesn’t in most movies recently. This when coupled with solid acting and a story thats any less predictable than a Mario game plot sequence creates a beautiful thing.

I was debating on whether or not to give scores to both Part 1 and Part 2 and eventually decided against it. There will be an overall score at the end of Part 2 so be sure to check that out when it goes up!

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