Starring: Kate Beckinsale, Charles Dance, Lara Pulver, Clementine Nicholson, Theo James, Daisy Head (Rated MA – 91 min).
After thirteen years and five films, the only unsurprising thing is that excellent British talent Kate Beckinsale still looks superior in the black catsuit and corset, wielding weapons as death dealer Selene.
Basic scripting keeps any glimpse of decent plot to a minimum so that digital effect heavy action sequences take the lead in proceedings. It’s mixed emotions and quite unbelievable for a big budget film full of choreographed fight scenes to be so boring. Although devotees won’t mind I’m sure.
Survival of the Vampire clan is at risk as Selena and her new ally, former adversary Thomas (Charles Dance). They seek sanctuary in a secluded Nordic coven until the prowling Lycans eventually sniff them out. Die hard fans may recall Selene has a hybrid daughter meaning her blood is of high value for immortality, or something like that.
Production delays held back release of this installment and it shows at times of fuzzy special effects, while although looking wicked, Beckinsale herself seems to be cruising through the motions in this declining series. At one point she disappears off screen for an extended period before returning in a flash to fight, unexplained. Soaring earlier this year in Jane Austen’s Love and Friendship only proves her acting has not gone by the wayside.
Little known Clementine Nicholson is strong, worth the ticket price as Lena, while legendary Charles Dance sleepwalks through his elder role. It’s still always great just to hear him speak with that Shakespearean like tone. Television’s Sherlock star Lena Pulver is buoyant in a welcomed kick ass female heavy cast as Semira, at least her character motivations kind of keep you guessing.
Not the worst Underworld film I have ever seen but that’s not saying much.
Shane A. Bassett