We had gotten the DVD of the first in this series, “Underworld” and found it surprisingly entertaining (although far from great), and so decided we would see this one on the big screen (for matinee prices). As with the first, the chief attraction of this movie is watching Kate Beckinsale look deliciously feral in her bright-blue contact lenses, vinyl catsuit, and leather corset. There must be something about the lenses that makes her want to keep her eyes wide open, because you can always see the irises all the way around, which, in order for her to look dangerous, causes her to affect a glower from under the eyebrows, which as a kind of anime bad-girl effect. The story proper picks up immediately after the end of the first movie, with the nefarious plans of Victor (the vampire) and Lucan (the werewolf) in ruins. Selene (Beckinsale) is on the run with Michael (Scott Speedman), the werewolf/vampire hybrid. The carnage back at Vampire HQ has awakened the progenitor Marcus (Tony Curran), who cleans house and sets out after them, since it turns out they both have something he wants very badly. I won’t go into plot details here, since this one actually has a fairly linear story compared to the hash of who’s-screwing-who plots in the first movie. There, are, however, still some plot holes, and the motivations of Michael and the other new character played by Sir Derek Jacobi, although explained, still seem kind of unlikely. Excellent effects, LOTS of violence, and quite a bit of artistically applied gore. (I admired one sequence where a frosted-glass porthole first flickers with rapid movement and gun flashes, then is sprayed with blood, then darkened by the approach of the enemy--. Artistically done.) The final fight scene goes on a bit too long for my taste (and about ten minutes too long for Georgie’s). Also includes one soft-core sex scene between Michael and Selene. Minimal bad language, but you can hardly blame Selene for the occasional “Oh, fuck!” given all that happens to her.
Interesting movie note: Along with this, we got trailers for upcoming ‘horror’ movies, including a remake of “When a Stranger Calls” (why?!) and one called “See No Evil,” which is a slasher movie in the “Halloween/Friday the 13th” mode. Seeing these two make me conclude that, in movieland, being a homicidal maniac automatically means that you will be huge, terribly strong, and almost invulnerable, a fact already demonstrated by “Jason” and “Michael Myers” of the two aforementioned films. I guess if you are looking for an exciting career slashing teenage bimbos, there’s no future for you if you’re a weedy runt. Freddy Kruger (of “Nightmare on Elm Street”) is no exception to this rule—he got torched by mere neighbors and had to do most of his nefarious work after being dead--.