Synopsis: In Underworld: Rise of the Lycans, the Lycans fight for their freedom from slavery from the Vampires.
Release Date: January 23, 2009 MPAA Rating: PG-13
Genre(s): Action, Thriller
The storyline of Underworld: Rise of the Lycans is nothing extraordinary. It has action and romance but they are not overly exciting and the acting is by no means great. Underworld: Rise of the Lycans does entertain for the duration and gives insight into how the other films in the franchise fall into place, being this is a prequel.
The main effect in Underworld: Rise of the Lycans is the creation of the werewolves and the change from human to wolf. For the most part, the werewolves, or Lycans, do appear believable. The majority of time spent on film for them is either done from wide angles, as to avoid a close-up, or with very quick editing that masks the Lycan as a whole. When one does see the Lycan close up, and in action, it fails to impress. The face appears plastic-like and the body no more than a body suit of fake hair. These moments do not occur frequently so the belief in the reality of the Lycans holds true for the viewer throughout the film.
The editing in Underworld: Rise of the Lycans is outstanding for two reasons: the change of the Lycan from human to wolf and the action sequences between Vampire and Lycan. In both instances, the quick-paced editing allows for the intensity of the scenes to increase and grab the viewers attention. When the Lycan changes it is a mix of extreme close-ups on the body; the face morphing, the hair growing on the leg, the back arching. During the action sequences, a similar method is employed minus the extreme close-ups. Instead, you find the rapid pacing of shots moving between characters as they battle. All of these cuts are done seamlessly and with such perfect timing that you are at once glued to the scene.
The only real design aspect of Underworld: Rise of the Lycans is the fortress that houses the Vampires and Lycans. It is a dark, damp environment that is void of light and continually cast in shadow due to the fact that the entirety of Underworld: Rise of the Lycans takes place during the night. The fortress appears as a medieval ruin and does not offer any sort of awe for the viewer as it is plain and ordinary with nothing spectacular to draw your eye. This neglect weakens the experience as an otherworld that could be seemingly inventive is cast instead as boring and drab.
For a variety of different action sequences, Underworld: Rise of the Lycans delivers. From the Lycans attacking in the forest, to the Vampires and Lycans fighting each other for control, they do not fail to succeed. You will find yourself thoroughly excited by the fighting, the swift movements, and the stunts all along the way.
Cast and Crew
- Director(s): Patrick Tatopoulos
- Screenwriters: Len Wiseman, Robert Orr, Danny McBride
- Cast: Michael Sheen (Lucian), Bill Nighy (Viktor), Rhona Mitra (Sonja), Steven Mackintosh (Tannis)
- Country Of Origin: USA