After sitting out most of Underworld: Rise of the Lycans the 2009 “prequel” to the Underworld saga Kate Beckinsale returns to her trademark role as the face of the blockbuster action-horror franchise in Underworld: Awakening. The film finds Beckinsale’s vampire heroine Selene waking up in a research facility after a dozen years in hibernation whereupon she discovers that both vampires and lycans the traditional adversaries of the Underworld universe are now nearly extinct – “cleansed ” as it were by us good-old humans – and that her 12-year-old daughter Eve (India Eisley) is imperiled. It seems that both the dreaded lycans and a mad scientist named Dr. Jacob Lane (poor Stephen Rea) are after the girl on account of her special DNA.
All of which is meant to provide a serviceable backdrop for a good 85 minutes or so of relentless carnage orchestrated with relish by the Swedish directing tandem of Mans Marlind and Bjorn Stein and meted out dutifully by Beckinsale. Nine years after she first portrayed Selene the actress appears as comfortable as ever in her familiar black leather as she carves through waves of monstrous creatures and hapless henchmen performing the odd acrobatic feat to better position herself for the killing blow. The bloodlust occasionally pauses to allow Beckinsale a moment to emote over lost love or seek a fleeting bond with her offspring but soon more CGI beasts arrive on hand and the soulless slaughter hastily recommences. Gorehounds hungry for splatter will delight at the myriad ways Underworld: Awakening finds to depict an exploding skull (in fabulous brain-bursting IMAX 3D!) but in the end they’re likely the only ones who’ll leave the theater sated.
It’s the story of America's youth. It's the story of outcasts who band
together with the beat serving as their common bond in a "communal
experience." It's the story of tireless rave scenesters savvy promoters
and idealistic artists. If you're part of the scene you'll see all the
familiar phenoms and faces; if you're over 30 and don't have a clue
this is a good intro course to the techno world and from now on you'll
be able to love or hate this music with a more informed opinion.
Who the hell are all these people with names such as Frankie Bones DJ
Spooky Loop Guru Moby Scanner and so on? They're the DJs and computer
nerds who make those booming beats on their Macs and turntables and
some of their stories are pretty fascinating. With their do-it-yourself
ethic and their quest to create a new music art form these folks
actually come off as real human beings (like the guy who got into
deejaying by spinning his dead father's record collection).
If you've ever been to a rave you know that there are a few
fundamentals: A darkened empty building (usually a warehouse); loud
thumping and incessant music; weird lights and images streaming across
the walls; and of course the DJ. Director Jon Reiss who used to make
videos for Nine Inch Nails brings the party to the screen without
polishing the grit to an MTV-style gloss. See it in a theater with good