Underworld (2003)

I love making lists. It keeps me organized and I feel accomplished when I cross things off. One of my lists includes movies that I haven’t seen. This includes whole franchises or stand-alone films. One franchise that’s been on my list for a while is the Underworld franchise starring Kate Beckinsale. I know the Underworld series was about Vampires and Lycans, but that’s it. Watching Underworld for the first time, this movie has held up since it was released twenty years ago.

Underworld focuses on Selene (played by Kate Beckinsale) who leads a team to take down the Lycans as she is led to believe that the Lycans are evil and killed her family. As Selene is tracking a group of Lycans, she’s surprised to see that they are targeting a human which is unheard of. Selene feels that’s suspicious enough, so she finds Michael (played by Scott Speedman), the human that Selene feels is being targeted. Selene is correct as Michael was attacked by Lucian (played by Michael Sheen). Selene is too late and sees Michael has been bitten by Lucian. Selene is aware something is going on, but she’s gaslit by her clan who tells her there is nothing to fear. Selene turns her back on the clan to try to save Michael along with uncovering why he’s being targeted, to begin with.

The first thing I noticed about watching Underworld for the first time is how awesome Selene is. She’s a female protagonist who is not dressed provocatively and she can hold her own throughout the movie. It’s obvious that Selene is stunning because she’s a Vampire who doesn’t age, but they don’t dress her in a campy outfit, she wears all leather and black and her look is functional. I think that’s interesting considering the time frame in which Underworld was originally released.

Besides Seline, I think the cast in Underworld helps make this a more memorable supernatural action film. Michael Sheen as Lucian was a perfect casting choice. Lucian has this sort of goth, animalistic look to him. Lucian is the type of villain who isn’t physical, but more manipulative as he plays both sides of this war. Bill Nighy plays Viktor, one of Selene’s mentors as she became a vampire. Viktor is a character that is cold-hearted, yet he has a soft spot for Selene which is proven throughout the film.

It was fun to watch Underworld for the first time. I’m glad that I could cross another film off my list.

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