Screen Gems Movie Reviews
with Kennie Bass. You'll find it First On Fox!

Underworld: Awakening January 21, 2012
Underworld: Awakening
Studio: Sony Pictures
Rating: R for strong violence and gore, and for some language.

After skipping the franchise's third installment, Kate Beckinsale returns as Selene the Death Dealer in the fourth chapter of the "Underworld" series.

The vampire has been frozen for a dozen years...and wakes up in a future where humans have finally figured out that vamps and werewolves are real. The sets in motion a worldwide attempt to wipe the supernatural creatures from existence.

With some outside help, Selene escapes prison and works to stop the eradication of her race. However, she has even bigger problems than men with guns. The Lycans have a secret that might tip the balance of their eternal struggle with the vampires.

With Lycans on one side and killer humans on the other, Selene decides that hiding in the shadows isn't the answer. She takes the fight to her enemies, attacking the facility where she was held for more than a decade.

If you're a fan of the series, I think you'll enjoy "Underworld: Awakening." Beckinsale is better than ever...and she looks fantastic. I would have liked a little more fire from Selene...but the character has never displayed much emotion so she is staying consistent.

After a couple of halting steps and stumbles, the franchise feels a bit re-energized with the focus shifting to a war between supernatural creatures and mankind. And the addition of Selene's hybrid Vampire-Lycan daughter sets things up pretty well if there are any more sequels down the road.

For all of their flaws, I've liked each of the "Underworld" films. I know they're not groundbreaking but at least they serve up their action scenes well. With a bigger budget...there are even more bangs and booms in part four.

On my rating scale, "Underworld: Awakening" earns a DOUBLE.

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