Underworld: Blood Wars  The next episode in the Underworld franchise sees Kate Beckinsale return as our leather-clad heroine Selene, drawn back into the eternal war between vampires and lycans. Theo James (Divergent) reprises his role as David, Laura Pulver (Sherlock) is the devious Semira and newcomer to the franchise Tobias Menzies, who you might recognize from his roles in Outlander and Game of Thrones, is the lycan leader Marius.
Thank god for the recap at the start - I couldn’t quite remember what had happened in the other movies and I definitely needed Beckinsale’s monologue to bring me up to speed. This is the role she does well, and she delivers her badass death dealer character with just enough emotion to make Selene seem more human than vampire. The character has come a long way in the series and you can understand her frustration when she is yet again caught in the crossfire between the lycans and her own kind.
Clementine Nicholson is a refreshing new face as Lena, one of the Viking vampires. The introduction of the northern Viking coven is an interesting contrast to the usual dark and gothic vampires we are used to. Although the plot is more politically diverse than the previous films, Menzies is limited by the script and is ultimately a disappointing villain. There are a few subplots that tapered off unexpectedly, but I’m sure they will inevitably be developed, in the next movie.
Of course, there is gore galore, as you would expect from Underworld. It definitely brings a splash of color to an otherwise dull gray set and Director Anna Foerster (Outlander, Day After Tomorrow) supplies the big overwhelming action scenes we have come to expect from the franchise. Although the script is somewhat lacking and there’s only so many CGI werewolf transformations you can take, it is entertaining and drags you into the dark and gothic world of vampires and lycans.