“In the next installment of the blockbuster franchise, Underworld: Blood Wars follows Vampire Death Dealer Selene (Kate Beckinsale) as she fends off brutal attacks from both the Lycan clan and the Vampire faction that betrayed her. With her only allies, David (Theo James) and his father Thomas (Charles Dance), she must stop the eternal war between Lycans and Vampires, even if it means she has to make the ultimate sacrifice.”
The fifth film in the franchise, Underworld: Blood Wars opens with a brief description of events leading Selene to this point as she leads Lycan forces in a high speed chase through city streets. We learn in this opening voice over that the source of the conflict now is the search for Selene’s daughter. David arrives to save Selene and conveniently explain the new plot for us, that a new leader of the Lycans have risen, Marius (Tobias Menzies), who along with the Vampires seeks Selene’s daughter to use her blood for unlimited power.
Selene and David are invited by the Vampire coven to return and train new Death Dealers in anticipation for the upcoming Lycan war that seems inevitable. Selene is almost instantly betrayed, a theme that plays out way too frequently. She is held captive by Samira (Lara Pulver), a member of the high council that also wishes to possess the blood of Selene’s daughter. After a quick rescue by David and his father Thomas, his father implores them to escape while he holds off Samira and her followers.
Selene and David seek sanctuary at another Vampire coven where David learns of a hidden past his mother and father kept from him. Meanwhile, Marius and his army approaches Selene’s location thanks to another betrayal. This leads to a very action-packed third act that doesn’t have a lot of time for explanation, but focuses on what made the series so successful, Vampires and Lycans literally tearing each other to pieces.
Underworld: Blood Wars caters to the short attention spans of the audiences of today. Each shot lasts seconds, cutting to different angles carelessly, even as a single person speaks, which is oddly unnerving. There is little substance in the film, while the focus of both sides seek the blood of a character that is entirely absent. Any time there is any type of plot development, we are interrupted by either someone being betrayed, or the Lycans arriving, which they do in almost every scene.
What Underworld: Blood Wars does best is have a lot of intense actions scenes, to the point it leaves you wondering why even have a plot they spent so little time on developing. The franchise knows their target audience and what keeps these films going: the gore-filled bloodbaths between Vampires and Lycans. These fight scenes/battles are done extremely well, with good choreography in the more close quarters fights, and a lot of intense action that really pushes the limit of the R rating.
Underworld: Blood Wars is presented in 4k 2160p Ultra High Definition Widescreen 2.40:1. The 4k transfer delivers a beautiful and clear picture that looks absolutely stunning. The film is rather dark, understandably, but thanks to the HDR the bright blues and whites are exceptionally bright and vivid contrasted with the darkness of the film.
The Blu-Ray disc included is presented in 1080p High Definition Widescreen 2.40:1.
The audio is presented in Dolby Atmos and sounds incredible. Thanks to the abundance of action, there will be ample opportunity to experience the immersing quality of the sound. Levels are done very well, never overpowering the dialogue when you hear someone being betrayed.
There are a couple extra features included on the Blu-Ray disc, which are pretty interesting and worth taking a look at, especially for fans of the series. As short as the film seems, the amount of detail put into the film will really put it in perspective and may give you a better appreciation as almost every member of the cast and crew is interviewed and talk about the current film, as well as past films.
On this set you’re going to see:
- Underworld: Blood Wars The Official Movie Graphic Novel
- The Evolution of Selene
- Building a Blood War
- Old & New Blood
- The Evil Evolved
Fans of the franchise who love Kate Beckinsale being a bad-ass with intense and bloody sequences will have nothing to fear as this film has plenty of it. If you’re expecting evolution of the story and characters you may be left disappointed. Regardless, for what it is, Underworld: Blood Wars can be entertaining for those who simply want more of this character who has now spanned five films.