- Actors: Rhona Mitra, Bill Nighy, Michael Sheen
- Directors: Patrick Tatopoulos
- Format: PAL
- Language: English
- Subtitles: English
- Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
- Number of discs: 1
- Classification: 18
- Studio: Eiv
- DVD Release Date: 18 May 2009
- Run Time: 92 minutes
- Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars See all reviews (195 customer reviews)
- ASIN: B001QFZA9O
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 4,143 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)
Underworld: Rise of the Lycans [DVD]
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Michael Sheen and Bill Nighy star in this vampire thriller prequel, the third outing for the 'Underworld' fantasy franchise. The film tells the story of the origins of the centuries-old blood feud between the aristocratic vampires known as Death Dealers and their onetime slaves, the Lycans. In the Dark Ages, young Lycan Lucian (Sheen) emerges as a powerful leader who rallies the werewolves to rise up against Viktor (Nighy), the cruel vampire king who has enslaved them. Lucian is joined by his secret lover, Sonja (Rhona Mitra), in his battle against the Death Dealer army and his struggle for Lycan freedom.
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Top Customer Reviews
Our view of the Lycans so far has been one of savagery in comparison to the refined qualities of the Vampires, this is rebalanced in Rise of The Lycans. We see the Lycans as the slaves of the Vampire, forced to guard them during the day, and collared so that they cannot change form without fatal consequences. The Vampires still appear civilised, but it's clearly seen that their coven is built on a foundation of slavery, corruption, and exploitation.
Lucian - the first of the 'new' Lycans plans to escape and lead his own kind to freedom, only his plan is complicated by his love affair with Vampire daughter of ruling Elder, Viktor.
What ensues is an action / romance with Werewolves, Vampires, and lots medieval slashings and gore. Again a lot of effort has gone into marrying this film into the back-story already introduced during the other two films, and also into Vampire folklore itself. This means that the three films complement each other brilliantly. I've said before that the first two films certainly aren't bad - but they are best viewed together to give a true sense of the epic scope, and now with this film that sense is intensified.
The cast has been put together well and Bill Nighy seems to relish his role as Viktor. He hams it up but instead of feeling overacted, the flamboyancy adds to the Gothic theatrics of the film.Read more ›
In core essence this is Braveheart/Spartacus, only in CGI laden horror/action form. Michael Sheen buffs up into Karl Urban, who as Lucian (bad ass Lycan) leads his species to a bloody revolt, and Kate Beckinsale has made way narratively for Rhona Mitra, who sexes things up. The action is pulse raising and the Gothic designs and atmospherics are first rate, while the battle royale finale is fit to crown any genre film of its type.
Problems are evident, though. The constant flow of CGI blood becomes irritating after a while, and Bill Nighy (in spite of being a franchise regular) is still looking miscast! But it has proved to be a series with hairy legs and fangs that refuses to die, a popcorn munchers dream. So enjoy the spectacle and the screenplay homages, and I'll have a bag of tortilla chips and a choc ice please. 6.5/10
Though it slightly lacks the impact of the first two films I watched with enjoyment and enthusiasm, only to find it ended too soon for me, I could have happily watched more. If you are an underworld fan, then I'm sure you will like it as much as I do.