Top positive review
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one of the better vampire/werewolf films
on 5 December 2008
This film was sold to me on the basis that it was a vampire film, and I thought 'oh no'. I started to watch it and was delighted to find that it was a werewolf film too. I've always preferred werewolves to vampires - there is something extremely visceral about ripping another person's throat with your teeth, much better than the bite and suck brigade.
It is in fact a vampire verses werewolf film.
At the opening of the film the voice over from Selene says:
"The war had all but ground to a halt, in the blink of an eye. Lucian, the most feared and ruthless leader ever to rule the Lycan clan, had finally been killed. The Lycan horde scattered to the wind in a single evening of flame and retribution. Victory, it seemed, was in our grasp, the very birthright of the vampires. Nearly six centuries had passed since that night, yet the ancient feud proved unwilling to follow Lucian to the grave. Though Lycans were fewer in number, the war itself had become more perilous, for the moon no longer held her sway. Older, more powerful Lycans, were now able to change at will. The weapons had evolved, but our orders remained the same - hunt them down and kill them off, one by one. A most successful campaign. Perhaps too successful. For those like me, a Death Dealer, this signalled the end of an era. Like the weapons of the previous century, we too would become obsolete. Pity, because I lived for it."
Centuries ago the vampires decided that the best way for securing the survival of their species was for the three elders - Viktor (Bill Nighy), Marcus (Tony Curran), and Amelia (Zita Gorgo) - to rule on a rota basis. One awake, while two sleep. The memories of the vampire ruler being passed to the waking vampire elder by the taste of their blood.
The war between vampires and lycans (werewolves) began over 1,000 years ago, and the defining moment occurred 600 years ago when during a battle the vampire Kraven (Shane Brolly) killed the lycan leader Lucian (Michael Sheen) and set a great blaze which scattered the remaining lycans. As proof of his victory Kraven returned with the brand cut from Lucian's arm and was pronounced to be a hero.
Selene (Kate Beckinsale) is a vampire death dealer, it is her mission to hunt down and destroy the remaining Lycans one by one. At the beginning of the film we see Selene and her team hunting down a small group of lycans. They follow them into the underground train station where she discovers that the lycans are trying to capture a human doctor named Michael Corvin (Scott Speedman). After a battle which foiled plans of the lycans they flee.
Selene follows the escaping lycans and discovers that Lucian, who was supposedly killed by Kraven, is still alive and that the lycans are not running in small groups but have massed for war again.
Returning to the vampire mansion she is seemingly not believed by Kraven (who wants her to be his mate/wife) and decides to find out about this Michael Corvin herself by searching his apartment. They come under attack from Lucian and a group of lycans and Michael is bitten.
Selene becomes more and more desperate to make her fellow vampires believe her. Against the covenant rules and because she has no where else to turn, Selene decides to awaken Viktor (her 'dark father', and the man who saved her from attack by lycans that wiped out her entire family), but things do not go as she thought they would and she is confined to her room to await trial by the vampire council. It is at this point that Erika (Sophia Myles), who wants to be Kraven's mate/wife, helps Selene escape.
As events unfold, the whole truth becomes known and the final battle between lycan and vampire approaches.
All in all one of the best vampire films I have seen in ages, and a dvd 2 disc set that is full of extras (although many of the outtakes discussed in the commentary seem to be missing). I found this five star viewing.