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Movies You Aught Not Watch: Underworld

by on December 8, 2010
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Movies You Aught Not Watch is Nick Rogers’ weekly, alphabetical look back at the 52 worst films of 2000-2009.

“Underworld”
Rated R
2003

“Underworld” is witless, unimpressive, uninvolving and plodding. And that’s just getting started.

It was as horrible as one would expect knowing it’s the brainchild of two stuntmen and a prop handler — doing nothing but ripping off far-superior films they’ve watched or worked on. They expected audiences to drool at the cool of token mythology about vampires and werewolves fighting for centuries.

Oh, sorry, that’s “vampyres” and “lycans,” because 2003’s “Underworld” is just too darn Eastern European and gothic to use the “conformist” spelling or common words.

It’s also too boring to call main vampiric character Selene (Kate Beckinsale) an assassin. No, no. She’s a “death dealer,” one whose narration says that while the weapons have evolved, the battle has waned because there are so few werewolves left. Well, those weapons didn’t evolve that much, given that Wesley Snipes wasted vampires with similar bullets in “Blade II.”

The plot follows a human (Scott Speedman) targeted by both vampires and werewolves to create a strong hybrid. By what we see, that “hybrid” would be a guy in desperate need of electrolysis that shops the Hot Topic clearance rack.

And when two insignificant secondary characters duke it out, you’ll wonder why … until you realize they’re the two stuntmen who concocted the story.

In June 2003, Beckinsale and director Len Wiseman were engaged. Who knows? Maybe this was just his $22-million excuse to get close. Let’s hope their heart remains in the marriage. It sure wasn’t in “Underworld,” its sequels or prequels.

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