Thursday, January 29, 2009

sit back and wave through the daylight

Underworld: Evolution was one of my first reviews. It was a cold Monday night in January of 2006. I left work and went to the theater by my office, excited to be seeing the sequel to a movie that I loved. I sat in the back row to enjoy the movie, and enjoy it I did.

Here we are, a scant 3 years later and it's once more a cold January evening and I'm on my way to see Underworld: Rise of the Lycans. I left work and went to the theater by my office, excited to be seeing the prequel to a movie that I loved. I sat in the back to enjoy the movie, and enjoy it I did not.

I wanted to like it. I really did. I went to see it EXPECTING to like it. I mean, I loved the first two. I really like Rhona Mitra. And I liked the Victor and Lucien characters in the first movie. Something about this one though, just didn't do it for me. After the first five minutes, as the voice over sets the stage for what's to come, I was already unimpressed.

Something about it was just...wrong. Off. The origin of the Lycans, the all just just seemed wrong. At least wrong enough that it left me with a (figurative) bad taste in my mouth.

Lucien is a servant to Victor. A slave actually. A slave held in high regard, but a slave no less. Lucien is a lycan, a werewolf. Unlike the werewolves that have come before him, however, he can shift between wolf and human forms. This makes him valuable. Victor uses him to make more lycans like him. More slaves. Slaves who can help to protect the vampires in the daylight.

and in the daylight we can hitchhike to maine
i hope that someday i’ll see without these frames
and in the daylight i don’t pick up my phone
cause in the daylight anywhere feels like home*

Unless you're a vampire. If you're a vampire then in the daylight anywhere feels like burning! And that's not good. It leaves them vulnerable. A fact that should have really been exploited. Hey, whatever. I'm no general. I'm no leader of men (or lycans) what the hell do I know.

Back to Lucien though, since this is his story. See, he's in love with Viktor's daughter Sonja. And blah blah blah. Look, if you saw the first movie then you know the whole story. That's the problem with doing a prequel, you're covering ground that you've covered before.

Look, lets put it this a prequel that really helped a franchise, a prequel that added to the overall story. Not just added, I suppose they all add something, but added something good. Something worth while. Something that didn't leave you thinking 'well, I could have done without that'. Go ahead. Name one. I'll wait.



Take your time.

I've got plenty of time to sit back and wait.

I just got a new disc of House: Season 3 from Netflix.

Look at that guy limp.

Hey! He just made ajoke about Foreman stealing something! Hahaha!


Oh snap! He just called Chase British!



Boy, that House guy sure is wacky! Wacky and smart!


So, did you think of one? I sure didn't. You know how this shit is going to end. You know who lives. You know who dies. It removes the suspense from the movie. And while you know the 'what' going into the theater, you hope that the 'how' is at least interesting.

The 'how' could have been really interesting, but it was just such a rehash of what we learned in the first movie that movie served no narrative purpose. The story of these characters, the world they live in was not enriched. So, other than so-and-so begat so-and-so, nothing is really accomplished by RotL.

And that's the problem. Rise of the Lycans is a movie full of sound and fury, signifying nothing**.

*From Daylight by Matt & Kim. It's off of their new cd Grand. It just came out and it's pretty sweet.
**Hell yes I closed a review with a little Shakespeare! I'm cultured and shit, yo!