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The Underworld Franchise: The Definitive Ranking

This is a middling franchise, at best. A couple of halfway decent movies to start things off, a surprisingly good little third entry, and then the dregs of incoherence to end with two more.

There’s room for greatness in most story ideas, and Underworld had potential in its derivative world building, but it could never really escape from its self-seriousness, love of lore, and a weird propensity for palace intrigue in place of actual drama.

Kate Beckinsale has been talking up a return to the franchise recently, probably because she’s not getting as much work as she used to and a return to this series will be a guaranteed paycheck for her, but I hope it never happens. I have nothing against Ms. Beckinsale whom I find to be a perfectly capable actress, but this franchise will never fall into the hands of anyone who can do anything interesting with the concept. Just push the whole thing into the sun, let it burst into flames, and let’s be done with it.

Underworld: Blood Wars (2016) - IMDb

5. Underworld: Blood Wars

“I would be happy if this franchise stayed dead forever now.”

Amazon.com: (11x17) Underworld: Awakening Kate Beckinsale Movie Poster:  Prints: Posters & Prints

4. Underworld: Awakening

“Nothing matters. It’s all dumb. The franchise that always had more potential than great execution finally descends into complete idiocy and incomprehensible stupidity. Well, at least Kate Beckinsale can still fit into that catsuit.”

Amazon.com: Underworld: Evolution 27 x 40 Movie Poster - Style A:  Lithographic Prints: Posters & Prints

3. Underworld: Evolution

“The movie exists in the middle ground, and it’s kind of frustrating. As it stands, the movie’s fine, the sort of entertainment that can occupy without really engaging for a couple of hours. Much like the first one.”

Underworld (2003) - IMDb

2. Underworld

“It’s not great. It’s not even really good, but it’s a decent way to spend 2 hours.”

Underworld: Rise of the Lycans (2009) - IMDb
  1. Underworld: Rise of the Lycans

“I think it’s good enough to recommend on its own. Clear storytelling, strong acting from some of the key players, and an absence of the lore telling that burdened both of the previous films helps Rise of the Lycans become more than its predecessors and stand alone as a pretty good film.”

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