As a chapter in an over-arching epic of vampire and werewolf mythology - a narrative in which the characters and audience emerge enriched, and changed for the experience - Underworld: Awakening is a piece of shit. Don't go see it for that.
As a movie in which Kate Beckinsale, while sporting skin-tight pleather, is totally badass, Underworld: Awakening is the best Underworld movie there's ever been.
Most of her badassery takes place during the first twenty minutes of the film, as she kicks the crap out of human spec ops guys in far more brutal fashion than one would be accustomed to, after the last three Underworld flicks. She breaks necks and kicks skulls in and slashes throats - she is more of an ass-kicking ultrababe than ever before. This, finally, feels like the Selene we've been hearing about throughout the first two movies.
This is Selene as we felt she should be - quiet, mysterious and the most lethal thing in any given room.
In the middle and latter half of the movie, we get back into the vampire-versus-werewolf thing, and while she remains suitably badass, things take a disappointing turn when we're introduced to the Ultralycan. It's basically a very big werewolf, with more polygons and detail - but as an End Boss, it leaves much to be desired.
On the way home, in the car, I explained my problem with it to Kayla.
"It's like... if that were the end boss in a game, right? It's only got one move. It hits you so hard you go flying into a wall. You get up, and try again. I kept waiting for it to try and bite her head off."
Much less interesting than William in Underworld: Evolution - now there was a cool design.
You'd be well-served to wait for Awakening on bluray - and speaking of resolution, I find myself wondering if I would have had a better impression of the film if I'd seen it in a theater that could focus a goddamned picture.