230Underworld Lessons for Our World
- Oct 14, 2003
Dharma Movie Review: Underworld
Underworld Lessons for Our World
Tagline: An immortal battle for supremacy.
Plot Outline: Selene (Beckinsale), a beautiful vampire warrior, is entrenched in a war between the vampire and werewolf races. Although she is aligned with the vampires, she falls in love with Michael (Speedman), a werewolf who longs for the war to end.
Do vampires and werewolves (lycans) really exist? Well, whether they do or not, here's what the literally bloody feud between the deadly rivals in Underworld taught me...1. Eternal life for the vampires and lycans is not true happiness since they are continually fighting- it is eternal living hell- truly underworld. The two species have fought for centuries, but if one is able to live for centuries and still not able to let go of hatred, only breeding more hatred, it is tragic indeed.
2. Are the vampires or lycans truly immortal? None actually live forever. Even Viktor the powerful elder dies in the end. They are still fallible in their own ways (vampires' weakness of ultra-violet light and lycans' weakness of silver), though not as easily. God-like maybe but still trapped in life and death.
3. The vampires and lycans are like powerful yet jealous demi-gods (Asuras / "titans") constantly wary of each other. (More about Asuras at http://asp.thedailyenlightenment.com/specials/lamp/rebirth.asp#demigods )
4. Be it a supernatural battle or not, the Buddha's message holds fast, "Hatred can never cease hatred. Only loving-kindness ceases hatred. This is the eternal law." Well, since the vampires and werewolves live "forever", they have plenty of time to discover this eternal law? Selene the vampiress cum lycan death-dealer falls in love with Michael the unwitting lycan. Yes, maybe that's the answer to ending the battle for supremacy- the two species of underworldlings should embrace each other. Sadly, other than the two, the others have not given them their blessings. Thus the battle rages on... Exit the Underworld!
5. Let us learn something from everything- even if merely a fictitious movie. Afterall, did we not learn our basic humane morals from fairy tales? Is this not a modern fairy tale? Though with more violence? Well, isn't "Little Red Riding Hood" and "Three Little Pigs" pretty violent and scary too?
6. The Underworld reflects our world in many parellel ways- that's why we are able to relate to the story. Do we not turn beast-like (werewolf-like) and bloodthirsty (vampire-like) sometimes? For the same age-old pursuits too- for wealth (lycans' jealousy of vampires' aristrocracy), sex (Kraven's craving for Selene?), fame / power (Kraven's ambition to usurp Viktor's throne), food (humans' blood) and sleep (Viktor's "beauty" sleep for centuries for rejuvenation). Our demons of greed, hatred and ignorance at work are never much different from the creatures- whose bestial and bloodthirsty animal insticts are only more cinematically dramatised.
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