The series begins at the supposed end of the war between the vampires and lycans. Selene (Kate Beckinsale) is a death dealer vampire that hunts werewolves, introduced dropping from a building where she was scowling like a gargoyle. The whole movie is a goth dream mimicking gunplay, leather, heavy metal, and superpowers from the popularity of The Matrix and adding the fantastical twist of mythology.
Selene notices that the remaining lycans are trailing a particular human Michael (Scott Speedman). The head of the lycans Lucian (Michael Sheen) has taken a particular interest in Michael. The movie contains some great action scenes that I remember really pleasing me when I was much younger. I always thought this movie had a great mix of action and horror tropes.
The plot is all sorts of jumbled picking up in the middle of a story so as to dull any sort of character emotional impact and confusing lots of different threads. There are treacheries and magical happenings that all come together with a bit of ridiculousness that is to be expected in these types of movies. The action lifts it up and the special effects don't look terrible even after thirteen years of advancement.
Selene senses that her vampire coven is in danger so awakes an elder Viktor (Bill Nighy). Under the direction of Len Wiseman the movies veers off into all sorts of plot twist that don't have much of an impact but in the end all the bad guys want to kill Michael who Selene has fallen for despite minimal chemistry.
The first installment sets up the world and has some decent action beats. It certainly looked as if it was always planned to have a sequel as Selene's behavior upheaves the status quo of the vampire coven and there is a remaining elder that will want answers and revenge, according to what I got from the plot. I've seen the movie several times and I'm still not sure I understand the vampire politics. Still, I'm a fan of this series and looking forward to the new movie in theaters.