Vampires got an upgrade in Underworld, the 2003 Goth-chic horror actioner. In a canny spin on the genre, they earned the right to bear arms. Ostensibly, this was so bloodsuckers like Kate Beckinsale could blow away ''lycans'' (a.k.a. werewolves) with silver-nitrate rounds to the heart, as the two mutant forms were locked in a centuries-long battle. The real boon, however, was cosmetic: Vampires need guns because guns, like cigarettes, make people on movie screens look sexier even pasty, undead people with gore dripping off their fangs. In Underworld: Evolution, Beckinsale again doublefists her automatic hand cannons, but eventually you have to ask: What for? This time werewolves have, for the most part, ceded main villain duties to a supervampire (Tony Curran) with scary wings popping out of his back that double as spears, making all the noisy gunplay just sound and fury it signifies nothing, since vampires are immortal, remember? Bullets only slow them down. So the guns are a bit of a gyp, and the series never expands on the promise of its one innovation. Nevertheless, there remain minor pleasures. I especially like how, when Beckinsale's half-wolf, half-vampire friend Scott Speedman moves in for a kiss, you can hear the black leather of her dominatrix getup crinkle and crackle on the soundtrack like an old saddle. Sizzlin'!